1 (5m 14s): Way. When was the clues? When I look at the space between what I used to be and this record, I know I'm never be <inaudible> standing next to me. There was another in holding back the scene and shoot, I need reading of how I've been set free. There is a cross that bears the bird died for me. 0 (5m 60s): <inaudible> my dad left <inaudible> <inaudible> <inaudible> <inaudible> <inaudible> <inaudible> no, the name, the name that he who was and still is, and be may in the space between all I know would be, I know I'm <inaudible> <inaudible> <inaudible> closed all stuffing us. 0 (11m 49s): <inaudible> <inaudible> <inaudible> 2 (19m 28s): Yes, Lord. That is our aim today. That is our goal, as we gathered together, or thank you that you are Dan from the beginning, that Christians would gather for the purpose of worship. Lord, we worship you today for the purpose of being a witness to the world. How awesome, how mighty, how wonderful you are. Thank you. That you've put us here also to do good works and to be about your business. As we just desire every day, just to be filled by you, to love you, to serve you. And so Lord week, we give you our lives, a fresh thank you for meeting us here today. 2 (20m 11s): We are gathered together in your name. Your word tells us that you are here, you are with us in our midst, and we welcome you. We look to you for everything we submit to you, and we bless you in Jesus name God's people said, amen. Amen. Amen. So go ahead and have a seat. That would be wonderful. So just a little bit of background information, pastor Steve and his family, they, they try to take an annual trip to bass lake. And so they are gone for about a week. So pray Steve Henry and his, his clan. They couldn't go last year. 2 (20m 51s): Can you imagine why they couldn't go last year? Reason? None of us could go anywhere last year. So anyway, my name's Ron, I get to share with you today. So I want to welcome all of you in the sanctuary and also in the loss and in the patio and online, it's an amazing thing that we can really touch the world with the message of the gospel through technology, you know, and it's kind of an amazing thing. So as we begin this morning, as you know, yesterday was the 20th anniversary of the events of nine 11, the terror attacks of nine 11 being on the west coast, not on the east coast square at all took place. 2 (21m 33s): It's easy to be kind of disconnected, but just know this 2,977 people lost their lives on that day, 20 years ago on nine 11. What I've done this past week, just as a way of, I love history, but I want to know, I want to know what happened more fully be reminded about what happened 20 years ago on nine 11. And so I watched the documentary, it was done by national geographic and it's I think six episodes where they take you through day one. So it's just prior to, you know, the first Northern tower getting hit by, by the airline and then, and then it all unfolded from there. 2 (22m 21s): It, I think it's important to, to approach our lives and our world through a good sense of, of history of who we are, and not only 20 years ago, but certainly prior to that. And when we experienced something like that, it's becomes part of our lives. It's etched in our, our mind. Can you remember where you were on nine 11, 2001? Probably almost all of us can remember where we were, but out of that documentary, that documentary that I watched national geographic, it gave me such a overwhelming sense of appreciation for first responders, especially firefighters, and mainly because as everyone is pouring out of the buildings, they're rushing into the buildings to rescue people, to bring people to safety and not only the fireman, but also the medics and the police, you know, anyone that is a first responder. 2 (23m 24s): And it was so amazing to me to see their commitment to rescue people's lives in them, even in the midst of the potential of their own loss of life, but the, the comradery between them, between the firefighters. I, I've never known that the only I can even compare it to, and maybe, maybe the camaraderie that we share as believers in Christ in a moment of crisis. And so I'll tell you very quickly where I was on that day 20 years ago, DJ and I were actually, as it turned out, we'd spent a few months preparing for a fundraising event for lifeline crisis pregnancy center. 2 (24m 8s): And it was a fundraising event that we did for many years. It was a golf marathon. And so we were putting on this event and it landed on nine 11. And so we're all there at dairy Creek golf course up by quest college on highway one. And we got there really early, about five 30 in the morning because we had to get things set. And when you have maybe 30, 40, 50 people there golfers and, you know, raising money for lifeline and all the volunteers. And so we're in the cafe area, getting all the tables set up and the TV was on in this cafe area and a little after 6:00 AM, we heard some commotion and we walked in there and we see the Northern tower on fire. 2 (24m 48s): And of course, nobody really knew what was happening at that moment. And so we're sort of in awe, a shock and I guess, of, of what was going on. And then shortly after we see the plane going into south tower, and now this sense of soberness come, came upon us. And so, as we're thinking about what to do that day, do we cancel our event? Do we do, how do you do business as usual, knowing that on the east coast, 3000 miles away is this trauma, this tragedy that's unfolding that we, you know, we cannot comprehend. 2 (25m 30s): We weren't there. I wasn't there. And so what we decided to do, we gathered together for breakfast and to pray. So we prayed and we decided we're going to, we're going to go ahead and, and have our event. And we felt that in light of what was going on that raising money, raising funds to help save babies alive was important. But the strange thing about that day, there was roughly again, 30 or 40 golfers. So we go out on the golf course, we're all on a different, we all start in a different hole. We pair up, but it was this surreal feeling of we're playing golf, beautiful sunny day at dairy Creek, knowing the suffering that was happening in New York city and also at the Pentagon and also with flight 93. 2 (26m 24s): And, and one of the people in this documentary pointed out, you know, the, the terror attack was to bring about two things. It was to bring about an undermining of our freedom in America. And secondly, it was to establish a sense of fear among the people of America to undermine our freedom and to bring a sense of fear, to have us live in fear. So fast forward 20 years, I think we're still dealing with that feeling like we've lost some of our freedoms. Literally we have, and many people, not only from that tragedy, that terror event, but also what we're experiencing now. 2 (27m 11s): And so what I want to talk about this morning in a moment let's pray, Lord, we cannot fully understand the events that take place in human history. We can't fully understand what the people there experienced, what the first responders experienced and that they carried that with them after nine 11 and how it impacted them. And then with the events in Iraq and Afghanistan and in Florida, it's, it's almost too much for our us to handle, but Lord, we look to you. You're the one that makes sense out of things that don't make sense. 2 (27m 54s): You're the one that brings a sense of peace where otherwise there would be no peace. And so Lord, as we think about, even now, the people that are 20 years later are still suffering Lord, that you would give them peace, give them rest, Lord and father bless our first responders today. Lord, thank you that there are men and women, even in our midst that they're trained to go towards the danger to protect lives and save people. Lord bless them. We thank you for them in Jesus name. Amen. So what I want to look at today is we're going to be continuing where pastor Steve left off. 2 (28m 35s): So what we typically do at harvest church, as we go through books of the Bible and we finished one week, you know, go into the next one. So we've been going through the book of Titus. So if you want to turn to the book of Titus, we are in Titus chapter three, beginning with verse one. Now the way this typically works. So I knew that I was going to be speaking today about a month ago. And I, I wasn't sure where Steve was going to end off, but a few weeks ago he was his plan was to go through chapter two in one Sunday, but that didn't happen. And so he finished it last week. And so I'm looking ahead, I'm thinking, well, I'm going to be in five Lehman, which is the book right after Titus. So I realized, okay, I'm going to, I'm going to be in Titus chapter three. 2 (29m 16s): And I read verse one and I call Steve, Hey Steve, get your Bible out. Have you read Titus chapter three, verse one. So he reads it like, that's not fair, big. And I'll, I'll, I'll tell you why it's not fair and just a minute. Okay. And, but that's just the way it goes. And the beauty of teaching through books of the Bible is you have to hit everything. You can't, you can't say, well, I'm not, I'm uncomfortable with that. Or I don't understand that or be best to, you know, that's gonna make people upset or whatever you can, you can't do that. And it's a blessing. It's God's word. It's all. It's all good for us. So in the letter, this is a letter that Paul wrote to Titus. 2 (29m 59s): So Paul was a apostle. We know that everywhere he went, he's planting churches. So you spend some time on this island of Crete. It's a very big island. There's lots of cities, they're major cities. And so he's ready to leave. And he has left at this point and he appointed some people to be in charge of the churches that he planted. Well, one of them is this young man named Titus. So he's telling Titus, I need you. I need you to do a few things there to establish these churches, to help them grow, to become vibrant communities of believers. And so just by way of review, I'm looking at Titus chapter one, verse five, the scriptures will be up for you as well. So he says this to Titus. 2 (30m 40s): He says, for this reason, this is why I left you in Crete, that you should set in order the things that are lacking. So there's still some things that need to be done there. And I want you to appoint elders in every city as I commanded you. So church leadership is super important overseeing the work that God was doing. And so Titus was responsible to help establish leadership in these churches that were planted. And then, and then he continues in this letter. He says to Titus, Titus chapter two, verse one, he says, but as for you, so now he's speaking directly to Titus speak the things which are proper for sound doctrine. 2 (31m 21s): Titus. I want you to focus on doctrine, teaching establishing a solid firm foundation for these believers. He's talking about teaching the Bible. Now they didn't have the new Testament in that day. So it was, it was the new Testament. I, sorry, they didn't have the new Testament in that day. They did have, they had the old Testament scriptures. They get that right. Second time. Okay. So they had the old, old Testament books of the Bible. And that was sufficient because the holy spirit was speaking life into the words from the old Testament and illuminating them to show how they transition and fit and establish what would become the new Testament and sound. 2 (32m 3s): Teaching sound doctrine is super important. And then it continues in chapter two, verse 11. He says for the grace of God. So now he's going to talk about a bigger picture thing for the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men, teaching us that denying ungodliness and worldly lust. We should live soberly, righteously and godly in the present age. So now he's talking really, I think to the, to, to the believers there through Titus believers, followers of Jesus, he says you've received salvation through the grace, but it teaches us something. 2 (32m 43s): And it taught them something specific 2000 years ago, roughly. And is speaking the same, the same thing to us today. What did he say? It teaches us that denying ungodliness and worldly less. We are to live soberly. That is, we are to be, clear-minded clear thinking. We, we understand who we are in Christ. We are educated in the word of God in the scriptures. We are wise, we are discerning. We understand what's going on in their world. They understood what was going on. And in our world, we understand what's going on. 2 (33m 25s): And he also said, I want you to live righteously and godly in the present age. So we're going to fast forward because now we're, we're taking that. What Paul wrote to Titus is saying, this applies today, believers, we need to be thinking about this and applying this in our life as well. Living soberly, righteously, the righteousness of God and Christ, not our righteousness of course, and godly in our, in our present age. And then he sort of concludes that again, this is all just for intro chapter two, verses 13 and 14, w you know, why should we be doing all these things? Well, he tells us here looking for the blessed hope and the glorious appearing of our great God and savior Jesus Christ. 2 (34m 13s): Sometimes we get caught up in the muddle of, of just life and, you know, Christian life and day-to-day life. And, and yet he, he wants us to keep in focus, something that is promised to us that will happen. And he says, what is it? It's the blessed hope and the glorious appearing of our great God and savior Jesus Christ, who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us, set us free from every lawless deed and purify for himself, his own special people who are zealous for good works. So again, one of the things I want us to take away from this this morning is that we have purpose in the world in which we live today. 2 (34m 58s): I like in, in a king James version of that same verse, you know, new king, James says a special people. King James says a peculiar people, and I can test you a peculiar bunch of people. Okay. But if you think about it, we don't fit in. You know, we don't w we kind of go against the flow of the world against the stream. We resist some of the worldly things that are being indoctrinated into the world system today. And, and part of the teaching is we don't have to accept all the things that the world is, is, is telling us. We have to comply to these things were we're set apart. 2 (35m 39s): We're special, we're peculiar. But one of the things that we all were all zealous for his good works, we're going to talk about that. You may remember there was a song. I think it was done by crystal Lewis. It was either the eighties or nineties, but the sermon title for today is, is the title of her song. The song title is people get ready. Jesus is coming. People get ready. Jesus is coming. It's inevitable. It is a fact is a prophecy that will be fulfilled perhaps in our lifetime. We don't know. So now we're jumping into Titus chapter three. So there's four words that we're going to look at this morning. 2 (36m 18s): The first two are things that, that, that we're being encouraged to do. And the last two are things we're encouraged to be, to be aware of. So the first one is remind, we need to be reminded of some things and, and also affirm the other, another word is affirm, affirms some things in our Christian life. And then the other words are avoid certain things we need to avoid. And other things we need to reject. Now, if things are consistent in second services, they were with first service. I'm probably not going to get to the things that you need to resist and avoid. So you're probably going to ask steady that on the, on your own. Sorry about that. All right. So look at me now, Titus chapter three, verse one, Paul is talking to Timothy to Titus, sorry, Paul talking to Titus. 2 (37m 6s): He says, remind them, remind the believers to be subject to rulers and authorities, and to obey and to be ready for every good work. Alright. So part of the reason that Paul wanted Titus to be reminded or to remind the believers about these things is because Crete, the people of Crete, they had a long standing reputation of being very corrupt. It was a corrupt society, a corrupt culture, corrupt leadership, even it was part of their culture, but their culture needed to change. You see wherever the gospel goes, we're not looking to westernize people. 2 (37m 47s): We're not looking to bring democracy to people. We're looking to transform their life and their culture, which is going to set them free. And so Paul is reminding Titus. This is what it's all about. They were corrupt society that needed to be transformed. So once again, he says, remind believers to be subject to rulers and authorities, to obey and to be ready for every good work. So Paul talked about the same thing in other letters that he wrote, which I want to unpack just a little bit. The scriptures will be up on the screen for you. Romans chapter 13, beginning with verse one, it says, let every soul be subject to the governing authorities for there is no authority except from, and the authorities that exist are appointed by God. 2 (38m 40s): It's kind of a sober thought. Isn't it? Therefore, whoever resists the authority resists the ordinance of God. And those who resist will be bring judgment on themselves for rulers are not a terror to good works, but to evil. So here we have a little bit of a breakdown now of what leadership is supposed to look like. Even civil leadership. We're not even talking about godly leadership, civil leaders in a civil society. It says here, rulers are not a terror to good works, but to evil. Do you want to be unafraid of the authority? Do what is good? And you'll have praise for the same four. 2 (39m 20s): He's talking about whoever's in authority for he is God's minister to you for good. But if you do evil, be afraid for, he does not bear the sword in vain for he is God's minister and Avenger to execute wrath on him who practices evil. Therefore you must be subject, not only because of wrath, but also for conscience sake for, because of this, you also pay taxes for their God's ministers attending continually to this very thing. So what thing are they continually this very thing attending, attending to what thing are they attending to continually? 2 (40m 7s): And again, it's for his God's minister to you for good render, therefore to all their due tax, their due taxes to whom taxes are due customed to whom customs and fear to whom fear honor to whom honor. So the premise here is that leadership is intended to give a foundation for a civil society and it rewards good people, and it has consequences for evil. All right? And he brings in there. He says, and also, I want you to do this for conscience sake. You see I've found in my life. When I violate the laws, pick a law. 2 (40m 49s): When I violate a law, my conscience says red light alarm. What are you doing? Stop? Because I say, we have this intuitive understanding that, okay, this is the law. And as a, as a good citizen, or we would say, as a godly Christian person, we obey the law. We want to do. What's good. Peter also talked about this in first, Peter chapter two, beginning with verse 13, he says this submit yourselves to every ordinance of man for the Lord's sake, whether to the king, as Supreme or to governors as to those who are sent by him by the king for the punishment of evildoers and for the praise of those who do good. 2 (41m 44s): We see the same thing Peter's talking about encouraging good behavior and punishing evil doers for this is the will of God. That by doing good, you may put to silence the ignorance of foolish men as free yet not using Liberty as a cloak for vice, but as bond servants of God. And then he concludes with this honor, all people love the brotherhood, fear, God, and honor the king. So there's a bit of a hierarchy there. And both Paul and Peter talked about, Hey, the authorities that exist, God ordained these authorities for a certain purpose, but then he says, you know, honor, people love the brotherhood. 2 (42m 30s): I think he's talking about the community of believers, fear God, and honor the king. So what is our, what is our priorities in all this? And again, I'm kind of unpacking this to answer that question of Titus chapter three, and look at it, maybe in a more relevant way that you and I are facing right now. So remember Jesus, he was confronted by a religious ruler and you know, the religious Lew said, Hey, what, you know, what's the most important commandment of all, which is the most important commandment in the law of Moses. So Jesus replied, you must love the Lord, your God with all your heart, all your soul and all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. 2 (43m 11s): The second is equally important. Love your neighbor as yourself, the entire law and all the demands of the profits are based on these two commandments. So Jesus is affirming that same thing. Number one, love the Lord, your God. Everything flows from that with all your heart, soul, mind, and strength. It is impossible to love our neighbors as ourselves, without first loving God and honoring him. So back to what Peter said, honor, people love the brotherhood, fear, God, and honor the king. And so if we want to prioritize all those things, fearing God is on the top. 2 (43m 51s): Loving the Lord with all our heart. Soul mind. Strength is on the top. Everything flows from that. So based on that verse, I read a moment ago, first Timothy three, remind them to be subject to sorry, Titus chapter three, verse one, remind them to be subject to rulers and authorities to obey, to be ready for every good work. First question of the day. Is it ever appropriate to disobey those who are in positions of authority? Is it ever appropriate to disobey those who are in positions of authority? So the answer is yes. 2 (44m 31s): Okay. When is it appropriate to disobey? When by submitting to and obeying those who are in authority, we're actually disobeying God. The Bible has a number of examples for us of this very thing. I'm not going to have the scriptures up. I'm just going to read them to you. And the first one is in the book of Exodus, chapter one, you guys know the story. So Pharaoh's the king of Egypt. He's like the dictator of all. He gave this order to the Hebrew midwives and it names, the midwives Shipra and poor. This is what he said. When you help the Hebrew women, as they give birth watch, as they deliver, if the baby is a boy, kill him. 2 (45m 19s): If it is a girl, let her live. So again, the king of Egypt, the Pharaoh has made this decree to these midwives, but because the midwives feared God, they refuse to obey the King's order. They allowed the boys to live too. So the king of Egypt called for the midwives. Why have you done this? He come, he demanded. Why have you allowed the boys to live? The Hebrew women are not, this is their response. The Hebrew women are not like the Egyptian women. The midwives replied they're are more vigorous and have their babies so quickly. The, we cannot get there in time. 2 (46m 1s): So not only did they defy Pharaoh's decree to kill the boys, they actually lied about it to what was the response. So God was good to the midwives and the Israelites continued to multiply growing more and more. And because the midwives feared God, he gave them families of their own. He blessed them as a result of the fact that they refused to obey the command of Pharaoh. Another example, you guys know this one. Well, this is in the book of Daniel chapter three. And it's when Nebuchadnezzar had made this golden statue that I think was about 90 feet tall. And the command was given that everybody needs to worship this statue. 2 (46m 44s): He had created all the officials came and stood before the statue that came that never <inaudible> set up. And then a Herald shouted out people of all races and nations and languages listened to the King's command. When you hear the sound of the horn flute, zither Lear harp pipes and other musical instruments, bow to the ground to worship king Nebuchadnezzar, his gold statue, and anyone who refuses to obey will immediately be thrown into a blazing furnace. You know the story, there were three Hebrew, young men who, who basically said, we're, we're not doing that. 2 (47m 26s): Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego replied, oh, Nebuchadnezzar. So they're speaking to the utmost authority in the land of Babylon. At the time they said, we do not need to defend ourselves before you, if we're thrown into the blazing furnace, the God whom we serve is able to save us. He will rescue us from your power, your majesty, but even if he doesn't, we want to make it clear to you, your majesty, that we will never serve your gods or worship the gold statue that you've set up. 2 (48m 6s): You know, the rest of the story, similar situation. Now we're in, in the book of acts where the disciples, the apostles, they're going all over predominantly in Jerusalem at the time. And they're declaring what had occurred. That Jesus had been crucified that he'd been put in a tomb. And then he had risen from the dead. And they also blamed the religious authorities that they were the ones that actually put Jesus to death. So they brought the, the religious leaders, brought the apostle before the high council where the high priest confronted them. Didn't we tell you never again, to teach in this man's name. 2 (48m 49s): He demanded, instead you have filled all Jerusalem with your teaching about him, and you want to make us responsible for his death, but Peter and the apostles replied, we must obey God rather than man, or rather than any human authority on to say that again, Peter says, we must obey God, rather than any human authority. The apostles left the high council rejoicing that God had counted them worthy to suffer disgrace for the name of Jesus. And every day in the temple and from house to house, they continued to teach and preach this message. 2 (49m 29s): Jesus is the Messiah question. Once again, is it ever appropriate to disobey those who are in authority? The answer is yes. When is it appropriate? When by submitting to an obeying, those who were in authority were actually disobeying God, and why is this well? Because we ought to obey God rather than any human authority. All right. Remember the verse I read earlier, it was Titus chapter two. It says that we should live soberly, righteously and godly in this present age. So let's fast forward. 2 (50m 9s): Now. Now we're talking about real life. We're talking about the things that you and I face decisions. We make things that we're being told to do restrictions that are being placed upon us mandates that are being put upon us. And we have to make a decision. And I want to say, I'm not going to tell you today what your decision should be. I only know what my decision is and what I have discovered in my life, personally, something about my personality, my character, which I didn't really fully understand before. Is it the more I'm being told? What I must do? 2 (50m 50s): You must comply to this. You must, this is a mandate upon you. I find what I do is I just dig my heels in all the more, and I'm not trying to be obstinate about it or rebellious about it. But in my spirit, in my conscience, I'm sensing God does not want me to do this. And at some point I think it is our responsibility to push back. Maybe not about everything. And I'm going to talk about that in just a minute, but what I have here in my hand right now, it's a document and it's titled order. Number six of the county health officer requiring face coverings in all public indoor settings, attributable to the rise in SARS, cov two Delta variant. 2 (51m 35s): So this was put in place September 1st, what what's today? The 12th. So 12 days ago. So I'm going to read one paragraph. This order directs that face coverings shall be worn regardless of vaccination status over the mouth and nose in all indoor public settings, venues, gatherings, and workplaces, such as, but not limited to offices, retail stores, restaurants, and bars, fitness centers, theaters, museums, personal care services, family entertainment centers, conference centers, and government offices serving the public. 2 (52m 17s): So what I'm going to do now is I'm going to give you two things. I'm going to give you my personal opinion on some things. And I'm going to give you also the position that harvest church, the leaders of harvest church have taken concerning some of these things. And so I'm going to give you, first of all, my personal opinion, let me backtrack. So at harvest church, what we typically do is the elders gathered together. The elders of harvest church are Steve Henry, Jim Erickson, Nilo Hagen, Gary Tucker and myself. We take these things very, very seriously. So we, not just this, but we, we gathered together. 2 (52m 59s): There's a decision that needs to be made, something that needs to it's impacting our church and we pray. And we, we, we communicated about it and we, we attempt to always be unanimous in our decisions about what's best for harvest church. And just please know that whatever decision we come up with, it's something that we feel that God is having us do a direction to take a decision that's made for the benefit of the church. Now things may happen. And I'm sure in any church, things happen where we might not understand, or we might not agree, or why are they doing that? And I don't think they should do that and whatever, and that's totally fine. If you ever have a question about anything that we decision we make, but feel free to come and come and talk to us about it. 2 (53m 43s): But more importantly, please be in prayer for, for the elders of harvest church, because it's a, we have a big responsibility. We're responsible for God's people. And, and we want our church to have a solid foundation and we want all of us to grow and, and just be confident that as a, as a body of believers, we're, we're on the right track. So personally, back to the mask mandate, all right, personally, I don't have a problem wearing a mask. If a business establishment requires me to wear a mask, I will gladly wear a mask. I don't have a problem with that at harvest church. 2 (54m 26s): So now we're talking about our church in particular, we've chosen to leave the decision up to you. So the decision is up to you, whatever you feel is best for you. So I want to go backtrack this a little bit. Remember it was, I believe April and may of 2020, where we were told. In fact, I think all businesses, all churches, we are were told, you must shut down and everything came to a screeching halt. You guys remember that? And we complied. We stopped having church. We did everything online. We didn't gather our, our space was utterly empty. 2 (55m 5s): And so w w for a couple of months, we agreed to do that. But, but then we began to sense that God was wanting us to do something different. And so he began to meet again. Now we, we removed a bunch of chairs. We set up a big outdoor venue. We encourage people to sit outside, you know, wear a mask. If you want to have some distance between you. So back to if you'd like to wear a mask in any of our venues, we encourage you to do so. And that is perfectly fine. 2 (55m 46s): In fact, backtrack just a little bit when we were doing church outside exclusively, I think we did it for like about three months, four months. I remember I thought it was super fun, mainly because we lived on the central coast of California, where you can pretty much have our outdoor church all the time. You know? So I have fond memories of that. But at harvest church, our leaders have chosen not to mandate the wearing of masks and our worship venues. We leave that decision up to you see all along, our default has been. How about if we let individual people, individual families decide what they're comfortable with, what is safe for you, safe for your family and those around you. 2 (56m 28s): So in that regard, we are pro choice. We're pro choice. It's up to you, we're supporting a Christian's right to choose. So now back to my opinion, in my opinion, it's really not about the mask mandate. That concerns me. Perhaps you heard our president last Thursday, he is putting in place. I'm just reading from my notes here. He's putting in place vaccine mandates, not only for all federal workers and contractors, but also for all businesses with 100 or more employees. And again, to be clear, in my opinion, I don't necessarily have a problem with the vaccines. 2 (57m 12s): I do have a problem with our government potentially forcing us to get them. And by the way, by definition, they're not actually a vaccine. They are in fact gene therapy, which is a new technology, never been used before. A new technology that has no long-term data to determine its safety. In fact, a person who is fully recovered after having COVID has a superior immunity against the virus and all the variants compared to those who have been fully vaccinated. 2 (57m 59s): Again, that was my opinion. So ultimately what I personally have a hard time with is the sense that we are being manipulated. We are being lied to about many things. I have the feeling that we're being set up. And in my opinion, our leaders seem to be sewing and fueling division and discord within our country. I don't know if you guys are aware of this. There's the thing is called the Nuremberg code. The Nuremberg code was established prior at the end of world war two, when they were holding those accountable for the atrocities of the, the Nazis, the Germans, and one of the things that was being done during world war two is the Nazis were doing experiments, medical experience, experiments on Jewish people and, and others without their consent. 2 (58m 55s): So the Nuremberg code, which was established and voted on by the international community, this is international treaty in the Nuremberg code. It is said that you cannot, no nation can coerce or force its citizens to take medical procedures that they, that they do not want to receive. So it's international law and it's in violation of our laws as well. So it seems to me that our leaders are sewing and feeling division and discord within our country. Do you remember what Jesus said about this in Luke chapter 11? 2 (59m 38s): He said this every kingdom, every nation divided against itself is brought to desolation. And if a house is divided against itself, that house cannot stand. Do you remember the, the two things that the terrorists, those who committed the terrorist attacks on nine 11, they, what they wanted to do is they wanted to undermine our freedom and they wanted to keep us in fear. I see that same thing, continuing, and, and maybe even being more impactful now in our day now, to be clear, I'm not ignorant of the seriousness of COVID. 2 (1h 0m 26s): In fact, about two weeks ago, one of our dear friends died from COVID and he's 58 years old, relatively healthy guy. So I'm not in any way saying that this isn't a serious health issue that we need to be dealing with and, and praying about and ask God how we should approach it. But again, the census that we're being manipulated and lied to my opinion, is that as much as we would all like things to get back to normal, things are never going to get back to normal. 2 (1h 1m 16s): Things are quickly moving in the direction of what the prophets foretold in the Bible. One world leader, one world government, a cashless global economy that is controlled in such a way so that a person cannot buy or sell without receiving a special mark on their right hand or on their forehead, back to Titus three, one, remind them to be subject to rulers and authorities to obey. But here's the thing I really want to focus on this morning to be ready for every good work, to be ready for every good work. 2 (1h 2m 1s): So as Christian men and women, we are all about being a godly and a good influence in our community and in the world. We're all about being ready for every good work I trust. God will give us the wisdom, the discernment, the ability to make these decisions as we need to make them. But we're all called in whatever area of life you live, whatever sphere of impact you have to be ready for every good work. In fact, actually, I would say this, you were born for this Ephesians chapter two verse 10 for we are God's workmanship. We are his workmanship created in Christ Jesus for good works. 2 (1h 2m 44s): You're born for this, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them. Perhaps we are here today for such a time as this, when I would pray, we would pray that people's hearts could begin to be opened up to the gospel message. Maybe such as never has happened before. Jesus talked about, you know, the fields there they're ready for the harvest. He said, but you need to pray for laborers to go out into the harvest and to bring them in. Jesus is returning that that is the first certain thing. We don't know when, but until he comes back again, I think our priorities should be bringing the gospel, taking the gospel to as many people as possible in our world and bringing them to Jesus who will give them that sense of living a life without fear, living in the freedom and the Liberty, where in crisis set us free. 2 (1h 3m 47s): Finally, this is the last scripture want to present to us today. And this is from Matthew chapter five, verse 16. Jesus said, this, let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your fathers and head that isn't heaven. Lord, I pray father that you would instill in us. Lord a sense, not a fear, but a sense of victory. Lord, I pray that as there is this, I don't know if I'd call it a conspiracy, but this movement to undermine our freedom in America, undermine our liberties. Lord, I pray that you would help us understand that if any man is in Christ, that we are free, our freedom comes from you and Lord. 2 (1h 4m 36s): I also pray that as we are confronted with all the decisions, the mandates, the challenges, the forcings upon us, that comes our way. Lord help us to make the decision that is obedience to you, where we need to comply, help us to comply, where we need to disobeyed, help us to do that with humility and Lord, I know many of us in our workplaces, we're being mandated to do these things. And it's a difficult decision about either complying or, or losing our job. Lord, I pray that you'd help us to come to the conclusion that obedience to you is far superior than a job that you will provide for us, no matter what happens, no matter what threats might come our way or because we belong to you. 2 (1h 5m 26s): So Lord, we just look to you for everything. Build us up in our most holy faith, give us in this day, discernment like no other. And we bless you. We thank you in Jesus name. We pray. Amen. Amen. Let's all stand. We're going to continue to worship this morning. 1 (1h 10m 45s): I'd like to invite the prayer team up. I think now's a good time. And then if anybody would like to respond and just receive some prayer, what we're going to have, we're just going to have them up here during the last song. 0 (1h 10m 57s): Good morning. <inaudible> 1 (1h 14m 3s): Thank you, Lord, for setting us free. Thank you. That like true freedom from, from sin and death only comes through Jesus and we have it right here, Lord, I just thank you for the access we get through through Jesus.
