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October 1, 2021 3:00 am
In today's episode:
The Devil is a liar. The Bible calls him the father of lies. Today, Pastor Greg Laurie points out the best antidote for the lies we've been told by our enemy. We'll see it's to let our souls feed on the truth of God's Word.
Learn more and subscribe to Harvest updates at harvest.org.
A New Beginning is the daily half-hour program hosted by Greg Laurie, pastor of Harvest Christian Fellowship in Southern California. For over 30 years, Pastor Greg and Harvest Ministries have endeavored to know God and make Him known through media and large-scale evangelism. This podcast is supported by the generosity of our Harvest Partners.
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Eli, listening to a new beginning with Greg Laurie, a podcast supported by harvest partners for more ways to deepen and challenge your spiritual walk and roll and pastor breaks free online courses firstname.lastname@example.org should you always know when the devils why today Pastor Greg Laurie urges us not to provide the law was your dog doesn't love you so long.
Sometimes the devil will say go ahead and do this then he'll whisper indoor here is these things that are not true.
The only way to know why they have a good working knowledge of what beginning Greg Laurie address before a study gets underway as we been mentioning this weekend is big.
It's a huge one night evangelistic event SoCal harvest this Sunday and pastor Greg whether our listeners are in Southern California or elsewhere. This is their opportunity to invite someone who needs to hear the gospel will debut actually could call it the Americas harvest because this is just a Southern California bill. The event is based there. It's going to be national. Frankly, it will be international because were going to use every media platform available will be in all of our Facebook pages will lab partners and friends that will work with in the cross opposed the event live. It'll be on YouTube.
Little bit harvest on Oregon working with some partner radio stations in its own skin to be a lot of places so here's the thing you need to understand this is in the event that from the moment it starts to the time events is designed to present the gospel and confront the person and I mean that in a good way. Not a bad way it's directed straight forward.
When I give a message at so-called harvest time preaching for a decision about it, telling who Christ is what Jesus said how to come into a relationship with him and then I'm going to give them the opportunity to believe in Jesus Christ and sub.
We weren't even going to do it this year because of the cove of lockdowns, and so forth. But we just decided to go for it. But instead of three Nitro doing one night.
We have amazing music for my friends for King and country until we come in a few surprises and then a message for everybody and enemies is that one of the thing for those of you that have the opportunity to attend this in person or watch it. This is going to be different than any so-called harvest you've ever been to before. I would describe it as more of an immersive experience will be elements of our cinematic crusade that you remember that we call the Russell Pope woven in to the live event is just going to be cool. What can I say, if possible, make plans to come to Southern California ever outside of our state and if you're in the state definitely make plans to join is it Angel Stadium on October 3 for the one night SoCal harvest what our listeners need to do right now, right this very minute to prepare for this weekend of three things you probably heard me say this before, but some folks are new to where broadcasts of this might be something you'd not heard of prey invite bring so start by praying you know Jesus said the harvest is great, but the laborers are few and he said pray therefore that the Lord of the harvest would send laborers into the harvest so pray.
But don't just pray that other people would be sent pray that you would be sin because God wants to use you. You know the Bible says, how will they hear unless someone tell them how will they tell them unless they are sent God's looking for people to speak through so pray pray for a person that you know that is not yet a Christian and pray that God will soften their heart and open their spiritual life and then invite now you extend a personal invitation. Hopefully you earned a little credit with them, so to speak as a friend you been there for them in times of need. And now you're saying listen, this is the most important thing to me. My faith and I want you to come to this event or watch this event or however you choose to connect them to what is happening. I read recently that 85% of the people out there who are not believers would be willing to talk about faith issues with their friend if it was important to their friend. So it's important if it's important to you. It will be important to your listener so pray, invite, invite, and then this is the key. Maybe bring them don't send them bring them so if you're in California with Sam to come pick you up in a motor drive you to the event.
