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September 6, 2020 12:01 am
Carter Conlon from the historic Times Square Church in New York City. It's time for you and I did come back to an understanding of how great our God is time for us to begin to pray for our neighbors is time to slip out of this timidity. If the devil succeeded in wrapping us up and it I will live in rule and reign with Christ forever, and I'm not going to cower under the threats of this godless generation that's Carter Conlon from Times Square Church in New York City. And this is a call to the nation in the book of acts.
Peter and John are going up to the temple. They see a man who's been lame for 40 years and could not walk, Peter took the man by his hand and told him to walk so he jumped up to his feet and did just that, because the people were so amazed at this miraculous event Peter asked them why they were surprised.
Let's join Carter. Now, as he asks the question, the devil knows the greatness of God. Do you God is given me a message in the title is, the devil knows the greatness of your God. Do you know James, one of the apostle wrote in his epistle. One of his verses. He said you believe there is one God. You do well. The devils also believe, and tremble. They know the greatness of God. Every demonic power of help.
They know they're facing a God of inestimable power is all-knowing is all-powerful. He is everywhere at the same time he can speak to a person's heart than block for billions of miles into the galaxy and there was something there, all at the same time in the devils know that state they have at some point experience the presence of God, and know what it is that they're dealing with and and part of the problem that we face is the people of God is that we forget how great our God is somehow we we come to a place of thinking that that we have to plead with him to do something for us, or maybe have to move his reluctant hand to act on our behalf. When in reality, God sent his only begotten son into this world to die for us in the Scripture tells us that if he didn't withhold his only son, how shall he not through him or with him freely give us all things so realistically in the greatness of who God is, he came down Meadows where we were in our failure in our folly cleansed us from our sin made us righteous again in his sight brought us back in the right fellowship with him and says now ask of me what you would desire and I'll give it to you. Is there a mountain you need to move is the strength you need in the in your inner man.
Is there a new vision you need in your heart and in your mind. Ask because I came to give these things to you as a father does, we come to your word would you help us one more time to see your greatness. God if if we have made you little and we made our problem so big. Forgive us, so God if we've made your heart small and Lord. When you have is this incredible largeness of heart towards all or called by your name, my God, would you forgive us if we thought we had to beg you to do what you died to give us if we thought that we had to move your head because you were reluctant to bless us. Forgive us Lord for our lack of understanding of how great you really are all God give us a renewed heart and do something in every one of our lives by the power of your Holy Spirit, and through your spoken word take us from where we are to where we need to be move us forward in our understanding give us passion and power in our prayers again and help us to understand in all of our struggling and striving and trying and pushing to do better and to be better all you ever asked us to do was to ask you for what we need God forgive us for trying to do it on our own and help us to see your greatness one more time. In Jesus name. The book of acts chapter 4 is a story of two disciples Peter and John going into the temple and seeing a man who's been lame for 40 years by the power of God. The rebel reach down to that man and see him raised up again by again the greatness of God had raised him up from a position that everybody knew that he had been in for for a very very long time now in verse 14 were entering the scene in chapter 4, one.
The order of the day the religious order of the day there. Not for the Lord Jesus Christ and not for the cross, though not for what he is done. They're not for his definitions of truth or not for his way of salvation lived in the craft of their own way three months. Like every other society without God has done all throughout history and Susan seeing the man who had been healed. Verse 14 standing with them, they could say nothing against it now were living in a generation. For example, where the testimony of God has is too powerful to deep going on for too long. This generation of the godless do not understand and deny the resurrection of Jesus Christ. They know it's true. They know it's historical they know it's a fact they know it's can be proven. There is a great great testimony of those who were living in weakness or been raised by the power of God. They know all of this, they can't deny it. And so the strategy that we face today and others of faith throughout history is the same strategy that they faced in this time in the book of acts chapter 4 it says they could say nothing against another words the testimony was too strong.
They couldn't deny its existence because it stood right before them. They can't deny the power of God.
