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June 5, 2022 3:00 am
“Lord, I pray, open his eyes that he may see!” —2 Kings 6:17
Angels are actively involved in the life of the Christian.
Acts begins with two angels after Jesus ascended.
It would appear angels are eternal and never die.
Angels have a special work and ministry in the life of the Christian.
1. Angels sometimes deliver us from difficult situations.
Angels played a major role in getting Peter out of prison again in Acts 12.
2. Angels sometimes stop us and other times they prompt us.
Angels are everywhere in the Bible doing the work of God.
The metaverse is not real, but the supernatural world is!
Demons are fallen angels.
3. The Devil.
Lucifer came from Heaven.
Satan was once a high-ranking angel.
Lucifer was not satisfied with worshiping God; he wanted to be worshiped himself.
Though Satan lost his once exalted position, he still has access to Heaven.
If Satan can’t enter in the front, he’ll try to get in the back door.
If that doesn’t work, he’ll try to come through the roof or tunnel up under the floor.
4. Satan is not alone, he has a well-organized network of demon powers doing his bidding.
5. The purpose of demons seems to be twofold:
They seek to hinder the purposes of God and to extend the power of Satan.
6. Satan knows his days are numbered.
7. Satan does not want you to know that he attacks with accusation.
It’s not the bait that constitutes sin; it’s the bite!
8. They overcome the devil by the blood of the Lamb.
Our access to God is the result of what Jesus has done for us.
At the cross of Calvary, Jesus dealt the decisive blow against Satan and his forces.
It is through the blood of the Lamb, I can even approach God and find the help I need.
9. They overcame by the word of their testimony.
10. They did not love their lives to the death.
You can be forgiven of your sin!
Satan says “tomorrow” while the Holy Spirit says “Today is the day of salvation.”
Angels rejoice when a sinner comes to repentance!
Learn more about Greg Laurie and Harvest Ministries at harvest.org.
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Hey there, thanks for listening to the great glory 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 harvest.org hey everybody, I want to do sort of a special message for you with the title angels and demons a look into the supernatural world. The world of God and Satan of angelic creatures and demonic creatures. But when we start with prayer father now as we look at this supernatural world this world that coexists with our natural world that you will give us insight help us to understand our role in all of this speak to us from Scripture. We pray in Jesus name we have to cement so I heard a story about God up in heaven, and he knew things were bad on earth, but he decided to dispatch an angel to see just how bad things were as a top angel so the angel spent some time implanted earth checking things out. He returned to Gevity said Lord, things are really bad down there. Basically mankind is 95% bad and only 5% of them are good so the Lord wanted a second opinion. He sent another angel down then angel returned after a time, it said, Lord, it says the other angel said 95% of the people are bad. Only 5% are good so the Lord thought well I want to encourage the 5% that are good and you know, at least let them know that I appreciate what they're doing so to the 5% that were good. He sent them all a text you want to know what the text said oh you think it will either of that's a silly joke, but actually angels are real and are actively involved in the life of the follower of Jesus Christ. We live in the natural world, but coexisting is the supernatural world. You and I live in the visible world, but then there is the in visible world and this world is just as real as the world you and I are living in right now the story is told in the book of second Kings about the prophet Elisha and his servant to his eyes. So one night they were surrounded by enemy armies and Elisha was trying to get a little shut eye, but yet he's I was freaking out and he woke up the sleeping prophet, and he said Master Master were surrounded by our enemies. What are we going to do.
And Elisha probably a little irritated that his nap was interrupted said Lord just opened his eyes up and help him to see that those that are with us are more than those that are with them in the eyes of this servant to Hayes I were open to the supernatural world. The Bible tells us in second Kings six behold, the mountain was full of horses and chariots of fire all around Elisha CE saw into that other dimension. The next dimension, the dimension of angelic creatures now. I pray that the Lord will open our eyes as we take a biblical look of what is going on behind the scenes were not only get a look at Angels organa look at demons look at the work that angels want to do and do in the life of a Christian. I will look at the work of demons and what they attempt to do in the life of the Christian religion start with a few questions about this one. How many angels are there simple answer a lot. Thousands and thousands and thousands of angels are in heaven and working on earth serving the Lord. Most of these angels are holy. Some of them are following you find them in the old and the New Testament affect their are references to angels in the old and New Testament about 300 different times.
