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How to Not Be Born Again | A Message From God

A New Beginning / Greg Laurie
The Truth Network Radio
March 14, 2022 3:00 am

How to Not Be Born Again | A Message From God

A New Beginning / Greg Laurie

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March 14, 2022 3:00 am

God had an important message to deliver to mankind. He was surrounded by heavenly messengers, called angels. But He had a different plan. He could have written His message across the sky, or fashioned creation itself to reveal His words. Today on A NEW BEGINNING, Pastor Greg Laurie points out, instead, God chose to deliver the message Himself, clothed in humanity, born as a baby. Today, we’ll look at the message, and the God-man who was born in a manger.

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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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We are glad you're joining us for a new beginning with Greg Laurie, a podcast supported by harvest partners get more encouraging audio content. When you subscribe to pastor Greg daily defenses. Learn more and sign up@harvest.org Jesus is God's view was larger. The law you created the solar system became an embryo today pastor Greg Laurie morning show dog came to earth to walk among the to live among us as a man, Jesus showed us what God is like he is God among us basically he was God with skin on Jesus became human without ceasing to be God, surrounded by heavenly messengers, angels, different you could have written this message across the sky and creation of so today have a new pastor Greg Laurie points out, instead, God chose to message himself clothing humanity born is today will look at the message God was in a manger. Let's grab our Bibles to the golf of John were starting a brand-new series in the title of this series is called life life because this gospel is all about life. It's about this life on earth. And it's about the afterlife as well. Now I want to look in the days ahead.

I am the gospel of John the bird, the live the ministry the miracles the teaching so course, the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ is found in the Gospel of John, know over the years I taught through all the Gospels, of course, in each gospel has its own unique perspective that sort of like taking photos of something from different angles.

Each gospel gives us a different angle. One gospel is not better than another. They're just different from each other. One is not more insightful.

It's just different insights. All pictures of Jesus, take the gospel of Matthew. For instance, Jesus is presented as the Messiah of Israel was written 30 years after his death and resurrection, and Matthew is showing that Jesus is the Jewish Messiah with 129 quotations from the old testament that unique to Matthews gospel or some other things in his gospel that we don't run in the others like the story of the wise men in the Nativity story as well as the sermon on the Mount. The sermon on the Mount is only in Matthew's gospel. Then there's the Gospel of Mark by the way, that was the first of the four Gospels that was written. Some believe it was actually dictated by Peter to Mark. We don't know for sure about that but Mark's gospel almost. He almost writes like a reporter hee hee there's a breathless quality there's like movement in it. One of Mark's favorite words is immediately effective uses it. 42 times so he has Jesus and movement Jesus doing things that sort of like the gospel for people with ADD. I don't know, but it's a fast-paced gospel is shorter gospel 16 chapters in total. Then there's the gospel of Luke and again, really unique.

By the way Luke was not one of the apostles. He was not an eyewitness of the life and ministry of Christ. In fact, he came back and interviewed the people that were involved in the story and a Luke was a position by trade and educated man. He also was something of a poet of the way that Luke writes in his particular version of the Nativity story stated so beautifully, but that he was a stickler for details, and so he probably interviewed Mary the mother of our Lord and Simon Peter and the other disciples then he has some unique features as well.

Like the two disciples on the Emmaus Road. That's only found in the Gospel of Luke, as is the story of the prodigal son. One of the best-known stories in the Bible that only the gospel of Luke that brings us to the gospel of John others.

No Nativity story in John's Gospel. By that I mean the story of the birth of Christ there is no genealogy in John like the risen Matthew and Luke. In fact, 90% of the material found in the Gospel of John is found nowhere else. While other gospels focus on key events in the life of Christ.

John focuses on the meaning of that. Let me say that again while other gospels focus on key events in the life of Christ. John focuses on the meaning of them, affect many of the great I am statements of Jesus are found only in the gospel of John we read Jesus saying I am the bread of life. I am the good shepherd John chapter 10 I am the resurrection and the life and he that believes in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live, and of course the very familiar John 14 six I am the way the truth and the life and no man comes of the father but by me. So why did John write his gospel. Well, for starters, he was an eyewitness of the ministry of our Lord and he was sort of in the inside circle. Remember how Jesus would take Peter, James and John with him on special occasions. There were there when the daughter of Johnny was first raised from the dead, they were there when Jesus was transfigured with Moses on one side and Elijah on the other.

Peter, James and John were there in the garden of Gethsemane were Christ's.

What is it were great drops of blood and Dr. Luke pointed out uniquely and being a position. Maybe he is describing a medical condition known as hematuria and process that when a patient is under extreme stress that can actually have perspiration admixed with blood.