They can't deny the reality that God came into her room and set a man free from hopeless addiction to crack cocaine in an instant.
In a moment of time. The can't deny the reality of the miracles of God that he has done and continues to do in his people throughout the world. In verse 15 says when they commanded them to go outside of the Council they conferred among themselves. Now in Judah. I want you to dislike in this to like it. A demonic assembly. They know the power they know number I said. James wrote the devils believe, and tremble and when people are outside the kingdom of God. They're open to demonic suggestion world and be led by the powers of darkness. Remember the Scripture tells us that our our warfare is not against flesh and blood, but against powers and principalities, against spiritual wickedness in high places and when they had commanded in the God of the Council. He conferred among themselves that wanted this girl with me into the scene and you see you see darkness is animating these these religious leaders. The secular leaders and also the temple people really want nothing to do with Christ and they conferred among themselves, saying, what shall we do to these men. For indeed that a notable miracle has been done through them is evident to all who dwell in Jerusalem, and we cannot deny it, but so that it spreads no further among the people.
Let us severely threaten them that from now on they speak to no man in this name that has been the strategy of darkness from generation to generation to generation to generation. The strategy never changes. We can't deny the reality of God. But we can threaten his people not to speak his name anymore teachers are being threatened with losing their jobs in the school system athletes are threatened with losing their positions even on professional teams if they happen to even mention that they might have a biblical worldview on different things. So they called them and commanded them not to speak at all nor teach in the name of Jesus. Isn't that very much like what a lot of people are facing today in the workplace wherever you go where you travel. Do not bring this man Jesus with you. Do not speak about this man Jesus don't tell us what this man Jesus had to say. Don't talk about the reality is you see it of salvation exclusively offered to humankind through him, don't speak. It is then because if you do, it's going to cost you. But Peter and John answered and said to them, whether it is right in the sight of God to listen to you more than to God you judge for we cannot but speak the things which we have seen and heard and you know why I like the thought came to me today is our choices no matter.
It really does reconsiders the cow or we can choose to come under this threat that somehow were going to suffer if we speak the name of Jesus Christ.
Or we can just simply choose to say no I can't help but speak the things that I know I can't help but stand up for the truth that has become a very real part of my life and I can't bow down. I'm sorry I read about Nebuchadnezzar today. I can't bow down to your golden stature.
When you play your music.
I'm sorry I can't do that and I believe that God can deliver me whether he does or doesn't are not going to bow down to your new social order that your using an imposing by threat, for we cannot but speak the things which we have seen and heard. So when they had further threatened them the let them go finding nowhere punishing them because of the people, since they all glorified God for what he had done for the men was over 40 years old, in whom this miracle of healing had been performed and being let go. They want to their own companions and reported all that the chief priests and elders had said to them, so when they heard that they raise their voice to God.
You see, this is where you and I are today. This is the generation were now living in. We are watching our society unraveled before our very eyes.
We are facing the very threats that others throughout society and in other parts of the world are actually facing today along with us and I suspect it's going to become more difficult in the future and not more than that easier but when they heard this when they heard this when they heard about the threats when they heard about the punishments that were possibly going to come their way. They lifted their voice to God with one accord and they said, Lord, you are God who made heaven and the earth and the sea and all that is hidden Student who are hot. These are just men, they are here for a moment, and as the Scripture says like a blade of grass that grows in the morning. It is gonna dries up and blows away at night they just here, just for a moment and then they're gone into eternity. They have no eternal power, but you are God you made everything that exists everything in heaven. Everything in the earth. Everything in the sea, and everything that is in them that you have to know when we pray, who are we talking to who, by the mouth of your servant David said, why do the nations rage and the people plot vain things. In other words why the people consistently rise up and think that they can overthrow you and overthrow your people had the not yet learned anything from history you can overthrow the people of God any more than you can overthrow God because God's spirit is alive inside of his church, and the more you oppress the church, the more she is going to grow. History proves that China proves that Vietnam proved dual goal of the world and you see were ever kings of the earth rose up against the testimony of Christ in his people.