But there are so many Ms. conceptions about the angel so hopefully we can clear some of these things up. Let me start by saying the angels primarily work under cover. It is not the job or the nature of an angel to draw attention to himself. They're just doing God's work, you might describe them as God's secret agents or another way to put it there.
Sort of like Navy SEALs, you know, we hear later about things that the Navy SEALs of done like a seal team six and in what they did in finding Osama bin Laden and other things that they do, but there's a lot of things that are done behind-the-scenes by the seal team and other special ops groups that we never hear about. But that's not their job to draw attention to themselves. Their job well is to get the job done.
Very similar thing with angels there doing the work of God, but we don't necessarily know that an angel did intervene. There are times that angels have stopped us from doing the wrong things. There are times when the Angels have got this out of tight situations or protectiveness by harm. There are times when an angel is prompted you. There are times when an angel is probably spoken directly to you, so angels are all over the book of acts affect the book of acts begins with angels in acts chapter 1 verse 11 where after Jesus ascended, we read these words men stood by them in white robes. Those are angels.
Men of Galilee, they said, why do you stand looking into heaven.
This same Jesus who was taken up from you in the heaven, will come in the same way as you saw him go into heaven. So often we read of angels making appearances where they are at least temporarily visible. The appearance men I was having a conversation with my granddaughters the other day and we are talking about angels and of the said pop but when angels look like and I said while they when they appear they appear as men in there. All the girls were not happy is that that's not fair pop, but I'm just telling you what the Bible says that I know we often think of an angel is feminine like she's as pretty as an angel, we might say we would not necessarily think he's as handsome as an angel but in reality when angels do appear visibly. They do appear as men after Christ rose again from the dead.
We read in Luke 24 42 men in clothes that gleamed like lightning stood beside them and I want you to know that there actively involved in your life. These angels now understand this, we don't become angels and I say this because sometimes when someone dies people say will be become an angel for another wavered and said is well God just needed another angel in heaven give that's wrong you don't become angels. Angels are angels are created beings. They are spoken of in Scripture, there is the said cherubim and there's this Seraphim there's rankings of angels, we find them worshiping the Lord and we also see God using angels to discuss the dispatch judgment and justice on the earth in different occasions, like the judgment of Sodom and Gomorrah, and much more, but that angels are created beings.
People don't become angels, but angels do have a special work that they do in the life of the Christian Hebrews 114 says, are not all angels ministering spirits sent to minister to or serve those who are the heirs of cell vision.
We don't always know what they're doing when they're doing it with their active in our lives.
Some 34 verse seven says the angel of the Lord guards all those that fear him, and rescues them so let me share with you now tend to go away trues about angels and demons okay so if you're taking notes. Here's point number one angels sometimes deliver us from difficult situations again.
Angels sometimes deliver us from difficult situations going back to the book about acts chapter 5, you remember the story when the Angels busted the apostles out of jail and the angel said go and tell all the people about this new life we recently look at the story of Peter who was imprisoned in acts chapter 12 and we read constant prayer was offered to God for him by the church and so the Lord heard their prayer and answered their prayer by dispatching in Angel to walk into the cell. The light filled the dark place, so angels definitely emanate light and then the little chains they were little probably big chains around the ankles and the arms of Peter came off and then the door opened automatically and the angel accompanied Peter out of the jail.
And then when he was outside the angel just left suddenly left us with.
The Bible says find it interesting. Angel did his job okay go to get you out of prison.
