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One God or Many

Summit Life / J.D. Greear
The Truth Network Radio
February 15, 2021 9:00 am

One God or Many

Summit Life / J.D. Greear

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February 15, 2021 9:00 am

As we continue our study of Elijah, we’re looking at a defining moment in Israel’s history when they had to choose between serving God or idols. And Pastor J.D. is challenging us to face that decision, as well!

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Janie Greer it's one thing to hear what what I'm saying about God and say that's wrong. I disagree with. It is entirely arrogant and bigoted things usually don't you believe limp along intellectually and do the very thing that you are denied to others is because you have the courage to actually think through till somebody. I disagree with what you believe if you will decide about God being God, you're limping intellectually, if you will decide which God is God your web you want your life right after Janie. I'm your host Molly minutes every once in a while you're bound to come to some defining moments crossroads in life, like marriage proposal or pursuing a new career or move to a new city. Either way you choose, you know, your life will never truly be the same again today were looking at one of those defining moments for the nation of Israel when they had to choose between serving God or serving idols, and pastor Janie Greer is showing us that we have to make the decision in our own life partner. Teaching series titled something better and pastor Janie titled this message as a question one. Israel is out of place in first Kings 18 where they gotta make a decision rely just got called into the decision and Jos to go on any longer, not making a decision to decide whether God is your God, or whether or not really fully committed to God.

You get all just kind of following the problem, least resistance, like you have been.

I would say that of those that are listening to me right now probably this would describe a large number of people the largest groups of people in our car, our culture and our community are those that you not rejected God made you rejected God. I doubt you would be.

I you ever rejected, but you haven't fully decided forgot either and so you're kind of like you I got.

I'm in the God but but you're not a fully committed disciple of Jesus Christ and I would present the same decision to you that Elijah gave to the children of Israel because through through this story, God is presenting this question God's got a Bible and might you take it out and opened the first Kings chapter 18, the context just to catch you up. Israel has been on a downward spiral for about 200 years in which they begun to worship a lot of other gods besides Jehovah Jehovah. Of course being Israel's God be God to deliver them from slavery to one creator of all the universe, the king of Israel. This time is a guy named Ahab and Ahab is pretty much a spineless wimp. On the one hand he's kind of a worshiper of Jehovah. I say that because he named his kids, Ahaz I enjoy Orem Ahaz.

I am means owned by Jehovah and Zora means Jehovah is exalted in those days names are very significant. So it's kind of a worshiper of Jehovah, but on the other hand, he chooses for his wife. The wicked witch of the West. Jezebel who is fully committed to bail not just fully committed, but she is committed to take to removing the worship of God from Israel and so she has a lot of God's prophets killed and she cares that a lot of the synagogues and in their places build temples. The bail and she is making.

Try to make bail worse of the official state religion and Ahab is too much of a spineless wimp to do anything about it. So God into the situation raise up a real man. Elijah and Elijah's mission is to show that there's only one God Jehovah and call Israel back to worship him. Elijah's name in Hebrew. I told you this literally means the Lord is God Ellie job Ellie God, job, Lord. So his name is kind of the point of his life trying to show what is distinctive about Jehovah try to show this, not a bunch of gods and men use choose whichever one you want one God, the Lord he is God trying to show what is distinctive about him. So we come today to this epic battle on top of Mount caramel. I told you last week that all the stories and Elijah's life had been leading up to this battle. So this is kind of but the moment that all this is been building toward the moment when the question is answered. Is there one God or is there are there many gods now. I was a few weeks ago that when I am when I was growing up always bail was like one guy one God is yet God bail but that's not true Bill was like a title hundreds of bales. There was bales for just about every sphere of light in the bail good sex and had the bail of billable harvest and you have the bail of prosperity and success in the bail of military power develop economic might see a lot of times thing about this. I know this is true, oftentimes we will hear stories like this and like all others.

Silly primitive people with all their gods there so backwards a couple statues that we are so far advanced beyond them yet. Think about it we worship the exact same things they do sex prosperity's family power. At least they recognized that they had these things spiritual dimension to them.

They had the ability to grab a hold of our souls. They have the ability to penetrate us and consume us. We often don't recognize that which makes them in many ways ahead of us see all humans are worshipers will find something that we give ultimate worth to worship from workmanship worship you find something that is so wordy, so valuable that you could imagine wiping any good without that thing that thing defines you to obtain that thing determines whether not your life has no value nine is not me. I'm not worse from that even religious at all.