0 (10s): <inaudible> <inaudible> <inaudible> <inaudible>. 0 (11m 48s): Bye God. 0 (11m 52s): <inaudible> <inaudible> you never stop. 0 (13m 49s): You never stop. Never stop. <inaudible> stop. Stop. Stop. 0 (14m 7s): <inaudible> stop. 0 (16m 13s): Stop, stop, stop, stop. Stop. 0 (16m 28s): <inaudible> promise in the thought that is a true story, Lord. 0 (17m 47s): That is who you are. You are always working in us 1 (17m 53s): With us and through us. And that we're so humbled by that heard a song this week that said, when everybody's running away, God is running towards you. Through failures, mistakes, dumb things that we say when people are moving away from us, God, you're moving toward us because you're working and your grace is sufficient kindness. 1 (18m 34s): Everlasting, your love unconditional hard to fathom. Thank you for it. Lord, God continue to move toward us in this service Lord and help us to move toward you as well. Lord, as we worship you, as we open up your word and receive instruction, Lord, we want to hear what you have to say to us, not just today, but every day, Lord God. Today's just the time that we gather corporately and we hear together what you want to say to the body of Christ, but Lord, every day, Lord, help us to remain in you, to abide in you, to be connected to you, to be filled with you. 1 (19m 16s): Lord God, I don't know about the rest of the group, the Lord. I can't do it without you. I don't want to do it without you. So thank you Lord, for your kindness to ride out the storms of life with us to be faithful when things are good. And when things are hard, you're faithful. God minister all over the central coast is people are struggling with illness and issues. Lord God, I just pray God that she bring healing all over the central coast. 1 (19m 58s): God, that people would know that you're alive and well because of the good work that you're doing. God, thank you more. Be ministering all over the world and places like Afghanistan, where they're just hard and horrific things happening, Lord God, we just pray for your grace, your sovereign power and presence all over the globe. Lord God that you be protecting people and rescuing people and responding to the hard cries of people meeting the physical needs and the spiritual needs of people all over the globe or God, God would just invite you to do wonderful and supernatural things locally and globally. 1 (20m 42s): God help us to be mindful to be prayerful and to be faithful. We pray in Jesus name. Amen. Hey man, 2 (20m 49s): You can be seated. God bless you. God bless you. Thank you. Worship team. We've titled the message today. The PA the path to godly character in a fallen world and had a chance to be tested in this arena on, in, in a golf match that I was in this week, the path to godly character in a fallen world. One guy said I've given up cussing, unless I'm on the golf course. I didn't say that somebody else said that, but I might as well have said that. So the path to godly character in a fallen world. 2 (21m 30s): So money, money, where we were playing golf this week and, and we're excited, we're gonna go out and play 18 holes of golf. And, and we get out there and we get behind this, excuse me, but we get behind this geriatric couple, this very old couple and which is fine, but they were very slow as well. And I'm very, 3 (21m 51s): Very thoughtful about every shot and, and it just went on 1 (22m 1s): And on and on and on. And 2 (22m 3s): So finally, at one point we decided if we're going to just jump over this couple and go to the next hole. And then we ran into the same thing, another old couple who bless their hearts. They were very, just thoughtful about every shots. And, and so we get through the front nine and then we decided let's just go have lunch. Hopefully all of the slow people get, get ahead of us and move and get moving. And then we'll be able to get out and play. But the truth is we were playing such terrible golf, both of us from the first strike of the ball to the very last strike of the ball that we were completely discouraged with our golf game. 2 (22m 46s): And then we were, so it was just, we sat at lunch and we said, this was, this has been a, a lesson in patience today, the path to godly character in a fallen world and imperfect world. And so we were tested that day. We were so discouraged after nine holes and after lunch, then we get to lunch and we're at the counter for lunch. And then we get behind this other, I think it was one of the same couples that we were behind on the golf horse. And they were very thoughtful about every decision that they were making at the cafeteria there, the, the restaurant in and the service was really, really slow. 2 (23m 30s): So every moment we had opportunity to be, to find the path, to godly character in a fallen world, because you want to lash out you're right. You're like, w we, we wanted to say speed it, Alice, right? You want to just kind of yell it out there and get anxious. But, but we decided not to do that. And we just crumbled amongst ourselves instead, which is, you know, the high road, I guess in that situation, we shouldn't have grumbled at all, but we did. And so we just quit. We quit after nine holes and went home. We decided it was over. I was reading in Proverbs chapter three. It's not going to be up on the screen. But I was reading this yesterday in light of the message that I wrote this week. 2 (24m 14s): Proverbs three 15 through 17 says wisdom is more precious than rubies. Nothing you desire can compare with her. She offers you long life in her right hand and riches and honor in her left, she will guide you down delightful paths. She will guide you down delightful paths. All her ways are satisfying. And so I thought it was interesting that that word path was used in my devotional reading. After I'd written the message, there's an expectation that God has upon us. It's put upon us. And it is to be expected actually as believers and followers of the Lord, Jesus Christ. 2 (24m 59s): Why? Because we're filled with actually, we're filled with his presence. When we come to faith in Jesus, we're told that his spirit, the third person of the Trinity, the person of the holy spirit actually comes in, takes up residency lives in us. And so we're to live our lives as believers, as followers of the Lord, Jesus Christ, reflecting that life that is within us. And we're told in John 15 to abide in Christ that he will abide in us and we will produce much fruit. And so out of that life of a biting remaining in Christ and being filled with the holy spirit, there's actually, there's actually a change of life that is obvious or should be obvious in us and with us, we're in Titus chapter two, but at the end of Titus chapter one, Paul wrote about the corrupt and unbelieving. 2 (25m 51s): He said, this is why they were corrupt and unbelieving. He said, they claim to know God, but they deny him by the way they live their lives. Isn't that interesting? So he said, they claim to know God, but they deny him by the way that they're living their lives. In other words, Paul could look at their lives and know that they're not, that they don't actually know God they're there. Their lives were actually in congruence. What they said, they believed didn't actually line up with the way that they live their lives. There there's a specific path, the path of godly wisdom that we must choose to develop godly character. 2 (26m 33s): And it's in doing so that our lives 3 (26m 36s): Arguing group, once we 2 (26m 39s): Live not perfectly, we can all raise our hands and talk about the struggles that we have followers of the Lord, Jesus Christ, things that get us into trouble and things that that causes problems. So we're not talking about perfection, but we are talking about consistency. And, and we're talking about on an honest pursuit of God, God, and his plans and purposes for our lives and honest pursuit of the path of righteousness that God is calling us to live on. So there's a specific path. It's the path of godly wisdom that we must choose news. And it's something that I find I got to choose all the time. 2 (27m 19s): I got to change. I got to choose it like on the golf course, I got to choose it. What I'm doing just about everything. I've got to choose this godly path or else by default, I'm off, off the path and do thinking and saying, and acting like I shouldn't be acting. So if I don't choose the path that I'm off the path all together. So that of wisdom keeps us congruent in the way that we live our lives. So we, we, we actually begin to live in the way that God has called us to live. So Paul wrote to Titus this clear instruction regarding life and lifestyle and how to live. 2 (28m 2s): He said in verse one, Titus two, one is for you, Titus promote the kind of living that reflects wholesome teaching. So he, Paul saying it matters. And we see it throughout the whole Bible old and the new Testament, whether Paul's writing about it or somebody else, we're seeing that it matters how we live our lives. As for you, Titus Titus, you're leading the people of God on the island of Crete, eat this godless place, this worldly place. I want you to promote the kind of living that reflects wholesome teaching, make sure your living and your teaching line up. 2 (28m 44s): And this is a challenge for anybody like myself, who has a teaching role and responsibility, but it's not just about pastors and people upfront. It's about small group Bible study leaders. It's about youth leaders and Sunday school leaders and good news clubs, leaders it's about anybody who wants to proclaim with their lips, with their mouth, that they profess Jesus. We need to make sure that our living and our teeth Ching lineup Titus must live in such a way that his life models wholesome T teaching the teaching you received from Paul and the teaching. He gives day to day. 2 (29m 25s): So all of our lives should be, they should reflect the wholesome teaching we are receiving. So I get up on Sunday morning and I preach and teach and lead. And it's our job myself. First and foremost to take in what I say this all the time, I'm preaching to myself mostly. And if you get something out of it, then God bless you, but I'm mostly teaching to myself, you know, and all of us. And we need to make sure w what we're hearing as we listen to the teaching. And then as we open it of the scripture, because we need to be opening up the scripture to learn, to sell feed and, and, and teach and be taught by the holy spirit and, and be, and be learning all the time. 2 (30m 6s): As we look at them, the word of God, like a mirror held up to our lives. We say, oh, I'm actually not doing this. Yes, very well. And so Lord, forgive me for not doing this very well. I need to make sure that I'm doing this. So by your spirit and in your power, Lord helped me to do that. So we all need to reflect the wholesome teaching we're receiving. So that's a responsibility, right? It's a responsibility, the teacher, but also on the student, I need to be teaching and then making sure that my life is like coming up with what I'm teaching. And then the student must listen 3 (30m 41s): And then make sure their 2 (30m 43s): Lives are lining up with what is being taught. So the pupil and the teacher both have this responsibility that our lives accurately reflect the wholesome teaching of the scripture. So what does wholesome teaching look like? Your Bible might use the words like sound 3 (31m 2s): Doctrine. 2 (31m 3s): Your translation might say sound right. Doctrine sound doctrine is basically healthy doctrine. Healthy doctrine leads to a healthy, spiritual life. This contrasts with the disease. Remember we learned last week that the religious leaders, this church leaders in this, on this island of Crete were actually misleading. The people there were actually not godly people. They said that they knew God, but they denied him by the way they live their lives. So this contrast, this healthy doctrine, it contrasts with the diseased teaching of the religious leaders on the island in Titus one nine. It says that the elders are to encourage others with wholesome teaching or with sound doctrine, sound doctrine are the truths that we believe. 2 (31m 53s): They're the trues that we teach as followers of the Lord, Jesus Christ. It's our Christian statements of faith. It's this doctrine that we hold, dear. It's the chews we teach and preach. We already are Christian believers. Titus must teach these truths to do a couple different things to combat godless teaching, right? Because we're always hearing godless things, things that are not godly and things that are not truth. And so the truth of God's word combats, that, and he helps us to think properly about it, but it also equips the believers for good works in Christ. When we have a proper understanding of biblical doctrine, godly doctrine, then we live out of that. 2 (32m 38s): We live out of our, if the information that we believe we live out of that, that, and then hopefully we're making wise choices and we're staying on the path that God would have us to stay on. So Titus my teach these truths, the most combat godless teaching and do equip the believers for good works in Christ. Verse two, he says, teach the older men to exercise self-control to be worthy of respect and to live wisely. They must have sound faith and be filled with love and patience. So the path to godly character and a fallen world, number one, step one, exercise self-control. So this is for the older men, but as we will see these characteristics for the men, the older men, the older women, the younger man, the younger women for slaves, all of the above, they apply to all of us. 2 (33m 31s): They apply to all of us. And so we're actually, we actually won't become older, godly people. If we don't begin the process now, 3 (33m 44s): Well, there's, we, you know, they're there, 2 (33m 47s): There are exceptions to that. Obviously people come to faith in Christ, late in life. I remember Jolene's grandpa came to faith late in life, and he was completely transformed. He was completely transformed by the grace message of the Lord, Jesus Christ, as he was filled with the holy spirit. And he became, as we reflect in, as we remember, cause he passed about 10 years ago or so maybe a little bit longer, but we reflect on his life. He was totally transformed, getting saved at about, I don't know, in probably 80 years old or so. 3 (34m 21s): So 2 (34m 22s): There, there are exceptions, but the best way to gain this, that kind of stuff has to begin when we're young and to live a lifetime exercising self-control. So the older men are to 3 (34m 35s): Understand and grow in this 2 (34m 36s): Area of self-control and then model it to everyone. But this truth is for every one self-control well, let's unpack that a bit. Self-control it's fruit or evidence of the holy spirit control in our lives. Self-control I think I'll be wrestling with this area of self-control for the rest of my life. So it's good that I start now or hopefully started awhile ago because it'll be something that will be a burden to me for the rest of my life. Self-control but it was really the fruit or evidence of the holy Spirit's control. 2 (35m 18s): It's evidence that the holy spirit is in us when we have self-control regarding our words, thoughts and deeds. It's not just about our deeds. It's just not about our words, but it's about our thoughts as well. That secret place where we can get out of control with a lack of self-control. And so God's concerned about all three, right? Because Jesus said, if you sin in your heart, you it's just like you've done it naturally or outward. So self-control all fruit or evidence of the holy spirit. So if you're lacking, self-control just ask the holy spirit, 3 (35m 59s): God, I need 2 (35m 60s): Self-control regarding my anger toward this person or regarding my attitude toward this person or regarding my responsibility in this circumstance. God give me self, okay. Control where they have respect. That's the next one self-control goes a long way in helping someone be worthy of respect. Think about the people that you respect in your life. Those people probably have self-control troll figured out. They've figured out how to control themselves and word thought indeed. And because they figured out how to control themselves and word that need, they are worthy of respect. You usually we respect people who are making wise choices. 2 (36m 43s): We respect people who are living their life, maybe the way that we hope to live our lives. And so we hold somebody in esteem saying, I respect that person because I respect the way that they're living their lives. Dave's who is respect again, people who make wise choices. And so I think about our, our, my life as a follower of Jesus Christ is my life worthy of respect. I do somewhat, some would say yes, some, some would say no way. Yeah, I, 3 (37m 12s): But my 2 (37m 14s): Audience is God, what does God think is my life worthy of respect? And thank God for his mercy. Amen. Who is worthy of respect. People who make wise choices. So it's a, it's a lifetime of, of, of kind of attaining this respect. It's a lifetime where throughout the course of a life, you look at somebody's life and you say, man, there's been consistency, but also we've known, we've all known people. Who've made mistakes who have repented of those mistakes. And they've lived consistently or people who are humble in the midst of their mistakes. And they're there. What is God working in your life? What has God want to get changed in your life so that you can become a person who is worthy of respect. 2 (37m 55s): Maybe you just need to speak differently to people. Maybe you need to think differently about your life. Maybe you need to act differently in relationship to your circumstances in life. None of us have a perfect life with perfect circumstances. So we have to figure out how to live as a person worthy of respect, no matter what we're going through. Difficult marriages, difficult kids, a difficult financial situation, difficult physical stuff. Are we living in a way that we're worthy of respect? This is the call that God has put upon older men, but it's something that all of us need to attain to. And it's only attainable through the power of the holy spirit when we yield God. 2 (38m 36s): And when we walk with God 3 (38m 40s): Being 2 (38m 41s): Filled with his presence and remaining in him the last couple of days, probably because of our journey group, we were talking about abiding in God. And that's kind of the whole abiding in Christ. That's pretty much the theme or the underlying theme of everything that we do in journey. So I've been thinking about a lot lately. So I I've been getting up in the morning and say, Lord, help me to abide in you. I don't think I've prayed that prayer much in my life I have, but not that much. And so lately, especially this week, I've said, Lord, help me to abide in you. Meaning I want my words, thoughts and deeds it's to reflect who you are. So if I'm up against a difficult situation, I want to make sure my words 3 (39m 22s): Reflect 2 (39m 23s): Who you are. I want to abide in you. And then hopefully out of that, there's there's wise choices and respect. Jesus said, yes, I'm the vine. You are the branches. Those who remain in me and I then will produce much fruit for apart from me. You can do nothing. 3 (39m 40s): John 15 there. So 2 (39m 42s): People who remain abiding Christ make wise choices. What else? The old men are supposed to have sound faith. The older men must have sound. Faith sound. Faith comes from sound. Faith sound. Faith comes from, how do you get sound faith while your faith will be tested to prove whether it's sound or not. There's just no other way around it. It will be tested. It's like building a boat. You've eventually got to put that boat in the water to see if it will float. If the float, if the boat doesn't float, it's not a sound boat, right? A boat is designed to float and to carry passengers and cargo. 2 (40m 25s): So if it doesn't do that, then it's not sound. And so what happens? The boat comes back out of the water and they go back to work on the boat, right? It's tested, right? So maybe you're pulled, been pulled out of the water so that your faith can be tested. And you're about to be put back in the water to see if your boat floats be okay, either way, be okay with it work because the work is done by the, the boat builder. In this case, the spirit of God, the person of God who wants to make you see worthy, you see worthy so that you can be effective doing the things that he's called you to do and living the way that you've called. 2 (41m 7s): He's called you to live so older. Men must have sound faith. And that again is developed over the course of life. Maybe you don't have sound faith right now, but you're saying, God, I want you to, I'm sinking in the water. And it take me out, put me on the rack and fix 3 (41m 24s): Me. All right? 2 (41m 27s): And you're saying, God, what does it need? What do I need to be fixed? Then you go back and maybe you're, you're looking at all these attributes that we're talking about today and tie this to you. And you're saying, I 1 (41m 35s): Need that. And I need that. And I need that. You're making a little 2 (41m 38s): Shopping list and let's let the holy spirit make that shopping list for you. He might say, yeah, you're doing great there, but you need this. He knows us better than we know ourselves. Self-control worthy of respect, sound faith. And the older man must also be filled with love and 3 (41m 55s): Patience, love and patience. I think 2 (42m 2s): Sometimes as we get older, we get a little less loving and a little less patient. That's the temptation, right? Little less loving. Cause we get a little more cynical. Right? Right. Cause we know things where we think we do. We've got opinions about things. And so we get a little less loving, a little less patience. So I think it's interesting that that Paul said to the older men be filled with love and patience. Jesus said in John 1334 and 35, it's up on the screen. So now I'm giving 3 (42m 33s): You a new commandment, love each other, love each other. How just as I have loved you, you should love each other. Your love for one another 2 (42m 45s): Will prove to the world that you are my disciples. 3 (42m 48s): When we're loving each 2 (42m 50s): Other, like Jesus loves us. We're demonstrating that we belong to him, that we belong to Jesus because our love looks just like Jesus's love 3 (43m 0s): For the world. A new commandment 2 (43m 3s): Love each other just as I have loved you, you should love each other. Your love for one another will prove to the world that you are my disciples. So that's the doctrine of love or to love, not just in 3 (43m 16s): Word. I love you. We should say that. We should say it often to the people that we love, but our 2 (43m 27s): Actions should reflect that statements. Just like our actions should, should support the statement of our faith. It's just support our love. So are we doing loving things 3 (43m 39s): Where we're just getting crotchety as we get old, 2 (43m 46s): The doctrine of love, this is what Jesus taught us about. Love and impatience. 3 (43m 52s): I think 2 (43m 52s): We should, as we get older, we should be the most patient people 3 (43m 54s): In the world. But what happens? 2 (43m 57s): We start aching everywhere. We start, you know, start feeling all the pains of life. And, and then we get impatient and we kind of justify our inpatients. Where's the, ah, I'm an old guy. Everybody, everybody should be patient with me. Right. And, and, but that's not what the Bible says. That's not what Paul is telling us. He said, be patient. The, the younger people in our lives should witness our patients and then desire that it's something that's is very difficult in this day and age. 2 (44m 39s): But it's a work of the holy spirits 3 (44m 42s): That makes 2 (44m 43s): Us patients. So be patient, the older men must be patient. It's a lifetime process. Right? So number one, exercise. Self-control number two. Choose to honor. God says in verse three, similarly. Yeah. That's always a hard word for me to say, similarly, teach the older women to live in a way that honors God 3 (45m 8s): Teach the older women 2 (45m 9s): To live in a way that honors God. Paul's addressing the issues of the people on this Greek island called Crete. And he's fashioning a list of areas for men and women, old men, old women, young women, young men, slaves, he's fashioning a list of areas that need attention. So Paul was writing a letter to you. What might that look like? What might that list be? Mate, maybe you can kind of take a little bit from each and every area and say, yeah, this is kind of my, yes, this is kind of my lists teach the older women to live in a way that honors God. 2 (45m 52s): And then he just kind of unpacks that. He said, they must not slander others. The king James version says don't be a false accuser. In other words, your words should be seasoned with 3 (46m 10s): Grace. So 2 (46m 13s): Maybe you check with your self or check with the holy spirit. That's a better idea. So I got, should I say this? I think we should be filled so filled with the holy spirit that God has full access to our lives. So that when we're about to say something, because he knows that we're going to say, he knows what we're going to say before we say it. He knows what we're going to do before we do that. We give him full access so that we actually are so sensitive to the holy spirit that we hear him say, sheesh, like stop. Like don't, don't say that. All right. And then what w we say, yes, Lord. 2 (46m 53s): Right? We say, yes, Lord. Like I know what I was going to say. And you know what I was going to say, but I'm, I'm, I'm not going to say it. Or if we're about to do something and word thought or deed, and he says, stop, 3 (47m 13s): We have 2 (47m 15s): A sensitivity to the holy spirit. And so we, I think that's what God's desire for us and sending the holy spirit to do, empower us to live the kind of life that he's called us to live, to do the works that he's called us to do. But he's got to have close access to our hearts and minds that just with the still a smallest voice, he's got her attention and we do what he says to do. So maybe the next time we're tempted to, and again, this is not just for older women, but this is for all of us. All of this list is, but specifically there must've been an issue with the older women, slandering, falsely accusing. 2 (47m 56s): And so he's addressing yet. So maybe, maybe this is your issue. Maybe it's not your issue, but maybe the next time you're tempted to slander and we're all tempted to slander. Maybe you just say, God, 3 (48m 8s): I, I want to make sure 2 (48m 10s): That my words are seasoned with grace. I want to listen and then watch your behavior. And your words change as the holy spirit says, stop, don't be falsely accused or your words should be seasoned with grace. Speaking the truth in love. We're we're really good at speaking the truth. We're really good at that. Right? But speaking the truth in love so that our words are seasoned with grace, what does it mean to speak the truth in love? It means we want the very best for the person that we're speaking the truth to. We're not looking to be right. We're not looking to accuse. 2 (48m 52s): We're just speaking the truth in love and that we want to see that person built up in their faith and their understanding. We want to see that per person restored. We make sure that person is loved. And sometimes we say hard things, but it's done in love. 3 (49m 12s): We've done our part. We must 2 (49m 14s): Us to speak the truth, but we must speak the truth and love again, this is not just for older women, but all of us also it says, or be a heavy drinker. So older women must not be heavy drinkers and slaves to much wine. It says we live in wine country. So we have to guard against this. It doesn't say don't drink wine. It says don't be enslaved to much wine or be heavy drinker. So just be careful, be careful that you're not drinking 3 (49m 50s): Too much. 2 (49m 52s): Bible says, yeah, the fees is five. Don't be drunk with wine. It will ruin your life instead. Be filled with the holy spirit. So be careful. Some of us have Liberty to drink. Some of us don't have Liberty to drink. Some of us can drink a little in moderation and we're fine. Some of us can't drink at all because we won't be fine. So pay attention to what you're doing and make sure that you're fine. Make sure that you're good with the Lord. Maybe it's the holy spirit again, saying stop to that extra bit or two at all. Don't be heavy drinkers. Why? Because drunkenness leads to foolishness and foolishness is the antithesis of what we're trying to accomplish as followers of the Lord, Jesus Christ. 2 (50m 39s): We want to be on a path, the path to godly character in a fallen world. Instead, the older women should teach others. What is good in word? And indeed so older women are to teach 3 (50m 55s): In word 2 (50m 55s): And indeed. So it actually doesn't do a lot of good just to speak. If there's not action, following the speaking, 3 (51m 7s): It actually 2 (51m 8s): Is pretty pointless to try to and give instruction when there's not 3 (51m 13s): Evidence that you're following 2 (51m 16s): That instruction yourself. So instead of the older women should teach others, what 3 (51m 21s): Is good? So not drinking to excess drunkenness, not slandering others, living in a way that honors God that's, God's call for our older women. I'm gonna stop 2 (51m 44s): There for this week because there's a lot more than I need to cover for this chapter. And we're just kind of getting out of time. So we will pick up the balance of this next week. Steps three, four, and five step three for next week, just to wet your appetite own the next generation. That's what we'll be talking about. Step four for next week. Being an example by doing good works will impact this next week. And step five, do all things as unto the Lord 3 (52m 21s): Lord. As we consider these things, imprint upon our hearts and minds, the truth that we need to hear and to give us the grace to be obedient. We pray 2 (52m 38s): In Jesus name. Amen. Hey, as the worship team comes up and kind of gets ready to go, I'm going to go over to the list of home groups that are available. Ron talked about all kinds of stuff that's going on, but there is so much going on. Christy covered it last week. But I asked Christie to give me a outline of everything that's happening so quickly. I'm going to go through the, I think 17 different opportunities that are before us to be involved. I think that's the number don't count because I could be wrong about that. Here we go. Home groups. This is under home groups. Brett's and Ann Harvey are hosting a group for families focused on those who have adopted children or foster care families, but all families are welcome. 2 (53m 19s): They will meet twice a month on Sundays at 5:00 PM. So that's a home group at the Harvey's. I believe they're in Nipomo. And so that if, Hm, no, it is an age. Okay, good. So all of this information is on our website. Also Jim and ginger Raman host a home group on Wednesdays at seven o'clock in a row Grandy Kurt and Andy Saltzman will be hosting a home group for parents of teens. They will meet on Wednesdays at the same time as youth group. So that's happening. Scott and Amy Goodman hosts a home group on Thursdays at 6:00 PM and a Pomo. They are currently setting through the book of Luke, Carol, Gary and Carol when hosts a home group on Thursdays at 6:30 PM in AIG, Matt and Stephanie list, we'll be hosting a group for families meeting twice a month on Sundays from four to seven for worship potluck, dinner, fellowship, and sermon discussion. 2 (54m 9s): Josh and Christine Erdmann will be hosting a group setting the Bible Bible school on wheels classes. So the, the stuff that we've been teaching through midweek for the last few years, they will meet on Tuesdays at six 30 for discussion study and fellowship. And they're in a Pomo. Seth and Carrie McMillan will be leading financial peace university. Ron already talked about that biblical money principles that teach you how to save for emergencies, pay off debt, spend wisely and save for your future. 3 (54m 42s): They meet in the Pomo. Our 2 (54m 44s): Foundations class. This session will be the survey. The Bible taught by Bruce Wilkinson. That will be Sunday mornings at nine o'clock. And then we have a weekly prayer group that meets Thursday mornings at eight o'clock in the loft. So that's home groups and the prayer prayer group. And then there's also men's groups. Jim Erickson leads a early morning men's Bible study, which meets Thursday mornings at six 15 currently studying the book of Philippians. So that's happening Thursday, six 15, Dave Workman leads a men's Bible study and prayer group. They meet on Tuesdays at 6:00 PM here at the church. The pure desire groups for men who are seeking sexual purity. 2 (55m 28s): They meet on Mondays at 6:30 PM, really all over this campus on Mondays age specific, the young professional groups, they call themselves the GoPros, the unprofessional group for ages 22 to 39 meets twice a month on Mondays at 7:00 PM. And we'll be setting through a book of the Bible. The college group meets on Friday evenings at 6:00 PM in various homes in the five cities area. So that's college and yo pros. And then you've got women's groups. Our morning, ladies Bible study has led by Jean and Nate. They meet on Thursday mornings at 10:00 AM and we'll be setting the book of second Peter. And they meet, I believe in the loft. 2 (56m 8s): Jen Hayden leads a young women's Bible study for those, between the ages of 25 and 40. The group meets on Tuesdays at 6:45 PM. And then the good yarn club meets for fellowship and yarn crafting on the second Saturday of each month, 5:00 PM also there's clubs, five, six for fifth and sixth graders. I think there were like 28 or so fifth and sixth graders this week. There's junior high and high school. There's all kinds of stuff going on. There's journey groups that are already happening. So they're not really open for newcomers at this point, but there's journey groups for men and for women that are also happening. And you'll be up to speed on those. When those restart soon, there's just so many opportunities. 2 (56m 49s): I'm guessing, I'm guessing. Did anybody count? I told you not to count. Good job. 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18. I was close 3 (57m 8s): 18. 2 (57m 10s): Plus the groups that are already going puts us probably close to 20 to 23 groups happening during the week. So plenty of opportunity for people of all ages, male and female, you guys are welcome to, to check those things out there on our website. Also, you can send them to be a part there's a kind of a little signup, fair outside. You can send it to be a part of ministries within the church. How many, how many I'm going to have you guys stand? How many are work have are working with kids in the church. If you're working with kids, go and stand up all over the campus. If you're working with kids. So that would be, that would be nursery through high school. 2 (57m 52s): All right. Nurses, your high school. What about the college and young adults? How many are working with colleges? Young adults. If you're doing that, go ahead and stand up. What about women's groups? If you're working with women's groups, go ahead and stand up. No, stay standing, stay standing. There we go. There we go. Sorry. I didn't make that clear also. Okay. What if you're working with men groups, go ahead and stand up. Jim. That would include you. Go ahead and stand up. 3 (58m 18s): There we go. There we go. 2 (58m 22s): Men's women's kids. Prayer. How many are involved in prayer? The ministry of the church. Go ahead and stand up. 3 (58m 30s): What about 2 (58m 32s): Para church ministry? Whether you're involved in a ministry outside of the church where you're involved in like jail or convalescent home, or you're involved in some kind of street ministry where you're involved in doing some kind of ministry throughout 3 (58m 47s): The week. What 2 (58m 49s): If you, there we go. Go ahead. Yeah. What if you take in little tiny babies and nurture them and love on them? If that's you go ahead and stand up. Cause that's a killer ministry. What if you're going to stand up? If you've got a foster your care ministry, there are so many things. What have I missed cleaning? What if you're a part of the cleaning team? Go, go ahead and stand up. Jolene cleaning. I knew I was, I should've made a list. If you're a part of the cleaning team, go ahead and stand up. If you're a part of the music ministry, go in and stand up music, meeting tech. So that'd be a tech team. You guys can stand up. If you're a part of the maintenance team here at harvest shirts, go ahead and stand up all over the campus. 2 (59m 35s): What else? Safety team. If you're part of the safety team, all of it, we make me list for a second service. Also, if you're a part of the coffee ministry of harvest yards, go ahead and stand up. Emmy. You should be standing up for women's stuff. There we go. Don't make me call you out. If you're a part of men's ministry, that would be you guys because you're, you're helping with men's breakfast stuff. Greeters. If you're a greeter, go ahead and stand up. If you're an usher, go and stand up. Info center. Sunday setup team 3 (1h 0m 13s): Jolene is my helpmate. She's better 2 (1h 0m 16s): Than I am smarter than I am. We're capable. She writes my sermons, just get it. She had to do that, all that to say there's a ton of people doing a ton of things all over. It takes literally a couple of hundred volunteers. Let's go ahead. Now, everybody stand up now. Thanks for standing. It takes literally like 200 to 250 volunteers. They do everything it needs to be done around the church. So even with all of these people signed up and serving, we still have more people in needed to serve. And so if you want to be a part of any of those things that we talked about, you can go out to the sign up, fair out there and be a part of that. So shall we worship some more? This is why I cut my message off a little early. 2 (1h 0m 57s): Cause I knew I'd be doing all of this. So Lord, as we worship be glorified, we pray in Jesus name. Amen. Let's sing. 4 (1h 1m 4s): Now if you breathe, if you can breathe in here, please stand up. If you can breathe. <inaudible> 0 (1h 1m 42s): That is <inaudible> <inaudible> <inaudible> Jesus, God, we worship you in this place. 0 (1h 10m 12s): Lord, we thank you for the service this morning. God, I pray that as we go outward that we would find moments to honor you God, that we would find moments to pause in our day and just ask you, ask him, call on the holy spirit. Lord, we worship you. We praise you in your most precious name. We pray. Amen. If you need prayer, make your way forward. We have an amazing team of friends. Have a wonderful day.
