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The Plot Thickens - II

A New Beginning / Greg Laurie
The Truth Network Radio
March 10, 2020 12:04 pm

The Plot Thickens - II

A New Beginning / Greg Laurie

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March 10, 2020 12:04 pm

Pastor Greg Laurie says you are uniquely equipped for service, with tools given to you by the hand of God. And He has a plan for how those tools can be used. Tuesday on A NEW BEGINNING, we’ll see what God can do when His providence meets a divine opportunity.

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The following message from Pastor Greg Laurie is made possible by harvest partners, helping people everywhere know God. If you would like to know how you can become a harvest partner, just go to harvest.org that's harvest.org God gives gifts and talents to each of us that we need to you. God is uniquely equipped each one of certain types of service Pastor Greg Laurie says our strengths are given on purpose. All one is a great visionary every good with the nuts and bolts on the other is indeed still present everybody because it will and everyone of you is talents and gifts that are given to you by God, that you must discover, cultivate and use for his glory and pastor Greg Laurie brings a message from the book of Esther will begin in just a moment.

Pastor Greg, it's hard to get our minds off of what's going on around us right now and oh yeah but the Lord doesn't want us to be anxious yet that's right Dave.

You know the Bible says don't worry about anything or be anxious about anything but pray about everything in the peace of God that passes all human understanding, will guard your heart and mind in Christ Jesus. So let's try to get perspective, you know, one thing that I've shared with folks as were facing this pandemic called coronavirus together as number one. We need to be practical. Follow the guidelines of the CDC number two.

We need to be prayerful. Let's be calling on the Lord to arrest him churn this virus away. And thirdly, we need to be proclaiming that is telling others about Jesus and fourthly we need to have perspective just be reminded of the simple fact that God is still on the throne. The Lord is in control and really get through this together. Good encouragement and a reminder that there's so much good encouragement online, including an intimate weekend worship experience with pastor Greg called Harvest at Home, found it harvest.org check out well as Pastor Greg brings his main message today will see how Esther was a woman who was at the right place at the right time for such a time as this and we can follow in her footsteps turned to Esther chapter 2 Esther chapter 2 the title of my message is the plot thickened.

Let's pray together now father were so thankful to be your children because of the blood of Jesus that was shed for us of the cross of Calvary. We pray as we visit this story again and look at this heroic young girl that we will be inspired, both men and women to make our stand and speak out for what is right.

So help us to see how this applies in our life. We commit this time a Bible study to you now in Jesus name we pray. Amen. Let's pick up or we last left off King Xerxes. The ruler of the mighty Persia get a lot of women that snap his fingers and a woman would be there, but but apparently the king wasn't satisfied with just sexual pleasure you wanted love. He wanted a companion. He wanted some of that actually cared about them.

The king wanted to clean so the word went out at all these girls applied the ancient historian Josephus believe there was 400 contestants and these girls had to be virgins that he go through an extensive makeover that a team of stylists there that would do their hair, makeup and help them to become as appealing as possible to the king and then the winner would be chosen to be the Queen and that's all we pick our story up Esther chapter 2 dropped on the verse five and let's read together. Note the fortress of Sue so there was a certain Jew named Marta KIA, son of Jared, he was from the tribe of Benjamin and was a descendent of Kish and she may I his family had been exiled from Jerusalem by to Babylon by King Nebuchadnezzar, along with King Jehoiada Kim of Judah and many others. This man had a beautiful and lovely young cousin named Hadassah who was also called Esther what her father or mother died more decay. I adopted her into his family and raised her as his own daughter. There so standing up from all of these gorgeous Persian women is a beautiful Jewish girl named Hadassah. She was an orphan adopted by more decay. I so he became a father figure to her. Most likely your aspirations in life would have been to marry a nice Jewish boy a raise a family. Serve the Lord and live in relative obscurity, but God had another plan for Esther for such a time as this. Reminding us that there are no coincidences in our life. Only Providence so all of the beautiful women of Persia are paraded before King Xerxes and he chooses Esther will get Esther to verse 16. Esther was taken the King Xerxes at the Royal Palace and early winter on the seventh year of his reign, and they King loved Esther more than any of the other young women. He was so delighted with her studies at the royal crown on her head and cleared her queen instead of varsity. God was at work. Now this is a fairytale. It would end right here. Poor little girl becomes the Queen and they lived happily ever after, but this is not a fairytale. This is a Bible story and Bible stories are true, their history and so here's what happened after that the plot thickened as Esther was made Queen. Her cousin Mordecai was made a counselor to the Queen and Mordecai mean Esther promised him that she would not reveal her national identity. In other words he was. Not to say to the king or anybody else that she was a Jewish girl. That was good or bad, will deal with in a couple of moments but the that's the way it was and she went by that and one day Mordecai uncovered a plot by two of the king's guards to kill him. He revealed it to the king. The guards were arrested.