The church is prospered and even when she said to go underground.
She is prospered. The numbers of increased and the glory of God is begun to fill the land. Why do the nations rage and the people plot vain things the kings of the earth took their stand and the rulers were gathered together against the Lord and against his Christ. In other words, everything that is godless.
Everything that is motivated and animated by demonic power will rise up and move.
Especially in this last day against both God the father, God the son God the Holy Spirit and God's church you and they will rise up against the church and they will rise up with all the power. All the threatenings all the coercion that they've got for truly says in verse 27 against your holy servant Jesus, whom you anointed, both Herod and Pontius Pilate that the secular rulers with the Gentiles as a godless, and the people of Israel as a compromise. Religionists were gathered together and others the whole works of them of gathered together against the Lord against his Christ, and against his people, but verse 28. Listen to what they said to do whatever your hand and your purpose determined before to be done in other words, they're all under your control. They are all in the boundaries of what you allow and don't allow. And there's no one that can raise their hand against you, and prosper even what they think they're doing is already been pre-judged by you, you have determine how far they can go and what they can or they can't do. In other words, the people are saying God you are you are great. There is nobody greater than our God. This is who we are calling out to this is who we are praying to. We are on the winning side as Paul the apostle said, we are more than conquerors through him that loved us.
Nothing can separate us from the love of God, trials, difficulties, tribulations, powers, principalities, mountains, valleys, whatever we have to go through threatenings, darkness, loneliness, whatever the situation nothing can separate you and I from the love of God, everything is predetermined by him. He knows the boundaries of behavior. He knows what can prospered. He knows what can now they said. After all of this. All of this. This declaration of who God is this it now Lord look on their threats now Lord, this is my prayer. Now consider the threatenings of this godless godless generation against the testimony of Christ.
Consider the threatenings against her people in the workplace in the school system the homes in our communities everywhere. We travel in all that we do consider there there speech saying you're going to pay a price if you dare speak. This man's name and go against our new ideas of what society should look like and what truth is what truth is not now Lord, this would look under threats and grant to your servants that with all boldness they may speak your word.
In other words, God give us confidence to speak your word, give us confidence to walk with you and to know that you are with us grant to us this incredible courage to speak your word by stretching out your hand to heal and that signs and wonders may be done through the name of your holy servant Jesus look on their threats.
Give your servants boldness to speak your word by stretching out your hand. Your hand, not our hands. Your hand through us.
The inference is clear. We recognize it's by your power that we live.
It's by your greatness that we are able to go forward through this darkness is by your victory. They were able to declare the victory that you've given to us and are willing to give to others structure handout and let signs and wonders be done through the name of your holy servant Jesus. This is got to be our prayer again in this generation.
I'm telling you, it's mine.
I'm asking God to do miracles again I'm asking Christ to stretch out his hand and do the things that he said he came to do masking them to give sight to the blind, heal the brokenhearted, set the captive free.
Let the poor have the treasure of heaven open to his heart to freedom to the oppressed, unmasking him to raise up those that are bow down them asking to heal second bodies unmasking them to give straight thinking the minds that have become cloudy and dark.