1 (11m 53s): Us. Thank you. That your love is totally dependable. Lord. It's unconditional. So we can know, we can know of your love no matter what, Lord, it's hard for our, our human minds are finite minds to get ahold of the love of an infinite God. It's beyond our ability. Lord, all we can do is say, thank you. And we love you too, Lord God, thank you for just your goodness to me and to each and every one of us, we need your grace and your mercy and we just, we just need you all the time or so refresh us today where we need to be refreshed. 1 (12m 47s): I know so many people are struggling today with sicknesses and I've got people in hospitals and nursing homes and all kinds of stuff going on, Lord God. So many difficult challenges and yeah, it's on the other side of things. So many amazing things, so many good things, Lord God. And so I pray that you administer grace to those who are struggling and suffering today and encouragement to those and health to those Lord and, and God that you would also just bless those who are just so grateful today. We're grateful that you are faithful. Lord, thank you for who you are because we know all too well who we are and we need you. 1 (13m 33s): Jesus. We love you in Jesus name. Amen. This while everybody is still standing, I want to mix things up a little bit today. Why don't we take communion at the beginning of service instead of the end of service. So hopefully everybody's got elements that if not raise your hand and we will get those elements to you. I want us to stay standing. Just, this is a way to honor the Lord worship team. You guys can be dismissed. So as people grab their, okay, I've got elements. Thank you. 1 (14m 17s): So communion here at harvest church once a month, the family Sunday, fourth, Sunday of every month. And it's just a reminder of God's goodness, this, the sacrifice that he made for us, he reminds us through the scripture and we are reminded as we take communion that before the foundation of the world, God had a plan to bring salvation to us. We're going to be reading passages of scripture that communicate that truth to us. And so it's a bit tricky, but if you can peel off that top layer of cellophane on, there we go. Mine came off very easy that time. So I'm going to read and we're going to take communion. 1 (15m 1s): And I just want to encourage you if you're here today and you need to get yourself right with the Lord before you take communion, you simply do that by confessing your sins to him, acknowledging your need for Jesus, opening your heart to his love and to his life. And as you do that, the grace of the Lord, Jesus Christ washes over you. The kindness of God is re is renewed in your heart and mind. And there's just beauty that follows. And so Lord, we thank you that your mercies are new every morning. Great is your faithfulness. 1 (15m 42s): We thank you that your word we're thankful that your word speaks to us life and grace and truth. So Lord, as we read your word, as we take communion, as we pray, Lord, we just avail ourselves to you. We give ourselves to you. We say yes to you. Paul wrote in first Corinthians 1123 for I pass on to you. What I received from the Lord himself on the night when he was betrayed the Lord, Jesus took some bread and gave thanks to God for it. Then he broke it in pieces and said, this is my body, which is given for you do this in remembrance of me. So let's go ahead and take the wafer. 1 (16m 29s): Thank you, Lord. Thank you, Jesus, that you willingly went to the cross, allowed yourself to be nailed to a cross. Not because you were bad, but because I was mad now because you are a sinner, but because I, I am a sinner. So thank you for taking that, making that substitutionary sacrifice on our behalf, Lord, the same way. Verse 25, he took the cup of wine after supper saying this cup is the new covenant between God and his people and agreement confirmed with my blood. 1 (17m 12s): Do this in remembrance of me. As often as you drink it for every time you eat this bread and drink this cup, you are announcing the Lord's death until he comes again. So with that, let's go ahead and take the juice. Thank you, Lord. Thank you Lord. That when we're washed in the blood of the lamb, we are made white as snow. All of our impurities are gone in Jesus name. 1 (17m 54s): All of our failures have been forgiven. All of our sins are washed away in Jesus name. Thank you, Lord. That is such a refreshing truth. Lord God. As we talked about salvation and sanctification today, we're so excited for who we are in you and for the possibility of salvation coming to everybody that we know and sanctification coming to everybody that we know. And so Lord, we pray that you would make us excited about salvation and sanctification. Lord make us excited that we carry this message and that we've got something of life to offer people. 1 (18m 37s): So Lord help us to humbly do so excitedly do so. Bring that message to those in our world. We love you, Lord. We bless you Lord in Jesus name, amen. You can be seated. You can be seated. We're a brand new study today. We are in the book of Titus. We finished up Timothy and now we are in Titus and much like Paul's letters to Timothy. Paul has written a letter to this young man named Titus. He's a Greek believer in the Lord. Jesus Christ. Most likely the apostle Paul through his life in ministry led Titus to faith in Jesus Christ. 1 (19m 23s): And I want us to get this connection. I want us to make this connection to see that a life can be radically changed. And then through a process of salvation and sanctification can be used mightily by the king of Kings and the Lord of Lords. And so we see that Paul was instrumental in Titus's salvation, but then also instrumental in his discipleship process, equipping him to take the gospel message and to teach others the gospel well message. Titus traveled extensively with the apostle. Paul was involved extensively in his ministry. 1 (20m 3s): We read in Paul's second letter to the Corinthians that he, he lists Titus's name nine times over and over again. Titus is right there with the apostle Paul ministering, the administered together on the island of Crete, which is where Titus is assigned to minister to churches that have sprung up all over the island. And now we're seeing that the apostle Paul is passing the Baton. This is something that is part of the Christian faith. The Baton gets passed to us. Jesus passed the Baton. I shared this last week when he said, go make disciples of all nations, baptizing them, the name of the father, the son, and the holy spirit this week. 1 (20m 51s): Well, last Friday we baptized 14 people at the beach. And then I think it was a couple of days after that there was this mom and her adult son. They took a mutual friend of theirs down to the beach at nine o'clock at night because he needed to get that ties. And there's no better time than the presence. And so they took him down at nine o'clock at night and the sons videotaping the baptismal and the mom is taking this man down into the waters of baptism in Pismo beach about the same place that we baptized all those people the Friday before. And they baptize him. 1 (21m 33s): Isn't that cool? The Baton has been passed to us. Jesus said, go make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the father, the son, and the holy spirit. So we're seeing people get baptized, get discipled in the faith, get saved first and then get baptized and discipled in the faith. And we're so excited to have that Baton passed to us. And so as we study Titus, we're going to see that Paul gave very specific instruction to Titus this young pastor who is going to help strengthen the body of believers that have sprung up in this Greek island to here. And so what I've done is I've downloaded this Bible project video. 1 (22m 17s): That's about eight minutes long, and this is something that we do from time to time when we're launching a new book of the Bible study, we'll take a moment and watch the video because the Bible project people put together an amazing video that just helps us to understand the purpose of the book of Titus, the chapters, the overall message, that conclusion and all of that. So before I preach through the rest of chapter one, before we, before I preach through the chat chapter one, we're going to take eight minutes and watch this video. So let's go and throw that up here. 2 (22m 53s): Can I sit here? Paul's letter to Titus. Titus was a Greek follower of Jesus who was for years, a trusted coworker and traveling companion of Paul's. He had helped Paul in a number of crisis situations in the past. And in this letter, we discover that Paul had assigned him the task of going to Crete, a large island off the coast of Greece to restore order to a network of house churches. Now creating culture was notorious in the ancient world. One of the Greek words for being a liar was created. So to be a cretin, these people were infamous for treachery and greed. Most of the men on the island had served as mercenary soldiers to the highest bidder and the island cities were known as being unsafe, plagued by violence and sexual corruption. 2 (23m 36s): However, the island of Crete had many strategic harbors and they serve as cities all over the ancient Mediterranean sea. And so from Paul's point of view, Crete was the perfect place to start a network of churches. Now we don't know the details, but somehow these churches came under the influence of corrupt cretin leaders. They said they were Christians, but they were ruining the churches. And so Paul assigned Titus with the task of going there to set things straight. And this letter provided the instructions. It has a pretty straightforward design. After a brief introduction, Paul gives Titus clear instructions about his tasks in the church. He then offers guidance about the new kind of household and then about the new kind of humanity that the gospel could create in these cretin communities. 2 (24m 20s): Paul then closes the letter with some final greetings. So Paul opens the whole thing by reminding Titus that his message as an apostle is about the hope of eternal life. That is the life of the new creation that is available starting now through Jesus, the Messiah and this hope was promised long ago by the God who does not lie. Now this little opening comment introduces an important theme underlying the whole letter. One of the problems in the cretin churches was that they had assimilated their ideas about Jesus, the Christian God, to their ideas about the Greek gods that they grew up with specifically Zeus, their chief, God cretin. People claimed that Zeus was actually born on their island and they love to tell stories and mythologies about Zeus's underhanded character. 2 (25m 7s): He would seduce women and lie to get his way. And Paul wants to be really clear. The God revealed through Jesus is totally different than zoos. His basic character traits are faithfulness and truth, which means the Christian way of life will be about truth also, which will be a real change for these cretins. So Paul then addresses Titus with a two-fold task. He says the first one is to appoint new leaders for each church community, a team of what he calls elders, mature husbands or fathers, whose way of life is totally different from cretin culture. They're to be known for integrity, total devotion to Jesus, for self-control and generosity, both in their families and in the community at large. 2 (25m 49s): And these new leaders are to teach the good news about Jesus and replace the corrupt leaders who need to be confronted that's Titus a second task. Paul identifies the teachers as those of the circumcision. In other words, they were ethnically Jewish cretins who said that they followed Jesus, but similar to the problems in glacier, these people demanded that non-Jewish Christians be circumcised and follow the laws of the Torah. If they really wanted to become followers of the Jewish Messiah. Paul says that they're obsessed with Jewish myths and human commands. And to top it off, they're just in the church leadership business to make money. And so Paul, in a brilliant move, he pulls a quote from an ancient cretin poet at the amenities who was very Frank and honest about the character of his own people. 2 (26m 35s): He said, Cretans are always liars, vicious beasts, and lazy gluttons. They blur the lines between true and false between good and evil and they're just in it for the money. And so while these leaders claim to know God, they're cretin way of life denies him, they have to be dealt with. And this leads Paul into the next section because of these corrupt leaders, many Christians in these churches now have homes and personal lives that are a total wreck and three different times. Paul highlights the result of all of this, the message about Jesus is discredited. Their non-Christian neighbors now have good cause to make evil accusations. And all of this makes the teaching about God, our savior totally unattractive, not compelling to anybody. 2 (27m 18s): So Paul paints a picture sure of the ideal cretin household that is devoted to Jesus. It would be elderly men and women who are full of integrity and self control. So they can become models of care, character to the young people. And the young women shouldn't be sleeping around and avoiding marriage as was fashionable and Crete at the time. But rather they should be looking for faithful partners so they can raise stable, healthy families. And the young men are to do the same they're to be known as productive, healthy citizens, Christian slaves on create we're in a unique position because we know that because of the gospel, they were treated as equals in Paul's church communities. However, there was a danger that they would use that equality as licensed to disrespect their masters and then become associated with slave rebellions, which would further discredit the Christian message. 2 (28m 6s): You can see Paul negotiating a fine line here. He believes that the gospel about Jesus needs to prove its redemptive power in the public square. If it's really going to transform, create and culture, and that's not going to happen through social upheaval or by Christians, cloistering away from urban life. The Christian message will be compelling to cretins when Christians fully participate in public life, when their lives and homes look similar on the surface, because after it closer look, their neighbors will discover that Christians live by a totally different value system out of devotion to a totally different God. And that's the difference that Paul beautifully summarizes at the end of chapter two, he says the value system driving the Christian way of life is God's generous. 2 (28m 52s): Grace, which appeared in the person of Jesus and will appear again at his return. This grace was demonstrated when Jesus gave up his life honor to die a shameful death on behalf of his enemies so that he could rescue and redeem them. And it's that same grace that calls God's people to say no to corrupt ways of life that are inconsistent with the generous love of God. Paul then zooms out from the Christian household to a vision of Christians living like new humans and credence society of all people. Christian should be known as the ideal citizens, peaceable, generous obedient to authorities. Yeah. Known for pursuing the common good, but this is really different from how cretins grew up. 2 (29m 35s): How are Christians it's supposed to sustain this counter-cultural way of life? And Paul believes the power source is the love of the three in one God announced in the gospel. And he explores this with a really beautiful pawn. He says, God's kindness and love are what saved us despite ourselves. So that through the holy spirit, God washed and rebirth and renewed people and through Jesus has provided a way for people to be declared right before him. And all of this opens up eternal life. That is a new future in the new creation. This living story is so powerful. It can produce new kinds of people. 2 (30m 15s): Paul convinced that spirit empowered faithfulness to the teachings of Jesus will declare God's grace all over the island of Crete and all over the world. Paul concludes by promising to send back up for Titus, either Artemis or tickets. And then he says hello to their common friends. And so the letter ends, the letter of Titus shows us Paul's missionary strategy for churches to become agents of transformation within their communities. It won't happen by waging a culture war or by assimilating to the Korean way of life. Rather, he calls these Christians to wisely participate in creating culture. They need to reject what's corrupt, but also embrace. What's good there. 2 (30m 55s): If they can learn to live peaceably and devote themselves to Jesus and to the common good Christians will, in his words, show the beauty of the message about our saving God. And that's what the letter to Titus is all about. 1 (31m 12s): Good stuff, good stuff. You can watch. Any of those videos, a video, I believe for every book of the Bible, how's that you think after all of these years, I would have that microphone figured out. Thank you, pastor Ron. Hey, we're looking at a, the title of the message today. The faith, the faith that saves and sanctifies that's really what Paul was talking about is, is what he's talking about in the letter to Titus. And that's really what we were just understood is that God is in the business of saving people from dark and destructive cultures. 1 (31m 60s): And then it's not just saving us out of our culture and out of our sin, but then sanctifying us as followers of the Lord, Jesus Christ. And so we're not just meant for fire insurance, where we just get saved and move on with our lives, but we're actually saved for the purpose of serving God and becoming more and more sanctified as we follow him throughout the course of our life. Now sanctification is a lifelong process. Salvation happens immediately when we trust Jesus for our salvation, but sanctification takes to the rest of our lives. And we have to be patient with that process patient with ourselves and then patient with one another, because every one of us are in a different place on that sanctification process. 1 (32m 44s): So let's take a look at Titus chapter one, verse one, we'll get through all of Titus chapter one today. It says this, this letter is from Paul. A slave of God ended up possible of Jesus Christ. So Paul out of the gate reminds everyone. Now he doesn't need to remind Titus who he is. He doesn't need to speak to Titus and communicate who he is. He's writing this for the benefit of everybody who will read this book after, or this letter after it's been dispersed to Titus into the churches. Or so even to this day, we're reading this letter, understanding who the author is and what the purpose of it is all about Paul, a slave of God and an apostle of Jesus Christ. 1 (33m 30s): He's a bond servant of God and an apostle taking the message of Jesus, the message of the gospel to those that he is called to take it to you. I've been sent to proclaim faith to those God has chosen and to change them to know the truth that shows them how to live godly lives. So there we have it in the first verse, we see the purpose of this letter. I had been sent to proclaim faith to those God has chosen and to teach them to know the truth that shows, shows them how to live godly lives. So in this opening verse, we see the purpose of this letter. 1 (34m 13s): Faith brings us salvation and sanctification. Faith brings salvation and sanctification. Paul said, I have been sent to proclaim faith to those God has chosen and to teach them to know the truth that shows them how to live godly lives. Number one, in your notes, faith in Jesus first and foremost saves simplistic, right? But we are here as followers of the Lord. Jesus, because our faith in the risen savior has saved us. Or we're here sitting in church this morning with the opportunity before us to receive this salvation that is made available to us because of what Jesus has accomplished. 1 (34m 57s): We, we can't jump over this point. We can't forget about this point. This is why we take communion on a regular basis because it reminds us constantly of our desperate need for the salvation that is available through our faith in Jesus, this expression, those God has chosen that he said I've been sent to proclaim faith to those. God has chosen this expression embodies. It embodies the true balance of the gospel that says God initiated salvation and then respond. There's a divine initiation where before the foundation of the world, God saw our for him before you ever knew you needed God before you were even ever born before the foundation of the earth. 1 (35m 47s): God saw you and saw that you needed salvation. And so he made a way through Jesus, this to offer you salvation, there's this balance. And so this, this divine work of God, God, coupled with our need to respond. And so we have this information, this revelation, this gospel message communicated to us. And then we get to choose what to do with maybe you're here today and you've heard the gospel over and over and over and over and over and over again. But you've never truly embraced the gospel message. 1 (36m 26s): You've never truly accepted that race message of the Lord. Jesus Christ. That message is before you again, today that Jesus loves you and he died for your sins. And he's welcoming you with open arms, into his family, wanting to, to forgive you, to save you and to say defy you. And you simply accept that grace gift by saying yes to Jesus. Some of us have said no to that grace gift because we don't feel like our lives are in order or because we don't feel like we can follow through on our commitment to follow Jesus. 1 (37m 6s): Some of us have a dozen different excuses for not saying yes to Jesus. Maybe we just don't want to surrender our lives to him. Maybe we just don't want to allow someone else to be in charge of our lives. Jesus, grace is there for you. What will you do with them? The Bible says, if you confess with your mouth, that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart, that God has raised him from the dead. You will be saved the Bible. Doesn't say, get your whole life in order. Get all of your biblical questions, answered, figure out every dilemma in your life and then come to faith in Jesus. 1 (37m 49s): He said, if you confess with your mouth, that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart, that God raised him from the dead. You will be saved. There's this divine initiative and the human response that is before us. And I would just encourage you to accept the grace and the mercy of the Lord. Jesus Christ. I can't tell you how my life has been radically transformed since coming to faith in Jesus. My BC days are nothing like my AAD days, my, my after Christ days. And I'm so grateful for that. Verse two says this truth gives them confidence that they have eternal life. 1 (38m 30s): So Paul it's writing truth to those who have decided to follow Jesus. And this truth gives them confidence that they have eternal life, which God who does not lie, promise them before the world began. So we're told in scripture that we're saved by grace through faith. And we see that throughout the old and the new Testament. And we can believe that we're saved by grace through faith because God does not lie. It's actually impossible for God to lie. So if God says that we're saved by grace through faith, and we have accepted that grace gift of his, then we are indeed saved by grace through faith. Some of us have a hard time believing that we're actually saved. 1 (39m 13s): And so we maybe confess our sins over and over again, come to, you know, make that prayer of declaration over and over again. And I think there's something great about confessing our sins to the Lord. If we confess our sins, he is faithful. And just to forgive us and cleanse us from all unrighteousness. And so I think we need to be regular confessors of our sin, but it's not for the sake of salvation over and over and over again. Once we come to faith in Christ, it's a finished work of the Lord, Jesus Christ. God can not lie. And if we can not believe God about our salvation, we're going to have a whole lot harder time believing God about everything else in our lives. We're going to have a hard time believing that God loves us. 1 (39m 54s): We're gonna have a hard time believing that God is a provider for us. That he's a healer for us. That he's a Redeemer for us. That he's good. And we're going to have a hard time believing all of these things that we sing and read about in the scriptures. Hebrews six 18 says this. So God has given both his promise and his oath. These two things are unchangeable because it is impossible for God to lie. Therefore he or we who have fled to him for refuge can have great confidence as we hold to the hope that lies before us. So in creating culture, Paul's communicating this message with Titus they're ministering on the island. 1 (40m 38s): They leave. And then Titus gets sent back to minister in this culture where Zeus has been there, prominent God, and he's a liar and a womanizer. And so they've got to go into this culture, explaining something about this new God who never lies and who is always good and who is always faithful. There, there, there needs to be a differentiation in their hearts and minds about that. True living God, the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, the three in one God, the God that God, the father, the son, and the holy spirit, they need to see the difference. And this is part of the reason that God saves us out of a culture and sanctifies us so that people can see the difference in the lives of believers, of the Lord, Jesus Christ. 1 (41m 25s): But it's also what causes people to hunger for something that they haven't experienced before that they are used to following Zeus and his role model as a liar and a womanizer. That's all, they know, people are hungry for something of choice, true religion, true faith in the living. God people know that this can not be a proper representation of who God is. And so the gospel comes in and as the gospel goes throughout the island of Crete house, churches are popping up all over the place because people are hearing of this real gospel. 1 (42m 5s): Good news message. And they're believing it. And they're beginning to walk in it. And they're beginning to abandon Zeus abandoned this small G God, who's not a God at all. Who's a counterfeit. Who's there just to distract and to hinder people from following their real Lord and savior Jesus Christ. And so people begin to see the reality of the truth of who God is. And they begin to follow that. Some of us have done though, what the Christians have done. And we've kind of married Christianity with, with pagan culture. We've blended the two in such a way that people are confused by the way that we live our lives. 1 (42m 47s): They see us calling ourselves Christians, but we, we engage in pagan, cultural type things that cause confusion and hinder our ability, our sanctity education as followers of the Lord, Jesus Christ. And so we're dealing in our culture, what the cretins we're dealing with in their culture. This temptation to bring our old life into this new life with Jesus and try to marry those things we've been saved by God's grace, so that we might be redeemed and delivered out of that old life and sanctified by his grace because he's good. Not because we're good. So our God is real. And God's plan of salvation was determined before the foundation of the world. 1 (43m 31s): So you think about zoos, he's a liar, he's a womanizer. He's all about Zeus, right? God, on the other hand, the God of Abraham and Isaac and Jacob, the try, you and God, father, the son and the holy spirit. They're all about you and me. So before the foundation of the world, imagine the Godhead, they have this plan to create mankind, but they know because they know everything. He knows everything. I'll say he knows everything. When I say they I'm talking about Trinity is there it's, it's, it's a really, really difficult concept to, to fully internalize, but they, God had his, they speak among themselves being one God in three persons, father, son, and the holy spirit. 1 (44m 14s): They're thinking about how things will unfold. And they're saying, Hey mankind, we'll see. And God said, let's make a way of salvation for them so that we might know them and have relationship with them and bring them into fellowship with us. This is what it says in second Timothy, one nine for God saved us and called us to live a holy life. He did this, not because we deserved it, but because that was his plan from before the beginning of time and that interesting. So before you would ever sinned, before you would ever born, they made a plan. God made a plan for you to know him. And it happened before the beginning of the time to show us his grace through Christ Jesus, all right, Titus one, three. 1 (44m 56s): And now it just the right time. He has revealed this message through the Bible, which we announced to everyone. It is by the command of God, our savior that I have been entrusted with this work for him. What's the work that Paul's talking about. The writing of the inspired word of God, the proclamation of the gospel of the Lord, Jesus Christ, right? Like on the road to Damascus, the apostle gets the Baton handed to him and he gets saved on the road and that the Baton is passed to him. And then he begins to take the message of the Lord, Jesus Christ, everywhere he goes. And then God uses him to write two thirds of the new Testament. 1 (45m 36s): And we're talking about the apostle Paul again, who, who persecuted the church and who was a hater of God and his people. And yet God redeemed him by his salvation. I am writing to Titus my true son in the faith that we share, may God, the father and Christ Jesus, our savior give you grace and peace. Paul's entails about what he's writing to Titus. This grace and peace that he's writing about is contrary to what the experience is of the church or the people who live or living in Crete. It's, they're not experiencing grace and peace because they're following false God. 1 (46m 16s): A false ideology. May God, the father and Christ Jesus, our savior give you grace and peace. So Titus working, create a title. So again, the faith that saves and sanctifies, number one, faith in Jesus saves. And the second point, the last point, faith in Jesus sanctifies, what does it mean to be sanctified? It means to be made holy or to be set apart, to be used for God's purposes, to be consecrated, to be dedicated to God. So Titus was set aside for his work on the island of Crete. I wonder what you are sanctified, set apart to do what work are you sanctified and set apart to do here in the earth? 1 (47m 4s): Because I always say this, I believe this is true. Then if you've got a pulse, you've got a purpose. If you're here in the earth, you've got work to do. And so the question is what is the work that God is calling you to do? Christie Suiza will be sharing a ways to get involved at harvest church here in just a few minutes. When I invite her up after I preach, she will talk about small groups that you can be involved in. And in those small groups, you can learn what salvation is all about, what sanctification is all about. And you can help lead small groups. You can be involved in the work and ministry of harvest church. As we get ready to move into 1 0 2 here in the next few months, we're going to need more people. 1 (47m 44s): It's another venue we're holding on to all of this venue, all of this, these buildings and location. And so we're going to need more people to be involved. Many of you are involved in para church ministries and organizations where you're ministering in the community, doing the things that God has called you to do, even as Titus was set aside for the work of God on the island of creed. I want us to figure out what we are set aside to do what sorry, serving opportunities are before you. How is it? The Lord has equipped you to do the work that God it has called you to do. So just be thinking of about that and be praying about that. 1 (48m 24s): And maybe as you hear Christi present today, all of the opportunities, maybe the thing will peak your interest and you'll say, Hey, I'd like to be a part of that. Or I'd like to be a part of that. And then just jump in with both feet and watch what we'll do Titus in verse five, I left you on the island of Crete. So you could complete our work there and appoint elders in each town. As I instructed you, I liked that. He said complete our work there because it means that Titus isn't in it by himself. Paul started the work. Titus has carry on carrying on the work, but others will be there with him supporting him along the way. 1 (49m 7s): You are not in this life. As a follower of Jesus Christ alone, others have gone before you, there are people who will support you in your journey, and then you will pass the Baton at some point in your life. I left you on the island of Crete. So you could complete our work there and appoint elders in each town. As I instructed you, an elder must live a blameless life. And now we're going to kind of get a snapshot of what sanctification looks like. And these are actually qualifications for those who want to serve as elders within the church of the living, God, there it's a high bar. This list of expectations and qualifications, for those who want to start as elders, it's actually very difficult, but by the grace of God, nobody would be able to manage this list and live up to it. 1 (50m 4s): So an elder must be a blame. A leader live a blameless life. Maybe your Bible says to you live above reproach. That means that somebody, because as if your lifestyle is not even able to actually use you, it's not that you get accused and acquitted it's that your life is so far above reproach that can even accuse you of doing wrong. That's the standard. Isn't that crazy? That's the, that's the standard. But this is by God's grace. What is capable for us as followers of the Lord, Jesus Christ. When we allow the sanctification process that God wants to accomplish in our lives. 1 (50m 45s): So an elder must live a blameless life. We see it here in verse six, and we'll hear the same qualification repeated in verse seven. Let's continue verse six. He must be faithful to his wife. That just means a one woman, man, someone who's married to one woman at a time and his children must be believers who don't have a reputation for being wild or rebellious. That's going to disqualify most of us, right? That's a tough one. She's children must be believers who don't have a reputation for being wild or rebellious. So part of the, the, the what's to be understood about that text is that we actually, as parents, as people who follow Jesus, have that responsibility to pass the Baton to our kids. 1 (51m 37s): And so it's not actually the church's responsibility, the Sunday school or the youth department. It's not our responsibility to make sure that your kids are saved. It's actually your responsibility. And we as Sunday school teachers or youth leaders come alongside what you are already doing, helping your kids to know Jesus. So that's part of that process. Salvation comes as your kids, see you model godliness in your life. And this will only happen if we allow the sanctification process happen in our lives. If we allow that sanctification process in our lives, then our, our kids will see something in us that they desire. 1 (52m 19s): They won't see perfection, but they will see on an honest pursuit of who God is and honored pursuit of God. And out of that, we get saved and sanctified, and our kids see something that is genuine. It's something that they want a child, a church leader and oversee, or a Bishop is a manager of God's household. So he must live there. It is again, he must live a blameless life. He must not be arrogant or quick tempered often when we're arrogant, it's because we're comparing ourselves to someone else. And we estimate that our lives are in better shape than somebody else's life. And so we become arrogant a few weeks ago, Dr. 1 (53m 0s): Stacey Harmon, when he was teaching and preaching here from the pulpit, he said the, he said, we need to remember that we are not the standard. Remember when he said that you said we are not the standard, meaning that my life is not the standard. Your life is not the standard God. And his word is the standard. And so we need to make sure that we're when we're comparing ourselves, we're comparing ourselves to God and his word and trust. All arrogance will go out the window. You want to have any room in your life for arrogance. If you're looking at the word of God on a regular basis and comparing your life to the word, you will eliminate all arrogance from your life. So you must not be arrogant or quick tempered. 1 (53m 42s): It must not be a heavy drinker, violent or dishonest with money. I think Paul's writing this list in light of the culture, in the island of Crete. He's writing this because he understands the culture that he's up against. And so he's writing about living a blameless life, not being arrogant or quick tempered, or a heavy drinker or violent or dishonest with money because he's seeing all of these things happen on the, in the creed and culture on the island of he's seeing the people do all of these things. He said rather, and then he gives a whole list of things that we should be doing. 1 (54m 26s): And again, these are things that we do as we allow the sanctification process of God in our lives. We can't do it in our own strength with our own willpower. Yeah. Make these things happen. We can do some of these things okay. For a while. But if we want to do all of these things well for the long-term, we have to be filled with the holy spirit, the power of God that gives us the ability to do what God has asked us to do. So we can't not do the things. And we can't do the things apart from the work of the holy spirit, sanctifying our lives, rather Mercede he must enjoy having guests in his home, speaking of elders and, and what they should be doing. 1 (55m 9s): He must have enjoyed having guests in his home. Why? Because that's where fellowship and relationship and connection takes place. That's where people are getting, getting a discipled in their faith and growing as a follower of the Lord, Jesus Christ. He must love what is good. He must live wisely and be just, or fair again, thinking about what's going on in the culture in that day and thinking about what's going on in the culture of our day, this is the list. This is the standard that by God's grace, we are able to accomplish. As we just allow that sanctification process in our lives, we must live a devout and discipline life. 1 (55m 56s): You must have a strong belief in the trustworthy message he was taught. So not a new believer, but someone who understands and believes wholeheartedly the message of the gospel and what the scripture teaches. Then he will be able to encourage others with wholesome teaching and show those who oppose it, where they are wrong. So wholesome teaching is teaching that confronts. This is what essentially Paul doing. He's offering wholesome teaching that is confronting the culture of the day. Wholesome teaching confronts the unbiblical teachings of those who are confused about God's plan of salvation and sanctification. 1 (56m 41s): Okay. First Sandy goes on for, there are many rebellious people who engage in useless talk and deceive others. This is especially true of those who insist on circumcision for salvation. So he's saying, Hey, if anybody's saying it's Jesus plus anything else, and that's the gospel, they're wrong. They're confused about what the gospel is all about. So if we say it's Jesus plus tithing, that equals salvation. That's wrong. If we say it's Jesus plus serving we're wrong because it's Jesus plus nothing else that equals salvation. 1 (57m 22s): Now sanctification is the process whereby we come, we become more and more like Jesus and less and less like our old self, our old man, our old woman. So there's a sanctification process that begins to change the way that we live our lives, the way that we spend our time, talent and treasure. So they were Judaizers in the island there and they were saying, well, if you really want, like, we are here on the video. If you really want to be a follower of the Messiah, then you, you have to be circumcised. And the disciples had already put that dispel, that myth and said that that wasn't accurate. It's Jesus blessed, nothing else. 1 (58m 4s): That equals salvation. First of all, 11, they must be silenced because they are turning whole families away from the truth, from the truth, by their false teachings. And they do it only for money. So they were spiritual leaders within the church who were operating only for financial gain. So they were being dishonest, not doing the true work that God called them to do. And so we have to be careful that we're not being conformed to the culture in which we live, but that the Bible is shaping us and be, and we're becoming more like Jesus and the culture of Christian, true Christianity, even one of their own men, a prophet from Crete. 1 (58m 51s): He said about them. The people of Crete are all liars, cruel animals and lazy gluttons. You know, that's the culture that they were in. I wonder what could be said of our culture. What would be their little pithy statement that would be said about our culture? I don't know. No, I haven't taken the time to write it out, but, but there are challenging and desperate and sinful things about our culture that are trying to influence us and draw us away from the things of God. People of Crete are liars, cruel animals and lazy gluttons. 1 (59m 31s): This is the culture. Titus is ministering. Yeah. And it's helpful for us to know the culture that we're in. Let's just play a game real quickly. I'm out of time already. Anyway. So let's just play a game and you just go with that. What would you use as a word to describe our 21st century culture? Sure. In Western and the Western part of the world here in California on the central good G get, get specific to like to the central coast. What would you use as a word? What is it unfocused? Interesting. Very good word on the word is unfocused. What else could we do you use to describe the culture of the central coast, worldly, unfocused, and worldly. 1 (1h 0m 15s): So we're, we're, we're kind of getting close to this year. Where, what else? Unfocused and worldly, let's do one more. Oops. That was a bunch of them. Who, what was it? Fearful, depraved, fearful and depraved. So it's helpful for us to understand our culture so that we, number one, don't become like our culture, but number two, so that we understand what we're trying to, what we're trying to do to help what we can do to help people who are stuck in that culture. So think about the culture of your family. Think about the culture of your work. Think about the culture of your neighborhood, and then ask the Lord, Lord, how do I operate within that culture? 1 (1h 0m 57s): So that I might bring salvation to those who need salvation so that God, you might work too, brings sanctification to their lives. Here we go. Let's finish this up. This is true. So reprimand them sternly to make them strong in their faith. They must stop listening to Jewish myths and the commands that people who have turned away from the truth. So Jewish myths are Jewish laws and traditions that NOLA Phi and contradict the holy scripture. So anything that we're believing that either no Ify replace or contradict the scripture is something that we need to be, be wary of circumcision. 1 (1h 1m 38s): Hand-washing these, these are examples, extreme rules around the Sabbath. I, I D these are all things that were happening in the day. And these are things that not even Jews even knew how to honor and obey. Let's get to these last couple weeks. Everything is pure to those whose hearts are pure, but nothing is pure to those who are corrupted and believing because their minds in common, the agencies are corrupted to the right. Everything is pure. Have you noticed that in your life, like when you're in a really good place with the Lord, like everything is pure. Somebody can tell you a story. And all you do is see the episode about the story. But when your mind is corrupt to the perverse, everything is, somebody might tell you the same exact story, but you can come up with this perverse conclusion about, about the story. 1 (1h 2m 28s): Maybe you're seeing someone of the opposite sex walking down the street, a man, or a woman. And you're attracted to that man, or that woman, someone who is pure, what might say that is a handsome person, right there. Someone who is perverted would say, let's take that a step further. And it's not just a handsome person. That's someone that they want to get with. And because their perversion is in their mind, everything that they think about ends in perversion, but to the pure, everything is pure. So you've got this culture where there's perversion everywhere. And then the culture is they're trying to shift the culture by bringing purity into the culture. 1 (1h 3m 11s): And this is what they're up against. They're trying to communicate truth and trying to live differently. And there's perversion in the culture. There's corruption in the culture, verse 16. So people claim, they know God, but they such people claim. They know God, but they deny him by the way they live. They are detestable and disobedient worthless for doing anything good. So you see the value of sanctification sanctification actually helps us to be qualified. We're qualified by God's grace and through the process of sanctification to do the works that God has called us to do. And so there's a process there, the faith that saves and sanctifies, faith, faith, faith in Jesus saves and faith in Jesus sanctifies. 1 (1h 3m 52s): And we can't, we don't want one without the other. We don't, we can't be sanctified without salvation, and we don't want to be saved without sanctification. We need both. We need both. And that's God's plan for both for, for all of us in Jesus name. Well, we've already taken communion. That's the end of my message. I'm wondering if it's Christie Suiza here. There she is. Christie's going to talk to us today about opportunities to get involved, to get plugged in. And so this is Christie <inaudible>. Christie has been on our staff team for the last dozen years or so. Something like that long time, she's only 20, but she's been with us for a very long time. 1 (1h 4m 33s): Christie, your full attention. 3 (1h 4m 35s): Good morning, everybody. Don't worry. I'm not going to sing. Yeah. I'm the director of discipleship here at harvest, and I have some exciting ways you can get connected and get plugged in. I know many of you are newer to our church and looking for ways to build those relationships, grow deeper in your faith and have that community of connection outside in our driveway. On the right-hand side, you'll find a couple of tables today. One of them has a list of all of our life groups that are going to be launching here in September. We have a lot of different groups, something for everybody just to highlight a few things. We have quite a few home groups that meet in a Royal Grande date. We have some home groups this time focused on parents of teenagers, and that are focusing on family groups. 3 (1h 5m 19s): We have a couple that meet in the Nipomo area. We also have a young professionals group as well as a college group. So those are great ways to get plugged in with others, your age in the community. Here we have men's groups and women's groups, both daytime and evening for men. We have a morning, one for women and one for young women. And then we have a new financial peace university class that's starting up as well. So if you're interested in learning about budgeting and how to honor God with your finances, stop by the table, and we'll be able to answer questions for you there on those. So stop by pick up a flyer and ask whatever questions you have. We'll also be out there next week as well, taking signups and getting as many people plugged in as possible. 3 (1h 6m 4s): Our second table is for getting involved in an area of ministry here at harvest church. And ed is such a blessing to serve and be involved and connected with the heartbeat of what we do here at harvest. So if you're not plugged in to a ministry team, I really encourage you to pray about where God wants to connect you. We have so many ways you can connect children's ministry. Don't worry, not everyone is teaching. And children's. We have people that help people that serve behind the scenes, people that greet children. So there's lots of ways to connect there. We have a women's ministry team. We have folks that serve and our coffee bar ministry that make the coffee and keep that area refilled throughout our Sunday morning services. 3 (1h 6m 46s): Believe it or not. We actually have people that clean this place too during the week. And we love our cleaning team members. So if you have free time during the week and would love to help clean, there's a big need. There, we have folks who serve on our tech team, behind our camera's up here on our worship team and our prayer ministry as well. So we have so many ways you can get connected here at harvest. So pray about it. Stop by the table, ask questions, and we'd love to help you find a spot or the Lord can use you here in our body. So thank you. Please stand with us. We're going to sing one more song bursty inside. 3 (1h 7m 47s): Yes, we can surely see 4 (1h 11m 9s): Thank you for salvation, for who you are, Lord, and for just this place, you have us in our community. And I just, I just pray that our Holly ladies would be multiplied in, would just stretch out across our region and across our, our, our communities and our families. Lord, when people just be pointed straight to Jesus, because of it, because of the, the worship that we give to you. And thank you for today. And I see blessed. It says, we go, let us never be the same.