They were executed and he was never rewarded for that right knowledge for that sin that happens in life sometimes is not, you know we do something for someone and we don't get the credit. Maybe it's your idea and someone else stole it and they got all the glory for it are at your workplace. You choose the path of honesty and integrity and you don't advance while the person who chose dishonesty and scheming to advance in your saying this isn't fair, it's not right. Well, hold on now, buckaroo. It's not over till it's over because were going to see in the book of Esther. How things played out in the big picture because, among other things, the book of Esther is about reaping what you sow. Both good and bad. So not only was more decay I not recognize what a wicked man was elevated. Instead, enter the villain of the story he meant. Let's go to Esther chapter 3 verse one sometime later, King Xerxes promoted Heyman son of Hadassah the alga guy over all the other nobles that would include Mordecai making him the most powerful official in the Empire all the king's officials would bow down before Heyman to show him respect whenever he passed by, because the king had commanded, but more decay. I refused about a home or show him respect, not Heyman probably fondant flattered his way to this position and die and the command is given by the king, you better bow down before this is a very insecure man. This is a very ambitious man because of your good leader.

People will fall you naturally nifty yellow people all the time or for some to do what you want you're not a good leader, so Heyman you better bow down before me and show me some respect to everyone's belly belly belly there stands no more decay. I the balance in human season is what warrant you bet I will bow before you. They say why was this well it's interesting because there was sort of a blood feud between Heyman's clan and people in Marta KIA's clan that goes back a long ways it's found in verse one, King Xerxes promoted Heyman son of, The egg gag. I know we read. That doesn't mean a lot to us, but back in first Samuel is a story of King Saul. He was told by the prophet Samuel to kill the Amalekites. They were the lifelong enemies of the Jews, in fact, the Amalekites and attacked Israel after they left Egypt, so that's how far back this feud when so Saul partially obeyed the prophet he killed most of the Amalekites, but he allowed egg gag there King to survive in the egg gag guides or the descendents of a gap so Heyman was an eager guy and more decay. I was a Jew and so more decay I is so tiptop that Heyman will bow before he decides.

Not only is he gonna die, but all of his people are going to die. This is payback time. It's sort of a precursor to Kepler's final solution. Anti-Semitism.

Let's destroy the whole Jewish race and wipe them off the face of the earth, so Heyman goes to the king with his wicked plot and amazingly, the king goes along with that says okay go ahead and wipe them out because Heyman promise thinking a bunch of money in return will get into that next time, but incredible turn of events and a lot more to discover in this book you will get to that later. And so what we learn from what we've seen so far. Number one when God tells you to do something do it. God told Saul to destroy the Amalekites, including their king, a gag he didn't do it now.

Heyman is a descendent of that man more decay I is dealing with that. Years later, you know, sometimes the Lord will speak to our heart hotel is to break off a relationship with someone that's pulling this down spiritually.

You know someone like that some of the whenever you're around and they just pull you down, or worse yet, you're the person pulling someone else down.

I just saw wife nudge her husband. I like to know what's going on right there, but some see I have eyes I can see you. I don't know if you know that I see everything I see it all.

Yes, maybe it's giving up something that's taking over your life something you regarded as an innocent pleasure that is now becoming something of an addiction. It could be a substance alcohol drug, but it can be other things that you just become obsessed with and that being that person is becoming more important.

You and God.