Mabel will get dinner before or after or whatever but I need to bring you to this event and then while you're at the event you're praying for them or you send them that link and you're saying I'm in a be watching to let's talk about it afterwards or you're watching it together. You know there's a harvest app for your TV up for the Apple platform for the Roku platform you can put it up there in your big screen and watch it in your firm room were on a tablet together or however you choose, but this is an event that will be available on every kind of platform out there and I hope that you utilize it because you know what people need to hear the gospel and we hope our listeners will not only remember this event in prayer and of course remember it by bringing somebody who needs to hear this message but there we also still remember it with their support is not right. Yeah, that's right, Dave. You know it is these are very expensive events to undertake that cost a lot of money and think about it if you went heard a great been like for King and country are for what temp you would pay admission to go to the concert you do so happily because who doesn't want to go in here great Christian music.
But there's no charge to a person who comes to harvest Crusade. This is sort of a tradition if you will that was established at every outset, we wanted to make the gospel without charge. The harvest Crusade, the so-called harvest is cut from the same cloth as the Billy Graham Crusade, and he is ministry was cut from the same cloth as the Billy Sunday crusades or campaigns or the deal Moody campaigns. It's the idea of going to large venues, neutral venues by neutral I mean not a church sanctuary were in a stadium in this case that a person can come to, but I don't want money to be a barrier. Yet we do receive an offering of the event, but it doesn't come close to covering our expenses. We need our friends to step into this with us and be a partner and invest in it because they want to lay up for themselves treasures in heaven and I'll tell you what I can think of a better way to spend your money than on giving people an opportunity to hear the gospel. So for you there listening if you could help us financially, especially at this moment it would mean a great deal well.
Any other thoughts before go on SoCal harvest yes Dave, I have a very important announcement to make. And what I need is echo and then fanfare following and then some applause.
Are you ready I'm ready. Okay, here it is, people listen volunteers for the SoCal harvest and that means you. That means I am asking you to come and be a part of what God is doing on October 3 in the Angel Stadium.
Hey have you been to one of these events. There's nothing like it. This is an experience you want to have to be used by God, you might be an usher you might be a counselor you might work at our merge table.
You might do something else but whatever it is you matter and we need you and frankly I'm depending on you. So Dave wanted to tell them where they need to go to sign up and actually be a part of the so-called harvest on October 3. It Angel Stadium is really easy just go to harvest.org/SoCal again harvest.org/SoCal you get information on volunteering and also get more general information about SoCal harvest this Sunday. Well it's time to dig into some of the most revealing insights. The Bible gives us on the time of the great tribulation. Here's Pastor Greg were going to the book of Revelation together in the title of my message is what is the mark of the beast.
Revelation 13 verse 16 says he causes all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and slave, to receive a mark on the right can run their foreheads and no one can buy or sell except one who has the mark or the name of the beast or the number of his name here is wisdom led him to this understanding calculate the number of the beast word is a number of a man and his number is 666. So here's the thing we wonder why would anybody take the mark of the beast and the answer is given to us in second Thessalonians chapter 2 verse nine which says, speaking of antichrist. This evil man will come to do the work of Satan, with counterfeit power and signs and wonders.
He will use every kind of wicked deception to full those who are on their way to destruction, listen because they refuse to believe the truth is not that they haven't heard the truth.
They refuse to believe the truth that would save them so God will send the great deception upon them and they will believe the lie will believe the lie. What is the lie the people in the tribulation. Will believe the lie is pretty much the same thing that goes back to the Garden of Eden. Satan was peddling this thing way back when.
Number of first parents, Adam and Eve were there at the garden there at the tree of the knowledge of good and evil and the snake comes to them, the serpent, the devil and says, has God said you can't eat of every tree in the garden. Go ahead and eat of this fruit from the day you eat, you will become is a God, knowing good and evil.
They ate of it and then sin entered the world, but one of the lie that Satan was propagating the lie is simply this.
Don't believe the word of God, believe something in its place. Hey, we believe a lie sometimes to the devil will whisper in her ear. God doesn't love you. Why the weave and follow him. He's against you.
That's a lie. Sometimes the devil will say go ahead and do this thing.
No one will ever find out you'll get away with it will, that's certainly a lie. Hopefully it'll be fun and he'll whisper into our ears. These things that are not true and the only way to know the line from the truth, and in no good from evil is they have a good working knowledge of the Bible.
All of us have been deceived by sin. At some time in our life. All of us have known something was wrong, but we went for it anyway right and if you did, that means you listen to the live you know in life.