0 (1s): There, God has just brought you into the space. We just laid down everything that's said of us and we just put our eyes on Jesus. But horizon view right now, the author and finisher of our faith, I just argued. Jesus is our S Jesus, your savior. You are, are, you are the one who made a way for us to come into the presence of God. And so I just, that's just what we're doing right now is Jesus made a way for us to just approach his throne, just approach God's throne. And so, so God is asking to do what only you can do this morning. 1 (37s): Jesus, 0 (40s): We're going to sing an Oli, but it Katie to start it. And I want, this is like, we need some, some clapping. So like in time, you know, if you got rid of them, great. If you don't look to the person the next year, they might have rhythm one, two 1 (59s): <inaudible> <inaudible> <inaudible> <inaudible>. 1 (9m 33s): <inaudible> beautiful. Beautiful. 1 (10m 16s): <inaudible> <inaudible> <inaudible> 2 (16m 20s): That's terrible. That is terrible. I thought I turned that thing on. Oh, well <inaudible> I did. 2 (17m 3s): Yeah. Oh, because, oh, because my mic was off. Was it? Yeah. That's what he said. Yeah, yeah, yeah. Oh, that's all right. Hey, they get me. They get the Rami, no matter what. So it's all right. It's all right. Hey, Michael. 1 (17m 31s): <inaudible> we'll go. 2 (17m 37s): Steven Agee harvest. Yeah. Sounds good. Welcome. Come on back. We're in second Timothy chapter four second, Timothy chapter four. So before we get to the second Timothy chapter four, if you look around on your chairs around you, there are information cards, info cards. If you did not fill those out last week, we're going to take a moment now to give you an opportunity to just go ahead and fill those things out. It's just helping to update our database so that we can get everybody kind of there and know who we're serving and ministering with and praying for. So it's, it takes typically three weeks to get everybody insurance to do something. 2 (18m 17s): So we talked about it last week and we're talking about it this week and we will talk about it next week. So I'm just giving you an opportunity to be a part of our database. So you can be a part of the communication that we send out weekly and be a part of what we're doing here week to week. Amen. So sometime during the service, if you can fill that out and then put it in one of the offering boxes here, there's offering box in the sanctuary on both wall to walls, and then I'm in the loft. There's a box and on the patio, there's a box as well. So good stuff, Lord, as we get into your text today, speak to us, lead us because so many of us are already doing this stuff that we're talking about, Laura, but there's there. 2 (18m 59s): I believe there's more to do by your grace as you call us and empower us Lord. So help us to do the stuff that you're calling us to do to be about the stuff that you're calling us to be about. Lord God, be glorified innocent with us. And through us, we pray in Jesus name. Amen. I titled the message today you have work to do so. I thought that's off putting right work is like a four-letter word. It's like, we think it's a curse word, right? It's like when we talk about work that needs to get done, we got to get all nervous about it and anxious about it. But really this is what we're put in the earth to do, to accomplish stuff for the kingdom work. Isn't something to be avoided. 2 (19m 40s): Work is something to be in. It's often where we find our greatest sense of purpose. It's where we get our provision from it's where doors of opportunity are opened up to us. Grow those new experiences. Some of us need to think differently, reframe work and think about it differently because God does his best work through us. When we're humble and submitted and obedient to do what he's called us to do. One coach said this hard work, beats talent when talent doesn't work, work hard. So some people are just gifted with all kinds of abilities academically or whatever it may be. 2 (20m 24s): But this is the case, hard work, beats talent. It beats that out when talent doesn't work hard. So even if you've got talents, you need to work hard to develop your talent, to develop your gift set and to develop who you are. As a person, Colin Powell said this, there are no secrets to success. It is the result of preparation. <inaudible> hard work and learning from failure. We're all going to fail in life. We're all going to fail at work and the things that we attempt, but that is just part of the process. And I think sometimes we're afraid to fail. So we're afraid to step into those things that got us calling us into someone else said hard work, spotlights, the character of people, some churn up their sleeves, some turn up their noses and some don't turn up at all. 2 (21m 11s): So, so we're going to be talking about work today and what God has called us to do. And so again, we've held the message you have work to do. We all have work to do. This is what Paul told Timothy in his letters to Timothy in this letter. And specifically in this chapter, Paul told Timothy, you have worked to do this is what Jesus told his disciples, especially before sending to the father, you have work to do this is what the Bible is telling us from. Start to finish the old Testament, new Testament. The Bible tells us we have work to do so. Let's take a look at a second. Timothy chapter four. These are the last anointed words that Paul penned before his execution. 2 (21m 57s): So this is what Paul wrote right before he was going to be executed. And he knew that his time was short. He knew that he would be executed. And so imagine the urgency in his heart to make sure that he's communicating the right message before he expires and goes to be with the Lord. It was important to him that he finish. Well, a good friend of ours. That's been at the church here for the last six or seven years. Don gainer passed away this Tuesday. I don't know if everybody heard that Don was 82 years old. And he, I remember talking to him in the weeks leading up to his passing. 2 (22m 37s): He said, man, I just want to finish. Well, I just want to make sure that I finished well. And to him that meant he wanted to see some things in his family happened. He wanted to experience some things, but mostly he wanted to make sure that his life represented Christ and that he died as a follower of the Lord, Jesus Christ taking his last breath and then going to be with the Lord. And that's what he did. He was an incredible man, 82 years old, worked until the end to doing the work of the ministry that God called him to. He was in the process of writing a book. Didn't get a chance to finish that. But he also founded a grandparenting mist ministry here on the central coast. And now we're going to be hosting a grandparenting seminar here on the central coast here in the next couple of months. 2 (23m 20s): And so it's an opportunity for grandparents to be encouraged in the work that they have to do with their grandkids, helping to disciple the next generation, helping to be an encouragement to the next generation. So this is some of the fruit of Don's life. Very little bit of the, the fruit from 82 years of pouring himself into life and ministry as a follower of the Lord, Jesus Christ. He understood the value of hard work and now he's receiving his reward. Amen. So what Paul wrote, I solemnly urge you in the presence of God's will Paul wrote to Timothy, I solemnly urge you hear the urgency, the importance of his statement. 2 (24m 1s): I saw calmly urge you the seriousness of it in the presence of God and Christ Jesus in front of God and everybody. This is what I'm communicating. This is what you need to do. I solemnly urge you in the presence of God and Christ Jesus, who will someday judge the living and the dead. When he comes to set up his kingdom, he said, in verse two, preach the word of God, preached the word of God in Bible college, we'd go around saying, preach the word because we're learning how to preach the word, you know, and we, so we quote second Timothy four, two preach the word of God. And that was just something we did. And, and it was preparation for something that we planned to do for the rest of our lives. It's it's God's plan for each of us to be preachers of the word of God in our sphere. 2 (24m 44s): In our context, in the, with the people that we come in contact with, it's our job to communicate the gospel, to preach the word of God, be prepared. Paul said whether the time is favorable or not, and this is what you're supposed to do. Patience, correct? Rebuke and encourage. That's what Paul means. When you, when he says patiently preached the word of God, do build patiently with correction, rebuke and encouragement. Why did he say patiently? Because people change slowly, right? So I thought about this over the last 18 years of being pastor here at this church. And I thought, man, it's just, it's a long haul assignment. 2 (25m 25s): Like I changed slowly. People change slowly. And it's just a process of being consistent, teaching God's word and watching what the holy spirit will do in somebody's life to bring that person along, convicting them of sin and of righteousness and making them more and more like Jesus and less and less like their old man. So Paul understood, Hey Shanley, correct. When necessary. Correct. Every time I opened up the word, I feel like the Lord's correcting me or, or even subtly rebuking me for something that's going on in my life. Whether it be a thoughts, a word, an action, some kind of deed. And there's this loving correction and rebuke and then follow it up with encouragement. 2 (26m 7s): So we're not meant to just kind of beat people up with the word and with the truth of God's word, because God's word is filled from start to finish with God's encouragement for his people. There's correction, there's rebuke, but there's encouragement. Everything he does is to build us up to Edify us in our most holy faith. So preach the word of God, be prepared, be prepared. So just be prepared. How do you get prepared? We just, there's something about the Bible that you don't understand, begin to understand it. Take the time to open up the word of God and get some good commentaries, your good counsel about what you're struggling with and watch God open up your mind to the things of God. And as he opens up your mind to the things of God, watch the confidence. 2 (26m 50s): That's, you know, we're not talking about arrogance. That's not helpful, but confidence is good confidence in your ability to communicate the truth so that people understand what you're saying. And so, you know, understand. So you understand what you're trying to communicate so patiently, correct? Rebuke and encourage your people with good teeth aging. 3 (27m 7s): So Paul Timmy, this is like, I'm about to perish. This is what I'm telling you. Jesus. 2 (27m 14s): After his earthly life and ministry, after his crucifixion, his burial, his resurrection, and before he goes to the father in Matthew 28, he said something very similar. Jesus came and told his disciples. I have been given all authority in heaven and on earth. Therefore go and make disciples of all the nations, 3 (27m 36s): Baptizing 2 (27m 36s): Them in the name of the father and the son and the holy spirit, teach these new disciples to obey all the commands I have given you and be sure of this I'm with you always, even to the end of the age. And so as Jesus was getting ready to ascend, what does he say? Go make disciples, right? Baptizing them. It was been, it was so exciting on Friday night. I don't know. I can't remember if Jeremy told this story, but there was this family you showed up from Southern California. Maybe he told a story. I'll tell it again, came up from Southern California. And they were just hop. These happened to be at the beach, you know, like, you know, by accident, right. No such thing. So they happened to be at the beach and they're seeing this group of people. And then they realize that people are going to get baptized. 2 (28m 19s): We're praying, worshiping, and we're heading out to the waters of baptism to baptize people. And so they've got this, their son chase who's 10 years old and they've been trying to figure out a way to get chase baptize, but they haven't had the opportunity yet. So they're like, Hey, let's get chase baptized today. So chase went out there with the crowd and of course we didn't know who he was. And we said, Hey, what's your name? Chase. Have you given your life to Jesus? Yes. Would you like to get baptized? Yes. And so we got a chance to baptize him and get, get, got to meet his parents and give them a shirt, a harvest church shirt, and a harvest church towel that would give out to those get baptized and really got a chance to bless him. 2 (28m 60s): You know, it's that type of thing that God wants to do when we, when we say yes to him, you know, at the beginning of this church service. Yes, yes, yes. Lord, the Lord will do so much. If we just say yes to him, we were challenged about a year ago that we weren't doing making baptism kind of a big enough priority. And so we began to think about how can we make a baptism more of a priority at our church, because it was used to be like, we do baptisms at Easter or special events, you know, two or three times a year, which was great. But ever since we started making baptism available, like pretty much anytime anybody wants to get baptized, we'll fill up the tank and baptize people. We've baptized almost 40 people this year already. 2 (29m 41s): So more than we've ever baptized in a single year. And we're only in what month are we in? Like August or September? What month is this? Is this still August losing track? It's summer's over. So when we're intentional about being used by the Lord and doing what he's asked us to do, fruitfulness begins to follow. And it's just a beautiful, beautiful thing. So Jesus, okay. As the living word and Paul is the guy who spent his life writing the inspired word of God, and then their last instruction to us was to preach the word of God. So Jesus and Paul, and they're like, Hey, we're getting ready to go to the Lord, preach the word. 2 (30m 22s): Paul was ready to go long before this, like when I say ready to go, like he was ready to go. Like he had been stoned memory drug outside of the city left for dead people gathered the believers, gathered around him. He got up, went back to the city. Remember he was shipwrecked at one point, remember he got snake bitten at another point, like he was, he has been through it in the earth. Like he had been suffering persecution for his faith. And he said, Hey, it's, it's, I'm ready to go. And Philippians 1 23 and 24, I'm torn between two desires. I long to go be with Christ, which would be far better for me. But for your sake, it's better that I continue to live. 2 (31m 7s): Why? So that he could continue the work. That four-letter word, that word that got to call them to that work that we so often try to avoid because it's uncomfortable. And it requires something of us before leaving Paul had worked to do. And now in this passage, she is passing the Baton to us. Now we have, or to do number one in your notes, do what you're called to do. Now do what you're called to do now. Why, why must we do this work now? Because verse three says for a time is coming. When people will no longer listen to sound and wholesome teaching, 3 (31m 49s): They won't have an appetite for it. They won't want to listen to it. The 2 (31m 56s): Same and wholesome teaching that brings correction, rebuke and encouragement. They will follow their own desires and will look for teachers who will tell them whatever their itching ears want to hear. This is going to be the attitude and the perspective of people in church and people in the world. They're not going to want to hear correction, review and encouragement. So while we have the opportunity, we have this responsibility to preach the word of God, to correct rebuke and encourage with all truth filled with the holy spirit. As God leads, they will follow their own desires and will look for teachers who will tell them whatever their itching ears want to hear. 2 (32m 38s): They will reject the and chase after myths. This is what is happening in our day and age. Now it's going to happen with increasing normalcy. It's just going to be the thing for the next two weeks. We're gonna be talking about work and we're going to be giving you an opportunity to work within the church. Beginning next week, Christie Suiza will be up here and she'll begin to present work opportunities for people within the body of Christ. And then, because it takes a while for people to kind of think about it and sign up. We're going to do it the following week as well. And there's going to be opportunity for everybody to sign up for a particular ministry, whatever you're gifted or called or whatever you feel like you're led to do. 2 (33m 24s): I talked with a gal after service and she said, how can I get involved? I said, what do you want to do? I said, how about teaching Sunday school? She said, that scares me to death. I said, well, maybe that's a good place for you. Then she said, well, what else do you have? I said, well, how about if you clean, you want to clean the church. She sat in London and cleaned the church. So I said, well, go talk to Jolene and she'll get you on the cleanup list. And so there's going to be opportunity for a platform ministry where you're playing an instrument or helping to lead worship behind the scenes ministry, where you're at the computers or the soundboard doing that sort of thing, or doing live feed in another space. All together, you can clean, you can work with youth. 2 (34m 5s): You can work with kids. You can work with young adults. You can work with college-age ministry. These are all areas, fifth and sixth graders there. These are all different ministry opportunities. You can be involved in men's leadership, women's leadership. There's all kinds of opportunities for people to get involved with. So next week and the following week, there's going to be up opportunities. And so be ready to get plugged in as the Lord leads into the area of work that God has called you to be involved in. So do, as you're called to do now, like we tend to put off these important things. Maybe you're kind of your new year's resolution for 2021 was to get busy doing the work that God's called you to do. 2 (34m 51s): But now here, we're halfway through over halfway through and you still haven't done that. Now. It's an opportunity for you to be involved. It's really going to be very, very good, especially if you're new to the church, because you're going to get a chance to meet all kinds of new people, people that you can work with and be encouraged by and encourage. And it's just going to be really good. So number one, do what you're called to do now. Number two, do, as you were called to do without fear, this is what Paul wrote for a second, Timothy four, five, but you should keep a clear mind in every situation. Don't be afraid. 2 (35m 32s): Don't be afraid of suffering for the Lord. Work at telling others the good and fully carry out the ministry. God has given you. As for me, my life has already been poured out as an offering to God. And the time of my death is 3 (35m 50s): Near. So Paul 2 (35m 52s): Works and Paul suffered persecution, but he didn't allow the fear of persecution to hinder his work. He worked fearlessly as a follower of the Lord. Jesus Christ. You and I most likely will not suffer for serving the Lord. Although we prayed for Afghanistan because the underground church is suffering persecution. This very moment, Christians are being killed and heard the story that the Taliban are going into homes. And if you have a Western phone number in your phone, in your contacts list, they will kill you on the spot, any connection to the west, which would be the us and you are killed on the spot. 2 (36m 37s): This is real stuff that's happening like right now today. And so Paul understood persecution. We don't understand it yet, but I have a few failing. We will be understanding it soon. Not to fear, put fear into anybody, but just the reality of the situation. It's not going to get better. It's going to get worse for the church in the west has, for me, Paul said my life has already been poured out as an offering to God. The time of my death is 3 (37m 5s): So don't 2 (37m 6s): Be afraid of stuff from persecution for the most part. Now, unless you go to another country or somewhere else where the persecution is real right now, but I would say you should be afraid of being 3 (37m 18s): Inconvenience. 2 (37m 20s): You shouldn't be. I should say you shouldn't be afraid of being inconvenienced. That's really the biggest obstacle to our serving is that we don't want to be inconvenience, right? We live 3 (37m 31s): In a pretty posh part of the country where 2 (37m 36s): We can much do what we want to do. And a big part of our freedoms here is just the conveniences that we enjoy. And honestly, when you sign up for, to serve, you're going to be inconvenienced, 3 (37m 49s): Right? And that's a pretty small price to pay, to 2 (37m 54s): Be a part of what God is doing here in the earth. So I'd say don't be afraid of being inconvenienced. Don't be afraid of the work involved. You can handle the work he can handle it. Don't be afraid of commitment. That's another big thing by sign up to usher or greet on Sunday morning. That means I have to actually be there at church on Sunday morning. And what if I wake up on Sunday morning and I'd rather go to the beach or I'd rather go to breakfast or I'd rather do whatever it is. If I'm committed, that means I've got to go. And so don't be afraid of commitment, embrace commitment, and know that God will bless you for doing it. And don't be afraid of failure. Either often we were afraid to up or commit because we're afraid that we won't do a good job. 2 (38m 40s): Well, that's all right. If you don't do a good job, go back and try again, right? We're not talking about rocket science stuff you were saying, do you want to clean? Do you want to change a diaper? Do you want to, whatever it may be, you know, keep them rounds cleaned. They're their opportunity. And often the enemy will say, wow, can't do that. Cause you, you know, you're not skilled or you're not going to follow through or whatever. Don't let, don't be afraid of failure. Don't be afraid of responsibility. Be afraid of missing out fearful Mo FOMO, fear of missing out. Don't be afraid of that. If you're going to be afraid of anything, fear, that's right. Be afraid that you're going to miss out and be afraid of falling short of fulfilling your potential, right? 2 (39m 22s): Be, be afraid of that. Like if you've got potential in life, you need to realize, you need to realize that potential. If you're old and you still haven't realized your potential, you need to be out there realizing your potential is one thing to say to a little guy. He is full of potential or she is full of potential, but to be older and still have unrealized potential <inaudible> man, don't let your life in that way. Be afraid of falling short of fulfilling your potential. She'll be afraid of not being fruitful. Be afraid of slipping into selfishness. Be afraid of disobedience. Be afraid of standing before God, one day and giving an account for your life. Or how about, how about not living with fear at all? 2 (40m 6s): How about God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of sound mind. How about if we out of obedience to God live without fear because we know we're doing everything that he's called us to do. Like there's nothing that we won't say yes to. How about living that life where we say, Lord, whatever it is that you call me to do, I am saying yes to you. And with that kind of life, there's no fear because God is on the throne of your life. And you know, you're doing what God has called you to do before full obedience. Keep your conscience clear by saying yes, Lord, before I even know what the ask is, Lord, the answer is yes. 2 (40m 47s): Why wouldn't it be Lord? You're the Lord of my life. You're the king of my life. You're in charge of my life. I'm submitted to you. We all have work to do that was talking to a guy before a second service started. And he's like, Hey, there's this guy. I want to go minister to him. Is it all right? If I go minister to him, I said, yes, the answer is yes, go minister. But he didn't want to. He didn't want to step out. He didn't want to be out of line. And I said, listen, from here on for a minister to anybody that you want to minister to pray for people, encourage people. You are released in Jesus' name to minister in Jesus' name. 2 (41m 28s): Now, if you start doing weird stuff, we'll call you on it. But pray for people. Love people, work with people, encourage people, do the work that God has called you to do and do it. Number three, 3 (41m 41s): Faithfully, faithfully. So it just means 2 (41m 45s): Laura. I think you're calling me to do this. 3 (41m 48s): I'm going to go do this. And if 2 (41m 51s): You're not called to it, got to make that clear heal. If you've misheard, God we'll make that clear, but you I'd rather go down swinging and miss the ball. Then not swinging at all. When I played little league baseball and I'd strike out, my buddies would be all excited. Hey, where do you go down and swinging? I'm like, I struck out. They're like, but you didn't go down without swinging. And it began to, I began to realize it matters. The effort that we put into it. If we go down swinging, at least we went down trying, even if we missed the Aw it's okay right now, if you are playing golf and you miss the ball, that's not celebrated. 2 (42m 32s): That's just like, you lifted your head and you didn't keep your eye on the ball and you didn't do good. So there's some things we don't celebrate, but so do, as you're called to do faithfully. So this, I fought the good fights. I finished the race and I have remained 3 (42m 53s): Faithful. You know, you remain faithful. Just keep saying yes to God. Just keep saying yes, Lord. Yes, Lord do it now. 2 (43m 5s): Deal without fear and do it faithfully say yes, Lord. And now Paul wrote, right? And now the prize awaits me the crown of righteousness. This is all what, this is what we're all headed for right here, which the Lord, the righteous judge will give me on the day of his return. And the prize is not just for me, but for all who eagerly look forward to his appearing. And then we see Paul's final words. And in his final words, we begin to see what keeps us from doing the work we're supposed to be doing fall. Paul was faithful, but others around him struggled with faithfulness. 2 (43m 46s): This is what he writes. Timothy. Please come. As soon 3 (43m 50s): As you can, Demas 2 (43m 53s): Has deserted me because he loves the things of this life and has gone to a festival. Annika creations has gone to Glacia and Ty, this has gone to Dalmatia loving the things of this life will keep us from doing the work that we're supposed to do. So there are things, real life obstacles to our success in doing the things that God has called us to loving the things of this life is part of it. Now I think we're supposed to love this life. I think we're supposed to love what God is doing in our lives. Love the people in our lives. Love the relationships, love the work and hobbies and all that kind of stuff. But if the love of world, the love of this life is hindering our ability to love God, fully being fully obedient, to do what God has asked us to do. 2 (44m 41s): Then our love is misplaced. We need to seek first, the kingdom of God and his righteousness and everything else will be added unto us. So we need to seek first God loved first God and trust him with everything else. Verse 11 says only Lucas with me, bring mark with you. When you come for, he will be helpful to me in my ministry. I sent tickets to Ephesus. And when you come be sure to bring the coats I left with carpus at shero as also bring my books and especially my 3 (45m 10s): Papers, my parchment 2 (45m 13s): Alexander, the coppersmith did me much harm, but the Lord will judge him for what he has done. Be careful of him for. He fought against everything. We said something else that keeps us from doing the will of God. And the work that God has called us to do is opposition Alexander. The coppersmith was opposing Paul's work. He recognized that it was an opposition. He recognized that he was a problem and that he was trouble. He warned others about Alexander, the coppersmith and Paul went about his business, doing what God had called him to do often we're derail because there's opposition. There's always going to be opposition. 2 (45m 54s): When we're trying to do what God has asked us to do, whether it be real human opposition, a guy like Alexander, the coppersmith, or it's other opposition, relational opposition, time, confinements and restrictions. We might need to re assess our lives and do some other things less so that we can invest ourselves more in the kingdom. My daughter was super, they've been super busy lately. And I told Jolene my wife. I said, why does Leslie always so busy? 3 (46m 31s): And she's just, and she said, because she takes after you. 2 (46m 35s): I said, ah, that got hurt. But the reality is that we can get so busy that we can miss the best that God has for us. So what is it that we need to eliminate from our lives? Seemingly good things, busy things that are keeping us from doing the very best that God has called us to do. The enemy is really good at keeping us busy, doing, you know, 3 (46m 56s): Things but missing 2 (46m 58s): The very most important things that God is calling us to Alexander. The coppersmith did me much harm Paul Rowe, but the Lord will judge him for what he has done. Be careful of him for. He fought against everything. We said the first time I was brought before the judge, no one came with me. Everybody abandoned me. May it not be counted against them? I love Paul's heart. 3 (47m 23s): He's like 2 (47m 24s): I was abandoned by these people, but may the Lord not hold it against them? As I was worshiping the first service, I really felt challenged in my spirit that I was holding something against someone in my heart and I couldn't worship for service. I was like, Lord, why can't I worship? And I felt like Lord said, because of this. And I said, oh, 3 (47m 44s): I said, Lord, forgive me. I repent. 2 (47m 47s): I forgive. I extend grace. And it was like a load had been lifted off. We can never minister effectively. If our heart is not in the right place. If we're not being humble and extending the same grace that has been extended to us, to others, we can never minister effectively. And with longevity, the way that God has called us to effectively and fruitfully, unless our hearts are in the right place. And so whenever the Lord challenges your heart, don't be offended. Be humble. Say Lord. Yes, you're right. You're right, Lord. I don't want to be angry with that person or hold a grudge against that person or be disappointed with that person any longer. I just want to let that go. So there's all kinds of things that will keep us from doing what God has called us to do the work that he's called us to do in quitting quitting. 2 (48m 36s): When things get difficult. As part of that, that's what by me, Paul said, everybody's abandoned 3 (48m 39s): Me w may 2 (48m 41s): Not be counted against them. First time I was brought before the judge, he said, I'm being brought before the judge. And everybody left me when things get difficult, the temptation is to quit that by God's grace weekend, stay in the fights by God's grace. We can keep going by God's grace. We can finish well, but it's only done by God's grace. And so we've got to stay home. So 3 (49m 5s): Teachable available 2 (49m 7s): Well to God. And we got to stay in the word. We've got to be filled with the holy spirit. We've got to allow God to do what he wants to do in our lives. And then, and only then it will be, will we be able to do the work that he's called us to with longevity and with faithfulness? What will keep us from doing work? The work we're supposed to be doing? This one is common too, that we forget that God is the one who calls and strengthens his people for the work they are called to do. And I kind of been dancing around that tiptoeing around that first 17 Paul wrote, but the Lord stood with me now, everybody else abandoned me, but the Lord stood with me. 2 (49m 47s): You, you have this confidence, you have this assurance, you have this promise from the Lord that he will never leave you nor forsake you. He didn't leave Paul in his desperate times, the Lord stood with me and gave me strength so that I might preach the good news in its entirety for all the Gentiles to hear. And he rescued me from certain death. Yes. And the Lord will deliver me from every evil attack and will bring me safely into his kingdom, his heavenly kingdom or glory to God forever and ever. Amen. Then verse 19, give my greetings to Priscilla and Aquila. So there were people that stuck with him, a bunch of people left, but now he's recognizing who are faithful. 2 (50m 29s): Give my greetings to Priscilla and Aquila and those living in the household of Odessa for us arrest the state of current than I left trophy trophy, miss at a sick at Melissas. I gotta slow down. I'm trying to say too much, 3 (50m 42s): Do your best to get here before winter, 2 (50m 46s): You Melissa sends you greetings and SOTA, poutines, Linus, Claudia, and all the brothers and sisters may the Lord be with your spirit 3 (50m 53s): And may his grace be with all of 2 (50m 56s): You. These are Paul's last inspired pen words. He said, you have work to do, do it. Now, do it without fear and do it faithfully without let's go and stand up. We're gonna invite the worship team forward. We're going to sing some more and then we will have some fellowship afterwards, and then we can go have lunch and do all that kind of fun stuff. So thank you Lord. For this time, we love you. Lord, continue just to establish your truth in our hearts and minds, Lord, and as you establish that truth in our hearts and minds, Lord God, that we would be obedient to it. We'd say yes to it. Lord with big old smile on our face, we say yes, Lord. Yes, Lord. Yes. Yes, Lord. In Jesus name, we pray. Amen. Amen. 1 (51m 45s): <inaudible> <inaudible> need that. 1 (53m 54s): <inaudible> <inaudible> <inaudible> <inaudible> <inaudible> <inaudible> God <inaudible>.
