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January 5, 2022 3:00 am
And today on A New Beginning, Pastor Greg Laurie warns us about his tactics and strategies. We’re each in his crosshairs, but as believers we’re under the protection of The Cross
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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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Everybody you're listening to a new beginning, which is a podcast made possible by harvest partners. If this program is impacted you love to hear from you. So just send an email to me at firstname.lastname@example.org again it's email@example.com you can learn more about becoming harvest partner by going to harvest.org. Our adversary is cunning and gravity manipulative and merciless pastor Greg Laurie warns us here so the devil works whispers anywhere. Go ahead and do it. It's not that bad in the moment you're doing is you're the big disappointment that everyone have a severe don't even think of reading the Bible again. Don't even think of showing your ugly face in church again.
Now is the accuser of the brethren first season tempter will become the condemnor and many of us have some without even realizing the scammers admit long weekly upon your fear, kindness find a weakness vulnerability. Satan is like he's been practicing a lot longer today on a new beginning for Greg Laurie warns us about his tactics and strategies in his cross.
But as believers we are under the protection of the title of this message is Angels and so this is perplexed as us is where the heck did demons come from what we would have to have demons while they're out there for sure in this simplified daemon is a fallen angel God did not create demons as we know them today he created angels what he gave to these angelic creatures of free will and an ability to choose and as hard as it is to believe one third of the angels followed a high ranking angel known as Lucifer, the son of the morning and a rebellion server is also known as Satan and the devil. So Genesis 3 very familiar passage reverses 1 to 7 reading from the new living translation the serpent was the shrewdest of all the creatures the Lord God had made.
One day he asked the woman did God really say you must not eat the fruit from any of the trees in the garden. Of course we may eat fruit from the trees in the garden. The woman replied it's only the fruit from the tree in the middle of the guard were not allowed to eat. God said don't need it or touch it and if you do, you will die you won't die. The serpent replied to the woman God knows that your eyes will be opened as soon as you eat it and you will be like God, knowing both good and evil.
The woman was convinced she saw the tree was beautiful and its fruit looked delicious and she wanted the wisdom it would give her so she took some of the fruit and ate and she gave door husband with her, and he ate.
There such work, noting that in this particular passage the devil is compared to a serpent or a snake. So sometimes is compared to a lion sometimes is compared to a snake. This is a fascinating thing because well snakes are very interesting creatures and that they are hard to figure out you know when I was a boy. For some inexplicable reason I collected snakes, and I don't know why I like them so much but I had quite an exhaustive collection. Then I was bitten by many snakes.
I might add as well. My grandkids identically pop and tell us all the animals that it bit you and I've been bitten by so many animals that every candid creature you can imagine is a wide been bitten by mice have been bitten by rats of been bitten by guinea pigs. I do admit bitten by a rabbit I've been bitten by a turtle. You know, so I went over all the animals that it bit me, but thanks I was bitten by them a lot and I this one snake that almost could sense my fear and anybody else would reach in and this little Python would not strike and whenever I put my hand in there. It's striking every thought to be just snake totally crazy because he just knew here comes Greg Deneb item and so we had this very contentious relationship me in a crazy snake but you know snakes are that way you you can read the snake. You can read a dog it so easy to know where you stand with it all you know in a dog You know when a dog said you know when a dog you can pretty much wherever he said you can read it on his face. Cats are former mysterious. It just sort of look at you with those mystical lies and walk off. But snakes are even harder to read than than cats or dogs because a snake is a reptile in their brain is very small. They're not intelligent creatures and people. Seaview contains naked and sorted. You can, but they may bite you in the face and they may be fine with you for a while it all depends what you you always want to be aware of the threat of a snake and another thing about us.
They could thinking get in and out of the tightest little spot and that so much like the devil you don't know what the devil is going to do next and you'll kind of warm his way enters snake his way into a given situation. But the thing with those snake also was the venom I never had the venomous snakes but you know there are different kinds of snakes that have different strings of venom, was a guy and knew when I was a young boy who used to have a lot of snakes and he had Tiger states, which are among the most venomous snakes in existence and he had been bitten by a tiger steak and survived it because he had taken the venom and used it to build up his immunity. So this is like the guy who survived the Tiger snakebite. She was kind of a legend in the snake world right which I happen to be in. I can explain it but I was in it is like this.
