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The Real Thing | Sunday Message (with Pastor Jonathan Laurie)

A New Beginning / Greg Laurie
The Truth Network Radio
March 13, 2022 4:00 am

The Real Thing | Sunday Message (with Pastor Jonathan Laurie)

A New Beginning / Greg Laurie

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March 13, 2022 4:00 am

Having a community of believers to surround you will support you in your walk and give you the opportunity to support others as well. In a special Sunday episode, Pastor Jonathan Laurie gives us a model of what a gospel partnership really looks like.


Priscilla and Aquila were ordinary people who made a profound impact.

To be “Corinthianized” meant to be morally corrupt to the extreme.

Priscilla and Aquila were missionaries, evangelists, teachers, and friends to the church.

Priscilla and Aquila built their life upon the rock-solid foundation of Jesus Christ.

Hope comes from being in a relationship with Jesus Christ.

Priscilla and Aquila had spiritual community.

Don’t underestimate just how much Christian fellowship through a small group, “koinonia,” can change your life.

Salvation comes by faith in what Christ did on the cross.

“The path to public success is always paved with private discipline.” —Craig Groeschel

A fake salvation, a fake faith, a fake relationship with God hurts you the most.

The world is constantly telling you to do things for yourself, to be selfish.

The Bible says worship God, empty yourself, and live your life as a living sacrifice.

Scripture Referenced

1 Corinthians 2:1–5

Matthew 7:24–27

2 Corinthians 1:3–5

James 1:2–4

Psalm 103:2


Learn more about Greg Laurie and Harvest Ministries at

This podcast is supported by the generosity of our Harvest Partners.

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Hey there, thanks for listening to the Greg Laurie part just a ministry supported by harvest partners on Greg Laurie encouraging you if you want to find out more about harvest ministries. To learn more about how to become a harvest partner, just go to I'm Jonathan Lori and together we are to be looking at ask chapter 18 and 19 is we continue in our series actually upside down life message title is the real thing. And again, will be looking at ask chapter 18 if you'd like to open up your Bibles there open up a webpage tab may be in and follow along. We look at acts chapter 18 and a little bit into acts chapter 19 when you hear the word power couple, what comes to mind who comes to mind what images pop into your head to Harry and Megan come to mind. You know right he's he's the prince and she's I what the Duchess or something.

I do know I sound caring about what happened in England royalty in 1776. What about Jay-Z and Beyonc.

They might come to mind.

Maybe Travis Barker and Khloe Kardashian are Tom and Gisele come under their power couple for sure I will. Pamela Anderson kid rock right there their real power couple weight they broke up. Are you serious this is revelation notes getting what is a power couple though.

What is a power couple and why do we call them that will usually today we refer somebody is a power couple because the rich and famous, and they married somebody else there dating somebody else was also rich and famous and beautiful and celebrated.

Whatever it might be now.

Sometimes these couples they will use their influence for social issues or raising awareness for something good, whatever they might empathize with, but whether they like it or not, the attention is rarely on the things that they're trying to raise awareness for and the intention is solely on them they could be supporting a super valuable because they could be supporting some great organization but the cameras are always aimed in their direction.

The new stories always you know I celebrity endorses veganism is seen eating a taco at Del Taco you know a chicken taco Del taco. Hours later, right.

That's the big controversy and so power couples while they might be celebrated today were to be introduced in our text to a true power couple a true couple that was influential made an impact on one of the most important men in all of human history and they were rich.

They were famous they weren't successful. Necessarily, they were humble but they are committed to the Lord. So you might think that the power couple is 1/21 century construct, but we will see that in the first century and ask 18 we see a true power couple and we see that the user influence and their resources to change the world a quill and Priscilla. They were wealthy. They were famous.

They weren't influencers they were part of the social elite and I am positive that they were not gluten-free.

What I love about quill and Priscilla as if they were normal they were average. There were probably blue-collar ordinary people who made however one of the most profound impacts on one of again.

The most important figures in all of human history.

I'm speaking of the apostle Paul, Ralph Waldo Emerson wrote God evidently does not intend us all to be rich or powerful or great, but he does intend us all to be friends. I love that, and that's what Priscilla and Aquila did so well they made friends. They made connections with the apostle Paul and will see, also with the man and evangelist name Apollo's and in our text they were to see the Priscilla and Aquila.

They were a tightly knit ministry duo their married husband and wife and their always mentioned together and they were considered by Paul to be some of his closest co-laborers in ministry. This power couple was not powerful or strong because of their own fame and influence they were exactly though what Paul had commanded the church to be in Ephesus in Ephesians 6 when he says finally, be strong in the Lord and the strength of his might. Priscilla and Aquila. They were strong in the Lord. There were strong in their faith.