0 (4s): <inaudible> <inaudible> <inaudible> <inaudible> <inaudible> cross says food. 0 (9m 19s): Crown, the cherish Jesus. <inaudible> walk beside me. 0 (10m 0s): <inaudible> <inaudible> <inaudible> <inaudible> Lord, we praise you this morning. 1 (14m 4s): We thank you that you've made a way for each one of us to walk with you and have power over sin and death. We praise you and we ask that you would teach us this morning. Give us ears to hear what you're saying to each one of us. Give us power to walk with you in Jesus name. Amen guys. Thanks very much guys and gals. So 2 (14m 44s): Welcome. Hey, when everybody walked in, they probably saw an info card on their desk or on their seat there. Everybody get that. Oops, 3 (14m 52s): Everybody see the info card. So this 2 (14m 55s): Is going to be one of those awkward moments in the service where we ask everybody to take a moment and to fill out a card. And maybe you, when you arrived, you already filled it out. But what we're trying to do is update our database. And so we're trying to get updated information from everybody. So we're going to take a minute in the service to do that, just to take care of some Sheriff's business, and then we will get to the rest of the service. So fellas your name, if, if there's anybody, any, if there's been any kind of email changes or address changes or whatever, just go ahead and fill that out. And we promise to keep all of this information in house and it'll be really, really helpful to our team. 2 (15m 40s): So yeah, we've got few people. I think first service, I was the only one who filled it out. That's what it felt like. Anyway, I looked up and nobody's filling it out. So thank you for taking the time to fill it out when you are done. Hold on to that. And at the end of the service, as you walk out, the greeters will collect your communication card. Sound good? I feel like we should pray again, Lord. Thank you. Thank you for this time. We just continue to invite your presence Lord. And as we teach through second Timothy chapter three, today, we pray God that you would, as Jim said, God, that you give us ears to hear Lord that we would hear that we'd be excited and responsive and challenged and ready to move forward in Jesus name. So thank you for what you're doing in our lives. 2 (16m 22s): We love you. We bless you Lord. And for those going through hard stuff this week, a lot of people have been sick, have had surgical procedures. We lost a member of our family, our church, family, Andrew and Lord. It's just been a challenging week on a lot of different levels. And so we pray God that you administer your mercy minister, your peace minister, your grace Lord God, where healing is needed for people's bodies. God, we pray that you would minister in Jesus name, where people are needing encouragement spiritually and emotionally. Lord God. I pray that you build people up, encourage people and help people to continue to trust you, to continue to believe you and continue to follow you all the days of their lives. 2 (17m 5s): No matter what life throws at us, Lord, you are faithful and you give us the grace to walk, walk through it, Lord. So thank you for this time. Thank you for your goodness in Jesus name. Amen. Amen. A quick update on my dad. I asked last week, everybody to pray because I was going to be flying out to Denver. So last Sunday night I flew out to Denver, spent a few days in Denver with my dad and we made the tough decision to put them on hospice. Very, very difficult decision as a young guy, 72 years old. And so to put somebody at 72 on hospice, it's just a hard decision, but he's got some dementia going on. And so mentally he's not where he needs to be to be on his own physically. 2 (17m 47s): He's really not in a good place. It's hard there. They've detected some heart issues and he's not physically fit to even get out of bed. So thanks for praying for him. It was really a good week to be there and a hard week to be there. So I guess the good news is that my siblings and I, we were all kind of collaborating to try to figure out what to do. He doesn't have a will. So if you haven't gotten your, your end of life stuff squared away, get it squared away, especially if you're 72 or above. So that'd be really helpful before we get into first Timothy or second Timothy chapter three. 2 (18m 30s): Why do you, why do you need to knock on the fridge before you opened the door? Why would you need to knock on the fridge before you open the door? Well, the salad is dressing, so 3 (18m 39s): You just want to be careful. 2 (18m 42s): Yeah. Second Timothy hay, some very good. Usually people just blew at my jokes, but today I got some applause. All that does is encourage me. It doesn't encourage me. I'm encouraged. Thanks very much helping others avoid the dangers of the last days that we're, that's what we're talking about today. The last days include the entire period between the first century and the return of Christ. So that's kind of what we're talking about. We say in time. So when Paul is talking about the times he's talking about what's going on in his day and age, but then so what's been going on for the last 2000 years. So helping others avoid the dangers of last days last week, we learned how to gain God's approval. 2 (19m 29s): And these things, these things that we learned this week will actually help us to help. Oh, there's if we're doing the things that God has called us to do, it will actually equip us and prepare us to help others who God has put in our path. You know, God has given us, they met in the earth to make a difference and to communicate the truth and to love people side of heaven. So we said last week, how do you gain God's approval? Number one, be a good worker. And basically what that means is do the work that God has called you to do. We wrote about Paul told Timothy, be a good worker, be faithful to the work that God has called you to do. We're not saying work as unto salvation, but we're saying the work we're saved by grace through faith. 2 (20m 12s): It has nothing to do with our works, but our assignments have everything to do with our work. And we're actually going to stand before the Lord and give an account to God for the things that we have done or have not done in the earth. So essentially the challenge and the encouragement is to be a good worker. Then number two, turn away from evil. That's obvious. And then number three, do life with like minded people. We need each other. We gathered church to be encouraged, to gather, to pray for one another, to hear the word to worship together. And hopefully from there, we go into small groups throughout the week where we can gather and do the same thing where we're praying together and loving on each other. I meet with a group, like I said last week on Friday mornings at 6:00 AM. 2 (20m 53s): And then I meet with other pastors throughout the week and just for the purpose of growing together and praying together and loving on each other together. And, and then out of that, we're able to be filled up. We're filled up and we're able to overflow and bless others in the world that we come in contact with. And so it kind of, that's what it's all about. It's be a good worker, turn away from evil, do life with like-minded people. So this week let's revisit the last two verses from second Timothy chapter two, because they set up the passage for second Timothy chapter three, and the focus of this week's message. Second Timothy chapter two verses 25 and 26 says this gently instruct those who oppose the truth. 2 (21m 38s): Perhaps God will change those people's hearts and they will learn the truth. Then they will come to their senses and escape from the devil's trap for they have been held captive by him to do whatever he wants. A number of years ago, I was, we had a neighbor, you know, where the church office is now. So that house used to belong to Mark Miller and Mark Miller was our neighbor. And for about five years before mark passed, we would share the gospel with him. And probably once every, you know, once or twice a month, we'd go over there and share the gospel with him, have a cup of coffee and just kind of talk about things of the Lord. And before he passed away, I had an opportunity to go over there and, and, and when the final conversation and he prayed the sinner's prayer. 2 (22m 23s): And, but it was through gentle instruction over the course of a long period of time that finally opened his heart part to the work of the Lord. So Paul is instructing Timothy to help others. And we as followers of the Lord, Jesus Christ, we have this responsibility 3 (22m 44s): To help 2 (22m 46s): Others with gentle instruction 3 (22m 49s): In doing so, perhaps God will change 2 (22m 52s): Their hearts and they will learn the truth. I was talking to a gal earlier today during first service, before first service. And she was talking about how her dad passed away at about 86, 87 years old. And he had been an atheist his whole life, but the last like weeks of his life, she had the opportunity to gently instruct him in the truth and to share the gospel with him. And before he died, he accepted the grace of the Lord, Jesus Christ, being an atheist for like 86 years. So God is up to good all the days of our lives. And if we will never give up, but continue to ask and seek and knock and pray for our loved ones and continue to gently instruct them in the truth. 2 (23m 35s): God will do amazing and wonderful things. I can't tell you how many people I've prayed for over the years. Family members and friends who some took 30 3 (23m 44s): Years praying for talking to 2 (23m 50s): Encouraging them in truth. And then finally at the end of their lives gave their life to the Lord. But the beauty of the Lord is that he takes us at our last day or anywhere, you know, in our lives. But man, the beauty of the Lord is, is when we choose him early, is that we get to walk with him all the days of our lives. We get to experience his peace. And we talked about the fruit of the spirit, love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self, to all of those things. That's free to the Lord working in our lives for the holy spirit, working in us. And we can experience all of those things if we just choose to honor the Lord now, today. So maybe you're here today and you said, man, I I've been putting this off. 3 (24m 29s): I haven't trusted the Lord 2 (24m 31s): Or, or maybe you're here today and you've been distant from the Lord. Are you backslidden and, and your heart's been far from the Lord. I would just encourage you today to refresh yourself and the grace and mercy of the Lord, Jesus Christ. If you confess your sins, he is faithful. And just to forgive you and to cleanse you from all unrighteousness. So confess your sin to him, acknowledge your need for him and watch what God will do to wash over your life. I think about the prodigal who left his father and when he decided he came to a census and came back, the prodigal was received with open arms. A party was thrown form. A ring was put on his finger rope on his back, great celebration. That's what God will do when you choose to return. 2 (25m 13s): And that's what God does when any center turns and repents. And so 3 (25m 17s): Don't lose hope. Don't lose 2 (25m 19s): Heart, continue to ask and seek and knock, continue to pray and watch, watch what God will do. Pause instruction Timothy, to help others in doing so, perhaps God will change their hearts and they will learn the truth. So what can we do to help others avoid the dangers of the last day? And we're going to talk about what the last days look like as we get into chapter three, it just unfolds it for us. Yeah. Number one, gently instruct those who oppose the truth. Gently instruct those who oppose the truth. So I gave my life to the Lord in junior high school, but I kind of vacillated in my faith for all my, all of my, most of my high school years, junior high and high school years. I gave my life to the Lord, but didn't know what to do with my faith. And so I, we go to church on Sunday and was even helping out in Sunday school. 2 (26m 3s): But when I was outside of the church that I was doing the wrong stuff, I was doing stuff that I shouldn't be doing. And so the problem with that is I had a guilty conscience. So I would tell my youth pastor, every time I did something wrong and at one point he said, Hey, Steve, until you kind of get this stuff out until you decide what you want to do with your life, whether you're going to serve the church or serve the Lord or serve the world, you need to, you need to take a break from teaching Sunday school. I said, you can't do that. At first, I was kind of mad. You know, he said, well, I just did. But the reality of his discipline and his instruction was, was, was helpful to me. And as I thought about it considered it, it was really an opportunity for me to make, make a choice. 3 (26m 48s): Will I 2 (26m 50s): Serve the Lord wholeheartedly or will I continue to vacillate in my faith, the rest of my life? And so challenge the instruction, the gentle instruction that I received, actually put me on a proper path and gave me an opportunity forward as a follower of the Lord, Jesus Christ. So there was no condemnation. He wasn't judging me necessarily. He just said, Hey, based on what you've told me, you need to take a break from your work in the Sunday school department until you just kind of figure out what you want to do with your life. So he said you can't serve in this area for awhile. And so it just challenged me and awakened me. Yeah. And it allowed me to make a 3 (27m 30s): Choice without, with, with, so 2 (27m 32s): I've heard of so many people who've been injured by the church. And I talked with a couple, couple of weeks ago and I said, why aren't you insurers? They said, well, we've been injured by the church. I said, well, who hasn't been injured by the church, right? I mean, the church is full of people and the church is full of broken people. So if you come to church, chances are, you're going to get your stuff, your toe stub and somethings get somebody going to say something or do something and it's going to be hurtful. Or, and 3 (27m 60s): So, you know, I I've had poor 2 (28m 3s): Treatment by a doctor that doesn't mean I stopped going to a doctor, right. I just keep going forward. So, so we, we need to, by God's grace lovingly instruct people, giving them an opportunity to move forward, not condemning them and not giving them a way forward. And we need to instruct in such a way that people have room to repent and a path forward in the church. It has God's kindness that leads people to repentance according to Romans too. So when you're tempted to be harsh, when you're tempted to be unloving, when you're tempted to be critical or remember your own struggle with sin, and that will soften. If we get honest about our own struggle with sin, our own struggle with temptation. 2 (28m 47s): If we get honest about what God has done to deliver us in the extent to which God went to deliver us, it will soften us. When we're dealing with people who are stuck in sin themselves. We can remember I'm giving my testimony tomorrow night at M six. It's a men's group that gathers a few hundred people. And as I, as I've been thinking about my testimony, I thought this is how I always instruct people to give their testimony. What is, what was your life like BC, like your BC days before Christ and then what triggered your life change and brought you to the cross. And then what has God done since the cross? And so that's kind of how I'm going to break it up. Three-part message tomorrow night about my story. And it just began to get me thinking about my story again. 2 (29m 29s): And we need to think about our, our path, our story, because it refreshes us in the grace and the mercy of the Lord, Jesus Christ. Maybe God's done a bunch of a Mar marvelous things, wonderful things, but it's been 10 years or 20 years or 30 or 60 years. And you've forgotten how incredibly good God is. His mercy, his grace, his kindness, his love, his patience, all of those things. So be refreshed in your own story. And then you can instruct people with gentleness and watch the fruit of that. I was talking to a guy, I mean services. And he said, Hey, my grandpa, Fred, he's got stage four, colon cancer. I'm going to go pick him up. 2 (30m 9s): And I'm looking for an opportunity to share the gospel with them. How do I share the gospel with my grandpa Fred? I said, well, just be, just be prayerful. I said, this is how we do everything in the kingdom. We're prayerful first. We're praying for God's opportunity to open up and we're listening and we're in tuned to what God is doing in the person's life. And I said, it's just like, anything else you're excited about? I said, well, I'm excited about golf and I'm excited about God. So in the course of any conversation, I might talk about golf or God, depending on the situation. So just make sure it's natural. Don't force it. Don't S you know, do a sales pitch. But when there's an opportunity, just begin to talk about the Lord, see what he will do to be clear. I'm excited more about God 3 (30m 51s): Than golf. 2 (30m 53s): I don't want anybody to be confused about that. Golf didn't save me, but it is awfully fun on a Monday afternoon to go play some 3 (30m 60s): Golf. So, 2 (31m 2s): Yeah. So remember your own struggle with sin. Remember what God did to rescue you. Remember the mercy and grace that you received then extend that same mercy and grace to others. We were struggling with somebody's sin because maybe it reminds us of somebody else or reminds us of our own past and our own sin. And it makes us jaded. And it hinders our ability to minister effectively, but most likely, that's the person that God has placed in your life to minister to effectively. So I said, this, I say this all the time, whatever it is that God has asked us to do, it requires that we be humble and dependent on God and fill with the holy spirit, reflecting his life and his word in everything that we do. 2 (31m 42s): And then as we do those, just things we're able to do, fruitfully what God has asked us to do. So it doesn't mean that we don't speak the truth, but we speak the truth in love, right? So sometimes we dance around the issues with the woman at the well, Jesus is at the well, and he addresses is the woman's sin <inaudible> and go get your husband. And he said, she said, well, I'm not married. And he said, yeah, you're right. I've been, you've been married five times. And the guy that you're living with now is not your husband. And what did she do? She ran into the city and she said, come meet the guy who told me everything that I'd ever done. Right? So she'd been confronted lovingly by Jesus about her sin. 2 (32m 24s): And then she was convicted by the power of the holy spirit. And she was changed and the whole city heard the gospel. What can we do to help others avoid the dangers of the last day, gently instruct extreme, instruct those who oppose the truth. And then number two, the season and the times we need to understand this season and the times in which we live, what are the last days look like? Luke 1256 in the new living translation, speaking to the crowd. Jesus said, you fools, you know how to interpret the weather signs of the earth and sky, but you don't know how to interpret the present times. So we can look at the sky and say, ah, it's going to be a nice day. I think I'll go to the beach or no, it looks like it's going to rain. 2 (33m 7s): I should have my umbrella today. We're able to look at the signs in the sky and determine what the weather's going to be like, but we can't determine the signs of the times that we're living in. And sometimes we're blinded to it. Sometimes we're not paying attention to it, but we can be aware and we should be aware of the signs of the times. If you'd like help keeping up with what is happening in the last days, especially in the middle east, if you need help understanding the prophecies that are unfolding, you can download the app called 3 (33m 37s): Telegram. Thank you 2 (33m 39s): And follow Amir. Sarfatti on that. So telegram is a great, I just found out about it recently. And so Amir is a guy from the middle east who just stays on top of a biblical prophecy. That's unfolding in our lifetime and you'll get daily updates on what's happening in the middle east. And it's a hotbed for prophecy, and it's a hotbed for what God is going to be doing in the, in times and what he's doing now. And so if you'd like to know more about it, check that out. A mirror has about to be clear. There's counterfeit, Amir websites, Sarfatti websites, and so, or Instagram telegram accounts. And so he's got 125,000 followers. 2 (34m 21s): So you want to be careful to make sure that you're following the right guy. So find the guy that's got over a hundred twenty-five thousand followers, and that's who you want to follow. So that's telegram a mirror. Also. He's got to be hold Israel app and website. So you can check that out as well. Behold, Israel, Amir Sarfatti anyway, check it out. It'll just help you. It'll just help you day to day. And I'm so grateful for the resource and been reading it every day. So let's get into second Timothy chapter three, verse one, it says, you should know this Timothy that in the last days, there will be very difficult times, very difficult times. And so we're talking about for the last 2000 years, the church has had very difficult times, but leading up to the return of Christ is going to get increasingly different. 2 (35m 8s): You should know this Timothy that in the last days, there will be very difficult times for people will love only themselves and their money. So now we're going to see what this will look like. People will love only themselves and their money. People will be self-centered and narcissistic. It's interesting because Lucifer said, I will be like the most high God. So he was self-centered and narcissistic. So it's not curious. It's not, it's not surprising that he would attempt people in the area that he was tempted. He said, I will be like, imagine standing before God and say, I will be like the most high God, you gotta be pretty delusional about who you are, but that's where he was. And for the rest of humanity's history, he's been tempting people the same way. 2 (35m 53s): Colossians verse continue. Verse two continues. They will be boastful and proud scoffing at God disobedient to their parents and ungrateful, they will consider nothing sacred. So boasting is just an indication that there's pride internally. And so we need to be careful because whatever's going on out of the abundance of the heart, the mouth speaks. And so if we've got pride in our hearts, we will be boasting. We need to be clear that God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble. But this is a sign of the in times people will become increasingly proud and boastful scoffing at God. The words literally blaspheming God disobedient to their parents and ungrateful, they will consider nothing sacred. 2 (36m 38s): And we've noticed that even just in the 21st century with our church here, we used to have lots of weddings here at harvest church. It's a cute little chapel spot for people to get married. And so people would use the classrooms to, you know, dress and that sort of thing. And we, so he would say, Hey, please don't drink alcohol or smoke cigarettes in our buildings, simple requests, right? Almost inevitably, almost every time we would show up and people would be smash. And this is not always, but sometimes church people as well, and they'd be smoking and drinking in our rooms. And so you'd wake up Sunday morning going into the classrooms and what it would, it would smell like a bar in there, right? Cigarettes and alcohol. So we had to stop basically for the most part, having weddings here, especially for the public, because they were just thrashing our facility and they had no, they consider nothing sacred. 2 (37m 30s): We've had to set up video cameras all over inside and outside of the property, because this is a thoroughfare, which is great. We love that people come through, we invite kids to come and play basketball and our basketball courts, and we just love it. But inevitably people will. We've had people break into our facilities, stealing from us, vandalizing our property, doing all kinds of crazy stuff. And so now we have to have doors locked back in the day. Remember you watched these old films and the church doors are always open, right? So people can come in and pray. If we did that, the whole place would be destroyed and looted. And there would be nothing left for Sunday morning. It's just a crazy world that we live in. And so nothing is considered sacred in this day 3 (38m 14s): And age. And so we just, just, we have to 2 (38m 18s): Be aware of the seasons and the times and adapt, but keeping our hearts tender because we don't want to be hard-hearted toward the world. Otherwise we're not doing what God has called us to do. So we're to love those. We talked about this last week, love those who are difficult. We can only do these things as we're filled with the holy spirit and his word and allowing God to be God through us. First three, they will be unloving and unforgiving. Again, this makes sense. The very thing that defines the gospel God's love and forgiveness is what the enemy tempts people to resist. 2 (38m 59s): I've noticed that when the person hasn't received the love and forgiveness of God, they have a hard time extending love and forgiveness to others. So maybe it's been a while since you've experienced the love 3 (39m 10s): And the forgiveness of God, 2 (39m 13s): Refresh yourself in that truth. Rehearse that truth that God's love is unconditional. Maybe you're feeling distant from the Lord because you made it some mistakes. And you're feeling if the Lord doesn't love you, God absolutely loves you. His love is on 3 (39m 30s): Conditional. And so 2 (39m 33s): Whatever mistakes you've made, no, that when you confess your sins, he is faithful. And just know that his forgive, this 3 (39m 39s): Is for you. I have 2 (39m 41s): To remind myself sometimes at the gospels for me, 3 (39m 44s): Right? 2 (39m 46s): If I stumble how the gospels for me, if I say something, I shouldn't say, ah, the gospel's for me, right? I need you to remember that the gospel is free. That refreshes me in the Lord. It keeps me humble and it keeps my heart in the right place so that I might minister effectively to people in the church and people outside of the church. A few weeks ago, I challenged everybody a couple of weeks in a row to be taking the gospel to the streets as it were to share the gospel. And so I just want to continue to encourage you to do that as part of your job, your responsibility, as a follower of the Lord, Jesus Christ 3 (40m 21s): Love people. The 2 (40m 24s): Passage in second Timothy, that we studied last week, told us to be kind to everyone. And again, this is impossible. If one has not experienced the kindness of God personally, so no this season, this is the last days. And it's our time to gently instruct people who oppose the truth, right? Sometimes you just get from 3 (40m 42s): Straight in by the world's falling apart. Wow. The world's going to go into a pot. It is, it is, 2 (40m 51s): But as the world gets darker or light gets brighter. And we have an opportunity before us. And so love people by the grace of God, difficult people and see what God will do. Second, Timothy three, three continues. They will slander others and have no self-control. They will be cruel and hate what is good. They will betray their friends. Be reckless, be puffed up with pride and love. Pleasure, rather than good. 3 (41m 15s): They will act religious, but they will reject the power 2 (41m 21s): That could make them godly. Stay away from people like that. What's the power that can make us godly the holy spirits and the holy Bible. Those two things make us 3 (41m 33s): Holy. Now the holiness of God 2 (41m 35s): Has been imputed to us, but our lives 3 (41m 38s): Are made holy by our actions. So we 2 (41m 41s): Are w w we are the righteousness of God in Christ Jesus, but the holy spirit and the holy Bible help us to help us to walk in that godly life that he's called us to live. So the holy spirit is there to it's a person, second or third member of the Trinity. The holy spirit is meant to convict the world of sin and of righteousness. So when we're struggling, he convicts us. When we need challenge, he challenges us. He speaks to us, he's taken a residency in our lives, but we got to invite him. Also, we got to say, holy spirit, would you speak to me? Would you lead me? Would you guide me as part of the, the abiding with God that we talked about last week, allowing the holy spirit to do what he wants to do the holy Bible. 2 (42m 23s): The last couple of verses that we'll look out today is verses 16 and 17. And I'll just read those really quickly. It says, all scripture is inspired by God. So we're talking about the old and the new Testament, the Canada, God, okay, inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is true. And to make us real, what is wrong in our lives? It corrects us when we are wrong and teaches us to do what is right. God uses it to prepare and equip his people to do every good. So you can't do what God has asked you to do in the earth. Not for long. Anyway, you might be able to muster up some spiritual energy or something and do what God has asked you to do for a moment, but you'll know, never be able to do it longterm and with great fruitfulness and that kind of fruitfulness that God desires to produce in your 3 (43m 6s): Life. So be a person who is filled with the holy spirit, 2 (43m 12s): Right? Ask the spirit of God to speak to you, to minister, to equip you for the work that God has called you to. And then open up the word of God every single day, every day. I know I beat that like a drum, but that is the reality of the situation. You got to open up the word every day, I'm in a seminary level class, and I love it because they take you back to the basics in this class. And they say, go back and reread Genesis through the song of Solomon and do it over the next two months. And at first I was like, ah, this is a lot of reading it's going to be kind of, or, but then I changed my mind and this is what we have to do. We have to change our mind about the scripture. 2 (43m 53s): We often think it's, oh, it's a bummer. It's just going to take up time. It's not worth my time. It is worth our time. And so, instead of thinking about this as an assignment for myself, I decided added to think of it differently and say, you know what? This is an opportunity for me just to 3 (44m 6s): Be deep in the word and see what the Lord will speak 2 (44m 9s): To me as well as, you know, get my assignments done and that sort of thing. So now I'm reading, I don't know, 10, 12 chapters a day, sometimes 15 chapters a day just to get through that text. And, but I'm reading through it just kind of thoughtfully. Sometimes we rush through our devotional time, but the Lord wants us to just, it doesn't take that much extra time to read through it thoughtfully and make it a time of devotion where you're, what you're doing is you're examining your own life in light of the scripture. You're saying, God, speak to 3 (44m 39s): Me through this scripture, the culture and the context may be difficult for me to 2 (44m 45s): Grasp, but I know that you've got something to speak to me. The word of God is it's a, double-edged short, it 3 (44m 51s): Cuts and divides and reveals and communicates. 2 (44m 56s): And there's just something powerful about it. But we need to change our minds 3 (44m 59s): About the word of God and begin to think 2 (45m 4s): About it differently and open it up every single day, verse five, again says they will act religious. So Paul, isn't just talking about people in the world. He's also talking about people in the church. People who act religious godless, men and women who claim to know God, but our wolves in sheep's clothing. This is what they do. Verse six, they are kind, they are the kind who worked their way into people's homes. And when the confidence of vulnerable women who are burdened with the guilt of sin and controlled by various desires, such women are forever following new teachings, but they are never able to understand the truth. And so Paul is addressing something that is happening currently in the church at emphasis, but he's also addressing what godless people do in the earth. 2 (45m 48s): Those people who are wolves in sheep's clothing, they are pretending or acting pious, but they lack the power that can make them godly. So Paul is addressing occurrence in that day situation, but he's also addressing what's going on here. So we, we need to be careful if we are pious religious, but lacking the word in the spirit. We're always going to be off. We're always going to be missing the mark. We're always going to be misunderstanding what God has called us to do much like these women that Paul is talking about. They're forever following new teachings, but they're never able to understand the truth. And so that's why we say, keep going back to the truth. 2 (46m 29s): Keep going back to the truth, get a good Bible, get a good study Bible. Keep going back to it. I'll ask a lot of the holy spirit to fill you and to direct you. We just prayed out a couple who are moving to Arkansas. And I don't know why anybody would want to move to Arkansas, but apparently people are moving to Arkansas and Idaho and Oregon and all, all kinds of places. So we prayed 3 (46m 52s): Them out and 2 (46m 55s): They said, Hey, we're, we're living. There's 21 churches to choose from. I said, you know what? Pray and watch the holy spirit direct you to the right shoe. 3 (47m 3s): Cause you gotta be careful. So they're praying. They're believing 2 (47m 7s): That the holy Spirit's going to direct them. And then they will find a church that is good and Bible teaching 3 (47m 12s): And, and aligns with their values as followers of the Lord. Jesus Christ. Do you believe that stuff or is it just kind of like whatever? I 2 (47m 25s): Mean, do we believe that the holy spirit of God dwells 3 (47m 28s): In us in two Wells, this was 2 (47m 30s): In us richly and that gives us the wisdom instruction for life. It's part of the abiding walk with Jesus. We have to believe this kind of stuff. It's not Hocus Pocus. It's not magic. It's the real person of God living in us directing us. I mean, it's real stuff like you don't have to ask Lord what pair of socks should I wear? He, I don't think he cares about that kind of stuff. But if you want to ask, go ahead. It's that kind of relationship. I don't care if you ask God, what kind of socks to wear, but you can ask, Lord is, you know, what do you want me to do with this resource, Lord? What do you want me to do with this day? I get up every morning and say, God, this day is yours. I just want to honor you with the day. 2 (48m 11s): And sometimes I get it. Sometimes I miss it. But, but that's the intention. I believe that God wants to speak to us and direct us. So as I go to work, Lord, what do you want me to do? Would you help me to encounter the right people? Help me not to be distracted by the wrong people. How many get the work done that I need to get done and help me not to be worried about the stuff that I don't need to be worried about. Just watch what God will do. First aid. These teachers oppose the truth just as Janice and jam bris opposed Moses. They have depraved minds and the counterfeit faith who were Janice and Jamaris, we don't really know from scripture, but from a tradition, Hebrew tradition, Jewish tradition, these were most likely the magicians in Pharaoh's court. 2 (48m 57s): So you go back to Exodus 7, 8, 9 in there. 3 (49m 3s): There were a couple 2 (49m 4s): Of magicians who would do basically mimic the, the miracles that God would perform. And we read about here next exit seven, verses eight through 13. Then the Lord said to Moses and Aaron Pharaoh will demand. 3 (49m 16s): Show me miracle 2 (49m 19s): If we need it miracle. So miracles were given in the first century and they're still given today to help people believe the truth. But if your day-to-day life requires a miracle from God before you trust him, your, your faith is shallow and you're not gonna, you're not gonna make it. You're not gonna make it long-term. And when things get difficult there, I went to Israel a couple years ago, year and a half ago or so. And our tour guide was Jewish, but he wasn't a Christian, but he knew about all the miracles that Jesus performed. And he talked about all the miracles that Jesus performed, but he still did not know Jesus, the Pharisees, the religious leaders of Jesus' day. 2 (49m 59s): They saw him raise the dead feed. The multitudes heal the sick, do all of these amazing things. And they still refuse to believe. Pharaoh will see the miracle and he will refuse to believe, show me a miracle when he does this say to Aaron, take your staff and throw it down in front of Pharaoh. And it will become a serpent. So Moses and Aaron went to Pharaoh and did what the Lord had commanded them. Aaron threw down his staff before Pharaoh and his officials. And it became a serpent. Then Pharaoh called in his own wise men and sorcerers. And these Egyptian magicians did the same thing with their magic. They threw down their staffs and I don't know how that happened and they became serpents, but then Aaron's staff swallowed up their staffs and Pharos part. 3 (50m 45s): However, it remained hard. His heart remained hard. 2 (50m 49s): He still refused to listen just as the Lord had predicted. So if you're walking around and expecting a miracle and you're throwing around down your staff, like, oh, I didn't turn into a snake. I'm going to throw it out another one. Oh, apparently God, God 3 (51m 2s): Is not real. 2 (51m 7s): Put out fleeces before the Lord all the time. Lord, give me a financial miracle or give me a relationship. Miracle, Lord, give me a healing miracle or give me all of this stuff. And that's the expectation some of us have. And because God doesn't do our wish lists, we kind of hold them at arms length. The miracle that we need to be thinking about is the miracle on the cross, 3 (51m 32s): Where he died, 2 (51m 33s): The substitutionary death 3 (51m 35s): In my place, imputing righteousness to me so that I might know him and know him for eternity and escape, hell and death. That's the miracle. Jesus has done everything that he needs to do. And if 2 (51m 54s): He graces us with a miracle, praise the Lord, but I'm not serving him for the miracles. I'm serving him 3 (51m 58s): Because he saved me and he's called me and he is worthy. And so we need to get 2 (52m 8s): Out of that deal, making perspective and plan with God because he won't play your game. He loves you. But playing that game will keep you shallow 3 (52m 23s): And weak in your faith. As a follower of the Lord, Jesus Christ, 2 (52m 29s): Timothy three nine, but they won't get away with this for long someday. Everyone will recognize what fools they are just 3 (52m 36s): As with you <inaudible> they were 2 (52m 39s): Free pools because they refuse to believe Moses, even when science had been given. Why? Because they have depraved minds in counterfeit, faith, how has your mind, and how has your faith? We need to be careful to guard our minds. And that's why last week I talked about protecting what we allow in. We do, we do that by protecting what we see through our eyes on the internet, on the television. So there are different software programs that can be used. Covenant eyes is one that you can download on your computer 3 (53m 13s): And, and that will help 2 (53m 15s): Filter the stuff that actually doesn't filter, but you've got an accountability partner. So whatever you watch on line that your accountability partner knows. So that's pretty awesome, right? And so you need to be careful what you're you're doing. We have a video angel. Yes. Heard of it. Angel. It's just kind of filters all of the trashy stuff on TV programs and movies and that sort of thing. 3 (53m 37s): So anyway, 2 (53m 40s): No, the seasons of the times, number one, gently instruct those who oppose the truth. This is how we help others. We gently instruct them. And then we know the seasons and the time so that we're not taken aback by them. And then number three, we remained faithful. 3 (53m 51s): So we're able to help others. If we're not remaining faithful, we don't even have a desire to help 2 (53m 57s): Others. We don't see the need to help others. But if we're remaining, if we're remaining faithful, like Paul talks about in verse 10, then we will. But you Timothy. Certainly no I teach 3 (54m 8s): And how I live and what my purpose in life is. So we talk 2 (54m 13s): A lot about purpose around here. What's your purpose? What has God called you to do? And will Paul knew what Timothy was up to or Timothy knew what Paul was up to, what he taught, how he lived and his purpose. You know, my faith, my patients, my love and my endurance. Why did Paul need faith? Patients' love and 3 (54m 27s): Endurance. Why did he need 2 (54m 30s): Faith? Patients' love and endurance. He needed faith. Patients' love and endurance because his life was hard. His life was hard. You know, how much persecution and suffering I have endured verse 11. You know, all about how I was persecuted in Antioch. I conium and Lister, but the Lord rescued me from all of it. In those places. Mobs were incited against Paul. Like people gathered in incited mobs. And at one point they stoned him. They thought to death, they drug him outside of town to leave him there because they thought he was dead. The believers gathered around him. And as they gathered around him, he came to and what did he do after he came to, he went back into the town. 2 (55m 10s): Why did he get he's? He's got work to do, right? He's got work to do. And even stoning, even Stony, I was not going to keep him from 3 (55m 19s): Doing what God had called them to do. 2 (55m 22s): Do you know all about what I personally all about how I was persecuted Antioch. I, Tony, Melissa, but the Lord, this is an interesting statement that Paul makes, but the Lord rescued me from all of it. Moms were incited against him and he was stoned almost to death, but the Lord rescued me from all of it. What does that mean? We think the Lord's going to rescue us and take us out of all of our trouble. And we won't have any tribulation troubles or problems in the earth if we just trust the Lord. And we think if, if we're experiencing tribulation or problems that we've obviously disappointed. God, okay. Paul was able to say the Lord rescue me from all of it because God resurrected him after his Stony. 2 (56m 6s): Not that he was dead, but he healed him, got him up. I mean, the guy was left for dead. God actually absolutely had to heal him. He getting pelted with stones in the head and you're getting knocked. God had to heal him so that he could get back up. Doesn't say he was dead. So he didn't get resurrected, but he was, he had to get healed. So what Paul's saying is, Hey, the Lord was faithful to the Lord, rescued me and that he got me back up on my feet. So I can go back and do what God had asked me to do. Right? When God was done with Paul, they cut his head off. That's a pretty good indication that God has done with you. So keep going, keep going. And all they do the same, right? Keep going. Your head's still attached. 2 (56m 46s): Oh good. I got work to do. Yes. And everyone who is, who wants, oh, this is interesting and encouraging. Yes. And everyone who wants to live a godly life in Christ, Jesus will suffer persecution. So this happened in Paul's day and what happened as the end time events unfold and as demonic opposition to God's people. 3 (57m 5s): And God's plan on fold. 2 (57m 11s): I'm told from things that I read, that there's actually more persecution of the church today in the 21st century than the previous 20 centuries combined. 3 (57m 22s): That interesting, not in our town, you know, 2 (57m 28s): Not much anyway. I mean, I don't know of anybody that's been stone lately or mobs incited, or had their head cut off. But in other parts of the world, Israel is a war zone right now, just Friday. 3 (57m 40s): Hezbollah dropped 19 2 (57m 44s): Rockets, shot 19 rockets at Israel and Northern Israel. And, and they've been in a war zone where they're God's people. And so for almost since the inception, the beginning of Israel's history, they'd been in a battle somewhere. Cause the enemy hates God's people who are God's people. Well, it's the Jews. But then if you know, Jesus you've been grafted in. So you're part of God's people. And so you're going to be under, under, in a battle zone and you're going to be up against 3 (58m 14s): Obstacles and you can be sure that Satan is interested in 2 (58m 18s): Just discouraging you. If you want to find out why Israel or God's chosen people just go back and read the pendant to go back and read Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, numbers, and Deuteronomy, and watch the story of God unfold. It's still 3 (58m 32s): Unfolding today. And 2 (58m 35s): It's just helpful for us to go back and have that understanding. Sometimes we avoid the old Testament, but it's actually a foundation 3 (58m 40s): For the new. It helps us to understand the whole Bible as a whole back 2 (58m 45s): To the description of what the last days will look like. Verse 13, but evil people and imposters will thrive. 3 (58m 51s): They will flourish. They will 2 (58m 53s): Deceive others and will themselves be deceived, but you must remain faithful. Verse 14 says you must remain faithful to the things that you've been taught. You know, they are true for, you know, you can trust those who touch you. You've been taught the holy scriptures from childhood and they have given you the wisdom to receive the salvation that comes by trusting in Christ Jesus, all scriptures wired by God and is useful to teach us what is true. And to make us realize what is wrong in our lives. It corrects us when we are wrong and teaches us to do what is right. God uses it to prepare and equip his people to do every good work. So 3 (59m 29s): How can we help others 2 (59m 31s): Avoid the dangers of the last days, gently instruct those who oppose the truth. 3 (59m 38s): Figure out a way to do that. Lovingly 2 (59m 41s): Graciously mercifully 3 (59m 44s): Instructed with the truth, 2 (59m 46s): Know the seasons and the times don't let it freak you out, but let it prepare you and remain faithful. So you're able to help others with that. Let's go ahead and stand up all of us and we'll invite the worship team out. And we will worship some more with a couple more songs and, and we will wrap up this service Lord, thank you for this time. Thank you that you have been here through the worship, through the fellowship, through the times of prayer, through the teaching of your word, Lord, we thank you that your presence is obvious. And so we pray God that you would continue to speak to us as we worship you. God revealing God reveal yourself to us in wonderful ways. Lord God got to refresh our hearts and minds, bring conviction where we need conviction and do the work that you do in our lives. 2 (1h 0m 31s): It's the work that only you can do Lord. So thank you. Thank you for what you're doing in our church. Bless the work at 1 0 2 down the road. Lord, that new facility blessed that we pray. Thank you for providing for it. God, you know the obstacles in front of us with the electrical stuff that's in front of us and the plumbing stuff and all of the, all of the challenges. Lord, we just give those to you and trust you Lord. So thank you for your goodness and faithfulness through every season and project of life. We love you in Jesus name. Amen. Amen. Let's worship 1 (1h 9m 50s): Lord. We pray that our praise would be pleasing to you. We honor you this morning. We humble ourselves confess that you are the one true. Holy God. Worthy of all praise. We asked you to give us strength, walk with you this week.