Her pathologists is what we called ourselves we were in the reptiles very weird people. Okay but anyway I was into and so he survived the buying of a tiger snake within one day we heard the tragic news that he died from a cobra by any Cobras as pets. Cobra's and I think he thought because I survived the bite of a tiger snake. A cobra isn't that big of a threat and one of his cobras that literally would slither around his house.
Him he wasn't aware of it and he didn't get treatment quickly enough that he died from it.
So I think that's how we can be something we have our guard up. Be careful here, but then I lower my guard over there and all of a sudden I'm vulnerable take the bite of the this is a whole message on snake she didn't know this was coming, do a brain dump of everything I know about snakes tonight are not really, but time almost a mistake, did you know that the venom of a baby rattler is more toxic than that of an adult rattler so you know you you might see a full-grown rattlesnake and you back away from it. Don't get near that thing. Stay away from it. Then you see a little baby revenue will give you the pick them up to be be good reason your hand. You know what is it thing called baby red alert is it me it's so cute, feeling faint yellow mess around that. I bring this up because you know we have our guard up against the big sin, but we lower our guard with what we perceive as little sins or areas that were strong and we had a beginning defeated in the very areas is making sense to you. So the devil comes like a serpent, and what does he do what we need. He questions God's love effectively in order God really love you. He would like to eat of any tree you want to eat out in the garden so the fact that he isn't letting you eat of it must be an indication he doesn't really love you at all.
And by the way you eat this fruit you will become like God. Eve, you will be contests and you will know the things that only God knows, and that she just went for.
That's all she needed to hear an appeal to her prime. So the devil is clever he will, just say you know the Bible is not the word of God is a did you really understand the Bible correctly did God really say what you thought.
God said maybe you just misunderstood.
And so here come to us and so you know it's really not that bad for you to do that other people do that other people who say they are Christians, do that. Why can't you do that is, it will because you know I just think that Slocum don't be so uptight.
Don't be so rigid you're being legalistic go in and just do that thing that everybody else is doing okay will do it one time and I just have a little bit yeah the famous last words and then here's what happens. Any get you, then you do that thing in your sort of book here pulled in and no one is the devil due right after he deceived you and told you go ahead and do it. He then condemns you, because the Bible describes Satan is the accuser of the brothers and sisters, and he accuses us before God DNI to here's how the devil works he whispers in your ear.
Go ahead and do it.
Everybody else is doing it. It's not that bad. Do it just wants you'll be fine. Or no one will ever know, and then the moment you do it. He comes back and says you're the biggest hypocrite that ever walked the face of the year. How can you call yourself a Christian, don't even think of reading the Bible. Again, don't even think of showing your ugly face in church again. Now is the accuser of the brethren first sees the tempter pulling the when getting you to take is free sample. Now he'll become the condemnor and the accuser of Greg Laurie will have the second half of this message just a moment.
You know sometimes we can always make a picture, here's the good news church is coming to you is coming due on your TV screen or on your tablet or your computer or even your phone.
We do it every weekend and it's called Harvest at Home. We worship we have a message of the word of God. You want to find out more, just go to harvest.org enjoy this this weekend for harvest that all pressure gauge message title today gives Angels and Demons. It's part of our collection of most requested studies of the year let's continue know when you going to Krispy Kreme donuts. 11. Been there for a while, but the last time I was there.
I of course over eight as I always do.
That's why stay away but I want to know what a video would you like a free Krispy Kreme doughnut. Why do they do that because they love us no because they know the moment you eat that hot, freshly made donut glistening with sugar you will eat more jet it's worth it to them so you take up by going there to interview. Ever notice or a little smaller than regular donuts.
How many of you have had Krispy Kreme donuts. Cannot everybody give and have them you should go try God, like the devil. All of a sudden one time try this little one, now that's out work so I try that first one of another of another of another minute so someone I meeting the and then it just becomes all this greasy dough in my stomach and you wanted. I just do that then I go to a food coma. You know how works.
That's all similar terms are used Krispy Kreme in that way, but it fit you take the bait and then you're hooked.