They were a friend.

There were a co-laborer. There were some Nietzsche provides good community to the apostle Paul after he had just experienced a very tumultuous season in ministry. As Paul concluded his second missionary journey.

We can look and see. Really, it was fraught with revival rejection, riots repeat that's what he saw in almost every city there is a revival.

He was rejected.

There was a riot and that he can repeat the whole process.

He was beaten he was put in jail, etc. we learned last few weeks about how Paul and his friends. Literally, they were put in jail.

They were beaten there falsely accused.

They are attacked by angry mobs there chased out of town.

Then they were chased out of the next town by the people who chased him out of the previous town they're forced to flee for their lives, and we see Paul arrive in an area that is maybe one is in the modern day back then one of the most influential capitals of the world for cultural aspects for philosophical aspects for enlightenment and speaking of Athens, Greece.

As Paul came in and masterfully preached at the Areopagus to the Athenian philosophers on Mars Hill.

He built a bridge. He talked to them about the unknown God.

He talked about the resurrection. He was relevant.

He was articulate but ultimately the apostle Paul was rejected there rejected his message and even was scoffed at and yes there were some who believed and so there's that. But ultimately the apostle Paul as he left Athens. He did not spend much time there.

He began his journey to Corinth, which is what were gonna read about in acts 18 and is he began that journey from Athens to Corinth and he began a 53 mile walk. We are given an insight into Paul's mental space by none other than the apostle Paul himself in his first letter to the now church in Corinth that he would be planting. He says this is he, again, his journeys, he arrived in Corinth. He says this in first Corinthians 2. When I first came to use your brothers and sisters.

I didn't use lofty words. I didn't use impressive wisdom to tell you, God's secret plan for.

I decided that while I was with you I would forget everything, except Jesus Christ the one who was crucified. I came to you in weakness, timid and trembling in my message and my preaching were very plain.

Rather than using clever and persuasive speeches.

I relied solely on the power of the Holy Spirit.

I did this so you would trust not in human wisdom, but in the power of God again. The apostle Paul. He's coming to court after being beaten and imprisoned in Philippi, he was ran out of town in Thessalonica and in Berea and ultimately when he arrived in Athens and he gave this beautiful eloquent message that we read and chapter 17 as he talked to the men there on Marcel.

He was scoffed at. He was laughed at. He was dismissed, and ultimately he came into Corinth now humbled.

He was ready to just rely solely on the power of the Holy Spirit solely on the gospel message. He didn't want to use any of his own verbal judo or anything like that. He saw the power of the gospel is where it was all about. As he came to Corinth. He was well aware that Corinth was a city that was written down to the ancient world for its wickedness because of its location was a port city. It was a center for trade center for travel center for money and vice and new philosophies and strange new religions.

Paul Kane there, knowing that to be Corinthian eyes meant to be morally corrupt to the extreme that was actually term that was used and is even used to this day to be Corinthian eyes. But even though Paul had every human reason to be discouraged after leaving Athens after coming out of these cities, Philippi and and others.

The apostle Paul. He even may have been tempted to compromise as he came into Corinth. Nobody knew him there he was traveling there and and he could very easily given up this message that he was preaching he could've been so discouraged in his faith. But that's not what happened.

He refused to change his message and ultimately what happened was God orchestrated exactly what the apostle needed in that moment at the exact right time, at the exact right place. Enter Priscilla and Aquila are first century power couple. There are missionaries there were evangelists there were teachers and they were friends of the church husband-and-wife team who are committed to Jesus as their Lord. Let's read about them now and acts chapter 18 starting in verse one after this Paul left Athens and went to Corinth and there he found a Jew named Aquila, a native of Pontus recently come from Italy with his wife Priscilla because Claudius was emperor at the time in Rome had commanded all the Jews to leave Rome.

Yes, he banished them and he went to see them, and because he was on the same trade they worked on the same things.

He stayed with Priscilla and Aquila and worked for. They were tentmakers by trade. Point number one in the world to learn about Priscilla and Aquila today. Point number one enduring storms and during the storms or Pres. Franklin Roosevelt.

He said a smooth see, never made a skilled sailor a smooth see, never made a skilled sailor I told you that this couple, Priscilla and Aquila.

They were not your ordinary power couple.