This is because you understand how your soul works your soul.

Find something that it applies infinite value to it may not be traditional religion. In that sense, but you feel like without this one thing about a set of things. Life is not worth living. You could no more turn off your drive worship might not be religious you turn off your sex drive remaining single. This is not how it works and I don't bail is anything that takes on ultimate worth to you to become your primary source of security, your primary source of fulfillment. Your primary identity.

For example, money for many people is the primary source of security.

That's why you're so worried about it all the time. That's why you can't obey God in the area of money like I can get my money away because my money is taken early in the future.

Imagine liking okay without a good pile of money. My money is the prime nothing wrong with money usually listen.

I does not usually bad things idols are usually good things that we turn into God things for some people.

Family is filmic when I think about the good life that always balls run have an icon family.

That's why you're single for some of you. You think the idea of growing old single is just devastating to you because you can imagine liking okay without being properly married, he is here. If you're in it if you're not in a good marriage. That's why you daydream about getting out of that marriage and try to get because you like.

How could life be good if I don't have the right kind of family. That's why some of you as you get older getting better and unhappy because your kids are doing what you always hope they would do you think that in order for your life to be good you had kids live a certain distance from you kids that treat you a certain way and that's why it's because it's an idle that's becoming so censored devastating you, a lot of people find their identity in something besides how they find their identity like in their accomplishments told you before, this is me.

For years I have established my identity based on how good I wasn't something I was dragged out right into the pastorate, so I many times will judge my identity based on how successful I'm being is a pastor so I told you what I preach about sermon you get scraping about before the spatula on this because I'm worried that you people to get the word of God.

It's because I build my identity on being a good preacher and pastor I don't find my identity a lot of times and be a child of God. I find identity in something that I have accomplished are done these things. Things we worship in our day.

There are hundreds of false gods just like you were in Elijah's day, John Calvin used to say that the human heart is an idol factory you have as many bales in your heart right now is Jezebel has been trying to put in Israel, so do not think for a second. This is a quaint little story about some backward primitive people live couple thousand years ago. This is a story about you. This is a battle that takes place in your heart and if you are not aware this battle is taking place in your heart. You are more deluded than anybody because this is the ultimate battle of your life which God is God first Kings chapter 18 generally just by waiver 17 you will you read this in a dramatic drumbeat behind it. Okay, I'm not. For obvious reasons, but it just because the pace quickens in the story and it starts to cover 70 when Ahab saw Elijah remember a handsome looking logical 3 1/2 years trying to kill and did a lot of suffering when Ahab saw Elijah he have said to him, is that you is that you you trouble or of Israel.

Trouble is a Hebrew word that means one who wreaks havoc a pestilence leg so Ahab is looking at Elijah and saying there you are there you are you playing Temple you canker sore you asked. Okay no I said make sure you ask Ray that lastly okay you asked you snake verse 18 and Elijah answered, I have not troubled Israel, but you have in your father's house because you've abandoned the commandments of the Lord, and you follow the bales to the first question.

This passage presents to us is who is the real trouble or the real trouble or let me ask you this. Are you a place where someone is speaking truth in your life and you are hating them for is that person me just be honest for a minute and you're just busy trying to find fault you're busy trying to come up with excuses maybe for just a minute. Can I just did you stop and think maybe the trouble is not the person in your life that is causing that pain may be the real trouble is what they're pointing to.

Maybe for the first time.

Your life could you have a little bit a humility to say may be maybe I'm causing a lot of my pay and this person simply pointed out thing about pain works in our physical body write me pain. I am paying a like pain when I get rid of pain I get rid of it as fast as possible right pain is a good thing. Imagine you will dial on your list or you could just turn down pain that would be devastating because when you leaned against the hot stove and you begin to melt your hand that pain. Believe it or not is a good messenger saying you were destroying your hand. The real pain is not a problem what's causing the pain is a problem. Maybe the trouble in your life is there's a gift of God to point you to something that is deeply wrong inside of your heart. That's what Jezebel arrest what I have should've of recognized verse 19 now therefore Elijah says sin and gather all Israel to me at Mount caramel in the 450 prophets of bail and the 400 prophets of Asherah to eat at Jezebel stable.

How big was that table just a curiosity, but these are the questions I ask when I come to study about your new commentator enters the table 22. Ahab said all the people of Israel gather the prophets together. Mount caramel and Elijah came near all the people he said. How long are you going to go one limping between two different opinions Lord is God, follow him but bail is God and follow him.