Then he condemns you cc what you do, we just remember that that's his talk and no matter what sin you've committed God can forgive you if you will admit that sin, repent of, say, Lord.
I'm sorry for that sin.
And don't forget something else as a Christian you been justified before God is not based on anything you've done it solely based on what he did when he sent Christ to die on the cross in our place.
And remember, justified means just as if it never happened. So I stand righteous before God. So I say Lord forgive me of my sin.
I stand right before God now is child to the devil I just say go to hell because that's where he's going in and trust me he would like to drag as many people there with him as he possibly could. So it's very important for us to know how the enemy works. I think it was Victor Hugo who said he was the author of Les Miserables, who said, quote you must penetrate the brain of your enemy. A good general will penetrate the brain of his enemy.
The ideas know your opponent know what your opponent may do and be ready for him when he comes in.
These are the tactics of the enemy that he uses over and over again.
But here's the good news 2000 years ago on the cross Jesus defeated Satan.
He defeated the look at double can still tempt you.
The double can still have so you, the devil can still kind of buffet you word strike get you even the apostle Paul talked about how he was buffeted by the enemy but the devil can never overcome you, the devil can never overpower you and the devil can never possess you, because you are under new management because you put your faith in Christ and Satan knows the Bible says is a God puts his ID tag on us and that ID taxes property of Jesus Christ and that ID tag is the work of the Holy Spirit in the life of the Christian I was traveling recently on my back came off of the conveyor belt and I'm willing it out and some lady comes chasing after me. You have my back and things like this crazy since my back. She gets you up my bag and said no I'm sorry this is my back. She says open it up.
I opened it up reserve we had identical back and I'm so glad I didn't keep her bag because I did not want to dress in women's clothing for that trip and she had my bag in and I mistook it and the reason was I didn't check the ID tag using so God is what is ID tag on you and your under his protection. So you don't be afraid of what the enemy is going to do you just need to be aware of it and you need to keep your guard up. But here's the bottom line and I'll close with this God want you to come into a relationship with him in the devil want to do everything he can to keep you away from a relationship with God.
The Bible says the God of this world that Satan has blinded the eyes of those that don't believe Les or I should be open and they should see the glorious light of the gospel so Satan doesn't want you to believe in the Bible also says he's taken people captive to do his will so he tries to keep us from coming to Christ. But then when we do come to Christ. He'll do everything he can to get us to fall away or to compromise so he can neutralize us so we need to be aware of these things so let me speak to people as I close, number one, you may be a person who is joined as soon is not sure if your sin is forgiven that the devil is just been having a hate in your life, and he has you trapped in addiction. Drugs, alcohol, pornography then he has you trapped in some relationship he is you trapped in something else and you just feel like I can never get out of this place. You can you can but you must ask God for his help and for his forgiveness in Jesus can pull you out of that pit your rent and change. You literally in moments so give never believed in Jesus. I want to give you an opportunity to believe in him tonight and have all of your sin forgiven and get a fresh start of life, and most importantly, know that when you die you will go to heaven whether some of you who have accepted Christ in your life, but realistically and honestly you been kinda trapped by the enemies, got you wound up in some compromise situation and and you're not a happy person right now because you're trying to live in two worlds of bedroom.
Even sitting here right now thinking about what you're going to do, and that other world you live in the moment you get out of this church service that is not a good thing, watched some TV, to go to this club on go yell really, you're in a bad place because I don't think we should want to get out of this place quickly. I think we should want to be here and savor the moment. With God's people. I know you have to get home and get to work and things like that.
But I'm talking about.
Enjoy every moment that we have to worship and learn the word of God. It's a privilege to live in two worlds so if you're in that sort of no man's land of compromise and really encouraging the to make a recommitment to Christ and and really start walking with the Lord is you want to do all of the enemy have a foothold in your life. The Bible says don't give place to the devil. Don't give them anything. Don't have tea with him no hang out with him don't have a short conversation with him. Don't text him.
Don't let them text you I just stay away from. Keep as much distance as you can.
The Bible says is this the devil and he will flee from you. So we have the resistor, but before that, it says submit to God.
So first I submit to God, then I resist the double because as I submit to God.