In fact they were refugees there refugees there, leaving Rome because the Emperor had to treat all Jewish people would be banned from Rome because the Jews there apparently were riding over some issues and they got lumped in with this group of people and they were banished all the Jewish people were banished from Rome is right away. We see this couple facing adversity facing a trial having to pack up all their belongings whatever they could and they were allowed to take with them on their journey and leave behind. Ultimately, the things that they probably care most about their friends, their family, their business and ultimately their church, Bible scholars believe that this power couple have been a part of, and likely helped to launch the church in Rome. The church that Paul would write a letter to in his book are rather in his letter to the Roman church is over them to leave their community and come to a wicked city like Corinth. They must've been equally as pleased as Paul when they encountered each other they would been coming on this journey that would've arrived in Corinth discouraged challenge beat out, unsure of what the future held. So we see this couple experiencing hardships just like we all do.

We all experience storms.

We all experience hardship short strange trials and unwanted dynamics that take place in our lives.

You lose your job, your husband gets cancer you find out that your wife can't get pregnant you find out that your wife can't stop getting pregnant. There's a financial strain that you have a prodigal child and it's weighing on your heart heavy. How can we weather the storms in life.

Look at Priscilla and Aquila. How did they manage to go through this difficult journey of being banished for mom from Rome and starting a new life will we see two things in the first thing I want to point out to you is that they built their life on the solid rock foundation of Jesus Christ. They built their life on the solid rock foundation of Jesus Christ is a lot of things today that we are told we can build our marriages upon a lot of things that people build their marriages upon but they don't they don't support you they're not there for you. You can build your marriage on wealth. You can build your your marriage in your life on your appearance.

You can build your marriage on your sexual chemistry with each other. You can build your marriage upon your your common love for sports team, a TV show television or a movie series. Whatever might be veganism CrossFit kittens, whatever.

Honestly you will build their marriages on all kinds of things.

Oh, this is our common love. This is what we do. We love to collect. No glass mugs and that's her life. Wow. Okay.

When the storms come in your life and you experience that difficulty that trial that unwanted phone call. There's only one thing that will sustain your marriage and will sustain your life and that is the hope that comes from being in a relationship with Jesus Christ. Jesus himself said in Matthew seven. Anyone who listens to my teaching and follows it is wise like a person who builds a house on solid rock.

And though the rain comes in torrents in the floodwaters rise and the winds beat against the house, it won't collapse because it is built on bedrock, but anyone who hears my teaching and doesn't obey it is foolish, like a person who builds a house on sand and when the rains and floods come and the winds beat against that house, it will collapse with a mighty crash. Listen if you build your life on Jesus, he will sustain you. He will support you when that rain falls in the waters rise and the wind blows, God will not let you down. God will not leave you and you will not seek you know, such as the storms of suffering you, whether as a couple and an hardship and sickness is also the storms of frustration and disagreement you're going to face as a couple, and maybe unforgiveness. And we've seen over the years that the celebrity marriages. We so often see in the media don't often last very long anywhere from a few days literally think the shortest one is like less than 24 hours of heritage all the way to you know a couple of years we don't read about many who last more than a decade or two and you have to ask yourself what are they build their marriage upon what were they built upon happiness fame and not really sure.

I can tell you though that if it wasn't for my wife Brittany and I and our faith and our obedience to Scripture in our spiritual foundations.

I can guarantee you we would likely be another divorce statistic if we didn't have Jesus weep. I would've thrown in the towel.

If we didn't have that Christian support system around us. We would've given up it would've been so hard, but because we had the Lord because we had our faith because we had a deeper commitment to Jesus, that we had to each other. We fell back on the things matter most. Our faith in Christ. Let me tell you when you were choosing that girl or that guy that you might want to date aim for someone has a faith that you want to have some. It has a deeper faith in you. Someone has a stronger faith in Jesus that is a deeper commitment.

It is more enthusiastic, more in love with him. Ask the Lord to make a decision on your behalf, or would you have me marry this person, would you have me date this person is this, do you have for me. But what if the Lord chooses some ugly guy for me to marry. Hey listen, he may be hot but so is hell right now. Just kidding Lors I can have you Mary some ugly guy. Don't worry guys like to bring you some girl that you're not attracted to. That's not going to happen. You're not gonna marry someone you think is unattractive, testament to that. Because if you look at me and then you look at my wife. It's clearly the often obvious that I got the better end of the deal here.

She's beautiful.

I'm not so beautiful as you can tell thank you Jesus.

The second thing that I want to point out to you that Priscilla and Aquila help them weather this storm was they had spiritual community. They had spiritual community.