That's my assignment you're on your own. Nobody is that Peter went over to that prayer meeting and try to convince everyone that got it actually delivered him so that was an angel that was actively involved. The best known story, probably of angelic deliverance in the Bible is the story of Daniel in the lion's death. Remember that the King Darius gave a decree that no man could pray to any God, but ship so basically in the kingdom of Babylon. It was against the law to pray sort of Daniel do we did what he always did he pray and he didn't do it in secret. He opened up this window so you could see he got down on his knees and he offered his prayers to God and he was summarily arrested and sent to alliance. When he would beat us certain death, and the king did not want Daniel to spend the night in the pit or the den of lions but yet unwittingly signed this decree, not realizing he was condemning one of his top counselors Daniel to death, and so all my the king was up worried concern. Daniel slept like like a baby. So when the king comes the lion's den to see if his friend is still alive. Daniel says were I'm still here.
Everything is fine and then Daniel says these words the Lord said he is angel to protect company back to that story about this decree that was given out by Darius that no man could pray look as Christians we should be good citizens. As Christians we should never respect for those that are ruling over us. We certainly should be involved in the process of voting and tried to elect people that share values similar to our ours as followers of Jesus, but having said that, let me also add this if the government ever passes a law that's in direct contradiction to the Bible. We'll be God, not government. Let's think of the law was passed tomorrow. You could no longer pray were still going to pray. Let's say government passed a law tomorrow so you can no longer proclaim the gospel of Jesus Christ. You can no longer quote the Bible because we think that's hate speech, we will still quote the Bible and we will still proclaim the gospel after the Angels from the apostles from the jail.
The apostles said we will obey God and not man because they were forbidden to preach the said no were going to keep preaching.
Organ will be God, not man.
Here's point number two. Sometimes angels stop us and other times they prompt us. Sometimes angels stop us and other times they prompt us in acts chapter 8 we read that in Angel prompted Philip to go to the desert's interest in the angel didn't give many details. He didn't tell him what he was supposed to do when he got to the desert which actually was to ultimately share the gospel with the visiting dignitaries from Ethiopia and leave them in the Lord. The Angels job was to tell Philip to go to the desert. That's exactly what the angel did so. He was prompted by the angel. I wonder if there been times when an angel is prompted me. I can think of times where so directly led to do something like right now I need to do this thing. There's no doubt about it.
I need to go to this person and talk to them.
I need to take this step of faith. I need to do this other thing that may have been an angel of course doing the bidding of the Lord. The classic example of an angel stopping someone is a story of daily and his donkey, or the more humorous stories in the Bible. I have to say, so there was this guy named Bailey he was sort of a profit for higher he was kind of more of a profit PROFIT that he was a PR OP HDT so he was hired to Curtis. The children of Israel, and he was on his way to do the very thing that God did not want him to do so, God dispatching angel. The job of the angel was stop prelim from cursing the people of Israel.
So the interesting thing is the angel goes and appears in a way that the donkey saw him, but the prophet did not. So the dog is walking along with the Salem writing them and suddenly the donkey sees this angel standing in this path with his sword drawn hey this jackass wasn't stupid and he looked and saw that powerful being the just stopped and and Bailey became frustrated and started to beat the donkey and then the angel positioned himself in a way with the donkey could not get by there this little path where there's a wall there. So the donkey asserted against the wall and the prophets legacy had now be limits really angry and you start feeding the donkey an amazing scene and then the Bible says the Lord opens the donkey's mouth of the donkey says to bail them, why are you beating me and the prophet without missing a beat says because you're making me look like a full by the sword of the I'd kill you. Prelim says to the prophet, the donkey says hold on now. Haven't I been a good donkey. Have I ever done anything like this before being music don't give a good .3 Vectra been a very good donkey when with the angel thinking what is with the sky you does he normally talk to a donkey. This is an Shrek care I be what is happening and Bailey was so blinded by what is ambition or whatever it is he was about to do that is a realizing realize he's having an in-depth conversation with the donkey and then finally the angel of the Lord appears and Bailey now for the first time sees the angel of the Lord standing there in the angel says why did you Beecher donkey three times I came to stop you because you were headed for destruction. So one of the take away lessons from this a number one, don't talk to donkeys a number two people do talk to their animals all the time till date and that you would talk to dog you know that you'll see some do a Doug symptom the Kennecott their head over to the side like the understanding see a dog seem to come running to you. You talk to a Kathy just look at you like what I dimly know their name. They just don't care basically.