0 (0s): Each and every one of us as we enter your presence, Lord is you always, you always meet us there. So we just invite you. We become aware of you this morning in Jesus name. Amen. 1 (13s): <inaudible> clap. 1 (3m 8s): I hated rescue. My sin was heavy, but Shane spray, Catherine, raid of your clothes, I needed shelter. I was, you know, now you call me and says in her head, <inaudible> saving us worthy of every song. 1 (4m 43s): Seen <inaudible> Jesus. The name of Jesus, the only one who could <inaudible> we live Jesus, the name of Jesus. 1 (6m 44s): The only one you could ever say worthy of every breath, <inaudible> sing a song in your own words. 1 (8m 17s): Just it's just you and Jesus. Right now. It's just an opportunity to sit in his presence. Just tell him no worries. 1 (8m 55s): <inaudible> <inaudible> <inaudible> I read <inaudible> that's grease that <inaudible> <inaudible> has Google <inaudible> <inaudible> 2 (16m 51s): Thank you, Lord. Thank you, Lord. For that song, it is our song. It's your song, the gospel, our testimony, what you've done and who we are and you are faithful Lord, and we are so thankful. So, so thankful Lord. I pray that for those who don't understand the amazing grace that we've been singing about, Lord, I pray that you would minister that truth to each person. Truth is we're saved from the penalty of our sin. The wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ, our Lord. 2 (17m 34s): And so the grace of God that has been extended to humanity is available to why wipe away every sin to cover every mistake and to welcome us into the kingdom of God. And so I pray that those who need to hear that message today, or to rehear that message today would be refreshed in that truth. And I pray that people will be added to the kingdom as a result of that gospel song that we were just singing Lord and God that people would respond with a yes to your grace and yes, to your love yes, to your, your, your plan for their lives. Lord God. So we just invite you to continue that good work that you're doing. God has people watch online and listen online and sit around this campus. 2 (18m 17s): Lord, we just pray your will be done. Thank you for your grace. We love you. We need you. We appreciate it. Lord, in Jesus name. Amen. Amen. You may be seated. You may be seated. Welcome. How is everyone 3 (18m 30s): Fabulous? Good to hear I'm back. I, I was gone for the last couple of weeks and I'm so glad to be back. I don't even know that I stepped foot in this sanctuary for the last two weeks. And so when I got here this morning, it was so refreshing to be back and just so good to be back in this place. I've been, I've been doing like a staycation, which has been great, been, you know, at, at the project a little bit, but not really at church much. And so it's been great to be. It's great to be back today as I was, as we were singing that last song, I couldn't help, but think about what's happening a week from Monday a week from tomorrow, a week from Monday week from tomorrow is <inaudible>, which is a group of gathering of bunch of men from all over the central coast to gather once a month to have great food worship together and then have a testimony. 3 (19m 17s): And a few months ago, I was asked to give my testimony a M six, this next time. So, or this in August. And so that is my plan. But for months I've been thinking, Lord, what is my testimony? What part of the test? My testimony do you want me to share? I just, I was, I've been kind of at a loss and what keeps coming back to me is that song amazing grace. And so it's really amazing that we were seeing that today. Cause I feel like the amazing grace of God, the truth is say he saved a wretch like me. I was lost and now I'm found I was blind. And now I see that our testimony, if we know Jesus, that is our testimony, right? 3 (20m 4s): And God is so faithful to meet us where we are to resurrect us and to give us new life in Jesus. And so I'm beyond that. I'm not sure what I'm going to share a week from tomorrow, but guys, if you want to come out and be a part of that, that'd be amazing. It's a thousand Hills ranch. It's going to be just a lot of fun. Hundreds of guys show up and great food is prepared and we just have a wonderful time. So how many I've been just praying every day for this one? Oh two. How many note 1 0 2 is 1 0 2 is our building, which is literally 45 seconds east of us. As, as we walk along the sidewalk there and 1 0 2 is a building that we have leased and we're praying about trying to buy and that sort of thing. 3 (20m 44s): But we're in this tenant improvement phase, which has been for two or three months now, three months I think. And we'll probably be going for three, four more months. And, but so far we've got most of the electrical roughed in. We've got most of the fire sprinklers in. We've got the HVAC system in. We are, we've done a lot of stucco repair. We're going to paint the exterior next week. We've picked out floors and colors and bought chairs and sound equipment and all kinds of stuff that's going in. So can I do, can I ask you what? I asked my staff to do the staff here at the church. I said, Hey, let's not forget to pray every single day for that project. 3 (21m 27s): It's a big undertaking for us as a church, but I know that as we gathered together and just make it a priority to pray every day for it, then God will give us the favor that we need with the city. And they've been amazing to us by the way, the city of ag has been really, really good to us, but prayed for continued favor there with our architect, with our contractors, with our suppliers, with everybody involved, pray for safety and provision at the beginning of the project, I challenged everybody. I said, if, if every family within the church, there's roughly 300 families. If every family gave $700 per family, not per person, but per, per family, then we could meet our budget over there. 3 (22m 9s): So, so far we've raised in excess of 170,000. And so God has been so, so faithful and you guys have been so amazing. So if you haven't had the opportunity to give yet, and you would like to give, just mark your check 1 0 2 and w w God told me this. I felt like the Lord said you will have the resources that you need as you move forward. And so far the money that we've needed has been there. Every bill that comes in gets paid right away and everything that's needed has been able to be purchased. And it's just been really, really good. So, so be continually praying. If you could just write it down somewhere where you see everyday, like maybe on your bathroom mirror, pray for 1 0 2 and just pray for those things that we've been talking about. 3 (22m 50s): That'd be amazing. Hey, we're in second Timothy, back to second Timothy chapter two today verses 15 through 26, I titled the message. How do we gain God's approval? How do we gain God's approval? Now we're not talking today about salvation. We are saved by grace through faith. It has nothing to do with our work, but we receive God's approval. We receive God's approval of our life and work by what we do. So there's a difference. And we're going to be talking about the difference today. Salvation by grace, through faith rewards, approval of God comes through the works that we do. 3 (23m 31s): So I child, if you've got kids or whatever, I, we raised our kids, but as they were growing up, we would discipline them out of our love for them. We love them enough to discipline them because at times their behavior wasn't acceptable. So we would discipline them so that they would learn what good behavior is. God says, the Bible says that God disciplines, those whom he loves. And the discipline actually demonstrates that we belong to God, that we are his adopted sons and daughters. And so we know that God has a standard and has given us each responsibility in the earth that I always say, if you've got a pulse, you've got purpose. 3 (24m 14s): And so do that real quick. 4 (24m 17s): My pulse is good. Pulse 3 (24m 20s): Equals purpose, right? So if you've got to pulse, that's good. Cause we don't have to call anybody to take you out, but you got purpose. So God has given each of us a spiritual gift to be used. And then at the end of time, at the end of our existence here in the earth, we're going to stand before the judgment seat of God and give an account for our lives. And so we will each stand before the Lord and receive rewards or not based on how we lived our lives here in the year. And so we're going to be talking about gaining God's approval steps to gaining God's approval so that when we stand before the judgment seat of God, Gary was talking about that we're at that judgment seat, we're going to receive crowns. But then after that, we just cast it before the Lord and worship worship to him. 3 (25m 3s): So as we look at this text in second Timothy today, we're going to just kind of unpack it a little bit or a lot of bit and find three points that will help us to gain God's approval. Number one, weed comes right from the text, be a good worker, be a good worker. A second. To me, the two 15 through 26 says this work hard. So you can present yourself to God and receive his approval, right? So it's kind of, if you've never thought about getting the approval of God, if you thought, well, not obviously approves of me, he saved me and I, it doesn't really matter how I live my life. 3 (25m 43s): That's not God's plan. And it actually matters how we live our life. He's actually placed us in the earth to accomplish the kingdom work that he's given us to accomplish. So Paul is telling Timothy, and he's telling the church at emphasis. There are 2000 years ago when he's telling us today here on the central coast in 2021, he said, work hard. So you can present yourself to God and receive his approval. So we have this responsibility to work in such a way. So point number one, be a good worker. Verse 15 continues, be a good worker. One who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly explains the word of truth. So pretty specific communication there. 3 (26m 25s): What is Paul telling Timothy? How is Paul instructing Timothy to be a good worker? He's we need to know because he's instructing us to do the same thing. He said, be one who does not need to be ashamed. What does that mean? Well, we need to have a clear, we need to move forward as followers of the Lord, Jesus, having a clear conscience concerning the work that we do for God. We have been called to kingdom purpose, kingdom work, and we need to have a clear conscience that the work we're doing for God is what he has asked us to do. This week. I heard about a young lady who went to Cornell university, graduated from college, got a engineering degree, top 10 in her class. 3 (27m 11s): Amazing young lady started her engineering career doing great work, but she didn't enjoy it. It wasn't her passion. So she decided that she would quit her amazing engineering job that she got, that she had secured. And she decided I want to go back to school and get my teaching credential because I want to teach math. That's what she was passionate about. Right? So I think God gives us passion for our vocation, but then also for the work that he's called us to do in the earth. And it's that passion that gives us the ability to do the work that God has called us to longterm. When we're working out of the passion that God has put into us, then we're able to do for decades, what God has asked us to do so that at the end of our lives, we hear well done. 3 (27m 57s): Well done. Good and faithful 4 (27m 60s): Servant. So Paul is instructing 3 (28m 3s): Continuously to be a good worker by not being ashamed, have a clear conscience concerning the work you do for God, work with all your heart. As you do your work as unto the Lord, invest your life with passion into the work you are called to. So make sure that the life you're living as a follower of the Lord, Jesus Christ is not going to lead to your shame. Meaning sins of omission, where God has called you to do something, but you didn't do it. Or sins of commission where he just flat refuse to honor the Lord with your life. You're going to stand before the Lord and give an account. And you're going to have to give an account for every second minutes, hour, day, week, month, decade, your whole life, your whole life is being recorded. 3 (28m 54s): And you're going to have to give an account for your life. So Paul all told Timothy, be one who does not need to be ashamed. Also be one who correctly explains the word of truth or handles the word of truth. The Greek verb translated correctly. Handles really means cutting a straight road and suggests straightforward exit Jesus, exit Jesus. As the study of God's word, the understanding, gaining the understanding. It's a process to which you gain understanding and, and, and, and, and, and, and teach the word of God. In other words, don't read into the text. Something that isn't there, you need to understand how to XEG the texts. You need to understand how to open up the scripts. 3 (29m 35s): You know, basically what you do is you just let scripture interpret scripture. You open up the word of God and make sure that what's your about this passage is actually properly reflected in the rest of the scripture as well. There's a lot more to it, but you need to properly handle the word of God. So you know how to live it for yourself, but then also how to instruct it for others. You say, well, I'm not an instructor. I'm not a teacher. Every one of us teach teaches someone. Every one of us, I ran into this couple recently. And if you go back in their lives a few years ago, they were on fire for Jesus. They just loved Jesus. They started out their married life. 3 (30m 15s): That way they just love, love Jesus. And just over time, they've drifted and they have completely fallen away from the Lord. So I saw this couple recently and I said, they've had a couple of kids. And I saw one of their kids. And I said, you know what I said, do you know who loves you? And a little, little kid said, well, you do. And I said, why, no, I love you. And you know that, I love you, but do you know who, who else loves you? I said, Jesus loves you. And this little, little girl had no idea who Jesus was. She said, who is Jesus? I said, well, Jesus has God. And he loves you. 3 (30m 56s): She said, God's not real. That's not true. We're all teaching, instructing someone in our lives. Whether it be our kids, our grandkids, our neighbors, our coworkers, we're all instructing. And so we have to properly correctly handle the word of truth in order to effectively do the work that God has called us to do here in the earth. In other words, don't read into the text. Something that isn't there. I know a guy who was always giving me hypothetical's I, if you know me at all, you know, I don't like hypotheticals or whatever. I like just want the facts. Just like, give me the facts. I, if I'm in a meeting with my staff or my team, and they're wanting to give me all this information about, about what they're doing. 3 (31m 37s): I said, I don't, I it's not my place. I don't, that's not my job. We've got people in place for that. People, you know, tracking your goals and you know, all that kind of stuff. Just tell me what you need bottom line it for me, because you're going to lose me in about three seconds. If you don't bottom line for me. So I've got this guy who's always, and I've known many of these guys throughout my life. They're giving me all of these hypotheticals about God's word. Well, what if, why not? Could it be this type of hypothetical questioning to me yields only unhealthy speculation. And in my experience, now, this is just my experience. You can throw it out if you want. But in my experience, the fruit of that kind of conversation is a fruitless life. 3 (32m 22s): The people I've encountered over the years who talk like this and think like this don't ever grow up in their faith because their hypothetical questions are always getting in the way of them truly believing and being obedient to God's word that people have encountered over the years who like this, and think this like this, they don't ever grow, grow up. They remain childish and undisciplined, and un-involved insignificant kingdom work. They don't attend church on a regular basis, or they bounce from church to church. They don't get involved in long-term ministry. They don't give it. They don't give to kingdom work and they tend to cause problems in the church. So Paul is exhorting Timothy, and he's exhorting the rest of us. 3 (33m 6s): The one who does not need to be ashamed. In other words, don't make it excuses for not doing what God has asked you to do, do what God has asked you to do wholeheartedly with your whole life. Also be one who correctly explains the word of truth. What's the opposite of correctly explaining the word of truth. Well, back to our text, second, Timothy chapter two verse 16 says avoid worthless, foolish talk that only leads to more godless behavior. So these type of hypotheticals, these excuses that we make or come up with that hinder our obedience to God and our belief in God and our faith in God lead to godless behavior. 3 (33m 47s): It says this kind of talk spreads like cancer. That word literally in the Greek is gang green. So if you can get a good, a good picture of that, that's kind of disgusting growth thing to just a gross thing that kind of grows in your body when you're, when there's unhealth involved or when there's infection. And when it's unhealthy, this kind of talk spreads like cancer gangrene, as in the case of, and we get Hymenaeus and <inaudible>, they have left the path of truth, claiming that the resurrection of the dead has already occurred. I heard in this way, they have turned some people away, the faith. So how do we gain God's approval? Number one, be a good worker, not ashamed of the work you do rightly dividing the word of truth. 3 (34m 31s): Verse 19 says, but God's truth stands firm like a foundation stone with this inscription. The Lord knows those who are his and all who belong to the Lord may turn, must turn away from evil. So what does that mean? What is the foundation stone? God's true. Stands like a firm foundation stone. What does that foundation stone? There's no slides actually for these next verses here. I put them in this morning. It says this in first Corinthians chapter three, verses 10 through 15. And Paul wrote first Corinthians as well. So he's speaking here because of God's grace, me Paul road. I have laid that foundation like an expert builder. So as an apostle, Paul would go around from town to town, preaching the gospel, laying a foundation of truth and understanding about who Jesus Christ is. 3 (35m 19s): And churches were born out of that work. And after he left that town, others would come in and build on the foundation that he put down. Now, other builders that can diverse continues in verse 10. Now others are building on it, but whoever's building on this foundation. It must be careful. No one can lay any foundation. Other than the one we already have Jesus Christ. Anyone who builds on that foundation may use a variety of materials, gold, silver jewels, wood, hay, or straw. But on the judgment day at the judgment seat of Christ, fire will reveal what kind of work each builder has done. 3 (36m 2s): The fire will show if a person's work has any value. If the work survives that builder will receive a reward, the crowns that we're talking about. But if the work is burned up, the builder will suffer great loss. The builder will be saved, but like someone barely escaping through walls of flames through a wall of flames. So I don't want to get into heaven that way, like barely like singed, like smoking, like barely in there. Like I want to get in there. Not because I'm good, but because God's good. But I want to know that my life has mattered and that my good works have not been burned up. 3 (36m 44s): That I haven't spent my life working in an unproductive way so that my good works are burned up. Second Corinthians five 10 says this for, we must for, we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ so that each may receive what is due for what he has done in the body, whether good or evil. So how do we gain God's approval? We gotta be a good worker. We have a responsibility. If you're here today and you don't know your responsibility, figure it out, ask God. Well, as I'm getting ready to leave to Denver afternoon to go visit my dad. He's in the hospital, been there for a couple of weeks and I've been vacillating all week about whether I should fly to Denver today to go see him, or if I should wait. 3 (37m 26s): And so finally late yesterday, my wife and I decided, yeah, it's going to be good for me to go. And I'm going to go and hopefully be an advocate for him as he's kind of not doing well. He's, he's got heart issues and dementia issues and all kinds of stuff going on. So, so as I was vacillating with it, I knew that the Lord would show me if I just continue to pray. If I just continue to think about the situation and pray about the situation, I knew that God would make it clear and he did make it clear yesterday. So we booked the flights and I'm heading out this afternoon at five 30. So, and all of that is to say that if, if you're really wanting to know what God wants to speak to you about your calling and your gift set and all that, he's got, she got for you here in the earth. 3 (38m 11s): If you just continue ask, ask, and seek and knock it, God will reveal his plan to you so that you can do the supernatural she'll work that God has called you to do gaining God's approval by being a good worker. Number one, number two, turn away from evil. How do we gain God's approval? We turn, turn away from evil. Second, Timothy chapter two verse 20 says any wealthy. Some utensils are made of gold and silver and some are made of wood and clay. The expensive utensils are used for special occasions and the cheap ones are for everyday use. If you keep yourself pure verse 21, if you keep yourself pure, you will be a special utensil for honorable use. 3 (38m 58s): Your life will be clean and you'll be ready for the master to use you for every good work. Therefore 22 8 says run from anything that stimulates youthful loss instead pursue righteous, living faithfulness, love and peace. How do we turn away from evil? I'm going to share some good practices with you today. John 15 talks about abiding in Christ remaining in Christ. 4 (39m 33s): We, 3 (39m 35s): We away from evil. We turn away from evil by simply abiding with Christ remaining in Christ. If you go back and read John 15, you'll, you'll realize you'll see that. That's how fruitfulness happens. As we abide in him and he abides in us, we will have a fruitful life. In fact, Jesus said remain in me and I will remain in you. It goes with that verse. It says he'll never leave us nor forsake us. So as you remain in him, you will be able to turn away from evil and you will bear fruit. You will not be able to turn away from evil unless you're abiding in him. You might be able to white knuckle it for a little while and say no to the flesh, say no to the devil, say no to the world, but after you're done white knuckling, it you're going to give into it. 3 (40m 23s): But if you're abiding in Christ, walking daily with Jesus, you will have the strength and the ability to turn away from evil. This is the truth. You and I were. We'll never turn away from evil until we decide to abide in Christ. We will never bear fruit apart from a biding. Rocky Fleming from influencers, global ministries wrote this. Yes, it is actually Christ in us bearing fruit. It is his fruits and his characteristics that are at work without abiding in him. There is no fruit. However, bearing fruit is not our primary objective and that interesting. 3 (41m 4s): That's not our primary objective abiding in Christ is our primary objective. The fruit simply shows up when we are spiritually healthy. So how do we turn away from evil? We simply abide. And I say simply, it's not always simple, but it is the direction that God has given to us in the word. So if we abide in Christ and he and us, we will be able to turn away from evil, but we also need to do some other practical things that will us to do that. So protect yourself, protect yourself online. The internet is a wild wild west. First of all, kinds of information. Some of it's great. Some of it's not so great. 3 (41m 44s): So if you are having a struggle with the intranet, I would ask you to download on your computer. Something called covenant eyes, nice. Covenant eyes is a, the accountability process where you get somebody else to hold you accountable for the information that you're looking at and watching and reading on line, and that person will be communicated your con to the content of what you've been watching so they can help hold you accountable. So protect yourself on line it's way too easy to stumble by going on the internet. So protect yourself, protect your purity. In other ways, there's other ways to protect your purity. 3 (42m 25s): There's pure desire groups. We've got men's pure desire groups that meet here every Monday night here on the campus. There's dozens of guys who show up because they're trying to turn away from evil, doing the right thing. Also, you can grow in the knowledge and understanding of God through other Bible study groups that we have here on the central coast. In, in this, in this church. There's tons of opportunities for men and women and young people and young professionals and college, junior high and high school, fifth and sixth graders. There's all kinds of opportunities for people to grow in knowledge and understanding of God through the Bible study groups that we have available. Join a journey group, join a journey group. 3 (43m 7s): I'm a part of a 6:00 AM journey group on Friday mornings. It is a terrible time of the day to have a Bible study. I show up at six exam on Friday morning, the first time I'm like, what are you guys crazy? Who in the world has a Bible study at 6:00 AM? That means I got to get up at 4:15 AM so that I can be at the Bible study by 6:00 AM. It's a Riddick. It's the middle of the night. So for like four weeks in a row, I'm like, Hey guys, let's move it from six o'clock to say nine o'clock when God is awake. I'm not even sure God's awake at 6:00 AM. 3 (43m 48s): He is I'm kidding. But you know what? My point is, we're often to go do something or need to go do something that is inconvenient for us. Do it anyway. It has been such a blessing to be at that 6:00 AM group with those guys. I complained about it still, but it's the, the fellowship and the growth that we have experienced together has been nothing short of delightful. We're about halfway through our journey and you got another half way to go, but we're just really, really enjoying it. So it may be inconvenient a bad time, maybe somethings your kind of flesh resist, but do something to get involved in a small group so that you can to grow and believe and trust the Lord. 3 (44m 35s): So here we go. Here's some scriptural guidance for turning away from evil Galatians five 16 through 26. My Bible titles, this living by the Spirit's power. It says in verse 16, Galatians five. So I say, let the holy spirit guide your lives. Then you won't be doing what your sinful nature craves. The sinful nature wants to do evil, which is just the opposite of what the spirit wants. And the spirit gives us desires that are the opposite of what the sinful nature desires. These two forces are constantly fighting each other. Have you ever experienced that? 3 (45m 15s): Yeah, me too. So you're not free to carry out your good intentions, but when you are directed by the spirit and that's, that's part of the abiding process, you're abiding with Christ. The spirit of God is in you and you're being directed by the spirit. As you abide with Jesus, the Lord and great things begin to happen. There's just there's transformation that begins to take place. There's great growth that begins to take place verse 18. But when you are directed by the holy spirit, you're not under obligation to the law of Moses. When you follow the desires of your sinful nature, the results are very clear. 3 (45m 55s): Sexual immorality, impurity, less bill pleasure, idolatry, sorcery, hostility, quarreling, jealousy, outbursts of anger, selfish ambition, dissension division, I'll continue envy. First 21, envy drunkenness, wild parties and other sins like these like that. Wasn't conclusive other sins like these. Let me tell you again, as I have before that anyone living that sort of life will not inherit the kingdom of God, but the holy spirit produces verse 22. 3 (46m 37s): This kind of fruit in our lives. Love 4 (46m 41s): Joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, 3 (46m 52s): And self-control, I don't know about, she wouldn't want to read that first list of all the sin. I was getting anxious. I'm like all the gal is just such heavy. But when I started, when I started reading the, the, the fruit of the spirit, 4 (47m 3s): Peace, 3 (47m 5s): It's like everything settled down inside of me. Love joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness. And self-control, this is the kind of stuff that God wants to accomplish and produce in our lives. We cannot experience this apart from a biting and allowing the holy spirit to direct our lives. First continues. There is no law against these things. Those who belong to Jesus verse 24, those who belong to Christ. Jesus have nailed the passions and desires of their sinful nature to his cross and crucified them there. Since we are living by the spirit, let us follow the Spirit's leading in every part of our lives. 3 (47m 46s): Since we are living by the spirit, let us follow the Spirit's leading in every part of our lives. And so we abide with him. We simply remains true remain with him. So you're connected to Jesus. You're walking with Jesus. You're inviting Jesus into your path and your problems into your challenges. And you're asking for his wisdom and his grace and his strength. And so you're abiding with him and out of that, the spirit of God has access to your heart and mind and helps you to make wise choices and produce something of beautiful fruitfulness. And not just, God's a great plan that God has for us. I think it's a great plan. Those who belong to Christ Jesus have nailed the passions and desires of their sinful nature to the cross and crucified them there. 3 (48m 28s): Since we are living by the spirit, let us follow the Spirit's leading in every part of our lives. Let us verse 26, let us not become conceited or provoke one another, or be jealous of one another. How do we gain God's approval? Number one, be a good worker. Make sure the work that you're doing is kingdom work, born out of a passion that God has given to you to do the work that he's called you to do a number two, turn away from evil. And then number three, do life do life with like-minded people kind of like what we're doing today gathered for church. The Bible says in our text, verse 22, enjoy the companionship of those who call on the Lord with pure hearts. 3 (49m 9s): That's part of Paul's instruction to Timothy, to enjoy the companionship of those who call him the Lord with a pure heart. Proverbs 27 17 says this as iron sharpens iron. So a friend sharpens another. So we have this opportunity and beyond the opportunity, we've got this responsibility and beyond the responsibility, we've got an obligation to sharpen one another in Christ. And so we're challenging one another. When we need to be challenged, we're loving each other through the difficult seasons of life. We're encouraging each other with truth. We're praying for each other. As we go through life. We're not just going to church together. 3 (49m 51s): We're not just hanging out with people who love Jesus, but we're living life in Christ to gather. It's not meant to be an external thing. Only like a facade. Like, Hey, everything's good. Sometimes you show up and like, Hey, everything's great. Sometimes we need to say that if, if there's no time to unpack it, but you can. It's okay to kind of get vulnerable with one another and say, Hey, you know, I'm really, I, I need prayer. Like you can pray for me this as I go up to Denver, please pray. I'm going to be talking with my dad. It's hard conversations. Talking with doctors, it's going to be difficult. It's going to be difficult. So pray for me. And so that's what we need to be doing with one another enjoying fellowship together as the church supporting one, another carrying one another's burdens, you know, Jesus, didn't have very fond things to say about those who thought they were religious, but who lacks real life change wrought by the spirit. 3 (50m 42s): He didn't have much good to say to the Pharisees. Those who were the religious teachers and leaders, but who hadn't experienced life change through Christ the Lord. This is what he said, Matthew 23, 27. What sorrow, what? Sorry. Sorrow awaits you teachers of religious law and you Pharisees hypocrites for you are like whitewashed tombs, beautiful on the outside, but filled on the inside with dead people, bones and all sorts of impurity Christianity. And he was never about just, no, it was never meant to be just about kind of coming to church and even, even just reading the Bible or, or even just praying it's or even just kind of doing good deeds. 3 (51m 31s): It's it's, it's, it's all of it done out of a, a life that is abiding with Christ and filled with the holy spirit because as we abide with Christ and as we are filled with the holy spirit, we're able to do all of these things and thereby gain God's approval, living our lives in such a way that when we stand before the judge judgment seat of Christ, we hear well done. Good and faithful servant. And we received the crowns, the rewards that God has for us, knowing that we didn't spend our life in vain, but God is approving of our life. When it's all wrapped up. 3 (52m 12s): Just a second, Timothy chapter two, again, I say, don't get, don't get involved in foolish ignorant arguments that only start fights. This is interesting. A servant of the Lord who is a servant of the Lord. All right. If you're in Christ, you're a servant of the Lord, a servant of the Lord must not quarrel must be kind to everyone. How do you do that? How do you not coral? And how do you be kind to everyone? You do it simply by abiding, as you are abiding remaining in Christ. And he, and you, and the spirit of God fills you. You're able to do what the scripture asked you to do. We can only do what God asks us to do when we're filled with the holy spirit directed and led by the holy spirit. 3 (52m 58s): And when we're abiding in Christ, when we are doing those things, we're able to do these things. We're able to do not quarrel, be kind to everyone. And then it says be able to teach and be patient with difficult people, anybody. Yeah. Any difficult people in your life, like depending on the season, sometimes we do. Sometimes we don't, but God has got a plan for us when we're encountering difficult people. His plan for us is that we would walk through those seasons with those people, with grace and with love. Not that we don't have boundaries in our lives, but we have grace and love gently instruct those who oppose the truth. 3 (53m 38s): Verse 25, perhaps God will change those people's hearts and they will learn the truth. Then they will come to their senses and escape from the devil's trap for they have been held captive by him to do whatever he wants. Listen, if we're not abiding in Christ and fill with the holy spirit, we're easy. Pickings for the enemy were easy. Pray. The Bible says that Satan is like a roaring lion seeking someone to devour. He's prowling around like a roaring lion seeking someone to devour. So if we're not abiding in Christ and filled with the holy spirit, we're easy pickings. You'll be able to distract us, tempt us, get us down the wrong path. But God's plan is that we would produce that fruit of the spirit. 3 (54m 21s): Love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self control, all of those things that God wants to do, helping us to work as unto the Lord, as we abide in him. And as we're filled with him being good workers, turning away from evil, doing life with like-minded people so that we can help them be good workers so that we can help them turn away from evil so that we can do life together and get to heaven together and take as many people with us as possible. Amen. Amen. Let's go out and stand up. I wanna invite the worship team and we're going to worship. And if the Lord is doing a work in you and, and you feel like the Lord has got your attention about something, pay attention to what he's saying as we worship. 3 (55m 5s): And then after the worship, as we get ready to close up the service, we're going to have a prayer team up here to pray for you. So if you'd like to get prayer, that team will be up here after we worship. And so Lord, we just want to thank you for this time. Thank you for the worship team that leads us in song and in worship before your throne. Thank you for your word that instructs us. Thank you for your spirit. That guides us. Thank you for the opportunity to abide with you. As you walk with us, Lord, we love you. We thank you. We're so grateful in Jesus name. Amen. Let's worship. 1 (56m 6s): <inaudible> amen. 1 (58m 43s): <inaudible> the same. God never fails will not fail me. Now you will fail me in the way the same guy is working. <inaudible> the same guy, never fails. 1 (1h 0m 1s): <inaudible> the same guy. God is working all things out. 1 (1h 0m 15s): <inaudible> I choose to <inaudible> 0 (1h 2m 19s): Thank Lord for a wonderful morning Lord, as we go, Lord, I just ask you to just keep in presence about us. I mean, your presence is with us Lord, but may keep us aware of, of what you're doing in our midst and what, and what you'd have us do Lord. And we just ask that you keep us accountable to serving you and living our lives for you. As we go in Jesus name, we pray. Amen. And like Steve was saying, if you guys, if anyone, if you're feeling a tug on your heart from the Lord, like, please don't be shy to come forward. We have people, prayer teams ready do it. We'll see you next time.
