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A Blessing for You

A New Beginning / Greg Laurie
The Truth Network Radio
July 19, 2020 7:00 am

A Blessing for You

A New Beginning / Greg Laurie

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July 19, 2020 7:00 am

What does God think of us? How does He feel about us? Is He angry with us? Does He even care what’s going on in our lives? Pastor Greg Laurie answers these questions in this message from Numbers 6, explaining that God desires to richly bless us. It’s the latest in his series on the life of Moses, Water–Fire–Stone.

Read: Numbers 6:24–27

Notes

We are fallen people, living in a fallen world, in need of help.

1. God loves to bless us.

Blessing is a spiritual word.

Jesus began and concluded His earthly ministry blessing people.

The word blessed is from the Greek word Makarios, which is the Mediterranean island of Cyprus.

God wants us to be blessed and happy.

Blessedness and true happiness are independent of our circumstances. 

You want to live a blessed and happy life?

Love God and obey His voice and cling to Him.

2. God will keep you.

“Who are kept by the power of God through faith for salvation” (1 Peter 1:5).

3. God smiles on you.

Not only does God’s smiling shining face look at you, but He sings over you, too.

4. He is gracious to you.

5. He is attentive to you.

6. He wants to give peace to you.

We can have the blessing because Christ took the curse.

Scriptures Referenced

Numbers 6:24

Deuteronomy 30:19–20

2 Thessalonians 3:3

Jude 1:24

Numbers 6:25

Zephaniah 3:17

Numbers 6:26

Numbers 6:27

Galatians 3:13

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Everybody Greg Laurie here. You're listening to the Greg Laurie podcast and my objective is to deliver hopefully compelling practical insights and faith culture and current events. From a biblical perspective to find out more about our ministry.

Just go to our website harvest.org so thanks for joining me for this podcast. Everybody welcome to Harvest at Home. So grab your Bible and turn to numbers chapter 6 and the title of my message is a blessing for you. Would you like to be blessed.

Will you come to the right place or destroy the little girl to grab some crayons in the piece of paper and announced to her family on the draw a picture of God.

Mother said honey. Nobody knows what God looks like. And she said will, they will when I'm done. And we wonder sometimes what is God like is gonna happy God or is he a said God is he a smiling God or is he a frowning God and how does the Lord look at you and me. Does he look upon us with approval or disapproval. While that is answered right here and numbers chapter 6 the answer to all those questions is found in this blessing that the Lord wanted the priest to pronounce upon the people at the familiar passage you've heard these words before, no doubt, but it really shows you who God is and how he feels toward you, and we learn six very important things about God. So let's read it together so we numbers chapter 6 starting in verse 24 the Lord bless you. The Lord keep you. The Lord make his face shine upon you and be gracious to you.

The Lord lift up his countenance upon you and give you peace and so show you put my name on the germ of Israel, and I will love that. Don't you this was written to the children of Israel as they were making their way to the promised land.

As you know were in a series right now that were calling water Firestone and it's based on the life of Moses and chronologically were in the wilderness Moses is received the 10 Commandments from God and Mount Sinai and there slowly but surely making their way to that land of Canaan, in the land flowing with milk and honey. So the Lord specifically says to Moses to tell the priest you tell the priest to pronounce this blessing on the people because I want them to remember it so they were in the wilderness, and guess what were in the wilderness to art wing were passing through to another place. We all face our trial so we all make our mistakes and we all have danger around assorted threats to us every day. Of course the coronavirus. We're hoping now that the summer is here that it would be flattened, but we had a real eruption of it in certain states across the United States and were all wearing our facemask and were social distancing and were concerned about this. There are dangers then there are the normal concerns of our lives like our livelihood, our employment, our health art marriages, our children, our future, we are fallen people living in a fallen world in need of a little help. Let me restate that were in need of a lot of help. So God instructs the priest the spiritual leaders of the people to pronounce this blessing and in fact the Lord says I want you to pronounce it on the people over and over and over again.

I want this thing ingrained in their brain.