But that's what think we let some of the room. Take the weightlessness when God's trying to stop you don't keep going in that same direction. Wonder how many times we've been together for destruction.
And God changed our course by directing an angel to stop us from where we were going so angels that are actively involved in our lives like okay if we could like, sort of peel away the veil and see into the spiritual world. I think it would blow our minds is something very popular right now was virtual reality thus affect Facebook has changed the name of the company from Facebook to meta-meta-because it's all about the meta-world. The meta-verse and and you know you can put on these special glasses.
The AR glasses augmented reality like brands like oculus and others in and see a whole another world that actually doesn't exist. I've done this a few times and one thing I've determined is there's no way you can look cool or normal wearing those things you know you your like this in your writing imaginary battles or whatever and so they wanted help us to enter into this virtual reality that's not real, but the supernatural world actually is real even angel of the Lord were to appear to you right now. I can tell you you'd be blown away.
Rosie Australian say you'd be gob smacked. Well effect, you might even be tempted to worship the angel this actually happen that the apostle John. When an angel was revealing to him what was happening in the end times in the book of Revelation. In Revelation 22 eight we read John say when I saw this and heard this I fell down to worship at the feet of the angel and the angel said to me don't do that. I'm your fellow servant.
Worship God. Here's a question that pops up every now and then, do we have Guardian Angels. Here's my definitive answer. Maybe, and I would even add. I think there's a good chance that we do.
Jesus made the interesting statement in Matthew 1810. Speaking of children, said make sure you don't look down on these little ones try tell you there angels in heaven always see the face of my father and have interestingly said there angels in heaven, so maybe we don't all have guardian angels maybe only children have guardian angels and whether they mean a special angel assigned to you. I'm sure that some of these kids really where there angels out.
They have to dispatch even another. I don't know but maybe adults have them as well. Going back to a story we look at recently in X12 after Peter was released from the prison he went to the home where they were having a prayer meeting and he knocked at the front door only road he answered saw Peter and then went and told the apostles. They said you're crazy and one of them said to Rhoda. Maybe it's his angel. His angel so does that mean that Peter had a personal guardian angel. I don't know the answer to that.
But even if we don't have personal angels.
You can be sure that we do have angels assigned to us that are involved in our lives are at the title of this message is angels and demons. So let's talk a little bit about demons in the book of acts and in our life in general.
There are many instances in the acts of the apostles will receive demons that work opposing the work of God, trying to stop the work of God.
Demons are fallen angels are not created as demons.
They are angels that rebelled against God. Following Satan and now they're part of his world. Now listen when there was this angelic rebellion to third of the angel stayed on God's side, but one third of the angels went on the devil side or Lucifer side and don't underestimate the power of demons.
They have great power. We read in the Bible of people being demon possessed and snapping chains and having supernatural strength of the good. One story in the book of acts of a group of guys called the sons of Skiba there described as exorcists by the way, there is no biblical office of being in exorcists. That is some of that is a spiritual gift for casting demons up. Having said that, there are many instances of demons being cast out of people in the Bible. But there is no instance of someone being specifically called her that affect the only instance of someone being called and exorcists well they were a dismal failure. So these exorcists, the sons of Skiba found a man that was demon possessed and they commanded the demons that come out of the person come out of the name of Jesus. They said Paul preaches see they didn't have a relationship with God they thought there was some magic in the name of Jesus whom Paul preaches all the guy was possessed by demons attack them a tour of all of their clubs so they run away scare as they should, were no match for the devil.
That's why we need to stand in the Lord and of the power of his might. You know, when police officers are answering the call, and there's some kind of danger. The first thing they usually do is call for backup during the spiritual battle and you need to call for backup.
You need the Lord's strength in your life will anyway. Let's go back to where the devil came from and where demons come from. I already touched on it. You see, Satan was not created as Satan question is sometimes us.
Why would God create the devil. The God did. God did not create the devil as we know him.