Maybe it's the Lord speaking your heart and telling you to take a bold step of faith and do something you never done way out of your comfort zone so the little Bible study at work which is you in a couple of friends and see what the Lord will do.

Go engage that person that seemed so hostile with the gospel.

Whatever would be the Lord tells you to do it do it coming back to King Saul, the prophet Samuel said to him in first Samuel 15 a. What is more pleasing to the Lord your burnt offerings and sacrifices for your obedience to God he said, behold, to obey is better than sacrifice the words also will offer these offerings it'll be okay. No, God told you to do something you needn't do it and so that those will go to church to midweek service as we can give you know little more in the offering. Now all received communion.

Whatever it is you think some little things some ritualistic thing is can it take the place of what God really want from you, which is your obedience. When God tells you to do something do it pastor Greg Loring will have the second half of his message just a moment pastor Greg, one of the things radio does best is gives people immediate information. Well were drowning in information right now.

Yes, but we want to use radio to deliver a dose of hope in the midst of this concerning information going yeah we really do. Dave you know I think of Kovic, 19 like a storm and a storm is a beginning in the middle and an end to come to the end of this prayerfully very soon, but until that day. I want you to remember something Jesus is with you in your storm. He's on board your little boat that's been tossed back and forth to the waves of information that can cause a person to panic very easily. If you remember that when the disciples were see the sea of Galilee actually there was a great storm. They called on the Lord who came up on deck, and he rebuked the storm and then he said to them, oh you of little faith, and so we need to have faith listen. Faith needs to take the place of fear and prayer needs to take the place of panic. So let's be looking to the Lord right now. And remember this better to be in a storm with Jesus than anywhere else without great reassurance pastor Greg continue his message now boy number two God gives gifts and talents to each of us that we need to use God gives gifts and talents to each of us that we need to use for rest or it was extraordinary beauty. Not everybody is extraordinarily beautiful or incredibly handsome. I'm Deal with reality summer. Given these abilities. Some are not. I've had to struggle with this my whole life. When he laughing she had to die method is maybe one of the downsides of being beautiful as a child or a young lady and older lady, a young man so for this people always comment on your attractiveness. She's so beautiful you're so handsome and you only hear that 10 some of these people sometimes can end up being rather shallow because they always come to got to the front of the line and had some advantages early on and that God wants us to develop the inner person to. I've never shared this before, but I because it sounds kind of prideful but I was offered a very nice modeling contract. It was a hand modeling contract. Did you know there are hand models so I was contacted we could we use your hand on the cover of a magazine. I quickly agreed until I found out the name of the magazine old and decrepit. That was very depressing to me that up okay so Esther had inner character to match her outward beauty and she had great courage, as we'll see soon, but maybe you have another gift given to you by God is not necessarily beauty but it's brain or musical talent for artistic talent. Then again you might be good at crunching numbers. One is a great visionary, but never very good with the nuts and bolts. Another is a detail person. We can have all visionaries running around and we can have all nuts and bolts people right everybody plays a part. Everybody has a role to play in every one of US talents and gifts that are given to you by God, that you must discover, cultivate and use for his glory were told in first Timothy 414. Don't neglect the gift that is been given to you present another translation puts it, keep it dusted off and then use that user get my civil Greg, how do you discover what your gift is or your gifts are, as I pointed out before, sometimes it's literally through a process of elimination. Walt Disney probably heard him quite a visionary, himself, used to tell a story about a little boy and is a story when a circus came to town and there you have a parade so the bandmaster needed some of the play trombone so the little boy signed up. They had marched the block before the horrible rocket coming from his horn caused two old ladies to fade and a horse to run away. So the bandmaster went to the boy and said why didn't you tell me you couldn't play the trombone the little guy said what how did I know I never tried before. You know, sometimes finding out which are good at requires you finding out which are not good at so you volunteer volunteer for that job.

Nobody else wants and still do that. Okay, maybe that's on my gift. But another area develops trust me when I tell you I never aspired to be a public speaker. Like most people I was afraid of speaking in front of crowds and die member class.

I had were had to get up and give an impromptu speech and I almost had a heart attack.