How stoked were these three when they found each other. Priscilla and Aquila finding Paul Paul finding Priscilla and Aquila and being encouraged that they had similar things happening in their life but they all had Jesus Paul on this virtually low note encountering this couple who, by comparison, were were dealt a more severe blow being banished from Rome being banished from their home having to leave everything behind all comforting each other in the midst of persecution and rejection and uncertainty bearing each other's burdens, as Galatians 62 says bear one another's burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ. That's with these three were doing their bearing each other's burdens. There empathizing with each other. There were there for each other in second Corinthians 1. Paul says all praise to God the father of our Lord Jesus Christ, God, who is our merciful father and the source of all comfort. He comforts us in all of our troubles, so that we can comfort others. I love this and when they are troubled. We will be able to give them the same comfort God has given to us for the more we suffer for Christ the more God will shower us with his comfort through Christ. Listen Paul was comforted in his trial, he was comforted through his discouragement by the Lord himself.

Paul then took that encouragement he was given that comfort.

He was given any comforted others who were being discouraged. He was comforting with the comfort that he was comforted with how beautiful is that I want to tell you that community. Spiritual community will change your life. Being a part of a small group can literally change your life for the better. The first smoker that I was ever a part of.

I was in a transitional place. You could say I knew I wanted to get close to God. I knew I wanted to be closer to him and I knew that this lifestyle that I was currently living at age 21. I no longer wanted to live. I was in the throes of addiction was in the midst of just living it really a double life. I hated who I was.

I too much of the church to be happy in the world and I to which too much of the church world to be happy in the church. I was really in no man's land, but I knew I wanted to get close with God.

I knew I wanted to be back in church someday and really plugged in walking with him, but I was having such a hard time giving up addiction, giving up behavior, giving up groups of friends. It was really challenging for me enter this little small group community that I was able to be welcomed into. I hung out with these kids. I hung out with these other Christian believers and I was hearing them, teach Bible studies and while I was being convicted Lord was working on my heart. And yes, while I was kinda living this double life and you know one week and I be out over here parting with these guys in the next week and I was you know coming to church. I was not in a great place. You know it they're praying for me. There were challenging me. They were calling me out for my behavior. Fast forward a few months after being a part of this little small group community and one of the greatest and and most devastating things that ever happened in my life takes place.

My older brother Christopher was killed in an automobile accident. Unexpectedly, it it left me devastated left me heartbroken left me suffering and as I was able to be a part of that spiritual community who was it. Do you think the reach out to me and poured into me and let me know that they cared and sent me text messages and sent cards and let me know they're praying for me and encourage me with Scripture, and even bringing me food know it was in the people I partied with was in the people that I thought were my friends. It was the people there were part of this little church this little Bible study that was going to be reached out to me. Let me know. There were suffering along with their even crying along with me, they never met my brother, but they are hurting because I was hurting. That's right people from that small group was a ragtag home Bible study that I was a part of it was raw, though it was genuine is exactly what I needed. Fast forward a few months. From there, now I've committed my life to Lord I'm walking with him. I've walked away from addiction to the power of the Holy Spirit. God may be a new creation.

After being at this Bible study for a little while. Then I meet this girl who went to high school with.

Her name was Brittany. Fast forward a few months after that were dating a few months after that are actually more like a year and 1/2 after that now remarried. Now we've got kids together now. We got three kids together in this this April. Obviously writing 12 years of marriage wasn't don't underestimate how much a spiritual community. How much coin anemia Christian Fellowship. That's the Greek word for it through a small group can change your life.

That's how Priscilla and Aquila were able to endure this storm was by having their life built upon the rock of our salvation Jesus Christ, their marriage was intact, and also because they had spiritual community was continue in verse 18 of acts 18 says Paul stayed many days longer and then took leave of the brothers and set sail for Syria and with him.

Priscilla and Aquila.

Another little team there there working together little missionary group and it can Korea Paul cut his hair, for he was under a vowel. I'm succumbing to the end of his work there in current site. I assume that heat he shaved his head because his work was done there. This was a vow that he did and as they came to Ephesus. Verse 19, Paul left them there, but he himself wanted to the synagogue and reasoned with the Jews. But when they asked him to stay for a period longer. He declined and on taking leave of them. Paul said, I will return to you.