0 (0s): Good morning. Welcome to church. Will you stand as we begin to worship and good morning to everyone who's in our other locations and visiting us online or with the sunlight. 0 (8s): <inaudible> thank you. 0 (4m 34s): Jesus. We praise you. Worship your name this morning. 0 (4m 41s): <inaudible> <inaudible> Jesus. 0 (13m 41s): We thank you so much this morning. We lift your name. Amen. Thank you so much. 1 (13m 58s): Good morning. And you go ahead and have a seat. That would be great. My name is Ron and I will be your host today. Whatever that means. I just made that up by the way I needed up here. Thanks Dave. Hey, what we decided to do this year 2021 is on family Sunday. So today's family Sunday, the fourth, Sunday of each month, which we designate for a couple of things. One is we have communion together on family Sunday. So we're going to be enjoying convenient together today. In fact, if you didn't get the communion cup, when you came in, like to ask the greeters in each venue, sanctuary loft, and also in the patio to get and grab the, grab the tray and walk around and make sure everybody's got a communion cup. 1 (14m 45s): Cause we're going to be, as I said, having communion today as a, as a group, and then also what we do on communion Sunday, family Sunday is we encourage families to worship together. So we don't have our normal classes for first grade and up. We do have class available for those under first grade. So if you've got some kids that for whatever reason, you want to have them in class, you can take them there and that'd be fine. Or if you want to keep them with you, that'd be great. One of the things that, that we feel is sort of a, a symptom of a, a vibrant growing church is a sound of kids could be crying. Kids could be fussy kids. We love kids. 1 (15m 26s): And so, yeah, as long as they're not, you know, distracting me, that's fine. We love them. Also, what we've done this year is the mission. The missionaries that we support and we support about a dozen is we designate each, each family Sundays. We want to introduce you to a missionary that we are involved with. That could be financial, certainly prayerfully, and the couple of money to introduce you to in just a moment. We've actually been involved with them for a long, long time. And so I'll let them tell you their stories. I'd like to go ahead and invite chef Cheryl and land up to the front. So Sherrilyn Lynn, come on up. 1 (16m 7s): And Dave, where did you put your mic? It's oh, here it is. There it is. Okay, so let's give a warm welcome when you is this one. Here you go then. All right. Is that good height? Do you want it lowered? You good? All right. Okay. All right. 2 (16m 32s): I don't want it to fall over. Well, good morning, everybody. It's really a blessing for us to be here. I mean, you know, we're in Israel. Most of the time we have been, except for when this COVID hit. And I was in Israel when the COVID hit and I had to come back to the states when I was in Texas, I was in Israel and I had to first extend my stay in Israel. And then there were no flights. So I was waiting and waiting for a flight, but I didn't want to end up in one of those quarantines and New York and New Jersey where they fly you into. So I was just praying because I thought if I ended up in the hospital, I'll never get out. They'll find something wrong. So anyway, I had this window of time. 2 (17m 14s): I got the flight and June 18th of last year and I got back and lympic me up in Dallas. I didn't have to quarantine. Few days later, they started the quarantine again in New York, New Jersey. So God is good. Yeah. What's good about doing mission field or doing any ministry. And a lot of you're involved in ministry. You get to see the Lord working through you and working around you. You know, it's like watching them. I'm sure the apostles disciples were when they were following them. They'd probably wake them go, oh, I wonder what he's going to do today. And that's how we feel is like, what is he going to do today? And so many different surprises happen, you know, from attacks to people getting saved. The last two days were ministry days for us and they were long and we needed more sleep than we got. 2 (17m 58s): But you know, it was good. It was really good. We got to pray with our brothers and all kinds of good stuff happened. Okay. I'll stop talking. What I'd like to do is tell you that the ministry that we're involved in, that we do is called love without borders. And it started with a smiley who was a Muslim, became a Christian. And we worked together to go to these different Muslims, especially and tell them about the Lord. And they were coming in the kingdom like that. It was fun. You know, they would walk up to me and goes, I wonder to be baptized, you know, like, whoa, okay. You know, you go down, they believe you. They go down as a Muslim. They come up as a Christian. Not that that's their theology or whatever you want to call it. 2 (18m 39s): But they have to do that first after wash all that off and come up. And when they come up out of the water, they're just shining like crazy, you know, it's wonderful. So that's, you know, Jesus said, you know, not what food I have. You know, like when he was at the whale, when some area I have food over there and then knows this, you just get so invigorated, you forget about eating. You forget about sleeping and you just go and do the ministry. So anyways, a little bit, our borders doesn't just go to Muslims or go to arrows. But it also goes to the Jewish people. So we have a mixture. We were doing more Muslims and Jews. And now it's like mix secular Jews, ultra Orthodox Jews, regular Orthodox Jews, and just you name it all kinds. 2 (19m 21s): So it's a fun ministry. And the Lord just kind of puts us in their path. We don't go looking for them. They just come in our path and then we minister to them. So Len is going to share a little bit and while I rest. And so he's just got something to say to you, and then I will finish 3 (19m 38s): Up. Thank you. Okay, good morning. I'm going to start with something just a little off the ball. Since we moved to Texas from Israel by way of California. And when, when we first moved to Texas, I would hear people say y'all and I thought it meant y'all. But what y'all means in Texas is y'all one person y'all. So if I were to address everyone here, it's all y'all. And that was my reaction. 3 (20m 20s): So that gets me to relax a little bit. Thank you. So, as Cheryl said, it's and it's whoever the Lord brings in front of us, that's who we minister to. And, and so that's what we have to be open to wherever we're at in the United States, England, but in Israel. So I want to focus on the Jewish people in Israel now and the Jewish community. So what the Lord revealed to me a couple of years ago, a few years ago, was that the Jewish community ultra Orthodox, Orthodox Jews read scripture pretty obvious. 3 (21m 6s): But what was interesting to me is that they read portions of scripture every week around the world, the same portions. And so the Lord revealed to me in my little brain, why don't you read the same portions for a couple of reasons? One, I was blessed, but two, it gave me an opportunity to open a small door, to start speaking to the ultra Orthodox and Orthodox Jews, which in general, you feel like there's a little bit of a wall there. It broke open the wall. 3 (21m 47s): All I had to do was ask a question. What do you think of? And man, when you ask that question, the it's like a flood gate and they love to talk about scripture and argue. So, but yeah, it also gave us an opportunity to share the Lord. It's somewhat of a struggle. We do this a lot, but it's there. And it opens up that opportunity. And it just turns out that yesterday was the beginning of the next portion. I'll call it biblical portion. 3 (22m 26s): And they started reading Deuteronomy 3 23 through seven 11, and every Orthodox and ultra Orthodox Jews in the world is right now reading and studying with their families. The same scripture, the same. Yeah. All of them. Thank you. The same scripture. So that's what I started doing. And yesterday we started studying that scripture and buried in the scripture, not buried obvious to him, to me in the scripture is Jesus. 3 (23m 10s): So our prayer is that God uses his word to reveal Jesus to all of the Jewish people. That, especially those that are reading his word. Yeah. So if I were to ask everyone to, to pray for Israel, that's what I would first ask, pray into the word that God will reveal himself to the Jewish people. Thank you. Thank you. Wow. Okay. That turned out really good 2 (23m 45s): Reinforcement. I need, we use each other a lot. It has been a real blessing. We got married in 2014 and well, I mean the relationship grows all the time. And I found out about his sense of humor when I was in Israel stuck and I got back and he's joking with all the neighbors and I'm just watching this going, oh my gosh, she's funny. And now we get to have a funny time. So it's great. Love it. Okay. So what we just want to say is that tour portion or the biblical portion that he's referring to, we have an update. We put out every month and in that update, we put the portions. So if anybody wants to follow along, they know what the Jews are reading that week around the world. 2 (24m 29s): And if you run across a Jew, even on an airplane or something, you can just sit down and go, Hey, what about that in book? You know, what do you think about that? And you're right there with them on the same scripture. And it does open those doors. So we're going to have a table out in the middle, somewhere up there and we'll have the, we'll have the, no, we won't have the Torah portions out there now. Okay. So we have stuff on the table. Things you can take and cards and you know, information. So just please do that. If you can't, oh, by the way, we do have a sign up sheet. So if you want those tour portions, we call them Torah portions in Israel. So it's what I'm used to. But anyways, our biblical Bible portions, if you want that, we put that in our update. 2 (25m 12s): You can come and sign your email address there, and you will get that every month now in the update is not just that, but it's about what God's doing, what guys doing in our lives, maybe a little personal section. And then I put paragraphs of news because our cover in Israel is we're journalists. You can't be a missionary in Israel. As a matter of fact, I talked to this massaged agent and I had no idea that he was in my computer because I was babysitting his kid two kids. And anyway, she went in my computer to see who I was, you know, and do a background check on me. And he told me in 2018 in front of land, what happened? We checked me out in 2005 or six, whatever it was. And he kept seeing the word mission and mission this and mesh it. 2 (25m 55s): And he said in Israel, that means operation. And so he thought we were doing an operation tourist operation. So don't write mission to me, don't get me in trouble. But anyways, it's really fun to be over there. And we have this cover as a journalist, but we really have to do the work. So I'm on the government press office list. I get all the emails, all the Presley releases that come out in a day. I get all the press releases that come out in from the white house every day also. So I get all this news what's really happening before it goes into the paper. And some of it doesn't even make the paper. It's amazing. What does not make the paper? So that's our cover. And we tell all the people we go to minister to, they say, what are you doing here? 2 (26m 35s): We can't say missionary. So we say, we're doing journalism. We have to turn in our work at the ministry of interior. So they can see that we're actually doing journalism. We have our credentials, our press credentials in both America and in Israel. So that's pretty cool to have that. And the Lord opened the doors so that we could get journalists fuses. We're not on journalists abuses now because when you go in and you get an automatic three months in Israel, we bought a house as Len said in Texas, because we couldn't afford one here. And I miss it here. Oh my gosh, I miss it. I love California. I was born in California, but we needed a place we can come to. And God knew that the COVID was going to hit because in 2019, we bought the house, went back to Israel and the COVID hit. 2 (27m 20s): And we would have had to stay in hotels or with friends or family here in America, because we didn't have anything before this. So now we have a home where we have all our things out of the storage units. What timing God is good. I see it all the time. So yeah, so we write articles. We do television, we do radio and we're traveling around well, this time we're traveling up and down California, but we speak in England and Canada and Australia, wherever we're invited. We go to these places and speak about Israel. What's happening there. Current affairs, biblical prophecies, and how the current affairs match what's in the Bible and you're going to go, oh my gosh, I get, we'll leave. They're getting so close. And wow. Yeah, there's a lot to tell you guys what's going on. 2 (28m 1s): And it takes longer than what we can do up here. So what we're going to do on Friday, the 30th is we're going to be in the loft in the evening. We're going to start at five 30. We're going to have snacks. People can come and do it like a meet and greet thing. And then at six o'clock, we're going to have music. One gentlemen is going to come and he's going to be singing in Hebrew. He's going to sing the national Anthem in Hebrew, the Israeli national Anthem. And he's got the words he's going to hand out. So you can see in English and in Hebrew, what it is. And then he's going to do Psalm 23 and Hebrew. And it's beautiful. It's beautiful. And then DJ will be coming and she's going to lead worship. And she's going to do Hebrew and English songs among some others. 2 (28m 42s): I think. So maybe Gary is going to join her. I don't know. She said something about Gary will be playing with her. So then we'll talk, we'll do a PowerPoint presentation so people can see pictures. What's going on. We're going to cover current affairs. And then we're going to do a question time and discussion because people want to know what's going on. How does America match with peers or what's going on? Since both, we have two new administrations, one in Israel, one here, and there's a lot going on and a lot festering up right now. And we're going to let you know what all those things are. So Friday you can go up. You're welcome to come. Anybody's welcome to come on that table. We have flyers. So you can come up and get a flyer. It has all the details, but I just gave them to you. 2 (29m 25s): It'll be a little off. We start at five 30 program starts at six. Please come. If you're interested in what's going on in Israel, you're more than welcome. And I think that's about it. I think I covered everything right. 3 (29m 37s): I think so. Okay. 2 (29m 38s): So yeah. So we're going to go ahead and sit down and enjoy the service ourselves for a change. And hopefully we'll see you on Friday, but we'll be out there at the table if you want to talk to us. Okay. Thank you. 1 (29m 55s): Thank you, Lynn. Thank you, Cheryl. Today is really sweet sweet day for, for me in particular. And here's why, so Amanda, who is leading worship this morning, I've known her parents, Jim and Kim Coles before she was born. She is their first born of seven. And so I've got to see Amanda since day one girl up and now she's, you know, loving the Lord, serving the Lord, leading us in worship, and that's really special for sure. And then, so Cheryl began attending a church that I was a part of pastoring and Avalon beach, the Applebee's Christian fellowship. She started, she gave her life to the Lord in 1989 and began coming to the church novela back then. 1 (30m 39s): And so we have a lot of history. We helped get her on the mission field. She came to me one day and said, you know, I really believe the Lord is asking me, calling me to move to Israel. And so we talked about that and what I encouraged her to do is just go on a, going a tourist trip, go to Israel and spend some time there and, and see if God, you know, confirms that. And I think she went maybe twice as, as a tourist. And then she sold everything and moved full time to Israel. And again, that was in the we, that was in the early nineties when she did that. And so it's really special for me to be a part of seeing what God is doing in, in the lives of, of, of people that are friends of mine. 1 (31m 26s): And, and so what I want to do this morning, again, a little background, oh, by the way, did everybody get a communion cup? Is there anybody that did not get one? Okay. If you didn't get one, raise your hand and Kay, Amanda, could you grab the communion tray right there and kind of wander around and, and in the other venues, if you need to get one, there is communion tray there as well. Because as I mentioned, we are going to be having communion this morning. So Cheryl gave you a little bit of her background. I came to know Len later because they got married a little bit later. And so we have a lot of history. Cheryl used to work at Diablo canyon and she's from California. She mentioned that both Lennon and Charlotte, both from California. 1 (32m 7s): And so th you know, this is their life. This is what they know, their, their history, their background. So here, here's my question. I'm going to be asking a few questions this morning. The first question is this, why would Cheryl and LAN leave the central coast of California to move to Israel? Okay. Many of you know, Daniel and Solvay kinda, so Daniel is from here. He was born and raised in Santa Maria. Central coast grew up here. Solvay actually is from Denmark. She was born in the Faroe islands, just off the coast of Denmark. So think about Daniel for a minute. 1 (32m 48s): So he, you know, again had good career here in California, and yet God put a call upon his life. Now his original call, if he was up for telling you was actually to go to Uganda and now why would God send Daniel? This is pre pre-sold by days. He sent Daniel to Uganda. And so Daniel spent about seven years in Uganda doing mission work there, and guess who he met in Uganda. He met Sylvia from Denmark and Uganda. So they got married there and then got a bigger work, a bigger calling for them. So the two of them together moved to green. And in fact, I have a few pictures. I want to show you just to kind of refresh your memory of Daniel and Solvay. 1 (33m 32s): So what do we have here? So this is Daniel. So VI, this is their home in the village of Casa yang wit I can say it, I cannot spell it. And then the next picture is this is the village that they live in, in Greenland, Casa yang wit, and jumped to the next one, where is Greenland. And so the lower circle is where we are California. And you go all the way, you see Canada above us, and then to the east, that's where Greenland is. And I circled the area where they live and then jump to the next slide. Okay. I talked to take that one down just for a moment. So on Friday, this last Friday, Daniel had told me that they were going to be taking a trip. 1 (34m 17s): You know, they own a boat together. Daniel, the self I do, and the purpose of the boat is to be able to get to the villages in Greenland to minister there. And so he, he told me that he had a couple of young men, that he was going to be baptizing. And then he was going to be taking a trip. He and Sova and two crew to another village to show the gospel there. And so a Friday. So just a few days ago, I was at home and I get a phone call and I see that Daniels. So I take the phone call. Now this is sort of just a side note. So here I am in California, erode grand Grandy, and he's seven miles off the coast in Greenland. In fact, go back to that map. He's he's on his journey on his boat going along the coast of Greenland. 1 (35m 0s): And here we are talking, it was though he was sitting like in the same room. Isn't that amazing? Truly amazing. So what he did first, so this is the journey in the Southern or the lower portion that sort of that's the V the village they live in cosying with, through that little inlet there, and they're going to a village up on the top, but for, they did that, show me the next picture. As I said, they did some baptizing. This is Ian. So that's Daniel baptizing, Ian in a lake near where they live. And then the next one is Ian coming up out of the water, new creation in Christ. Isn't that awesome. All right. Jump back now. Okay. That's the boat. The, yeah, jumped back to the boat. 1 (35m 41s): That'd be good. The common leak. So that means the light. All right. So here's, here's my question. You can take the picture down now. So why would Daniel and <inaudible> Daniel particular move from central California? Sell everything, pack up, move to Greenland. We're going to look at that question. Yeah. And answer that question this morning. Many of you met maybe for the first time, or you got to see Shane Coke come up front. Steve invited him up front. He's been fellowshipping here for a number of years. So the Lord has called him on a five month missions trip to Zimbabwe, whereas Zimbabwe. 1 (36m 27s): Okay. Here's a map of Africa and I circled Zimbabwe for you. So you could get, get an idea of where it is. Okay. So Shane he's from here, he's from the central coast of California. So for the next five months, he's going to be in some Bob way, Africa sharing the gospel there with Mike and Cindy, Madam, some of you know, Mike and Cindy. All right. So the answer to this question actually is found in the title of this morning's message. So why would someone Lennon Cheryl, Daniel and Solvay Shane move from where they were settled, where their roots, where their foundation and move to a distant, distant country. So the answer is actually the title of the messages live your life on mission. 1 (37m 13s): Now that's, that's actually the answer live your life on mission, but we want to unpack that just a little bit for you this morning and to do that, we need to look at a few scriptures. So before we get into the scripture, let's pray for a moment. Lord, we just look to you. Holy spirit. We're thankful that you are the teacher. And so as I speak, and as we look through the script, sure, Lord, we want our heart to be impacted by you. We want to be touched by you. We want to hear your voice and, and the calling that you have on us. Lord, there's a calling on you. Each of us, Lord, help us to discover that calling and help us to respond to that calling. And so Lord, our time together this morning to you in Jesus' name, we pray. 1 (37m 55s): Amen. So you remember this story in mark chapter one, beginning with verse 16, Jesus walked by the sea of Galilee. So this is in the Northern part of Israel. And he saw Simon, Andrew, his brother casting a net into the sea for, they were fishermen. Jesus said to them, follow me. And I will make you become fishers of men. So they immediately left their nets and followed him. So we see Simon and Andrew Simon, Peter. So we're talking about Peter here. Another verse in Matthew chapter nine, verse nine, Jesus was walking along and he saw a man named Matthew, sitting at his tax collector's booth. 1 (38m 39s): And he said, follow me and be my disciple. Jesus said to him. So Matthew got up and followed him, Simon, Peter, and Andrew. They were fishermen by trade fact, the story it shows that they were actually with, with their dad. I mean, it's a family business. Well-rooted in the Galilee area, fishermen by trade. And Matthew was a tax collector. When Jesus called them, they left their occupation. They left their situation and they followed him. Cheryl had a career. As I mentioned earlier, working at Diablo canyon. She had a pretty awesome position there if I have it right, Cheryl, I think I do. 1 (39m 22s): She was insecurity at Diablo canyon for many years. In fact, she actually got to carry a weapon. I mean, how cool is that? Right? Blonde, a blonde girl, like her carrying a weapon out of Debola canyon, Supreme, scary Daniel. On the other hand, he was in the aerospace industry doing very, very well here. Then something happened to them. Jesus calls them. And they said, yes. And then he gave them a new direction. He gave them a new purpose in life, a different, a different calling in their life. 1 (40m 3s): So Jesus was, he was with his disciples. You guys, you know the story it's just before his Ascension. So he had already been to the cross. He had been put in a tomb and he had been raised from the dead. And we're in that interim time before his Ascension into heaven. And so this is what he said to the disciples, as they were gathered together, be being assembled together, acts chapter one, verse four, Jesus commanded them not to depart from Jerusalem, but to wait two, wait for the promise of the father, which he said, you have heard from me for John, truly baptized with water, but you shall be baptized with the holy spirit, not many days from now. 1 (40m 49s): So he was looking ahead to the day of Pentecost when they would be gathered together in that upper room. And the holy spirit would be given. Now, this was a very unique experience because prior to this time of the giving of the holy spirit at Pentecost, the holy spirit would come upon people. But from the day of Pentecost forward, he would dwell, he would indwell and live within believers. So Jesus continues that conversation in verse eight, he said, you shall receive power when the holy spirit has come upon you and you shall be witnesses to me in Jerusalem and Judea Samaria and to the end of the earth. 1 (41m 37s): So back to my original question, why would a person leave the comfort? It's comfortable here, central coast to California, it's comfortable. Why would a person leave their comfort in their current life and make that radical change and take a completely new direction in life. A new mission, a new mission in life. So there's really only one answer to that question. And here's, here's the answer. When a person makes the decision to believe in and to follow Jesus Christ as savior and Lord, the holy spirit begins a supernatural work in the life of that person. 1 (42m 25s): And it affects everything. Every area of life is touched by the work of the holy spirit. God gives us. Now I'm talking about us. Those of us who are followers and believers, Jesus Christ is our savior. And Lord God gives us a far greater purpose in life and eternal purpose. And as a result of that, that's a radical change. We tend to look at at life differently, but maybe more importantly, we see people differently. 1 (43m 5s): You see what happens when the holy spirit is in us. We now see people through God's eyes, the way God sees people. We discover we have a mission. We live our lives on mission. We discover our mission in life, beyond our occupation, beyond our current situation. If you are a follower of the Lord, Jesus Christ, you are on mission that there's, there's no, no question in that. You may or may not have realized it yet. 1 (43m 47s): Today's your day. You are in fact a missionary. Now, when we think of missionaries, we think of like the apostle Paul type of people that, you know, went on these fast campaigns and, and that may occur. It has occurred in Lennon. Cheryl's life, Daniel's life, Shane's life. Your, your mission field may be entirely different. So to be clear, you may not be called to move to a foreign country. And I know many of us, it's like one of the first things we think about as we become a Christian, like, oh Lord, don't call me to Africa. No, don't call me there. 1 (44m 34s): You may not be called to a foreign misfit mission field like Len and Cheryl and Daniels Solvay and, and Shane. But wherever you are are is your mission field, wherever you are, by the way, you don't, you, you may not have to leave your current job, your current situation to be on the mission field because you're on the mission field. So that the key is serve him right where you are. I love what Cheryl said about how God just brings people to her and Len, and then he, he opens those doors to speak about eternal things. I've found that's often what God will do. 1 (45m 15s): So the fear factor is alone. I, you know, I got, I can't talk to people and all that. And yeah, what God will do is he'll bring people to you, you know, open a door, a conversation. So you're just, you're just speaking into their lives words. Yeah. Of eternal life. So your current situation may not change. You serve them right where you are. What does that mean? So being on missions really means this, that you are an evangelist. What does an evangelist do? And evangelists, proclaims declares the things God has said about himself and about, about people. We share truth with people. 1 (45m 57s): So we're on mission, right? Where we are. We live on mission. So what does that mean? Well, it means evangelize your kids. It means evangelize your coworkers person. You're a student in elementary, junior, senior college evangelize your fellow students, your neighbors evangelize your parents. If they don't know the Lord evangelize your, your friends and, and your siblings, maybe your siblings don't don't know him, your extended family. So, and I want to say this as a word of encouragement, don't ever limit what God can do through you. 1 (46m 39s): God, God is an expert at using weak and broken people to accomplish his purposes. If there is a secret in all this, I think, I think the secret is this. When God calls you and he will call you, I promise you that he may lead you. The answer is always the same name. Yes, Lord. That's the answer. Now God knows human nature. We may struggle. We may resist him. We may fight him. I'm a bit, let him win. 1 (47m 19s): Let him win it. It's no, no greater life, no greater joy in life than to be on mission for the Lord, Jesus Christ. And to be able impact people for now and for eternity. You know, of course, there's a transformation that occurs when we see a person come to Christ and it's like, there's this amazing change that occurs, but they also get to go to heaven. And we've, we've played a part in that and how awesome that is. So one of the verses that I read a moment ago, it was act chapter one, verse eight, where Jesus, again is speaking. You shall receive power. When the holy spirit has come upon you and you shall be witnesses to me in Jerusalem and Judea and Sumeria to the end of the earth. 1 (48m 4s): He was speaking to a crowd that lived there that was home base. Pentecost was in Jerusalem things saying, Hey, start local. I'm going to call many of you to be local, but I'm going to call some of you broader. So Jerusalem would be for us, maybe the five cities local Judea could be, I don't know, St. Louis county and beyond a bigger part of California. Samira could be all of California, maybe even, maybe even the entire west coast. And the ends of the earth is the ends of the earth. I mentioned that because we have to think in terms of what is God's heart, what is the desire of God's heart, his, his overall plan, and it's this to get as many people into his kingdom as possible before the end of the church hates. 1 (49m 3s): That's what we live. We live in a church, H there's gonna come a time where the church age is going to end. And depending on how you look at eschatology, it could be at the time of the rapture of the church. It's when the tribulation period begins. There's that seven year tribulation period. And then after that is the millennial kingdom, but we're, we live here. We're in the church age, God wants to use us to reach as many people as possible with a gospel of the Lord, Jesus Christ, so that we can take as many people as possible into his eternal kingdom. So wherever life takes you, wherever God leads. You just like the disciples you were born. You've been born for greater purpose than just, you know, the mundane status quo more than just working more than just surviving, more than just living for yourself. 1 (49m 58s): I know that's, that's a human dilemma. We're pretty selfish creatures. It's more than just living for ourselves. You may never leave the central coast as I mentioned, but don't, don't be close to the possibility that God might call you out. And wherever he calls you, it's going to be amazing. It's going to be great. It's for sure. Going to be an adventure of the lifetime, perhaps God is calling you to go. We don't know. I don't know. God will show you. God will speak you. I promise you that God has given each and every one of us, a mission field. And, and it's, it's it's here. It starts here. It's right before us, right where we are right now. 1 (50m 40s): So why, why would God call people like us imperfect, broken, messed up people. We're all the same. Really? Why does, why would God call people like us to be his evangelists, to be his missionaries going forth, to answer that question, we'll look at a scripture. It's in second Corinthians. Chapter five begins with verse 17. Here's what it says. If anyone is in Christ, he's a new creation. Old things have passed away and behold, all things have become new. Now, all things are of God who has reconciled us to himself through Jesus Christ and has given us the ministry of reconciliation. 1 (51m 31s): And that is that God was in Christ, reconciling the world to himself, not imputing their trespasses to them. And he has committed to us the word of reconciliation. What does that mean? Now? Then we are ambassadors for Christ. As though God were pleading through us. We implore you on Christ's behalf. Be reconciled to God for he made him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteous righteousness of God in him. 1 (52m 15s): So God calls his people on mission because people are dying without knowing him. And he's given us a word for them, a message for them before they die. God calls us on mission because people are dying without knowing him. People are dying without knowing what God has provided for them through Jesus Christ. Maybe they've never heard the gospel. Maybe you're the perfect person. You've got that relationship, that open door to share the gospel with them. They may not listen to anybody else, but they'll listen to you, which is why he's given each of us a ministry emission. 1 (52m 60s): So it's, it's it's what is the ministry? I mean, if you could define it it's it's this what I just read? It's the ministry of reconciliation. What does that even mean? Well, it really that, that ministry of reconciliation, it really, in essence, it is, it is the gospel here at harvest church. We try to talk a lot about the gospel, but more, we need to know what the gospel is. It's super important that if we are given the ministry of reconciliation and we are that we're able to, to both know the gospel and articulate it to another person, to communicate it to another person. 1 (53m 40s): I want to give you a homework assignment that is to use whatever resource you need to, or just go to the scripture and try to try to discover what the gospel is. And there's some key verses that really seemed to summarize it super well. And I'm going to leave you on your own, define what those scriptures are, but I think it's a really good idea to memorize those scriptures. Just make them part of, part of your mind, part of your heart so that when you have opportunity and you may not have your Bible with you, you can't, well, let me, let me, let me look that up, but it's, it's coming out of you and you can communicate the gospel, you know, at, at, at the drop of a hat, anytime, anywhere I can tell and what the gospel is. 1 (54m 26s): So that's your homework assignment, but I am going to give you a little bit of the gospel. Okay. There's more about them to give you some of, well, by definition, the gospel is good news, but that, that just seems so minor. Okay. Good news. All right. Well, what, what does that mean? Well, it's, it's, here's what it is. And it's back to the verse. I read a moment ago. It's second Corinthians 5 21. Again, this is just one place you can find. And the gospel for he, that he, there that's God, the father for he made him that him that's Jesus, the Messiah for the father, God, the father made Jesus. 1 (55m 6s): The son who knew no sin. So Jesus was a spotless sinless person. The lamb of God, God, the father made Jesus. The son who knew no sin to be sin for us. What does that even mean? We think about it on the cross. Jesus, some of the, the things that occurred on the cross when Jesus was nailed to the cross, it says that the sins of the world were placed upon him in effect. They were, they were nailed to him. Our sins were put upon him. 1 (55m 47s): And in effect, he became sin. He that knew no sin sin. Our sin was placed upon him on the cross. Why did he do that? Why did God do that to his son? Well, again, it tells us so that we might become the righteousness of God in him, in Jesus Christ. This is a, this is a wonderful, amazing thing. And yeah, as you unpack it, as you understand the gospel to a greater degree, you're going to realize not only this good news, I mean, this is the best news. The, yeah, that ever could be that literally the picture is this, that we were lost in sin and death. 1 (56m 35s): We had a curse, a death sentence upon us, no relationship with God, no place in his kingdom. And then Jesus came and he died on the cross for us. He was buried Nina rose again and that as we place our faith and hope and trust in him, that my sin was put upon him on the cross. The supernatural thing that happens is that we're now made spiritually alive. The curse has gone. It's been lifted. And now we have a place reserved in heaven by the power of God. That's undefiled that cannot be taken away. So the gospel is really all about this from God's perspective. 1 (57m 17s): I think it's all about this. It's it's the restoring of a broken relationship. God loves you so much. He loves people so much. He sent his son. It's not that he just allowed his son to go to the cross. He sent his son to the cross. That's why Jesus came to restore a broken relationship. Our relationship with God was broken because as of sin in Christ based and through Christ, our relationship with God has been restored. We're we're back with him. We're one with him. We're reconciled. That's what that word means. The ministry of reconciliation, the word of reconciliation. 1 (57m 60s): We're reconciled to God, the father through Jesus, the son by the work of the holy spirit, it in us. So I mentioned earlier that we're going to be having communion. So in a moment, we're going to have community together. So we often call it communion or the Lord's supper. And I'm gonna read a verse about that. Then we're going to in a moment, have communion together. So Matthew chapter, sorry, in mark chapter 14, beginning with verse 22, as they were eating. So they're gathered together. This would be like the last supper before Jesus was going to be taken into custody and tortured, and then ultimately put on the cross as they were eating. 1 (58m 46s): So they're having to go Passover together. Jesus took bread and he blessed it and he broke it and he gave it to them and said, take eat. This is my body. And then he took the cup. And when he'd given thanks, he gave it to them and they all drank from it. And he said to them, this is my blood, the new covenant, which is shed for many assuredly. I say to you, I will no longer drink of the fruit of the vine until that day when I drink it new in the kingdom of God. So communion, if we think about it, it's really meant to be an illustration. It's a picture. It's a picture of what God has provided for us through, through his son, Perry. 1 (59m 32s): I don't have a communion cup. Could you go grab one for me, please? Thank you very much. So it's a picture of what God has. Thank you. Perry has provided for us through, through Jesus Christ, his son. So I'm going to go ahead and take out the wafer. It's kind of tough to get to and be careful. Don't once you get the wafer out, don't spill the juice on your lap. Not good, no bueno, go ahead and open up the juice so that we're ready to go. 1 (1h 0m 18s): I long for the good old days, when we used to just pass the cumin and trays, right? We didn't have to do this. Maybe we'll go back to that someday. So the bread, that's what we have right now. The bread, it's a picture of Christ body. And the fact that his body was broken, what does that mean? Well, when he was taken captive in the garden of guests Semini he was beaten. He was, well, he has beard plucked out. He had a crown of thorns put upon his head. 1 (1h 1m 0s): He was whipped. He was scorched. They put a robe on him after they scourged him and mocked him. As you know, you call yourself the king of the Jews and look at you and then they rip the robo off. So he, his body was, the Bible, says his, his visage, his appearance was marred more than any man. He suffered deeply on the cross. And that's what this represents what he went through to purchase for us, our salvation. Why? Thank you. Thank you. As we, you know, we can't fully, fully comprehend what you did for us, but we know that you, you gladly went to the cross for the joy that was set before him. 1 (1h 1m 50s): He endured the cross. The solar was so thankful that you did that for us. So Lord, we, as we partake of what represents your body, your broken body, Lord help us to comprehend in a deeper way, understanding a deeper way, all that you did for us and purchasing for us, our salvation. We'll go ahead and take the away. So the juice represents shut the Passover feast. There were four cups of wine. When Jesus picked up the cup that he shared at communion, it was called the cup of redemption. 1 (1h 2m 35s): He was in the process of redeeming us, buying us back, literally from slavery, from bondage. The wine is a picture of the blood that he shed. So I'm sure, you know, not only the crown of thorns was a put upon his head, but as he was nailed to the cross, his side was pierced the sword. And it says that blood and water came out. So this picture is the blood that he shed for us. It's a picture of the sacrifice that he made as a spotless lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world. 1 (1h 3m 15s): Lord, thank you that you were faithful unto death, even the death of the cross. Lord, help us to understand more fully, all that you did and provided for us by purchasing for us. Our salvation. Thank you Lord. So Jesus held up that cup. I'm going to just talk about it a little bit more. He said, this is my blood of the new covenant. So it's interesting. He brings up a term that many of us might not fully understand very well. This is my blood of the new covenant. What is a covenant? 1 (1h 3m 56s): A covenant covenant is a pledge. It is a promise that has been made. The covenant is a promise that God made. So if we go back and we look at some of the covenants that God made, there's a covenant that God made to Noah. And the promise that the pledge that he gave us this, I won't destroy the earth with a flood ever again. That was a covenant he made with Noah. God made a covenant with Abraham, and here's the promise he made to Ammar Abraham through your seed, Abraham, through your seed, your kids, all the nations of the earth are going to be blessed. 1 (1h 4m 37s): He's still in the process of fulfilling that God made a covenant with Moses that through Moses God gave the nation of Israel, the law, which was in effect that conditions that were necessary so that the people could approach him. So the covenant with Moses gave the people a way to have relationship with God, the father, but Jesus here, he says, I'm going, I'm, I'm fulfilling something profound, the new covenant and new, it's not new in the sense that it's, it's never been seen before done before. It's new in the fact that it's, it's the completion. 1 (1h 5m 17s): It's a completion of all the covenant that God has made. And when he went to the cross and shed his blood and died for us, the covenant was complete. It's been fully ratified and fulfilled. The promise has been complete. So all these covenants that I mentioned a moment ago, all these promises really were given directly to the people of Israel, not to people that aren't Jewish by birth. So what about us? What about us? Those of us that are not Jews by birth, as it turns out there is another covenant or maybe an addition to the covenant. 1 (1h 5m 58s): Another promise given in scripture, I want to, I want to share this one with when I found this one, it was like, my eyes just kind of opened my understanding Isaiah chapter 42, verse six, that God speaking. And here again, it's it's God the father speaking to Jesus, the son, he says, I, the Lord have called you. I got the father. The Lord have called you my son in righteousness. And I will hold your hand and I will keep you. And I will give you, he's talking about the cross. I will give you as a covenant to the people, not just the Jewish people. 1 (1h 6m 42s): It goes on as a light to the Gentiles, the Gentiles, or all the other people, non Jews. I'm going to give you Jesus, my son, as a light to the Gentiles, to open blind eyes, to bring out prisoners from the prison. And those who sit in darkness from the prison house. It's like, I've come. The covenant is fulfilled. When Jesus held up that cup and said, this is the blood of the new covenant. This is what he was talking about. I've come to set the captive free and to open the prison doors to those who are bound up. 1 (1h 7m 22s): So this is why this is why Jesus came into the world. Not only for the Jewish people, but for everyone to open blind eyes, to bring out prisoners, to deliver those who are in darkness to fulfill the covenant. The promise that God had previously given. Now, how did Jesus, the Messiah accomplished this? The fulfillment? So there's a few key verses in Isaiah chapter 53. I'm going to look at, we're going to be closing out just a couple of minutes, Isaiah chapter 53, verse five. When it says he he's talking about Jesus, the son, the Messiah, he was wounded for our transgressions. 1 (1h 8m 4s): He was bruised for our iniquities. The chastisement of our peace was upon him. And by his stripes, we are healed talking about the whipping, the beating, the scorching, the torture by his stripes, by what he endured, we are healed. You know, I think a bit from God's perspective, why would God, the father asked his son to do this? You know, Jesus didn't have to go to the cross. He was obedient to go to the cross on our behalf. Why did God allow his son to endure such suffering while we're told why? 1 (1h 8m 46s): And Isaiah chapter 53, verse 10, it says it pleased the Lord to bruise him. It pleased God to Bruce, his son. He has put him to grief. When you make his soul and offering for sin, he shall see his seed. I think he was talking about us. He shall see his seed. He shall prolong his days and the pleasure of the Lord shall prosper in his hands. God, the father shall see the labor of his son. 1 (1h 9m 28s): He shall see the labor of his soul and be satisfied. And by his knowledge, my righteous servant, Jesus shall justify many for he shall bear their iniquities. You see God sent his son into the world for the purpose of setting us free and restoring that broken relationship. So back to the verse in Matthew 14, for a moment, Jesus said to them, this is my blood of the new covenant, which is shed for many as surely I say to you, I will no longer drink of the fruit of the vine until that day. He's talking about a specific day until that day when I drink it new in the kingdom of God, I think, I think he's talking about the marriage, supper of the lamb. 1 (1h 10m 17s): We shall see. But when I say what I want to say to you this morning, I want to say this was absolute certainty. Jesus is coming back again to bring us home, to take us to heaven, to assure you and I into his eternal kingdom. And this could happen at any time. It might happen at the day of your death because to be absent from the body is to be present with the Lord. We don't know when we're going to die. We may be feeling great today this morning. And we just don't know what a day is going to bring forth. 1 (1h 10m 60s): Could happen anytime at our day of our death, perhaps, or this could happen at the time of the rapture of the church. The point is this, are you ready? Are you ready to meet God? Are you ready to meet him face to face? Because we're going to stand before God saved and unsaved alike. We're going to stand before God. And we're going to give an account. The account that we give as believers in the Lord, Jesus Christ. Why should I let you into my kingdom? Because Jesus paid for my sin on the card. Cross of Calvary. That's the only reason why. So Jesus in John chapter one, it says he came to his own. 1 (1h 11m 42s): He came to the Jewish people, his own people in his own people didn't receive him. Some did, but most did not. But as many as received him to them, he gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in his name. I want to urge you this morning. If you've never believed in Jesus before, believe in him today, as many as received him. So then he gave the privilege the right to become children of God. Even to those who believe in his name, Romans chapter 10. This is one of those places where the gospel is quite clear. 1 (1h 12m 26s): Romans 10 verse nine. If you confess with your mouth, that Jesus is the Lord. And if you believe in your heart, that God has raised him from the dead, you will be saved for it as well. I believing in your heart that you're made right with God. And it's by confessing with your mouth that you are saved in Romans 10, 13. You guys know it. Well, everyone who calls upon the name of the Lord shall be saved. So there's believing and there's confessing. Believing is like an internal thing. I don't fully understand. We never will, but I believe Jesus, that you did go to the cross. And I believe that my sin was placed upon you on the cross. 1 (1h 13m 6s): So I, I believe it with everything that I can muster it. I understand by faith, I believe this to be true. And then the confession is part is it's weak. First confessed to God, Lord, I, I need you. I ask you to come into my life to be my Lord and savior. We're confessing our belief to God. And then I think, I believe we confess it to others. It's a powerful thing. When we tell another person I gave my life to Jesus Christ and he is my Lord and savior. It's like, it's feels it seals. It seals the deal. And then the transformation begins and it's awesome. 1 (1h 13m 47s): It's great. You'll never regret it. I promise you that. So Jeremy mentioned earlier, invite the worship team to go ahead and come on up. Now that we have a baptism planned today and we've got some folks are going to be baptized right after this service, we're going to baptize some folks. And then at right after a second service, we're going to baptize some folks as well. Why am I mentioning this? So in the book of acts, the book of acts, it was common. The common thing was for those who made a decision to believe in and to follow Jesus Christ, they were baptized immediately. It wasn't like months later years later decades later, it was I believe, and I want to get baptized. 1 (1h 14m 30s): So baptism is really, it's a, it's a, it's a declaration. Maybe that's the confession part. I'm going to go in the water road represents I'm, I'm dead. I've died with Christ. And even as Christ raised from the dead, I'm, I'm rising again out of the water to new life. So if you've made this decision today to follow Jesus as your Lord and savior, and you've never been baptized, I would encourage you to do that today. Go up to the patio area. We're going to, we've got towels for you, shorts for you, shirt for you and a place to change all for you. Before you do that, though, you got to give your life to Jesus Christ. 1 (1h 15m 10s): And it's actually super simple. And I kind of modeled it a moment ago. Lord, I need you. I don't understand, but I know that Jesus went to the cross for me. And so I invite you into my life to give me new direction, to set me free in Jesus name. Amen Lord. Thank you. Thank you for all that. You did what? I pray for those here in the sanctuary, the loft and the patio and those online Lord, that many will call upon your name for the first time. 1 (1h 15m 52s): Many will be saved and the Lord we are on mission. Our life is on mission. Lord, confirm that calling in us, show 0 (1h 15m 59s): Us open, open up for us 1 (1h 16m 3s): And understanding of what our mission is and the mission field that is before us. Lord, thank you so much so we can impact lives both now and for eternity in Jesus name, we pray God's people said 0 (1h 16m 28s): <inaudible> <inaudible> <inaudible> <inaudible> thank you. 0 (1h 23m 11s): That you have made the way through Jesus by the blood of the cross, by his body. Given that and lunch today, Lord Jesus. Fill us with your spirit. Let us be on mission for you just for your glory. Bless you in Jesus name. Amen. And today, if you have made that decision to follow Christ, God has been speaking into your heart and you need to come to faith in Jesus. 0 (1h 23m 54s): We're going to have prayer teams up here. Ready for you. If you have other needs, maybe God's calling you to the mission field. Maybe there's something on your heart that God is working in you, and you want to respond to that. Do you want to, you want to let somebody know. Today is the day you come forward. You need healing. You need a touch from God, any reason at all that you have for healing, please come. If you don't need prayer right now, go up and celebrate the baptisms. I know there's at least three after this service. I don't know what about second service, but have a great time. And Lord bless you and we'll see you all next week. 0 (1h 24m 43s): <inaudible>.