I got an F in that class. By the way I like to work behind-the-scenes. I was born to design and graphics and things like that. But when I became a Christian, God put a call on my life to speak publicly, I thought it. I didn't want to do it but it was something I was sure the Lord called me to do. Maybe it was because I finally had something to say no if God calls you to do that or something else we want to take these gifts and use them for his glory. But it might be something unexpected God will call you to do.

Point number three in the last point, there is a time to speak up in a time to be quiet of verse 10 Esther to Esther had not told anyone of her nationality and family background for more decay. I told her not to know is this right or wrong, it can be argued both ways.

Some would say she should've identified herself as a Jew, and by not doing so, she was effectively compromising her faith.

There's some merit to that argument, but there are some flaws in it as well because sometimes, you should speak up and sometimes you should be quiet. It seems sometimes. Some people almost speak up too much yet, you might be surprised to hear me say that is pastored in events was that you speak of too much ivory. I've seen some Christians like it's overkill.

Everybody they talk to they feel they have to give a complete gospel presentation do it, just constant throne, you know, and that is not the best way to do evangelism. Sometimes one of the best things to do to engage a nonbeliever just listen to them for a while and get to know them a little bit better but then when the Holy Spirit prompts you to speak up, but some people always talking talking but the problem is they don't back it up with our lifestyle so you want to live a godly life.

I'm telling you it's a huge plus for the church. When Christians just go out there and there people to their spouses and they keep their marriages together in every single person. The don't have sex before marriage and they work with integrity and they work hard. That's a great testimony to that.

Be that with that when the moment comes speak and we have to give credit to Esther.

She delivered when it was needed. She put her life on the line and spoke up for her people and as a result, save the nation. Yes she save the Jewish people and they needed to be saved because Haman hatched a plot where they would all be exterminated.

Why did Haman want to kill all the Jewish people. I think this is bigger than Haman. This is about the devil. The devil wanted to kill the wife because the devil knew that through the Jewish people, the Messiah would come out of the know that goes way back to the Garden of Eden. After our first parents ate of the forbidden fruit and God said to Satan, there is coming one will crush your head, but you will bruise his heel. So the devil knew that Jesus was coming Messiah was coming, but he would come as a Jew we tried to stop Christ from coming. He inspired the king of Egypt the Pharaoh to kill all those Jewish baby boys. He inspired Haman to come up with this plot to eradicate the Jewish race and then later on he entered the heart of Judas Iscariot to betray Christ into helping orchestrate the crucifixion, but you know what result, according to God's plan because Messiah had come to this earth just to love us. Yes, to teach us, but ultimately, why did Jesus come.

He came to this earth to die for our sentence because we've all said Satan failed Christ to needed he voluntarily laid his life down for us at the cross of Calvary and took the wrath of God on himself as he hung there in our place and then he rose again from the dead, and these alive and now he stands at the door of each heart in the Knox nieces if you hear his voice and open the door he will come in if you would like Christ to come into your life. If you would like your sin forgiven if you would like to be a child of God is just a prayer away. So let's all our heads and pray father I pray not for any person here that does not yet know you, Lord Jesus, I pray that your Holy Spirit will convict and convince them of their need for you and help them to come to you and believe in you. Now pray for Greg Lord important prayer and if you'd like to make a change in your relationship with the Lord today. Pastor Greg will help you do that in just a moment before today's addition of a new beginning. Concludes did you catch all three of the practical points from today's message.

If you like a replay. You can go online and hear the program again. Just go to harvest.org. It's a study called the plot thickens or call us and ask for a copy of the full study on CD R number is 1-800-821-3300.

That's 1-800-821-3300 or Pastor Greg.

It's almost impossible to escape all the news about the coronavirus. It's all were hearing about an edit is important yeah but God's word has helped force that transcends pandemics and epidemics, and it's the perfect time to make available your new addition of the Bible it really is Dave and I think a lot of people are intimidated by the Bible. They want to read the Bible. They don't know where to start and so this is a Bible that's really design for a person like that. It's almost as though were sitting down at a table over a cup of coffee with social distancing.

Of course, and I and I'm taking you through a Bible study. I'm explaining things to you I breaking it down for you just like I do on this radio broadcast.