Unmasking debris chains of addiction and affliction off people's lives unmasking God through his son Jesus Christ one more time in one more generation to stretch out his hand one more time and begin to heal in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ Leonard Ravenhill great prophet of God once said to me, is a Carter man with an experience is not at the mercy of a man with an argument anymore and I believe that with all my heart. How do the essay. They saw the man healed. They knew he had been 40 years laying down the temple gate begging and they could not deny it, don't you think it's time for you and I did come back to an understanding of how great our God is going to think it's time to start agreeing with what he calls us to do one with boldness starting to pray that the Scripture does say these signs will follow them that believe they lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover. It's time for you and I do believe it's time for us to begin to pray for our neighbors. It's time to slip out of this a little cocoon of timidity if the devil succeeded in wrapping us up and it and say no no no no I have to speak about the things that I know and I have to declare the truth that I know to be the truth because the dip the realm that I live in his eternal edits God's realm. I will live in rule and reign with Christ forever, and I'm not going to cower under the threats of this godless generation. I was reading this morning in my Bible about the three Hebrew boys that refused to bow down to a golden statue. It would've been so easy and you think about Daniels us refused to stop praying for 30 days would've been so easy just to compromise and not prayer not speak or not, stand, or just maybe just kneel with the crowd for little while but no they said no we only bow before God and we are going to stand and were going to declare him to be the only God and is the only one that we will worship and when they had prayed, the place where they were assembled together was shaken, and they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and they spoke the word of God with boldness and when they had prayed, the place where there were assembled together was shaken.
I don't know if that was a physical shaking spiritual shaking.
I suspect that there was an actual feeling of being shaken in that room. I really do. And suddenly again the Holy Spirit comes and fills them sit is not asked to.
This is our chapter 4. They recognized God. We need you. You are a great God, you made heaven. You made the earth.
You made this see you made all that in them is we are being threatened. We are being told were going to suffer for speaking your name and Lord were not going to do this on our own strength but for we know we can't do it in our own state but were calling out to you in your greatness of God and asking you to stretch out your hand through us as we speak your word under the influence of your Holy Spirit and begin to heal begin to do what only you can do and God heard that prayer. This is the thing that amazes me the hard it instruct the place he filled them again with his Holy Spirit and they started speaking the word of God with boldness image with authority they want. Cowering there with her were drawing back there were speaking with authority and as they did God begin to heal people in the Scripture goes on to say with great power the apostles gave witness to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus. And great grace was upon them all. Everyone there was nobody nobody nobody left out the greatness of our God, the largeness of God's heart incredible mercy of God's hand his willingness as God to work through us as his ambassadors and testimony on the earth.
Not enough strength, but in our weakness. Now when we have it all together. But when we recognize that without him with.
We can go forward without the power to go forward. But when we pray when we believe you see, you have to the vision of the greatness of God. We can pray like this, you'll always be begging and whining and pleading and and and seemingly trying to move his hand to do some little thing in your life when he wants to do so much more is much bigger and sometimes than we've allowed our minds and hearts to think and I'm thankful for positives message on Sunday morning because it it brings anything back into focus again and it just opens if we have a little world just opens it up suddenly would begin to realize who it is that actually now lives in the third person of the Trinity inside these physical bodies who it is that is willing to manifest the greatness of his power and love and healing and wisdom through us. Yes, through you and me in our insignificance and our struggles in our trials and our misunderstandings and in all that we do and failed to do it. This great God is great God is willing to be God in us, to us and through us to a fallen world all around us is willing to give us his heart for people. We can't love. He still can. We can go forward. He still can take us forward when we can think of what to say. He can still give us the words to speak because he is God. All things were made by him without him was not anything made that is made by him all things consist.
In John the beloved apostle said, and we beheld them. We beheld his full of grace and truth would be held. God face-to-face all the humility, power, the grace of the goodness of our God.
We are asking you, Lord, to give us a vision again of your greatness. Give us a vision again is your people of what you're willing to do as we pray there is a vision Lord of zoo one more time shaking the place where we are lifting us out of where we need to be taken out of and bringing us in that place where we need to be. Give us great grace. Give us great strength.
Give us faith and give us the victory Lord, that will bring honor to your name.
Father give us the grace to speak to our neighbors give us the grace to pray for the sick give us the grace to believe for miracles we need in our own lives. Father, we thank you we praise you, and we bless you in Jesus name the message today has been brought to you by Carter Conlon from Times Square church.
For more information log onto TSC.NYC that's TSC.NYC plan to be with us next week for a call to the nation with Carter,