Now some translations there was a waiver literally. The Hebrew says, seeing how long we see between two opinions but limp is a really good translation to that is a good picture of where these people are not fully committed to God not fully committed to bail even then rejected God's limping along between the two.

Taking usually the path of least resistance without really being fully committed in either direction, but some things require a verdict and to not decide in itself becomes a decision and you begin to limp along the life which is exactly again were many of you are. For example, if you're one of the ones he says, oh, all religions are the same. You know they're all had the same place racist.

You know it's a big deal. You are limping intellectually, I don't mean to insult you okay but you're not thinking strong intellectual any thing about like this we will have the little statement adopted a mountain in whatever way you choose to the top is great. You know it's wrong on the same place you at your pad. I got top half. You know it's a little things are different but were all headed to the same place and all religions are the same is again known for ridiculous about that in order for you to say that all pounds are headed to the same point. What do you have to be able to see the whole mountain that you have to be able see that all the power to leave in the same place for you to make a statement like that. Which means you are claiming for yourself. The one thing you're denying to everybody else. How bigoted could you possibly be for you to denied to somebody.

The very thing you claim for yourself which is that you see the whole mountain whites alike how dogmatic Christians and Muslims are, you realize that the say that all religions are the same is essentially a dogmatic statement and you'll be missing to realize how dogmatic you actually are a good friend who is Muslim lives here in the areas Prof. our families got to know each other over the years I've had them in his whole family and my house for dinner.

When I wrapping up, totally destroyed, for it was as I have mold for dinner and we all given attention but serve dinner. It just hits me like authors that you pray, do this every night we would pray for dinner so I look at him and I'm like hey you know when you and I are eating lunch together usually understand about thing I pray you do your thing now our families are together. It sounds pray for everybody. Is that okay and you thought was that he said and I have an idea. He said he said why don't we have. My daughter who was his daughter was 11 years old. What we have her pray for our family and your daughter who was seven years old time she can pray for your family.

I went great except I had zero prep time with my daughter and so I was like oh Sir you know not to be operated by my Muslim friend and so his his daughter. His daughter will bow our heads. You know my families beautifully lined up here and this girl can lose overhead and she for 45 seconds, which doesn't sound a long time, but when you understand a word coming out of her mouth and she's is rattling off Arabic for 45 seconds it felt like an eternity, and Ralston men coming to the family is not you know I look around and got busy filing is something that sounds like a man.

And then there's the scum of his paws, causes that the moment and get away for a few seconds and am looking on the korma. I am a seven-year-old daughter who business weights there just beyond the point where it was really getting awkward and I and she is saving tort and she lifts up her her eyes like this and she opens her hands and she says Lord missing her exact words, Lord, thank you for sending your son Jesus to this earth to die on a cross for our sins so that we can be saved and thank you for leading us the holy Bible so that we can all know about it.

In Jesus name, amen. And I was like party was like nope he is totally thinking I will put my daughter on this, but I had no prep time with my so it's created some awkward situations between us for sure.

And we have talked about. We disagree. He thinks I am dead wrong about things I think about God, but both of us love living in this country love to be able to believe or want to believe in worship. What neither of us can stand no is that group of people is all you guys actually believe the same thing.

How bigoted could you possibly be now. You assume that you know better what we believe and we do is if you have some supreme view of reality where you can actually look at your so far beyond us. You can see that what we actually believe is the same thing.

It's one thing to hear what what I'm saying about God and say I that's wrong.

I disagree with it with my Muslim friend is entirely arrogant and bigoted things that you really know what you believe.

So don't limp along intellectually and do the very thing that you are denied to others is because you have the courage to actually think through tell somebody. I disagree with what you believe. If you won't decide about God being God. Your limping intellectually, if you will decide which God is God your wimpy along through life and what you serve and what you can what you worship. Elijah says to these people. He's like look if bail is God's servant all the way within tell you if money is your God.

Serve it with all your heart. You see, to get it. Seek because money is the ultimate good. It it it it if you had to sacrifice your family or your integrity to get it sacrificed below by goblet. I got your money monies ultimate good, and serve it with all your heart, what I can understand a group of people to sit and listen me every week is a normal God is our God, which will be God.

Money to you will obey God. Money on hello you live alone between two things of God is God and obey him and serve him of money. God wants to give up on God and money for parents that we have that would sit here and say oh yeah, God is my God yes yes God is my God the way that you hyper structure your kids lives shows that what you really value is then getting into the right schools so they can get the right job so they can make a lot of money.