I want this etched on their hearts. I want them to be able to recited from memory again six truths about God in every believer needs to know number one God loves to bless you is not a great thing to know God loves to bless you. Listen, the Lord is not stingy with his blessings. Jesus said it is your father's good pleasure to give to you the kingdom. It's like when I'm with my grandkids. I love to do things for them. I love to take them out the ice cream. I love to buy them a little toy I love to spend time with them and enjoy them and tell them jokes and tell them a Bible story the other day my granddaughter Allie said of my wife Kathy her grandmother. She says now that's what she calls her.

She says no mama. She cooks and she cleans and gives us food that makes us happy.

And then she says to me, but you Papa. You provide the entertainment. I like that and you know this is the think God loves to bless you and he wants to bless you. Look at verse 24 the Lord bless you what is this word bless or blessing me with throat around a lot. Hey God bless you all your such a blessing. I wasn't that a blessing what we've been talking about.

Sometimes we use the word to end the conversation.

Maybe someone's talking too long. I will say okay will listen.

I got ago got bless you, which means go away. Now listen blessing this word.

It's a spiritual word. Maybe the world will try to hijack it but they really have no idea of what it means. It is something only the child of God can experience and how do you become a child of God, I'll tell you how at the end of the program, but here's a sneak peek, you're not born a child of God, you're born actually in opposition to God. You become a child of God by putting your faith in Jesus Christ and the tell you how to do that. Just a few moments, but this is something that's only for the believer only for God's child, and it's worth noting that Jesus both began and ended his ministry on earth blessing people remember. He met two downhearted disciples walking on the Emmaus Road after he had been crucified, they did not know that he had risen yet and we read that as he saw him on the road. He bless them when little children came to him.

He took him into his arms and he bless them.

After his resurrection, he lifted his hands and saw the disciples and bless them, and he then ascended Jesus love to bless people who can forget those beautiful beatitudes that he gave on the sermon on the mount where he said blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are they that mourn for they shall be comforted. Blessed are the meek for they shall inherit the earth. Blessed are they that hunger and thirst after righteousness for they shall be filled, blessed, blessed, blessed, he says, and by the way. Another way to describe the statements of Jesus are the be happy attitudes another were to be live by these teachings of Christ will be a happy person and that's another way to translate the word blessed happy so happy are these people.

It comes from a root word mark a real snow, not Macarena. Remember that song never like that song. By the way, no, it's Monica Rios margaritas was the Mediterranean island of Cyprus because of its geographical location, balmy climate and fertile soil. The Greeks.

The Greeks effectively felt that if you live on the island of Monica Rios you added made in the shade it was even called the happy island.

So the idea was if you live on Monica Rios you live in a self-contained happiness, everything you need for life is right there on the island.

You don't have to leave the island to get it. Now we have one church over the island of Maui. It's called harvest colonic and I personally think Maui is the best of all the Hawaiian islands. There's even a saying now we know calling, which means now is the best and I think that's true, but we can all live on Monica Rios we can all live on the island of Maui. So what does this mean to us. We learned two important truths from the very word number one God wants you to be blessed and happy because in the opening chapter of Genesis we read God created man in his own image in the image of God he created them in the next words are Genesis 127 and God bless them, so this blessing that God gives to you is something he wants you to experience and secondly is independent of your circumstance. Let me say that again this blessing or this happiness that God wants you to experience is independent of your circumstances so you might be having great things happen outwardly are maybe going through a time of struggle, but you can still be happy new stop a new car new house. New money is all fine. Those are an extra bonus. The biblical idea is if you're on the island and your close of the Lord will be happy so it's not seen anything about where you are geographically it's seen everything about where you are spiritually. It's not about what you have. It's about who you know the Bible says let your life be without greed and be content with such things that you have for he has said I will never leave you or forsake you listen if you of Christ in your heart you can be a happy person. Right now the Lord bless you that some people might think that the Bible ought to say, the Lord curse you now. It is the fact that certain people have brought in effect occurs upon their life and I don't mean that in any mystical way. Sometimes people talk about a generational curse that's on a family in Europe to break the curse through prayer.