Some people believe the truth and some people believe the lie. As you know, I've written a book called Billy Graham the man I'm you and one of the stories I tell them the book is about Billy Graham and amending Charles Templeton.
You've heard the title of the book by Charles Dickens which was a tale of two cities. This is a tale of two evangelists moments, Billy Graham, who went on to change the world. The other was Charles Templeton who is been mostly forgotten in the late 1940s Billy Graham and Charles Templeton were both of evangelists for youth for Christ and some even felt that Templeton was the more effective of the two very handsome, eloquent, great communicator, intelligent Billy was a great communicator as well, but he was a son of the South in his own words, he would often think I'm a country preacher. Templeton was more sophisticated, but as time passed, Templeton began to doubt his faith and he encouraged Billy to do the same. Templeton said the Billy Graham. You can't really believe the Scripture it's not really reliable, and Billy continued to believe the Scripture, but this did create sort of a crisis of faith in the life of Billy Graham and so one night Billy was up at Forrestal conference center here in Southern California and the San Bernardino Mountains. Billy went out to a tree stump and he took his Bible and he placed it on the stump and he made a commitment to believe what the Scripture said and he said father I accept this as your word by faith. I'm going to allow faith to go beyond my intellectual questions and doubts because I believe this is your inspired word so Billy made a choice to believe what Scripture said. Even when he had occasional doubts leaving that place Billy went on to preach in Los Angeles at a tentative been erected and that basically was the launch of his inner national ministry. Meanwhile, Templeton walked away from his faith even wrote a book with the title farewell to God. But the story doesn't end there.
My friend Lee Strobel told me the story of when he went to visit Charles Templeton. It was quite a bit older and was in very poor health, and Lee Strobel who used to work for the Chicago Tribune was a well-known atheist to came to faith after watching how God transformed his wife was researching a book he was writing so we went to interview this famous atheist Charles Templeton. He brought up the subject of Jesus Christ and much to Lee's surprise, Templeton said of Jesus, he was the greatest human who ever lived, and then Templeton went on to say the least.
Strobel and you know what this may sound strange but I adore him and I even would put it this way.
I miss him and then Lee told me he was really surprised when Charles Templeton began to weep.
And the story continues on a little bit after that Charles Templeton was on his deathbed and his wife said that while he was there.
He said to her, he saw angels. He said there so beautiful. I see them now and there waiting for me. I'm coming something God Charles Templeton, the evangelist who became the atheist and wrote a book titled farewell to God came back to God and believe, but Billy Graham never stopped believing you have the same choice before you right now you can believe the truth for the lie, and every day when you go watch television or you listen the music or you go on social media. The lie is hitting you the lie is hitting you.
That's why you need to fill your mind and heart with God's word to counteract that. So when I cried.
He emerges on the scene as a peacemaker and he does something that winds him the approval of many Jewish people in Israel he read builds their temple nausea recalled King David wanted to build a temple for the Lord because up to this point they would meet with the Lord what they call the tabernacle or the tent but David wanted something fitting for the Lord and as he drew up the plans for this temple. The Lord said no. So, David's son Solomon ended up building this incredible temple which was ultimately destroyed and rebuilt by King Herod, King Herod was not a devout man at all, but he was a great builder and so that second temple became known as Herod's Temple. That was the temple that was standing when Jesus had his public ministry. One day Jesus pointed to that double is as you see that temple I'm telling you right now there will not be one stone left upon another. He said that temple will be dismantled and they thought he is out of his mind.
We've been building this temple for 47 years. How could that have only did happen when Titus in the Roman legions came in and destroyed the temple and dismantled in stone by stone exactly as Jesus said would happen. So that's a second temple, but the Bible predicts 1/3 temple that is not been built yet. So when I Christ will come in effectively a read this third temple and then he will commit what the Bible calls the abomination of desolation. Matthew 24 Jesus says when you see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the probit standing in the holy place that those who are in Judea flee to the mountains and so what is the abomination of desolation. This is after the third temple is rebuilt. Antichrist erected image of himself in it and commends people to worship. This image and so commenting on that second Thessalonians 2 forces of antichrist. He opposes and exalts himself above all that is called God or his worship so he is as God sitting in the temple of God is coming is after the working of Satan and pretended miracles, all of them lying wonders. This marks the second half of the tribulation children. The first half of the tribulation antichrist seems like a good guy bringing peace, rebuilding the temple.