If God wills and so he set sail from Ephesus when he arrived at Caesarea back in Israel, he went up and greeted the church and then he went down to Antioch and after spending some time there, he departed and went from one place to the next through the region of Galatia and Russia strengthening all the disciples. Verse 24. No Jew named Apollo's. A native of Alexandria, came to Ephesus. He was an eloquent man competent in the Scriptures, and he had been instructed in the way of the Lord and being fervent in spirit, he taught and spoke accurately the things concerning Jesus, though he knew only of the baptism of John and began to speak boldly in the synagogue. But when Priscilla and Nicole heard him, they took him aside and explained to him the way of God more accurately and when he wished across to Kea. The brothers encouraged him and wrote to the disciples to welcome him when he arrived he greatly help those who, through grace, had believed for. He powerfully refuted the Jews in public showing by the Scriptures that the Christ was Jesus. Point number two discipled the church discipled the church that is what Priscilla and Aquila did one of the greatest joys in my life is discipling other people. One of my greatest joys in life is being a married person and with my wife, getting to minister to other people and to disciple other couples, Priscilla and Aquila taking Apollo's aside and explained to him the way of God more accurately, that's exactly what they're doing there were discipling a beautiful Apollo's was eloquence. He was well studied in the Scriptures. He was passionate but he was an incomplete man with an incomplete message. He knew nothing about the baptism of Jesus. He knew that Jesus was the Messiah, but he didn't have the full picture yet. You can read the Scriptures you can know what the Bible teaches about how to live and know what's right and wrong you can worship passionately you can get all Pentecostal and wave flags around but if you don't know Jesus you don't know anything if you don't know Jesus. It doesn't mean anything if you build your life on knowledge rebuild your life on emotion and passion.

Listen, it's going to fail you.

Apollo's knew these things. He was well studied. He was passionate but he didn't know Jesus. If you build your life on knowledge rebuild your life on emotion and passion is going to fail you knowledge doesn't bring salvation and emotion and passion doesn't bring salvation.

Salvation comes by faith in what Christ did on the cross. Priscilla Tukwila heard Apollo's message. They saw that it was incomplete and they took him aside privately took him aside privately.

Respectfully, authoritatively, and they share with him the whole gospel message know they didn't call out you know Apollo say what you're saying is incomplete need to share the whole story. They didn't embarrass and they didn't assume they didn't talk about him behind his back. He didn't try and cancel him or or publicly shame have no they probably took them to their home. They minister to him and they began to disciple him. One commentator said the fact that this mighty preacher and scholar would consent to being taught by a lowly tent maker and his wife attests to his godly humility. Apollo's was willing to be taught.

He was willing to learn.

He was willing to have things share with him even be corrected. You know there's a lot of things as a couple you can commit your time to with your wife. There's a lot of things you can commit your time to with your husband today could be coaching your kids sports teams could be working really late hours working hard in your career could be climbing the social ladder. It could be binge watching the latest Netflix series a could be having a wine and cheese club hey it could even serving ministering and attending small group.

Here's the reality our job, our primary goal is Christians as married couples together is to be missionaries to our families first and foremost to disciple our children to disciple our spouses is the best thing you can do in your marriage Priscilla Tukwila. They have their home life all ironed out. They were disciplined there committed to Jesus and they're using what resources they had available to them to build the church and to disciple Apollo's Greg Rochelle says that the path to public success is always paved with private discipline. The path to public success. As a result of private discipline. I love that Pres. Harry Truman once said upon studying the lives of great men in history.

He said the first victory they ever one was over themselves.

It was the victory of self-discipline and effort. Discipline is not something you can fake discipline is not something that you can manufacture it has to be real. Otherwise, the results will speak for themselves right.

You can't claim to be like an All-Star athlete and then when the time comes to go and swim that lap in the pool or to go play that game of tennis or don't throw that football and you claim to be this All-Star athlete when it comes down to it you're knocking to be able to do it unless you really put in the time and effort and discipline. People are going to see that you are a fake, they're gonna see that you're a fraud because the evidence of who you really are will be on display unless you have paved your private life your personal life with discipline and commitment to whatever it is you're not going to have that public success. The worst thing you could ever pretend to be is a Christian worse than you could ever pretend to be is a Christian because you can full people for some of the time but you can't full God. Any of the time. As long as there is value in a name as long as there is no equity in a brand, there will always be people coming up with fakes coming up with phonies. We see that I with Christianity. How many false religions have, trying to manufacture. Oh, I got a new revelation from God. Oh, I've got the whole picture. Oh it's this and is that is this no sin. There's only one revelation and it's Jesus Christ it's him crucified. And that is the way to heaven and as long as there is faith in Christ there is going to be false faith is going to be people claiming that they have new revelation, whatever it might be. We see the same thing in the world today with brands yesterday with clothing. We see it all the time. People that want to have that nice clothing item and so they buy a replica right the Bible is called a counterfeited by a fake version of it.

They want to wear and that you know some nice jewelry and so they were some fake cold there were some fake earrings or whatever might be its fake diamonds.

You know that stuff all out there. By the way, right take watches fake handbags fake works of art, fake sunglasses, it's all author.