I don't think the Bible teaches that at all. If any family had its share of problems that would've been my family and sometimes what you have is a cycle of sin that's passed on from generation to generation for insensitive if the parent is an alcoholic, chances are far higher that the child will also become an alcoholic. If the parents are divorce, the chances are far higher that the children when they get older get married will also be divorced will my mother was divorced seven times. She was an alcoholic and I started on the wrong road on the early years of my life and I came to Christ at 17 and Jesus broke the cycle of sin in my life and I'm happy to report a been married now for over 40 years in the Lord is been good and faithful to me. And so my point is simply this, that if there is a curse on your life. It's because you've disobeyed God, we read that God cursed King because of his constant disobedience. It says in Deuteronomy 27 is a curse on a person who worships a false God.

The Bible also says in Deuteronomy 27, 20 there's a curse on a person who lives in Morley, so I'm simply saying that if you're living a sinful life, you're going experience the repercussions of that, the curse, if you will you choose that your life is going to be blessed or cursed.

Deuteronomy 3019 to 20 says is God speaking. I call heaven and earth as witnesses today against you that I have set before you life and death, blessings and curses. Now choose life, that you may live both you and your descendents, and then it goes on to say that you may love the Lord your God, obey his voice, and that you may cling to him, for he is your life and the length of your days. Listen you want to live a blessed and happy life then you need to love God, obey his voice and cling to him though.

Live it, put it in the practice, watch what the Lord will do the Lord bless you. Then it goes on to say the Lord keep you. Verse 24 the Lord bless you and keep you God wants us to be constantly reassured that he will keep us, it's interesting.

Therefore, the user for keeping's to watch the guards or to put a heads around the rim of the story of the book of Job. One day the Lord was bragging on Job in heaven. And the Angels were there and Satan was there as well. Don't forget Satan's fallen Angel and the Lord was saying.

Have you considered my servant Job, a perfect and upright man what the fears God and shuns evil, Satan says lose paraphrase give me a break you the key fears you for nothing and then the Lord allowed a series of calamities, double fall, poor Job that were orchestrated by the devil because the devil correctly pointed out, have you not put I hedge of protection around Job, and everything that he has you bless the work of his hands. And that's true. By the way, when I read what happened to Job after that I feel like saying the Lord Lord of your even for a fleeting moment, feeling a little proud of me.

Please keep it to yourself and don't say it in front of Satan. I'm kidding, really.

But the point is is a you to have a hedge of protection around you. As a follower of Jesus Christ. Satan cannot penetrate that wall and if he goes in the front door. He has the face Jesus because Jesus says in John 10 seven I am the door. So the next time the devil comes knocking at your door wanted to say Lord, would you mind getting that that's the way to deal with his attacks but there are many passages in the Bible that remind us of the keeping and protective power of God.

Second Thessalonians 33 says the Lord is faithful, who will establish you and guard you from the evil one.

Jude 120 forces now to him who is able to keep you from stumbling and present you faultless before his presence with exceeding joy and there were reminded over and first Peter 15 that were kept by the power of God through faith under salvation, not by the way the original language uses a perfect tense so the nearest equivalent would be your continually Not to set your Butcher continually.

The Lord is going to watch over you look, you don't forget something that you care about. Let's say you have a beautiful pair of sunglasses and you treasure them. For starters you pay quite a bit of money. Perhaps in and you don't want to lose him so you're always aware of where those sunglasses are, you lose them because you care about that which is valuable to you or to go to Disneyland.

You don't lose your child is gonna go wait, that I have a kid with me at the ceiling though because you love your job. You're aware of where they are in the same way God cares about you and these continually keeping you. Hebrews 725 says is able to save completely those who come to God through him because he lives to enter seed for us or about an older gentleman that was known for his godly life and he was asked what he did when he was tempted in the old guy said well I just say the Lord, Lord, your property is in danger, your God's property.

You belong to the Lord. The Bible says you're not. You're only been bought with a price to listen your preserve your protected and your continually kept by the power of God three months he will then I guess I could never fall away from my faith know you. You could you could fall away from your faith any believer can because later on in Jude.