So these guys saw a lot of things that the others did not see in John often describes himself as the apostle that Jesus loved. Evan will sound arrogant, Michael. I was the guy he loved while Alexander gets arrogant at all. I think it would be arrogant if he said he was the apostle who love Jesus, no hidden boast of his love for Christ. He boasted of Christ's love for him and in fact John was very insightful.

John seem to pick up on things that the others would often miss after Christ was risen from the dead and was standing on the shore was some fish that he had cooked for the boys or breakfast. He called with them and it was John, the perceptive one who said it's the Lord.

Peter was like what John was like it's Jesus after Christ is risen in the tomb was empty. John and Peter came to see the empty tomb. Peter was trying to figure out what it meant and went away with a certain degree of skepticism. John Lieut. Goddard saw and believed. That was John.

Very insightful guy. But why did he write this gospel. He actually tells us in John 2031. He said these things were written that nonbelievers might believe these things are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ the son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name. Whenever I talk to someone who says they want to start reading the Bible, you might be surprised to find I don't say start in Genesis. Not that it's a bad thing to start in Genesis. But I often tell them to start the Gospel of John, and the reason I say that is because it was specifically written, so a nonbeliever could believes I think it's a great place for a person to start and of course a great place for anyone to start wants to read through the Bible and I'll tell them to pray something along the lines of, say to God. If your real, make yourself real to me as I read this gospel 21 chapters, John proves that Jesus is the son of God who should be followed.

Number two. John's Gospel was written and we as believers might experience more of his life in us because he says that believing you may have life in his name. So John wrote the gospel for those who already believe because the word that he uses. Therefore, believing speaks of a continual action. In other words, John is saying. The more we believe the more likely will experience thus John wrote to convince a skeptic but also to convince the believer and the commitment they've already made so. John's Gospel was written that we as believers might experience more of his life in us pastor Greg Vick submerged a just a moment with one of the most important precepts of the Christian faith, and it's the truth revealed right here in the gospel of John.

More about that in a moment.

So many listeners have commented on the help they received from these daily messages God's word ministers to them. It often gets them through some of their darkest hours in a long time to murder graveled anger and blind in one night And I like that family can completely change entrance that I did the great God and your car every day.

I ended. God is with us 24 7.each and every one is encouraged to build the studies of God's will impacted this woman's life as pastor Greg you drop him an email telling your story, send it to great@harvest.org today will you thinking about again. That's great@harvest.org today. Pastor Greg is beginning a study series called life based on the gospel of John was continue the gospel of John in the way it begins is amazing because he goes way back before the little town of Bethlehem, he goes way back before Mary and Joseph. It goes way back. Even before the garden of Eden goes back to the solar system because back to the beginning of the beginning. So that's ever going to start John chapter 1 starting in verse one. Read verses 1 to 5 in the beginning was the word and the Word was with God and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God all things were made through him and without him nothing was made that was made in him was life and that life was the light of men in the light shines in the darkness and the darkness did not comprehend. There.

Now this is interesting because there is not a definite article before the word beginning meaning you cannot pinpoint this moment in time where there was a beginning. So really, when he says the beginning we that we don't even know where that starts but John is taking his back to eternity past further back than the human mind can imagine that that brings me to my first point about Jesus. If you're taking notes and here it is.

Jesus is God. Jesus is God.

That's a really important thing to understand, believe for a Christian. Jesus is God before there was a world before that was planets before there was light or darkness before there was matter before anything else. There was the Godhead and there was Jesus Jesus Christ coequal, coeternal coexistent with the father and the Holy Spirit, the Word was with God. The word was God. Jesus was deity in diapers.

If you will. He did not become identical to us, but he did become identified with us. In fact, he could not have been any more identified with us that he was.

It was total identification without a loss of the entity on his part.

Jesus is God, that by the way, is an essential for Christians that there's no wiggle room here if you don't believe Jesus is God. To be blunt, you can't be a Christian because who is just a great man, a prophet, a Guru. What I Jesus claimed to be God and for us to be genuine Christians, we must believe that he is God. Jesus was fully God, but just as true as that is. This is also true. Jesus was fully man. How's that possible.

I'm not really sure what he was fully God, it was fully man. Verse 14 says the word became flesh and dwelt among us, I mean think about it Jesus Christ who had neither beginning or rent was always existed came to this earth as a living, breathing human being. He was larger than life. He who created the solar system became an embryo. He went from the throne of heaven to a feeding trough that's effectively where he was born there and that manger or that cave, he went from the presence of angels to cave filled with animals and it's hard for us to wrap her mind around the idea of deity and humanity, and one person will a good example of this would be Jesus crossing the Sea of Galilee. He was tired from a day of ministry in and fell asleep in a radical storm came pitching the ball back and forth in the and they were waking on the same Lord save us, but we will die. So what could be more human than falling asleep right but then what could be more as an illustration of deity than the fact that he stood up after they woke him up and calm the storm, probably because you want to go back to snap again wake up wake up with bears whatever okay peace be still. So here's a start stops because back downstairs. I don't know if that happened, but that was deity on display that he could speak to us Dharma. By the way the phrase that she was there in the original languages peace me muzzle the Zoe was talking to a wild animal.