You can even get fake cars, people will literally take like there's a scar of the Pontiac, fear of the small little mid engine little rearwheel drive car kind of cool little sports car for whatever reason, this is like the go to car for people to make fake cars out of so you'll see someone take this little Pontiac Fiero little car from the 80s and 90s in the put all this bodywork is little $1200 Pontiac the public $25,000 worth of bodywork into it and what you get. You get some kind like mutilated Maserati this fake looking card persons are all wrong and only sings you know seem so funny to me. The people are willing to do this but as long as there is value in a brand, there will always be fakes. I've a friend who makes these things called market bags. They make these really cool bags for groceries and stuff enigma in a burlap and leather and they source. All the materials you know overseas they pay him a fair wage and is very cool and they've become really successful they've sold over, you know, hundreds of thousands of these bags they've done really well what happened now is there's a bunch of people that are making counterfeit versions of these bags is a self like 50 bucks. There's people are saying oh I could get it made here are way cheaper and I'll sell it and so what they've done is there's tons of these fake bags now all over the place and that's a big discouragement my friend to get pretty bummed out because first of all, they're doing a cheap replica of his bag and also that's no eating into his bottom line that's eating into his costs and it's affecting him and causing him to lose business. But here's a reality again fakes are nothing new. They're not going anywhere. There always be replicas out there there always be people saying that they are one thing when they're actually another and again the worst thing that you can be is a fake Christian.

I heard about the story of a guy and his wife, and it was their anniversary is a big one and his wife was dropping hints all over the place that for her anniversary present.

She wanted a brand-new 4 x 4. She wanted to awesome you note vehicle that she could take off road and that's that's what she wanted to sound like a pretty cool wife will the husband after just looking around it was a note really hard to to get the right one and so he ended up on their anniversary date is a big no group of people there celebrating them at dinner and he he gives her her presence. A small little box and she opens it up. She's expecting a key.

There's no key. Instead, there's a massive diamond ring she forgets all about the car right. She forgets all about the 4 x 4 and she's in love with this ring right away. Wow, it's beautiful.

My goodness, look how beautiful it is and it glistens in illness. Diamond is so big wow look at it.

She's so excited. His body leans over to Leo's hey, I thought that she wanted a 4 x 4 wind you get her a diamond ring and he leans back over to his buddy, the husband he says do you have any idea how hard it is to find a fake Jeep get the joke. I hope so its value is a fake ring right okay so the point is, there will always be replicas out there. But here's the thing.

A fake car will still get you from point A to point B a fake bag will still carry your stuff fake diamond ring still looks the part, but a fake salvation a fake faith, a fake commitment to the Lord. Being a hypocrite that only that, not only will will hurt people around you will hurt your family. Worst of all, it's gonna hurt you. That's exactly what we see happening here in our next passage of Scripture in acts chapter 19 starting in verse one ready to read together about a type of faith that wasn't the real thing. It wasn't the real deal. It was lacking something says this in acts 19 1/2 in the wall pulse was at Corinth hall pass to the inland country and came to Ephesus and there he found some disciples and he said to them, did you receive the Holy Spirit when you believed. And they said no we have not even heard that there is a Holy Spirit you can hear the disdain in Paul's voice sure verse three and he said into what then were you baptized. They said into John's baptism and Paul enlightens them in verse four Paul said John baptized with the baptism of repentance telling the people to believe in the one who was to come after him, that is Jesus, and on hearing this, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus and what Paul had laid his hands on them, the Holy Spirit came upon them, they began speaking in tongues and prophesying.

There were about 12 men in all these men had an incomplete faith that lacked in salvation there like Apollo's, an incomplete man with an incomplete message. Paul explained it to them and they were's they were filled with the Holy Spirit and pulsated with them for about two years after this further explaining the Scriptures to them that brings us to our third and final point and incomplete faith brings an incomplete salvation. These were men whose knowledge took them as far as I can take them. They were lacking, though a key component in their walk with God and that was the filling of the Holy Spirit, something that is promised to every follower of Jesus Christ who put their faith in him. I have an electric bicycle and I took my daughter for right on it recently and I realized, as we are halfway to our destination that the battery was at about 10%. This is not good. You know the bikes got these big fat tires.

I got my daughter on the back. She's 11 so you know she's not a baby anymore, and this electric bike has no gears.