0 (0s): Father God, I thank you for this morning. I think you, that we are here to worship you and here to praise you. And so we just bless your name. God, we take this time and we just, we want to sing to you. Jesus. Amen. 1 (20s): <inaudible> <inaudible> he can move by God. 1 (3m 24s): He is mighty to save. He is <inaudible> <inaudible> <inaudible> <inaudible> <inaudible> Jesus <inaudible> <inaudible> <inaudible> <inaudible> <inaudible>. 2 (13m 42s): Oh, thank you, Lord. Thank you for the privilege that you've given us that new and living way. So we can enter in to the holy of Holies by the blood of our savior and Lord Jesus Christ. Or thank you that as we gather in your name, as we come near you and draw near to you, Lord, you've given us the promise that you are with us, that you are in our midst. And so we welcome you Lord. And as you are here, you've come to heal. You've come to set us free. You've come to bring salvation. You've come to deliver us from all the things in this life that would hold us down and hold us in bondage. The solar. We welcome you to bring that deliverance to our lives, Lord, to open up our hearts, to see you as you truly are lo we, we often come to you with sort of veiled, veiled, vision, not really seeing the glory and the power and the authority that you are. 2 (14m 35s): The Lord open our eyes to you today. Open our, understanding our hearts, our minds, our will, our emotion to who you are today. Lord give us that, that desire for more. We want more of you, Lord. We're not satisfied with just where we are. The status quo Lord. We desire the power of your holy spirit, working in us from glory to glory, transforming us into your image and allowing us to walk in the victory that you have provided for us. But we want to abide in Christ or that's that secret place of the most high that you referred to. And Lord, that's where we want to be today. We bless you. We thank you in Jesus name. We pray God's people said, amen. 2 (15m 17s): Amen. Go ahead and have a seat please. All right. So what I want to do this morning, I want to go ahead and welcome someone up to the podium this morning. He is, I guess you'd call him our guest speaker, although he's not a guest is he's one of us. So Stacy and Tanya Harman have been fellowship with us for, I'm going to guess maybe five years, four years, four or five years, something like that. And so what we want to do today is I'm going to invite Stacy to come on up and he's going to be sharing the word with us today. So let's give a warm welcome to Stacey Harmon. 2 (15m 57s): Okay? All right, 3 (16m 5s): Everybody it's pleasure to be here. I'm good to see you all. And I just had lunch with Steve a couple of months ago and said I wanted to preach someday. And he said, how about July 18th? And I said, okay, well that's that's real date. That's the time I got to make some efforts to get this together. And I thought about, you know, how he usually tells a joke when he gets up here. And I thought there's no way I could ever approach the quality of his jokes. So I'm not gonna, I'm not gonna tell you a joke. I would like you to turn with me. If you would, to two familiar passages in your Bibles or on your devices, John 14 six is where we're going to start. 3 (16m 50s): And we're also going to talk about Matthew 18 or it's 5 28, 18 through 20. And John 14, six is very familiar passage to us, but there's really an outrageous claim made there by Jesus. If you think about it, this is where he's talking to his disciples. He's telling them that he's going to go away. He was trying to encourage them that he's going to go prepare a mansion's for them. And they don't understand what he's talking about, where he's going. And he says, and they ask him, where's this way. What, what are you talking about this way? He says, I am the way the truth and the life, no one comes to the father, but through me and that's before the cross, obviously before they scatter, of course, after his crucifixion. 3 (17m 33s): And if you go to Matthew 28, 18 through 20, he says, all authority has been given to me in heaven and on earth go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the father, son, and holy spirit teaching to deserve all that I commanded you. And lo I am with you always, even to the end of the age. So that's after the cross. Right? But those are really outrageous claims. If you think about it, he's saying he's the way. And he's also saying that all authority on heaven and earth has been given to him. So I would like to drill down a little bit on this idea about the way and the followers of the way, which are disciples and what they look like. 3 (18m 15s): But first let me ask you a question. I'll step over here. She'd get a good look at me. Do I look like an architect? Well, I'm glad that's like, you're like, what kind of question is that? Right? That's a ridiculous question. What's an architect look like it's kind of a running joke between Tonya and I. She was describing a woman's husband to me and she said, well, it looks like an architect. And I'm like, huh? I don't really know. I don't have a reference for that. I don't really know what that means. I'm not sure I could pick them out of a crowd if he looks like an architect. But what about a doctor? What's a doctor looked like actually happened to be a doctor. 3 (18m 56s): I'm an ER doctor, but maybe gray hair and old guy. Yeah, that's a doctor. But the point I'm making is you have a reference for that. You don't have a reference for an architect. You have a reference for a doctor, right? If I had a long white coat on, you might say, oh, that's a doctor. Or you could say it's a butcher, I guess, or a scientist or, or maybe it's maybe it's their cousin, someone that the cosmetic counter Macy's right with a long white coat. But if I put a stethoscope around my neck, then you're like, okay, that's looking more like a doctor. Or if I had an ID badge on that said, you know my name and I was affiliated with a hospital then, okay. That might be a doctor. And, and what about if I, as the setting that I'm in, if I've in scrubs, right? 3 (19m 38s): You come into the ER, I'm wearing scrubs, like, okay, that must be the doctor, but you don't really ask me for my credentials. Right? You don't say, let me see your diploma. Let me see your board certification. What about your license? Do you have a license? You have a framework that you understand what a doctor kind of looks like. And once you sort of figured that out, you're pretty comfortable that that's, that's the doctor so much so that you would literally trust your life with me after meeting me like two minutes within two minutes, right? If you come to the emergency department, I would have the authority, right? And I am the way I have the authority to take, to admit you to the hospital, to decide what's going to be done with you. 3 (20m 22s): And I'm the way that you get to the hospital, get the medicines you need or get what you need. Right. That's and you've decided just based on a little bit of information that that's the authority and that's who I am as a doctor. And then you have to also deal with what your impressions of doctors are. Right? You, you might think of Dr. <inaudible> Dr. McDreamy, right. But, or, or you might think, oh, I love my doctor was great to my kids or he delivered my babies or, or she helped my mom when, when she was in really bad straights when she was older, or you might think doctors are arrogant and condescending. And I really hate doctors. In fact, I've walked into rooms and that's the first thing someone says to me, I hate doctors. 3 (21m 5s): And I usually say, well, so do I. So let's, let's get busy, but what can I do for you so that it does it, but, but literally I have the authority and I'm the way in the ER. Right? So let's talk about spiritual thing. Let's switch to spiritual thing. So the question I have too, is what's a Christian look like, or a disciple or a Messiah, right? What's a Messiah look like, clearly it wasn't what Jesus looked like. Right? Because they said, ah, that's Joseph's son, right? Can't be a Messiah. Or he's just a carpenter, right? How about nothing good can come from Nazareth. Right? 3 (21m 45s): That was their image of a Messiah. Their idea didn't match what they were seeing with Jesus. And then he, he goes on to do miracles, right? Healed. Well, he healed on the Sabbath. He healed somebody on Saturday. That's against the law. He can't be the Messiah. Let's just forget about the miracle part. Right. But it's not fitting my little mold about what he is. He, he did work on Saturday. He can't be the Messiah. Even though he did a miracle, I'm dismissing the miracle from my fixed idea about what a Messiah represents. He was teaching with authority. He had knowledge of the scriptures. He did miracles of healings. He healed epileptics. Paralytics he raised Lazarus from the dead folks. 3 (22m 28s): Right. And they still didn't buy it. They still, still didn't work. It had such a strong bias against what it, or what it should look like. And it just didn't match. They still crucified him. Right. He didn't look like a Messiah. And they said, we want a sign. He said, well, you're going to get the sign of Jonah. And what's the sign of Jonah. Jonah was in the belly of the fish. Well, whatever you want to call it for three days, right. Jesus is saying, the sign of Jonah is all you're going to get, I'm going to be in the grave for three days. And the resurrection is what you're going to get as a sign. So that's the ultimate credential, right? 3 (23m 8s): So he says, he says, he says that he is, has all authority. And he's the way, well, what is his credentials? It's the resurrection, right? The resurrection card is the ultimate credential. Correct. Now he says, I am the way the truth. The life, no one comes to the father. Through me. All authority has been given to me on heaven on earth. So it's the, it's the, it's the way to enter heaven through him and the way to live on earth, the way to enter and the way to live all authority is his, because of his resurrection credential. 3 (23m 48s): Right? So the way back to God is through Jesus right first. So you have to ask yourself, well, what am I here for? What's the meaning of life? Why am I here? Where am I going? What's life mean? And then are these credentials good enough for you? Good enough for you to follow the way his credentials and plenty of flavor weighed in on this subject about what life's about. Right? If you ask Sigmund Freud, he'd say, life's about pleasure. If you have Carl Young, he'd say it's about power. If you have Victor Frankl who survived a concentration camp, he'd say it's about meaning. 3 (24m 29s): And you know what? Those actually, it's funny that all these experts have come up with all these ideas about what life's all about, but those are actually biblical principles. And how do I know that if you look in Genesis 1 27, God said to Adam and Eve, you subdue the earth. Awesome. Thank you very much. SI. I'm used to nurses pushing me around. Thank you. Looking out for me, actually appreciate it. So they said to subdue and rule the earth and be fruitful and multiply, right? 3 (25m 11s): That's power and pleasure. Right now, the meaning part is based on our relationship with God, they walked hand in hand with God in the garden. That was a meaning. That was meaning. That was the relationship they had. So if you think about it yet, you still can pursue power, pleasure and meaning in their life. But the, but the power and the pleasure have to be with a clear conscience, right? You can't do things that are, that are going to violate your conscience. And you have to have to realize what God has definitions of those things are there's power in weakness, right? There's pleasure in service, right? And there's meaning in relationship with God, right? 3 (25m 54s): So that leads us back to this idea of the way, the way to enter heaven, the way to live and the way back to God. Because remember, remember this in Genesis 3 24, what did God do? When he threw Adam and Eve out of the garden, he blocked away. He put cherubim at the garden so they couldn't get back in the way was blocked. Sin had separated them from God, kicked us out of the garden. The way was blocked for that meaningful relationship with God is now gone. That, that idea that we have a, we can walk with God is gone. So the way was blocked by sin. The way back is Jesus. And the way to live is through Jesus. 3 (26m 36s): This idea of the way is what is, is how the early Christians are. The disciples ran their lives. That that was how they followed Jesus. In fact, if you looked in acts nine Paul, before he was converted, it was basically a Hitman for the Sanhedrin, right? He was going out, he got permission to go out, bring Christians shackled back to face charges, basically for following the way. And he says, it says he persecuted those belonging to the way. So who are those following the way they're, they're called disciples, right? 3 (27m 17s): And here's my microphone. And if I can't drop this mic, but who's fired, they weren't Christians. This is what I mean. Wait a second. That term wasn't even used yet. Jesus never heard the term Christian Christians in acts 1126. The disciples were first called Christians at Antioch. That's 30 years later, 30 years. They were disciples following the way before they were ever called Christians. And some scholars even believed that that term might've been even been derogatory. Oh, that's those Christians. Right? 3 (27m 57s): Right. So there were disciples following the way, all that time. But they were first called Christians at Antioch. I had a friend of mine, a colleague of mine, call me a Chrysler one time. Are you one of those Chryslers? And I went, Hmm, well, yes I am. But I don't think I like the way you mean it. You know, I, he called me a Chrysler, which is like maybe what they were calling them Christians, right? The point I'm making is that they were disciples along the way. And then they were labeled Christians at some point in time. And what I'm, what I'm getting at is that calling yourself a Christian means something to people, just like a doctor or the Messiah. 3 (28m 38s): Right? So if you're a Christian, you might know what that means. And you have an idea of what that means, but somebody else might think, oh, you're a Catholic. Or maybe you're a Jehovah's witness or you're a TV evangelist, or a Mormon or a health and wealth gospel, or you're a boss at work who goes to church on Sundays and then acts inappropriate the whole week. That's a big umbrella to be under, as Christian. And we just have, is nothing wrong with calling yourself a Christian don't get me wrong, but we just have to understand that what it means to us, what we think it means and what, what someone else interprets that as me could be two very different things. 3 (29m 20s): So perhaps sort of getting back to our roots and calling ourselves disciples, or at least thinking like that might be helpful when we try to figure out who we are and how we should live as well as communicate to others and try to bring them to Christ. Right. And discipleship is kind of a lifelong process, correct? It's not like it's something you do your whole life. It's kind of like, like martial arts when you have a white belt and then you go progress to black belt and you can just gradually make your way through all these different stages and things become, you become better and better at this. But what's funny about martial arts is the people that are the most skilled are usually the most humble, right? 3 (30m 5s): You, you learn so much as you go along that you're actually more humble and more grounded and more rooted and, and a better person towards the end than you are in the beginning. Right? And that's a whole nother topic discipleship. We could spend hours on that. But what I like to do is get back to this idea about the way and what a few characteristics of a disciple living out the way. So the first one is under the disciples, understand worship and certainly worship involves what we're doing today is corporate worship, where we get together. And we think songs and we sing hymns and songs and spiritual songs where he preaching and teaching and prayer. And we take the Lord's supper. 3 (30m 46s): And you know, this corporate idea of worship is certainly part of what we do and who we are. But what I'd like to look at is acts 2 42 through 43. So this is after Peter is spoken on in Pentecost and there's 3000 people have been baptized. And they, it says they were continually devoting themselves to the apostles teaching and to fellowship and to the breaking of bread. And to prayer, everyone kept feeling a sense of awe and many wonders and signs were taking place through the apostles. 3 (31m 27s): The part I would like to emphasis is this idea of a sense of awe. I think we need to recapture that, right? I think that this idea that we worship is something we do instead of something that comes out of us is what we have to sort of undo. As we think of ourselves, as Christians as disciples, the sense of awe is, is what motivated all that other stuff, all the other worship that came out of that. So it's easy. I mean, I get bogged down. It's easy to check boxes in your life, right? I prayed today. I contributed to that. I went to church, whatever it is, the box that you check, it's easy to do that, but I think we have to start changing our attitude about worship is something is something about who we are and not what we do. 3 (32m 17s): And if you look in Romans 12, one through 12, it says, if I went to two, rather hired you, therefore brethren by the mercies of God to present your bodies, a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God, which is your spiritual service of worship and do not be conformed the world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind that you may prove what the will of God is. That which is good and perfect or acceptable and perfect. So it's, do you realize that when you're walking around your day-to-day life and you're trying to be a non-conformist to the world and that you are presenting your bodies, a living and holy sacrifice, you're, that's an act of worship every day, while you're walking around what you're doing, when you're trying to control what your thoughts and your actions and that's that's because you have who you are. 3 (33m 12s): You're a disciple who you're following the way. You're the path you're on Matthew 12, seven says I desire compassion and not sacrifice. That's where Jesus condemned the Pharisees for being so hung up on the law, that they forgot the meaning behind it, that it was there more, they were more concerned about religion and people are religion and ritual than they were the people he says in Matthew 5 23. If you were at the author to present your offering and you realize your brother has something against you, go make that right first, then come back. So what are the, what's the two, the two commandments that are sum up everything. 3 (33m 56s): Love. God, love your neighbor. So if you have something that's not right with your neighbor and you come to the house of God, you gotta make that right first, before you come to stand before God, he wants you to love him and love your neighbor. The relationship is more important than the ritual or the theology, the relationship with him, the, with his children and the relationship with mankind in general, that's, that's what we do as disciples James, 1 27 says this is pure and undefiled religion in the sight of God and father to visit orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself unstained by the world. 3 (34m 39s): So to be in the world, but not of the world and to take care of other people and their needs, right? That's part of the way of the disciple. Next is disciples have integrity. And this is, if you, if you looked up that word in Webster, it would say adherence to a code and soundness. And if you look at Matthew five and we're not going to go on, but that's a 5, 6, 7 is the sermon on the Mount. And this is where Jesus is talking to them in the beatitudes. Initially telling them, you know, things are rough, but they're going to be a better. But then he gets into Matthew five. 3 (35m 24s): And this that's the part where you hear the, but I say, right, but I say, you've heard it said you shouldn't commit murder, but I say, don't even be angry. You've heard it said, don't commit adultery, but I don't even lust. Right? You've heard it said, don't make false vows, but I say, make no vowel at all. In other words, let your word be your word. And I for, and I versus turn the other cheek, love they neighbor and hate your enemies. But I say, love your enemies. This is all the kind of integrity or the kind of person that we're striving to become. Now it's impossible to do that without God and grace and you it's, it's always, you're always falling in and out of keeping that together. 3 (36m 9s): But the point is we have integrity. It's who we are in out there in the real world, working on your heart is what we're talking about. And then he talks about in Matthew six righteousness is between you and God. This is because he's, he's condemning the, the Pharisees for, for wanting to get all this attention, right? Wearing all these brightly colored outfits and, and calling attention to themselves. He says, you should give in secret. If you will give your arms in secret, no fanfare that's integrity, right? Pray in private, not to be seen. 3 (36m 49s): Don't pray with meaningless repetition, but with intimacy, with God, fast, with a smile on your face, store up treasure in heaven and live today without anxiety. That's all in that chapter. I've heard it said, if you consider the worst case scenario and then it happens, you've lived it twice. So that's the problem with anxiety. And the other thing I've found out in my own life is 90% of the things we worry about never happen anyway. So you've just wasted all this energy and an angst on, on this emotion, this anxiety. 3 (37m 31s): And then he goes on into Matthew seven, a one through five. And this is where disciples make judgments, but they're not judgmental. There's a subtle difference there, correct? I mean, you make a judgment. Every time you come up to a red light, you can make an, a judgment as to whether you're going to stop or not. Whether it's a good idea to weighing everything and making a judgment. But in Matthew seven one through five, Jesus says, do not judge less. You be judged for in the way you judge, you will be judged. And by your standard of measure, it will be measured to you. And why do you look at the speck that is in your brother's eye, but do not notice the log that is in your, in your eye. 3 (38m 11s): How can you say to your brother, let me take the speck out of your eye. And behold, the log is in your own eye. You hypocrite first, take the log out of your own eye. And then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother's eye. Take the log out before the spec. He's not saying you don't make a judgment. It's taking work on yourself first, get the log out first, before you start looking other places. And he also said, he's also saying that you're not the standard. It's, you're not the standards. When you make a judgment based on righteous judgment. Cause he goes on to say, be aware of false teachers, right? You'll judge them by their fruits. So wait a minute. That's confusing. Wait, you told me not to be judgmental. Then you told me to judge them by their fruits. 3 (38m 53s): Well, it's not confusing if you think about it, it's you, it's not your standard. You're judging by God's standard. And, and it's not you saying, Hey, you know, you, you, you know, get that log out of your IRA, speck out of your eye. It's not you, it's not your own standard. I like the way that this, what does he, Dr. Phil, he'll say to somebody how's that working out for you. That's a good way to approach somebody, right? When you take the log out of your eye and you see a speck, how's that working out for you, maybe there's a better way versus, you know, you're an idiot, right? That's just not the way to do it. 3 (39m 38s): And disciples, the next point is disciples have bigger fish to fry. And what do I mean by that? I mean that, that they're not going to get bogged down on a lot of details and things to take them away from their mission. And so I want you to consider something considered this original crew that Jesus picked in Matthew ten two through four, but the 12 originals. Right? Think of these people in a room together, Peter and his brother, Andrew, we didn't know much about Andrew, right? Peter. We know a lot about from later on, but he's pretty, pretty impulsive guy. Yeah. Matthew was a tax collector. 3 (40m 19s): Now tax cokers were, were really viewed as horrible people. There, there are Jews working for the Roman government and they're skimming off the top and explain their own people. In other words, the Roman comes says, Hey, we want to 8% tax. And they sit. And so they charged 10 and get their own cut. And then they're there and they're skimming off the top to, for their own benefit. So they were hated by their own people. And then you have Simon, the zealot in the same room. Now the zealots were Jews who advocated overthrowing the Roman government by military force. So Simon, the zealot and Matthew whose work, I mean the tax collector working for the Roman government. 3 (41m 5s): He wants to kill that guy and throw overthrow the government that he's talking about. So those are two people in the same room. Then you got Judas, who's a thief, right? We know how here you have Thomas. Who's a skeptic. You have James and his brother, John, the one Jesus loved. Now, I don't know where that sort of was figured out the one that and how that he was loved more. But I'm just wondering how that would, the other guys would feel about that. Right? You got Phillip Bartholomew, James, the son of Alpheus Thaddeus. And then what about later on you have John. I mean, you think about other people like John, the Baptist, John, the Baptist wore animal skins and was a wild man eating locusts and honey. 3 (41m 51s): And then you have Paul later on, who's a persecutor of the church. And then he converts and becomes an, an impossible basically. How does that work out with the people that are, I mean, I don't get me wrong, but I think I would be a little bit like, Hmm, I'm going to sit over here. And that Paul Guy can sit over there. And then what about just Gentiles in general? Ultimately there's these, the Christianity, you start off with Jews, right? And then ultimately incorporated the whole Gentiles, which are dogs. They're viewed as dogs by the Jews. So the got this whole group together now. Right? But what happens is they put aside their differences to achieve a common goal. 3 (42m 35s): We live in a culture that thrives on just the opposite of that, that everybody that's on, it's thrives on divisiveness and conflict and individualism and hate. Our culture is just the opposite of putting aside your differences to achieve a common goal. That's how Matthew, the tax collector could be in the same room as Simon, the zealot, because they had bigger fish to fry there. They were trying to spread the gospel, right? Mark nine 40. Jesus is telling his apostles because they said, Hey, we found some people over here. They're doing some stuff in your name. Do you want us to make him stop? And he said, no. 3 (43m 16s): For he, who is not against us is for us. That's a pretty faffed call, right? If it's not against you, he's for you. There's at least some common ground there. I'm not saying we don't have standards or we should overlook sin to be inclusive. That's not what I'm saying, but I am saying that we need to have bigger fish to fry because some of the things we get upset about, or we get under our skin or cause division are really not worth sacrificing. The bigger picture, the bigger goal we have to agree on the ones. What I mean by that is in Ephesians four, four says there is one body and one spirit, one hope, one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God, and one father, God, and father. 3 (44m 3s): We have to agree on those ones. But after that, I think we can just get a little more flexible and not so rigid and, and also, and be more committed to the ultimate goal versus our own little agendas. Right? And besides you have to have a relationship with somebody to influence them. You can't say, you know what, until you X, Y, or Z, or until you this, this or that, I'm not gonna have anything to do with you. If you don't have a relationship with somebody, there's no way you're going to influence them. So we do have bigger fish to fry. 3 (44m 44s): My next one is, oh, is that we have the disciples stay in the game. And here's what I want you think about. Think about Judas and Peter, right? So Judas betrayed Jesus for money and Peter betrayed Jesus out of fear, right? Just for him mentally. I didn't know the guy three times, do you just felt guilt and remorse. Peter felt guilt and remorse. So what's Juice's solution. He kills himself. Peter solution. He repented resolve to do better, came back and then went on to be Peter. 3 (45m 28s): Who's the rock that his confession was the rock that the church was built on two guys at the same juncture in life. Right? So no matter what you face, you have to decide whether you're going to be a Peter or a Judas. What if Judas had repented? You know, it'd be a whole different story, but do you think the Lord would have welcomed him back? Like he did Peter, you have to say yes, right? His solution was to kill himself. And so many of us do that spiritually is we just get too discouraged and we just fall away or we just stop doing what we know we should be doing. 3 (46m 9s): And, and then versus Peter, who said, you know what? I, I, I really did mess up and I feel bad, but I'm going to get back in the game. So they stay in the game, disciple, stay in the game, resolve to stay in the game and they stay in the boat. And this is a, this is the scripture acts 27, 14 through 40, where this is where Paul is being transported to Rome on a ship. And he's shackled basically to a Roman guard who is, and some of you might already know this, but if you're a Roman guard transporting a prisoner, if the prisoner escapes, then you kill yourself, right. 3 (46m 55s): You and your basically your life for that life. So Paul is on a ship. You've got a Roman guard with him there. They're sailing to Rome and there's like 200 people on the, on the boat. And they come into this storm. And this storm is like two weeks long storm. And the experts on the boat, the conventional wisdom is, wow, we got to lighten the load. We got to throw off our food. We got to throw off the, eventually they throw off the tackle and the rigging of the boat. Eventually they say lowering the lifeboats. We got our abandoned ship. We've got to get off this shit. That's, that's the experts. That's the conventional wisdom of the day. 3 (47m 35s): That's the seasoned sailors telling them what to do. And Paul says in verse 31, unless these men remain on the ship, you yourselves cannot be saved. He had been a hit. God has spoken to him, said, no, I want everybody to stay on the ship, stay in the boat. What's the first thing people do or you do, or I do either emotionally or sometimes physically when things in life aren't going so good. Well, you know, I really don't feel like going to church or man, I, I know those people they're, they're better than me. I, I shouldn't go. Or people fall away. 3 (48m 17s): They jump ship, right? You leave the stay in the boat. Don't jump ship. Because what happened is eventually this a boat runs the ground. They get off everybody's survives, but it was completely against all their thinking process, all their wisdom, all their decisions to what you do. When, when, when you're in a storm like this, you get rid of all this stuff. And this is how, this is how we do it. So stay in the boat, disciples, stay in the game and they stay in the boat. This is the boat right here. We're in the boat. We're all in the same boat, trying to work things through, go get through life together. Disciples, bear, each other's burdens, but you got to stay in the boat. 3 (48m 59s): It's so much easier for you or us to help each other. If we're in the boat versus trying to get you out of the water. The next point I would like to make is that disciples believe in miracles, but they don't rely on them. Here's what I mean. Second Corinthians 12 verses eight and nine. This is Paul speaking. He's talking about his thorn in the flesh, which is some condition. We don't really know what it is, but it's some physical ailment. He says, concerning this. I entreated the Lord three times that it might depart from me. And he has said to me, my grace is sufficient for you. For power is perfected in weakness. Paul couldn't heal himself. 3 (49m 42s): Right? He could heal other people miraculously, but he couldn't heal himself. God said his gracious, sufficient. And Paul goes on to say, I'm content with my weakness. If so, because God decides how, when, where and why the holy spirit is distributed. Here's what God guarantees us. He guarantees this Providence, but not miracles. Providence means that he's going to take care of us. He's going to make everything work out. Okay. He always will be with us. But if you're holding out for, or you require a miraculous event or a sign or a gift before you're faithful, then you're going to be disappointed. 3 (50m 26s): And maybe even bitter that might happen. But disciples believe in miracles, but they don't rely on them. Right? Romans 8 28. We've heard this scripture a lot. And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God to those who are called according to his purpose. He doesn't say all things will be good, but if you're called to his purpose, he says, all things were turn out for the good, right? His Providence is guaranteed. 3 (51m 6s): Finally disciples are baptized member, go back to Matthew 28. It says by definition, that's what a disciple is. I don't want you to get hung up on this comma because in the Greek, there's actually no commas. But some people say, well, no, you have to be discipled before you're baptized now because they know you, you become a disciple when you're baptized. It doesn't really matter. The doctrine of it. The theology of it, the point of it is it's what Jesus commanded disciples are baptized. Just like Nike, just do it, right? Just do it. Every believer in the book of acts is baptized. And you can make a commitment that he was talking about reading a chapter day, read the book of acts. 3 (51m 50s): And some people were baptized more than once. Acts 2 38, 3000 people were baptized because they realized that they had been part of the crew that had crucified Jesus. And now he was in heaven because that miracle of them hearing Peter preach in their own language, right? You had different people from different cultures and different languages. They're on Pentecost. And it's like, if I was speaking to you and you only spoke Spanish right now, you'd hear Spanish and you heard English or you're here to French or whatever that was like, wait a minute. We're hearing them in our own language, hearing him in our language, how's that possible? And Peter says, well, he said that he was going to go away. 3 (52m 32s): And when he went away, he was going to send a helper and the helpers here. So that means he's where he said he was in heaven to help us here. He's in heaven. That's confirmed. And then they said, well, what should we do? And he said, repent, and be baptized. Some were baptized more than once. If they're baptized into John, they got rebaptized. Some people had received the holy spirit had not received the holy spirit and then got baptized into Jesus and received the holy spirit. Others Gentiles that were presumably left out of the whole program had received the holy spirit and the apostles go well, wait a minute. They had the holy spirit. So they must be concluded. 3 (53m 14s): Then we shouldn't withhold baptism. So they got baptized as well. The Ethiopian unique in the chariot says there's water. What hinders me from being baptized? That's what I would ask you. If you haven't been baptized, what's hindering you. What hinders you from becoming a disciple? First, Peter 3 21 says in corresponding to that, meaning Noah's Ark or the water saved people. Baptism now saves you not the removal of dirt from the flesh. It's not, it's not a bath, but an appeal to God for a good conscience through the resurrection of Jesus Christ. 3 (53m 54s): Who is that? The right hand of God, having gone to heaven after angels and authorities and powers have been subjected to him. There's that all authority again, right? He has all authority. He has to the he's the way to become a disciple. The way to clear conscience, Galatians 3 27, for all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourself with Christ. So what does this disciple look like? The disciple looks like you and me trying to live in this crazy world, clothed in Christ, holding onto the way, trying to stay in the game, staying in the boat. 3 (54m 42s): And then so maybe you've never decided to follow Jesus. Maybe you've jumped out of the boat. Maybe you have a doubt. I challenge you to go back to Matthew 28 and look at verse 17. This is right before. If you're, if you have a Bible, we'll go hook your device. Go ahead and open up that verse. This is right before Jesus says, gives the great commission. It says. And when they saw him and when they saw him means he's risen from the dead there. He's with them again. It says. And when they saw him, they worshiped him, which is appropriate, right? 3 (55m 24s): Wouldn't you do that if you just saw the risen Lord, but some were doubtful is what it says. Some there's only 11 of them, right? Some is more than one. So more than one of the 11 were doubtful. These are the guys that walked with him, thought his death, burial, and resurrection, and now see him alive. It says some were doubtful. So what I'm saying to you is doubt is normal. We all have doubt. There always be there. You cannot have faith without doubt, just like you can't have courage without fear. 3 (56m 8s): Courage is what you do when you overcome fear. Faith is what you do when you overcome doubt. So it's really okay to doubt and be insecure. The question is, what are you going to do about it? What are you going to do? Jesus says in that chapter, in that, in that passage we started with at the end of it, Jesus says, lo I am with you always. So do you believe that? Is he with you always, no matter what you face, no matter how difficult it is, no matter how much doubt you have, whether your faith is weak or do you need courage? So lesson is yours. I'd like you to just please make your needs known. We're here to, I guess I should have invited the worship team back up, right? 3 (56m 51s): Come back. Sorry. Rookie mistake. But I would like you to, to make your needs known. We're here to pray for you. Study with you. You can be baptized. You can put on, be Christ, put on Christ. If you can, you can become a disciple today. Let's stand and worship. 1 (57m 57s): <inaudible> <inaudible> <inaudible> <inaudible> <inaudible> <inaudible> beautiful. 1 (1h 4m 21s): <inaudible> you didn't want <inaudible>. 0 (1h 7m 31s): If you father, we praise you today. God, we thank you that we get to be in your house today. God, we thank you for the word, Lord, Jesus. And I pray that as we leave this place today, Lord, that we would just take something away. And when that we would hold onto it this week, Lord God. And we would find ourselves in your word. And so we thank you and we praise you and it's in your most precious name. We pray. Amen. Have a wonderful day. If you need prayer, we have a prayer team up front. So feel free to make your way forward.