It says keep yourselves in the love of God, though God's love is unsought undeserved and unconditional. You can be out of harmony with God's love. What is it mean to keep yourself on the love of God means keep yourself in a place where God can bless you and in the same way the place. Keep yourself out of the place we would not receive the blessing of God. Perhaps New York disobedience.

I keep yourself close to the Lord. Listen, you don't keep yourself say, but you do. Keep yourself safe and there are things overall vulnerable and we know we can fall into sin stay away from those places. By the way, this phrase it is used here.

The Lord keep you carries the idea of keeping you through something, not necessarily from something, but through something. In other words, when you become a Christian, you will still go through hardships and vector will be unique hardships and challenges you face because you're a Christian, but God never promises to airlift you over all of your problems, but what he does promise to do is be with you through all of your problems. As David said yay though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death I will fear no evil for thou art with me your rod and your staff they comfort me. So we been looking at the Israelites and you remember they were delivered from Egypt and they made their way to the Red Sea. There was no way they could get across the Red Sea and if that wasn't bad enough, the Egyptian army was in hot pursuit.

They got so upset they turn to Moses and said so was it because there were no graves in Egypt you brought us here in the to the wilderness to die. When you know the rest of the story, the Lord, because the waters of the Red Sea, the part in the Israelites crossed through on dry ground and then those same waters close on the pursuing Egyptian army.

So God did not keep them from the trial, but he kept them through the trial. The same is true of those three courageous teenagers, Shadrach me shack in the Bendigo member.

They were thrown into a fiery furnace because they would not worship a false God. God could've delivered them from the furnace altogether. But he allowed them to be thrown into the furnace. But remember, the king looked and he said did not. I throw three people and of the fire. Yet I see four and the fourth is like the son of God Jesus was walking with his three friends to the fiery furnace.

So again, the Lord kept them through the trial not necessarily from it. The list goes on. Jenny was not From the lion's den, but he was Through its Noah was not From the flood, but he was Through it. You might ask a what about when an accident Rex tragedy happens in the life of a child of God. Where's the keeping power of God that you and asking a question like that were assuming that somehow we have the inherent right to live long easy lives, and died peacefully in her sleep.

One day, but the Bible says our times are in his hands, and that means that the Lord's gonna walk with us through life no matter what you're facing.

And you'll never be alone.

The Lord bless you and the Lord continuously keep you number three God smiles on you.

Verse 25 says the Lord make his face to shine upon you know we may be said that we prayed that always sung that. But do we know what it means. Well, it's a beautiful statement that's really saying that when God looks at you. He smiles he smiles. I raise the question a little bit earlier as God smiling God or of frowning God is he a happy gutter is in it he an angry God.

The Lord smiles on you.

He's actually described in the Bible is the happy God, so he is smiling on you and when you walk into the room, his face lights up with joy so to speak. Not only is God smiling on you, but the Bible says he sings over you over and Zephaniah 317 it says the Lord your God in the midst of you is mighty he will rejoice over you with gladness, he will quiet you with his love will rejoice over you with singing. Can you imagine what it would be like to hear God saying I think will experience that we get to heaven. Number four the Lord is gracious to you. The Lord bless you.

The Lord keep you. The Lord make his face to shine upon you and the Lord be gracious to you in verse 25. This is something we need to constantly be reminded up.

We need to understand what grace is grace is God's unmerited favor as it comes under this justice is getting what I deserve. Mercy is not getting what I deserve. Grace is getting what I don't deserve. Let me illustrate, let's say hello my Harley to someone in the went out and dumped it and destroy that they totaled my Harley. I said I want you to get me a brand-new bike that would be justice. Let's say I dealt with them in Mercy instead and I said okay. You don't have to give me a brand-new bike. I forgive you but let's say I dealt with them and grace, I would not only make them not only what I don't make them give you new bike. I would take them out to dinner and a beautiful restaurant.