I think he was talking to the spirit behind that storm in this particular instance, which was the devil. Again, want to be more human than his crucifixion and death to see him beaten.

He bled real blood. He felt real pain he experienced real thirst as he hung on the cross.

But what could be more divine then the veil in the temple are ripping from top to bottom in the earthquake in the darkness covering the land is a poor sin of the world.

So I think people try to wrap their minds around God's not an easy thing to do. They consider his attributes. God is omniscient God is omnipotent God is omnipresent God is sovereign, that God is righteous in God is holy. Those things are all true, but if you really want to know what God is like.

Just look at Jesus. That's what got like look good Jesus what is God to get children located Jesus taken the children and was arms and blessing them.

What is God thing about that look good. Jesus, he is God among us.

Basically he was God with skin on God had a face.

Jesus became one of us, without ceasing to be himself. Jesus became human without ceasing to be God and the Bible is clear and pointing out that Christ always was God himself and buckled for the creation of the universe. Jesus was there. Notice verse one the word was with God he was with God, that can be translated.

The word was continually toward God. So what that implies is a closeness among the Trinity and implies a closeness between father and son being face to face.

It's hard for us to fathom how close the father and the son were, but the preposition with I implies nearness along with a sense of movement toward God took eerily close to someone you might lean on them right.

It's relationship its intimacy and that is the idea that's been implied here that Jesus said I always do the things that please the father who could say that.

But Jesus, I don't even forget say that for five minutes of my life, much less all of my Libra Jesus said why I always do the things that please the father and then in John 17, which really would be the technical Lord's prayer in a we we see the Lord's prayer is our father Ward in heaven, hallowed be your name and nowhere in the Bible is a call that the Lord's prayer want to be accurate it should be called the disciples prayer because it's a prayer only, we would pray Christ would never pray that prayer he gave in response to the request. Lord, teach us to pray because Jesus would never say our father Ward in heaven, hallowed be your name. Forgive us our sin is he. He wouldn't ask for the forgiveness of sin.

That's a good prep for us to pray, but if you want to read the Lord's prayer read John chapter 17 were that's the prayer. Only Jesus could pray and he said to his father during John 17 oh father, glorify me with your own self with the glory which I had with you before the world began, and you know Jesus as a member of the Trinity was hands-on at the creation of everything.

Verse three says all things were made through him without him nothing was made that was made so that verse is telling us that Christ is the creator of that Colossians 116 says for by him all things were created things in heaven on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities all things were created by him and for him. Okay, so there's no way when I'm confused because I read in Genesis 11 that in the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. Now you're telling me Jesus created the heavens and the earth. So who created it. God the father, God the son key ready for the answer. Write this down. The Holy Spirit what what what what now you're really confusing me. K simple answer.

Father the son and the Holy Spirit, all participated in the creation of all things, because in Genesis 1 we read the earth was without form and void and darkness was on the face of the deep and the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters. And God said, let there be light and there was light. So, father, son and Holy Spirit all played a part, the whole Trinity was working. Here's another interesting thing about the Trinity Genesis 126 has the father saying let us make man in our image and our likeness to who was God talking to angel's on thing so are you made in the likeness of an angel sometimes will say 70, she's just like an angel will know angels are created beings. So it wasn't angels so I believe it was the father son and the Holy Spirit having a conversation and then in Genesis 322 we read behold man is become as one of us and then it says let us go down and then in Genesis 127 read God created man in his own image, so the father son and the Holy Spirit in a way we can never wrap our minds around our having a conversation about so coming back to my main point Jesus was and is God beginning Pastor Greg Laurie with foundational insight from our studies in the Gospel of John. He's focused on one of the central precepts of Christianity. There's more to come.

In his series called life in a pastor. Greg sometimes will hear from people who moved to a new community and they want to be able to hear a new beginning on the station in their new area and they'll write to tell us that yeah and would like to make that happen, but it often takes financial resources to make those arrangements. Yes, so we hope our listeners will pray about making an investment today and we want to thank them with an important resource were making available. Yeah, that's right. The reason we offer these quality resources is so we can just help you encourage you and bless you, but also it's a way for you to support our ministry because as you can imagine, it takes money to be on the radio and we want to continue to reach you in your area and going to new areas were not on yet so we put that gift to work to reach more people with the teaching of the word of God and the message of the gospel.

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