As you are listener and you know so the new believers Bible has hundreds and hundreds of brand-new notes that I have written. I've been working on this for a number of years and it's finally out of were very excited about it as a lot of us are spending more time indoors instead of endlessly watching television or being bombarded with information that can discourage you. Why don't you take some time to open the word of God. Let me send you a copy of the new believers Bible and it will enrich you it will strengthen you and it will give you hope and a time were for some there's hopelessness, but we have hope in Christ.

One person took the word of hope and made it an acronym HOPE holding on with patient expectation and you know what the Bible is described as an anchor of hope. So get the anchor to hold you in place. Get your copy of the new believers Bible and I will send it to you for your gift of any size know some of you can't give a lot.

I still want you to have a copy some of you can give more. Of course, thank you for that support is generously so we can continue to be a beacon of light to people who need it right now, maybe more than ever, and in addition to the help that were providing through this new Bible we also offer some online help. Every week, every weekend through harvest.org or tell us about that. That's right, we have launched a new service every Sunday. It's called Harvest at Home and I will be sharing the message with you will have a little time of worship. It's geared to the viewing audience because we can't meet publicly right now so you can bring church into your home, you know, years ago, my uncle Fred Jordan had a television program called church in the home. I remember watching it as a little boy on the black and white television at my grandparents house or doing the same thing but in modern times, bringing church to your home so if you would like some encouragement in biblical perspective you're to be a part of it.

So basically you just go to harvest.org and Ron live every Sunday we start very early in the morning and we have multiple broadcasts throughout the day and even into the evening. I would encourage you to not only watch but baby I get the app for your Apple TV. If you have that or the Roku box and then you can watch it on your television set and invite people from your neighborhood over you can all watch it together and have a church service in your own house so go to harvest.org this Sunday and be a part of Harvest at Home yet. It's right and anyone not have a copy of the new new believers Bible on your lap as you watch what to send you this new resource. In fact, if you request it right away will include our start to follow resource. It covers the seven essential basics every believer should know will send you both of these new resources to thank you for your gift of any size. We really do appreciate your investment that helps defray the costs of bringing this program your way each day. So get in touch today and mentioned the new believers Bible you can write a new beginning.

Box 4000, Riverside, CA 92514 or call 1-800-821-3300 1-800-821-3300 or go online to harvest.org then that Pastor Greg would you like to speak to those who like to make a change today, in their relationship with the Lord. I would deny I receive so many letters day from people from every walk of life from successful businessmen to those who are incarcerated to mothers struggling is trying to raise their children to young Boys and Girls Club writing and saying they've made a commitment or recommitment to Jesus and maybe you need to make a commitment to him right now. Let me lead you want a word of prayer. Yes, you can meet God right now and I would just ask you to pray this prayer out loud after me and this is what you are asking Christ to come in your life. Pray with me know if you would, Lord Jesus, I know that I'm a sinner. I know that I've broken your commandments and I fallen short of your standards but I think you that you have loved me and you've called leave yourself. So I turn for my sin right now and I choose to believe in and follow you be my Savior be my Lord and be my God from this moment forward. Thank you for calling me and loving me and accepting me in Jesus name I pray, amen. Hey let me just say God bless you. You've made the right decision and welcome to the family of God and we want to follow up with you by sending something called our new believers growth packet to help you get started. Living as a believer will send it without charge. If you prayed for the first time today to receive Christ. Just ask for the new believers growth packet when you call 1-800-821-3300.

That's 1-800-821-3300 or write a new beginning.

Box 4000, Riverside, CA 92514 or go online to harvest.org and click the words know God is the first effort to bring someone to church. It does not get know the Lord is a big difference this year were going to do it all online. That's right, Easter is coming here how your family to your phone wherever you want to view it just goes to harvest or find out more, let's work together to reach the largest group of people we have never been able to make contact with this coming Easter harvest Easter on line will next time or from our studies in the dramatic book of Esther. Hope you'll join us next time you run a new beginning and possible by harvest partners, helping people everywhere know God sign up for pastor great free daily email devotions and harvest.org


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