Then he commits the abomination of desolation erecting this image and that brings the second half of the tribulation when he begins to hunt down followers of Jesus hunt down Jewish people and a series of plagues come upon the planet and on it goes.
And so this is a dramatic scene that's taking place reminds us a little bit about Shadrach me shack and Abednego remember them there in the book of Daniel, King Nebuchadnezzar erected a giant golden image, and commanded everyone to worship it and they refused and there were of course thrown into the fiery furnace which was no big deal, because the Lord preserved them.
They came out to tell the story, but a similar story as to what the antichrist will do now. We shift gears from Revelation 13 to Revelation 14 we go from horrific things happening on planet Earth do some amazing things happening up in heaven so look at your Bible again.
Revelation 14 starting in verse one. John writes that I looked, and behold, a Lamb standing on mount Zion and with them 144,000, having his father's name written on their foreheads and I heard a voice from heaven, like the voice of many waters, like the voice of loud thunder.
And I heard the sound of harpists playing their parts and they saying as it were a new song before the throne before the four living creatures and the elders and no one could learn that song except the hundred and 44,000 who were redeemed from the earth.
These are ones who have not the father themselves with women for the virgins. They are the ones who follow the Lamb wherever he goes. They been redeemed from among men being firstfruits to God and the Lamb in their mouth was found no deceit in there without fault before the throne of God.
So hundred 44,000 remember them.
We read about them earlier in the book of Revelation and God had protected them in Revelation chapter 7 wherever they went. God watched over them and their proclaiming the gospel, who are the hundred and 44,000 there Jewish people will put their faith in Jesus as their Messiah but now we see there not on earth there in heaven. Notice it's not all hundred and 43,999 that me that they have been no all 144,000 make it to glory. And it reminds us of the statement of Jesus in John 18, nine of those whom you have given me I have not lost one God doesn't lose his children have ever lost sight of what your children may be in an amusement park or a supermarket that is terrifying. Is it not God never loses sight of you.
He always has his eye on you because you belong to him now. They have the mark of the father in heaven, not the mark of the antichrist, so all marks are not bad. Revelation 14 one. Having his father's name written on their foreheads.
The father's name. You know you have a choice as to who your father will be. You can either make God your father. Or you can be as Jesus said of your father the devil you know when I was growing up.
I have allotted dads up with that." My mother was married and divorced seven times and had a bunch of boyfriends in between and so there was my biological father. And then there was other guy she met and she would literally say this is your new dad and they were all very similar. These men my mother married the kinda guys it would hang around in a bar with maybe a few too many of their buttons on the shirt undone and suck in a swinger type dude Janelle, and Todd became very cynical, even as a young man about a father and then my mother married this guy in New Jersey whose name was Oscar Lori. He was an attorney. He didn't drink, he didn't smoke. I don't know what my mom's on. He was an honest man, a law-abiding man, a very moral man and I remember that he took an interest in me and cheated me as a father ought to treat a son.
So one day when I was coming out of school there in New Jersey. My mom had the Cadillac filled with all of our luggage and I said what's going on.
She says of going to the airport. I said, were we going to said Joe. Why is it all that so exciting words that she said he's not coming and I never saw Oscar Lori after that until many, many years later.
So we landed in Hawaii and here's a guy I've never seen before that my mom and Mary and she said this is your new dad. This man was abusive and violent impact one night in a drunken probably hit my mother with a wooden statue and almost killed her, and that so I became very hard against all of these things, but later in life.
After I came to Christ. I sought out Oscar Lori, who was still alive and had remarried and I had the privilege of sharing the gospel with them in leading him to the Lord.
That's another story for another time, but I chose his name. I want to name the critter chosen as my daddy all I had all these names I chose Lori which I was marked for in school.