It seems to me that you actually would say that God is your God, what you do with your kid shows that money is your God, because you seem to care more about where your kids are to go to college and where they spend eternity, which is why you got no time for things like student ministries and kids ministry because gossip not a priority. How long are you going to limp along between two opinions Hoosier God is a God is God and you should make that a priority in your kids life as everything else is peripheral.

I'm sure my kid knows Walter God if romance is your God go anywhere to find you had a good marriage get out of it. Divorce obey God there just fine.

Good marriage. That's ultimately what what what you want. Do away with it.

Forget about your responsibilities. Your kids of romance.

Is your God will get over it. These important things you find your soul if your soulmate happens to be married. Your best friend.

Well figure out a way to get your soulmate from your best friend because romance is the ultimate and highest good. Now realize you really think that I'm trying to push you to && if you're not willing to obey God be area of romance, if that's your God will wake this, such as your God, go have sex with whomever and whenever you want. Try new stuff from the full-spectrum sexuality such as your guide.

If you're not willing to obey God in this area and go all the way. But if Christ is Christ is the one true God.

Serve him with all your heart. How long are you going to go on limping between two opinions see the joy in my life.

The things I did the most joy from all company back on wholehearted, a follower of Jesus Christ seemed faithful to my children, giving money away watching what it does in the kingdom of God on Thursdays are showing for me and the only joy because try to follow Jesus wholeheartedly. Joy is the sole possession of the wholehearted follower of Jesus Christ. Many of you are miserable because you're just enough in the gotta be miserable.

The world just of them will be miserable got you choosing what you need to get on with it.

Well, you know on limping throughout your life. If God is God and serve him and his bail is God and serve him to lodge if there is a bagel question out there house and I respond zero 21 and the people did not answer him a word, all looking down the ground kicking rocks of crickets playing in the background. So I said I will stick to bowls you did want it on the altar there that one will alter here for 24 then you call upon the name of your God now called on the name of the Lord and I tell you what the God who answers by fire. He is God and the people answered. It is well spoken words good idea for 25 and Elijah said the prophets bail, choose for yourselves.

One bowl bear first for your many and call upon the name of your God, but bowl putting fire to it. A course of profitability. Can you close 150 of us want you. Second of all, our God is the God of lightning. Verse 26 and he took the bull that was given to them and they prepared it and called upon the name of bail from morning until noon say oh I will answer us. There was no voice.

No one answered. And they limped. There's that word again on the way they limped around the altar that they had made this my favorite part. Verse 27, and at noon Elijah mocked them to cry. Well hello there, because he's on God. Either he is using, which means daydreaming, staring aimlessly in the space. Checking his Facebook page on his phone is yummy like he got on his latest picture. Maybe he is using all her or he's on a journey should yell louder.

What is the best one.

Maybe he is relieving himself some your NIV translation of the Bible to clean it up and it is a busy but the literal Hebrew, there is a euphemism meaning on the John hey maybe your God's taking a dump. Maybe you got the fan on the fan on and he can hear you. So why don't you yell louder. Or maybe he is asleep, and must be awakened. This is what we call righteous not talking writer smacked a holy sarcasm, Batman. I just point out, not all sarcasm is wrong. Some things need to be mocked.

Verse 28 and they cried aloud an icon themselves after their customer swords and lances until the blood gushed out upon them, and as midday paths they raved on until the time we offer the oblation but there was no voice.

No one answered no one in the world or are you eating with your faith. Like Elijah said the court had follow him here listening to Senate life.

The Bible teaching ministry of Janie Greer will hear the conclusion of the story tomorrow. In the meantime you can listen again or download the complete transcript free of charge. When you visit Jeannie Greer.com free online resources are part of our mission to the world with the gospel centered Bible is the gospel just typing bored into the Christian life. The whole pool and when you get to big ministry you are making that mission possible way of saying thanks for your generous import will send you a brand-new bug from Pastor JD titled something better something greater study of Elijah and Elisha follows our current theories right now on Senate life is broken heart. Each part includes a short chapter in online teaching and you will be hearing for the next also includes space for notes on the Scripture readings from first and second Kings interactive application question request a copy of something better something greater when you get today, 866335 or go online and request when you visit Jeannie.com and Molly minutes Tuesday after Janie came title to check your own tomorrow and my banking career ministry


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