I'm totally reliant upon the motor on the bicycle to get me around town and so as the bike ran out of electricity. What happened. It turned back into a regular Pike and not just a regular bike, but a super heavy bike with a big kid on the back of it and now I'm being forced to peddle this bike around and get it from point A to point B and it was so heavy it was not fun. This was not a fun bike to ride anymore. That's what these guys were trying to do living the spiritual life there trying to walk with God without the filling of the Holy Spirit is like trying to write a bike electric bike with a dead battery as I try to drive a car with no gas in it are trying to get close to God on their own ability that is a pretty futile pursuit. I gotta be honest, even in the church today. We sometimes see this take place their ministries today that seem to lean in one of two directions.

The church either has an emphasis on emotional experiences. The promises of God. What you could almost consider an epicurean mindset. Maybe, meaning that they're looking for fulfillment your own earth that incredible worship experience that incredible imperfect message that mountaintop variance are those that are looking for that and there's other ministries that only sing traditional hymns written and King James speech and they know speak in these and thousand dais and it whatever and they only cover topics in Scripture as they present themselves. They never talk about application necessarily. They dressed in suits and ties and are all about keeping up appearances and you can say they have may be more of a stoic mindset ill for some, the keeping of the rules and discipline and were un-reliant on emotion is what brings them closer to God. It's their commitment.

Listen, not one of these approaches are better than the other because they are both lacking.

If you want to isolate from the world and remain in your holy huddle and you only want to do certain things a certain way and only sing songs from when you first came to faith. How are you ever going to reach a culture that is out there, suffocating looking for oxygen. We have the answer and it's Jesus. And if you're always chasing that mountaintop experience and only want to worship God when he is blessing you financially and physically and and prospering. You were, you see that in Scripture was the Bible have to say about that mentality. Sure seems like there's been a lot of Christians who have suffered and been murdered and persecuted for their faith to have that belief system. Oh we only worship God. God only wants to bless us know financially.

He wants us rich, etc. James doesn't seem to believe that half-brother of Jesus. He says in James one. He says to count it all joy when you encounter trials of various kinds hardships of various kinds.

He goes on because your endurance has a chance to grow in your endurance and trials is fully dealt a developed will be perfect and complete, needing nothing counted all joy when you express trials of various kinds. Okay Yoda yeah I don't know how that works exactly listen when you have those times during worship and you do experience those emotional you know highs and you get so blessed by the Lord. You're just thinking of how God is bless you and your so thankful and you are gracious in your heart is full.

Hey. Praise God he allows us to experience that. And he allows us to enjoy worshiping him.

He did create us mind body and spirit. And so it's appropriate for us to worship God when we are happy it's appropriate for us to to worship God. Also one were sad and were downcast. It's a discipline and it's virtually maturing. When we worship God. When the bottom drops out and we get the bad news. The world is constantly telling you to do things for yourself to be selfish and to do whatever makes you feel good to get this possession to get this relationship to get this status get this new whatever it might be to get this higher status, it could be you know this. Next thing is on and on and on it goes your consulate climbing the ladder. The world says worship yourself satisfy that desire.

Give into that impulse. But the Bible says worship God. Worship the creator. Empty yourself. Live your life as a living sacrifice, that is what we see Priscilla and Aquila doing there were not just living for themselves they are not just living for their own personal benefit. They wanted to help the church along.

They wanted a porn to others that were around them, encouraging the apostle Paul at a difficult time in his life coming alongside Apollo's this amazing evangelist and helping him understand the fullness of the gospel and what it really means.

The Bible says worship God empty yourself. Live your life as a living sacrifice.

That's when you'll be fulfilled.

The other day my son Christopher. He's got a pet snake at home now and so everything that he wants to get now is like snake themed he wants a backpack with a snake on it. He wants a T-shirt with a snake on it. He wants this with a snake.

Whatever it is, stuffed animals, you name it. That's what he is like so stoked on and so occasionally when he gets bored he the note will go home. I'm my wife's phonies looking on Amazon account.

He starts texting things like dad, can I get this sometimes like a little three dollars stuffed animal snake like a snake stickers on them somehow sure buddy that's okay will get the phoria and he sent me attack. He sent me a text and he's like dad, can I get these I look at it and is like all these these snake rings like rings that you were on your fingers with snakes on a mic do not think you want those like you want to be like a nine-year-old little boy wearing rings on your fingers up with snakes on it so it's a little weird. I understand why he wanted them. It's not because he wanted to wear jewelry or whatever.

It's because he saw something with a snake on a thought it was cool you know his little brain like oh that's cool. It's got a snake on I want that and he was so bummed out that I told him no and we went back and forth housing tutoring up to take them off when you play like any of your other friends where you know rings when they play like no, but I don't really care about that for going back and forth about this and I saw that he was actually pretty blonde, and he couldn't shake himself out of it so I called him over to the dinner table and I sat down with them.