I have the power to resist the devil and he will flee from me, so some of you may need to make a recommitment, I'll give you that opportunity right now as we all closing prayer. Let's pray now father, thank you for your word to us. We know there's a devil we know there are demons, but more importantly we know there's you and we know there are angels and we know you're more powerful than our adversary. So we would just say right now to the enemy and his forces we rebuke you in the name of Jesus Christ and we would say Lord that there are people here that need to come to you and I pray that you would take off the blinders help them to see what we've shared tonight is true or not fairytales. These are not myths us is hard reality the supernatural world that I pray Lord for any person here that doesn't know you yet. I pray you would help them to come to you and believe in you and be forgiven of all of their sin in Jesus name I pray that your great glory important prayer if you'd like to make a change today before this addition of a new beginning wraps up in a moment. Pastor Greg will help you do that, so please stay with us and then we want to make available a wonderful book for kids. It's a devotional book. Boy what a great time to give your child a devotional book so they can start this new year off right. It's the colorful book from pastor Levi Lesko called roar like a lion partially by what your parents know about how kids are coping with life as we begin 2022. Are they navigating this crazy time better than we think. Or worse than we think. I think the answer that question is yes, Dave. I think it's the best of times, and a source.
At times I think I will level the this the studies are in anxiety, depression, suicide, hopelessness, drug addiction, these things are skyrocketing, but I don't think it's just because a COBIT. I think it's a perfect storm of a of a of a society that's continuing to hasten towards a state of secularism.
I think it's also the social media addiction as well as the fact that you know people are not outside walking around, getting Nate, the nature fix like were meant to everyone's inside there's a there's a toxicity to social media being on devices binge watching Netflix people are reading less, which is one of the things that so important just reading to our kids are kids reading. People are reading. Re: Lester just skimming year, the Internet and and so yes, it's the worst worst of times on that level what we expect out of out of of you know people being isolated which we know is as bad as it is bad for your body is smoking a pack of cigarettes to live in isolated life, like to a week of isolation without friendship. That's just sociologists have proven that, but I think also it's the best of times to because what we call the greatest generation is the generation that came out of the Great Depression. So the hardest times can create the best people yes so I see glimmers of that I believe God is raising up a generation of young people to seek him to glorify him and to stand up in this world and and and bring him the majesty he's tea deserves, but it's it's both. It's both, and at the same time so even listing the pastor Levi Lesko who had just written a brand-new book called roar like a lion 90 devotion still courageous faith. This is the book you been looking for to read your children and your grandchildren and will rush to your own copy for your gift of any size to us here at a new beginning so we can continue to come your way with the teaching of the word of God and the proclamation of the gospel. Yeah, that's right.
And you know it's the perfect time to maximize your investment in the work we do here at harvest ministries and we have huge plans for 2022, including a large Crusade outreach and a film documenting the Jesus revolution where pray God sends another revival like the Jesus movement so your donation couldn't come at a better time and with your investment. Be sure to ask for roar like a lion, pastor, Levi Lesko. You can donate firstname.lastname@example.org or write us at a new beginning.
Box 4000, Riverside, CA 92514 or call 1-800-821-3300. We can take your call anytime again at 1-800-821-3300 and then Pastor Greg would you like to speak to those who would like to make a change today, and their relationship with God. I would get II received so many letters. Dave from people from every walk of life from successful businessmen to those who are incarcerated to mother struggling is a 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 what 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 enough 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 me of yourself so I turned 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, yet would like to send something your way to help you as you begin your new relationship with the Lord.
It's an assortment of helpful resources we call our new believers growth packet just asked for it if you prayed along with Pastor Greg today you can give us a phone call at 1-800-821-3300. We can take your call anytime. Again, 1-800-821-3300 or write a new beginning. Box 4000, Riverside, CA 92514 or just go to harvest.org and click on know God. Next time, Pastor Greg brings another of our top 10 messages of the year it was for what's waiting for us in the hereafter.
Join us to run a new beginning, pastor, Bible teacher, Greg Laurie everybody thinks her list. Beginning this is a podcast made possible by harvest partners. So for more content can help you know God and equip you to make him known to others or to learn more about how you can become a harvest partner. Just go to harvest.org