Then I would buy them their own Harley that would be grace to see God's unmerited favor. The Bible says it's by grace you been saved through faith, not of works lest any man should boast. Why do we need God's grace because we sin each and every day you send more than you think you do, you fail, Greg. I don't even think I sin than the last two days. See that thought was probably simple because you're full of pride. The Bible says if you say you have no sin, you deceive yourself and the truth is not in you know this. There are different kinds of sin.

There is a sin of omission in the sin of commission heard a story about a Sunday school teacher who was speaking to her class and and she was going to speak on the topic of sin, so she announced today kids. I want to talk about sin. Now, who knows with the sin of commission is a little girl sitting up front raise her hand on the teacher called on her and said yes honey, what is the sin of commission little girl said the sin of commission is when you do what you should not do. Teacher said excellent answer now. Who knows with the sin of omission is little boy in the back of the room is waving his head back and forth yes on what is the sin of omission. He says those of the sins you want to do, but you haven't got around to yet.

No, not exactly a sin of commission when you do what you should not do a sin of omission is when you don't do what you should do.

The Bible says the him the nose to do good and does not do it to him of the sin, so we think sin is when we think a lustful thought, we lose our temper or something like that.

Yes that could be sin or that is in I should say but sin can also be when the Lord prompts me to open his word and read it and I say no sin can also be when the Lord leads me to pray and I refuse sin can also be when the Lord directs me to share the gospel with the nonbeliever and I said there's no way I'm going to do it a sin of omission.

You know what you should do and you don't do it.

So we need God's grace each and every day only Lord taught us to pray our father Ward in heaven, hallowed be your name. Your kingdom come, your will be done on earth as it is in heaven give us this day our daily bread and forgive us our sins as we forgive those who sinned against us. Just as surely as you need daily bread or provision from God. You need daily forgiveness as well. And that's where grace comes in the Lord bless you.

The Lord keep you.

The Lord make his face shine upon you. The Lord be gracious on view point number five.

God is attentive to you, he's attentive to you. Look at verse 26 the Lord lift up his countenance upon you, beautiful. What does it mean it actually means to lift up his face, or literally, to look to see to know to be interested to have one's full attention. I touch on this on my message last time were the Lord is looking at you, he's watching you. You have his full attention on the Lord's effectively saying I watch out for you each and every day. Sometimes we might wonder if God is really paying attention as the Lord know what were going through right now has a soul coronavirus caught God by surprise. Absolutely not. He knows all about it. He knows what you're experiencing right now in your life. He's in control of your life right now even though it may seem like he's not watching. He actually is. You hundred Joseph ever felt like the Lord of China forgotten about him.

Remember Joseph, sold by his brothers in the slavery for no good reason and and then he's taken of the house of amending Potiphar who sort of like the head of the Secret Service for the farrowing pot of residence. Crazy wife is trying to seduce Joseph. She was like the original cougar right so she's praying on Joseph trying to seduce him. He resists her advances in one day. She has everyone leave the house and she called him over and pulls them down in her bed and effectively says have sexual relations with me and Joseph runs for his life. And then he's falsely accused by Potter first wife of rape. I think her name was Mrs. Robinson know that's a movie I'm kidding, she falsely accuses him of rape he sent to prison and he sitting in the present.

How easily he could of thought.

God is surely forgotten about me with the promise of God is the Lord is attentive to you. He's aware of what you're going through and in fact God was preparing Joseph for a great work that was going to happen in his future as he would be elevated into a place of great influence. This brings us to our final point, the Lord give you peace.

The Lord bless you. The Lord keep you. The Lord make his face to shine upon you. The Lord be gracious unto you. The Lord lift up his countenance or be aware of what you're going through. And finally, in the Lord give you peace I mean knowing all this about God to bring peace to your life are you in turmoil right now. Just know this. He loves you. He's in control of your life and and rest in him. One final thing in this blessing of God to us.

Verse 27 the Lord says put my name on the children of Israel, and I will bless civil Lord is effectively saying to the spiritual leaders listen you guys your spiritual oversight. I want to pronounce his blessing on the people, live up to it in their lives. Another were so make excuses for me.

Don't soft sell this.