I wrote down on a pad of paper and drew little listen I just wrote to headings like a little charts you know pros and cons and I said at one side. I said things that I'm thankful for that.

On the other side. I said things that I have that other people would be thankful for and he spends his time is right down this thing and he's right down all the things that he's thankful for and he's going down on the other side of writing down things that maybe he's not thankful for somebody else would be thankful for and I come back after 30 minutes and he's he's still working on this thing and I can see something had changed in his countenance. He wasn't discouraged anymore. He wasn't bummed out. I sat down next on I was like wow is the dome moved and I saw how much he had written down.

He wrote Tonio his bed, his family, warm clothes, you know his iPad.

His books, his pet snake his sisters his dog all the stuff you'd written down church and I said Christopher you know how you feel now. He says I feel better dad. I feel so much better as I will what happened. He said will I just saw all the things that I had and I realized that I had been thankful forum, but now I wrote them down and I have a lot to be thankful for. No. Sometimes we need to do the same thing we need to remind ourselves of what God has blessed us with Psalm 103 tells us to bless the Lord, O my soul and forget not all of his benefits. Sometimes you know when we're seeing all I need to get that next car.

I need to get that remodeling my house so I need to get that, you know that next job is gonna pay me more. This is what I need to make me happy life, impulse, impulse, impulse, scratch that itch. Whatever it might be.

Sometimes we need to pause. We need to reflect.

We need to look at all of the benefits to God is given to us while look at where God brought me from while look at this person, the God brought into my life while look at this church them involved in.

Look how much they're helping me become much is blessing me. Look at all that God has done in my life. Thank you Jesus. You are what I desire, not just the things in this life. For those of us that started down the road of living a life of sacrifice to God.

We know that the more we give to God, of ourselves, the more we are blessed. Mountaintop experiences are nice are great when they happen, but for the other 99% of our time. We need to be committed to the Lord, don't forget memento Mori memento mori. This is a a Latin phrase that was used a lot in times past that we don't talk about too often anymore. Memento mori is simply translated. Remember, death. Remember that you are moral. Remember that this life is not going to last forever used to actually put on top of your bank statements.

Yes, the bank would send you a stain with all of your you know current checking balance, and whatever else your credits in your debts and all that stuff. It would actually say the top memento mori I was telling you remember you can't take this with you. Remember what you're going to leave to the next generation and I want to encourage you today Vento Mori think of the things that matter the most in this life.

Someday you're going to look back upon the life you lived in a socket to be the amount of YouTube shows that you watched or how many TV series you binge watched on Netflix that brings you comfort and happiness or how much money you made or how many vacations you went on, or how many parties you want to know is going to be in relationship with Jesus.

What you did for him and what you did for others in your spiritual circle and how you can bless them was the best thing that you can do is have a relationship with Jesus Christ as you see this pattern of of how Priscilla and Aquila live their life, we can see it was a life based on Jesus Christ, we see that these men in acts 19 that they didn't have the full picture of who Jesus was and once they were exposed to that salvation. The thing that they're looking for in this life. They found there trying to find God they're trying to get to him on their own.

Praise God we don't have to do that today. He sent us his son Jesus Christ 2000 years ago to die on a cross in our place. In closing, I want to invite you if you have not yet already to make a decision to follow Jesus as your personal Lord and Savior is the best decision you will ever make everything you're looking for in this life is going to let you down is going to let you down.

What you're looking for is found not in a religion, not in a possession. It's found in a relationship with the creator of the universe giving your life to him committing your life to him giving him your your time, your job, your family, your career, your children, everything is you commit those things to him. You're going to see God normally gives those things back to you. He blesses them before you give him any of those things you need to give them your heart need to give them your life. I promise you he is going to bless you. As a result. And so in closing I would invite you to pray this prayer with me asking Jesus Christ commence your life if you like prayed out loud wherever you are.

You can do that you could pray it while you're driving you to pray while you're on a walk wherever he might be might be listening to. This is a podcast are watching you know wherever wherever you can pray this out loud.

You can close your eyes will really matters is your heart so just say this pray this say this to God, dear God, I know I'm a sinner.

I know I've fallen short of your standard, but I know you sent Jesus to die in my place and to die for my sin. He was the sacrifice for my sin and I think you for him. And so I turned for my sin. Now I turn from that life and I turn to you from this moment forward. Help me to walk with you. Help me to grow with you as I give my life to you. In Jesus name I pray, amen. Everybody thinks for listening to this podcast to learn more about harvest ministries follow the show and consider supporting that. Just go to and the find out how to know God personally go to and click on know God

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