By the way house went to military school where you go by your last name server. Everyone call me Lori, but I carried that name with pride because of the man that gave it to me and the man that adopted me I chose him because he chose me. He chose to adopt me, I chose to carry that name in the same way we choose who our father will be you choose God is your father or by default. You effectively choose the devil. This mark on the foreheads of the hundred and 44,000 is something that identifies them as God's children. It's sort of like an ID tag other people won't see it but the Lord sees it. And by the way, God is put his ID tag on you was. I mean it means you belong to the Lord you find it comforting. I do first Corinthians 619 says you're not your own. You been bought with a price. Therefore glorify God with your life in the Greek it, you're not your own property you been bought with a price. You know when I travel. I'll take luggage on the plane and I have a little ID to so I was on a trip recently and I was getting up and I'm a little piece of luggage that I was wheeling away and some lady comes running after me think you took my suitcase. I said no ma'am this is my suitcase. I know to goes know it's my suitcase open it and I opened it up and I was filled with women's clothing. I'm really glad she chased me down and the problem was I didn't check the ID tag and sure enough, those two suitcases minors were very similar.
If I would've checked the ID tag. I would have known the difference and I'm glad she told me because I did not want to wear women's clothing for my trip. So we have an ID tag and nothing God can read it and the devil can read and when he sees that ID tag.
He has the best government because you are God's property and the Lord will protect his investment.
Greg Lori insights on the 144,000 and how they're identified as God's own there's more to come from this study here on a new beginning. But we know that many times through interruptions can occur during the half-hour so you can hear anything you may have missed by going online to harvest.org just look for the study called, what is the mark of the beast will, as we seen today Bible prophecy can be a heavy subject and revelation is very candid about the tribulation to come but to pastor Greg your book Revelation in the book of promises is a positive book is it's a hopeful book. It's an inspiring book. Well, I think it is because the book of Revelation is a hopeful book as well, and Bible prophecy is not given to scare us but to prepare us and God gives us these things to give us hope and beg Jesus said when you see these things begin to happen in those things he was speaking about were fulfillment of Bible prophecies happening in your lifetime when you see these things, beginning And Jesus says look up for your redemption is drawing near. That's where the Bible calls us the blessed hope, and so there's something hopeful and wonderful and encouraging when we look at last days advance, by the way God wants us to understand what is going on in the end times and I say this because some people would say no one can understand Bible prophecy nonsense of course you can. The very word Revelation means the unveiling. You see, it's not God's desire to conceal but to reveal and Jesus speaking of an event that's coming on the prophetic calendar called the abomination of desolation said, let the reader understand Paul talking about the event that we sometimes call the rapture said brothers I would not have you ignorant concerning these things. So God wants us to understand them and so I've just written a brand-new book based on the biblical book of Revelation in this book is going to be easy for you to understand. I've written it in every man terms I it's like were just sit down over a couple coffee I were talking about the end times events and I'm trying to help you understand what this means to you and how it applies in your life. So the title of the book is Revelation a book of promises when we were designing the cover right I said that the designer I don't want any flames on the cover. I don't wanted to be black with red type on it.
Let's make it colorful and hopeful because that really is the message of Revelation. It's a hopeful message. Now obviously the book of Revelation talks about the tribulation.
It talks about the Antichrist.
It talks about the mark of the beast but that's not all. It talks about talks a lot about heaven and what heaven will be like and he gives us a perspective on life on earth because we get any internal perspective. So I hope our listeners will order a copy of this brand-new book Revelation, a book of promises and will be glad to send when your way to thank you for partnering with us. So these daily studies can continue it's only through listener support to that's possible.
Your donation helps this insight continue to be heard here in your community for your benefit and the benefit of so many others so get in touch today with your investment and will be glad to send you pastor Greg brand-new book Revelation, a book of promises by the way, we are including a custom bookmark along with the book it shows the timeline of God's end times events graphically help you see the order of events very clearly comes automatically with the book, you can write a new beginning. Box 4000, Riverside, CA 92514 or call 1-800-821-3300. That's 1-800-821-3300 or go online to harvest.org everybody Greg Lori here.
I'm happy to announce how one night SoCal harvest in Angel Stadium on October 3 harvest present a message of selling interactive experience and enjoy the time SoCal will pastor Greg brings his or feeling insights from her studies of the end times in the book of Revelation. Join us here on a new beginning. Pastor and Bible teacher for an early beginning Greg Lori podcast made possible by harvest partners, helping people everywhere know God sign up for daily devotions and learn how to become a harvest partner harvest.org