Don't be afraid I'm not going to back it up. You tell them I'll blossom will keep them only when face shine upon them. Give them peace you tell them not only tell them I want you to tell them over and over and over again. So I'm telling you right now where ever you are God is smiling on you. He's gracious to you. He's attentive to you.

He wants to give you his peace and you can take that to the bank but as I said earlier, this promise is only for the child of God, the nonbeliever cannot claim this promise only the believer, the blessings of the Bible are only for the person is put their faith in God wipe because you can have the blessing in your life because Christ took the curse.

Let me say that again you can have the blessing of God in your life because Jesus Christ took the curse. Galatians 313 says Christ has redeemed us from the curse of the law, having become a curse for us, for it is written curse of this, every man that is hung on a tree.

Listen to this.

Jesus was cursed so I could be blessed. Jesus died so I can live Jesus was forsaken, so I could be forgiven.

So the choice is yours. You want to face the curse of your sin. The repercussions of your evil actions you want the blessing of God in your life that choices you again I quote Deuteronomy 30 where the Lord says I set before you life and death, blessings and curses. Now choose life, that you may live. I love this is sort of like a teacher announcing a test and then giving you the answer to the question on the test so Lord save, okay, here's your choice. Blessings and curses life and death. Now choose life, that you may live alerts very clear he wants to bless us. He wants to come in door life, but here's a problem were all separated from God by our sin. Every one of us a broken his commandments. User will not be of you ever lie. Have you ever stolen. Have you overtaken the Lord's name in vain. Have you ever failed to honor your father and mother.

Of course you have.

We all have.

So the point is this. We broken these commandments. The Bible says if we offend in one point of the law were guilty of all of so we've all sin.

But Christ died for our sins, he went to the cross and died in our place and then he rose again from the dead three days later. Listen to this. Standing at the door of your life right now and knocking the scene if you hear his voice and open the door he will come in his seat.

You're not automatically a child of God, you're created by God.

Your loved by God, but the way you become a child of God is by putting your faith in Christ. The Bible says, for as many as received him, he gave them the power to become sons of God.

So let's take this Bible I'm holding right now I'm offering it to you as a gift. If you want the gift of this beautiful green Bible with multiple ribbons coming out of the bottom you have to receive it. You just reach out and say while Greg thinks all except that gift from you. God is offering you this gift of eternal life you have to reach out and accept it. You're not born with that you have to accept it and receive it when you do that you become a child of God, so let me ask you, in closing, would you like Christ to come of your life would you like to be forgiven of your sin. Would you like to experience his blessing that I've been talking about. Would you like to know this piece in your heart that the Bible promises. Maybe you've gone looking for this piece of this purpose and this happiness in all the wrong places. If the drugs would do it for you. You thought booze and drinking and partying would do it for you. You thought some sexual experience would do it for you if you thought a possession would do it for you, but none of those things at work have the now you're wondering where is the answer you figured out where this it's all in Jesus Christ is ready to come into your life and forgive you of your sin but you must ask him any single would mean asking Minna how is that even done through prayer. He's just a prayer away in a moment.

I like to lead you in a simple prayer that you can pray after me. This is where you're asking Jesus Christ to come into your life. So listen if you want your sin forgiven, if you want to know that you go to heaven when you die if you want to experience this happiness. I've been talking about. If you want this piece I've been describing. I want you to pray this prayer after me you can print out loud and prayed silently.

However, you want to pray this prayer because the Bible says whoever will call upon the name of the Lord will be saved and in praying this prayer you're doing just that you're calling on the name of the Lord pray this prayer with me right now, Lord Jesus, I know that I'm a sinner but I know that you are the Savior who died on the cross for my sin and rose again from the dead Ike Schoen from my sin. Now I choose to follow you from this moment forward as my Savior and my Lord is my God, my friend in Jesus name I pray, amen. Everybody Greg Laurie here. Thanks for listening to our podcast and the learn more about harvest ministries. Please subscribe and consider supporting this show. Just go to harvest.org and by the way, if you want to find out how to come into a personal relationship with God. Go to know God.org that's key NOW GLD.org


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