Satan, also known as Lucifer was once a very high ranking angel. Now we only know of one archangel in the Bible so called, that would be Michael. He's the one that shouts at the rapture with the voice of the archangel and the trump of God. Michael is a mega angel. He's a five-star general angel then there's Gabriel, I don't know if he's officially in archangel, but he's way up there to special assignments were given to him and I think at one time Lucifer notices son of the morning was also a high ranking angel we read about this in Isaiah 14 and Ezekiel 28. I would encourage you to go back and read those verses that will tell you a lot about Lucifer before he fell.
Well Lucifer was obsessed with himself. He did not want to worship God. He wanted to be worshiped himself, and so he was brought down because of his pride effect. Jesus said, I beheld Satan fall is lightning from heaven, so this exalted powerful angel lost the position he once said, though he still has access to the presence of God's will see in just a moment, but he no longer has a powerful position. He wants help to me back whatever he said. When Lucifer rebelled against God and became Satan or the devil. He led one third of the angels with him, so good news and bad news.
The bad news is thousands of angels are now serving the devil's demon powers, but the good news is, thousands more angel thousands of more angels are serving God protectiveness guiding us and doing all the things that they do for us.
Here's an example of what the devil is up to right now in the book of Job, we read that the Angels of the Lord came to present themselves before God and Satan was among the so the Lord is probably getting a report of what was happening and he has the devil would've you been up to. The devil replies I been going back and forth across the earth watching everything that's going on. How creepy is that basically he's looking for trouble. The Bible describes Satan as a roaring lion walking about, seeking whom he may devour. I've had the privilege of seeing lions in the wild. One Sunday trip I took to Africa we went on a little safari outing then and there. We saw lions out in their natural element, a pride of lions, magnificent creatures, but you've seen them hunting their prey in going after what they're going to have for lunch or dinner, and so forth are a powerful creature but believe it or not, they're not the most dangerous animal in Africa. The most dangerous animal in Africa is the zebra know that the zebra if this will might surprise you.
The most dangerous animal in Africa that kills more people saw the lion son rhino is not a leopard is not a zebra you're ready for it. It's a hippo yeah that's right the hippopotamus either kind of cartoony looking almost aren't they having you look at them of that thing couldn't possibly be a threat illegal in the jungle Cruise at Disneyland and their heads come out of the water and the ears come to turn around. That's what they're like in real life with their predatory animals and they attack so the devil oh yeah he's like a lion but sometimes it can be like a hippo wife who would ever be afraid of a hippo answer. You should be because they could kill you read about a South African farmer what actually had a hippo as a pet.
He took the five-month-old calf and raised him as his own little pet hippo even give him a name Humphrey the hippo and the farmer was quoted in an article to say you know Humphreys like a Sunday me.
He's just like a human.
People think that you can only have a relationship with a dog or a cat or a domestic animal, but I have a relationship with the most dangerous animal in Africa," said the farmer. Famous last words I think you can figure out what happened. One day Humphrey.
The hippo killed his owner so what's it take away truth of that don't keep a hippo visit that don't make deals with the devil is point number four. The devil is not alone.
He's not alone of already alluded to this. He is a well organized network of demon powers, doing his bidding. What is their objective, it would appear that the purpose of demons are twofold to kindred the purposes of God and extend the power of Satan again to hinder the purposes of God to stop God and his people from doing what the Lord wants us to do and then to extend the rain in power and influence of Satan. Jesus summed up Satan's agenda very simply. In John 1010, when he said the fee comes only to steal, kill and destroy. Alright so let's read now some verses together out of Revelation chapter 12. Look at how the enemy attacks us and how we can overcome him. Revelation 12 starting in verse seven we read these words, then a war broke out in heaven. Michael and his angels fought with the Dragon. By the way the Dragon is just another word for Satan and the dragon and his angels. That would be the devil and his demons thought that they did not prevail know is there a place found in heaven for them any longer. But the great dragon was cast out, that serpent of old, called the devil and Satan, who deceives the whole world. He is cast to the earth, and his angels were cast out with him. Then I heard a loud voice in heaven say now salvation and strings in the kingdom of our God and the power of his Christ is come for the accuser of the brethren might underline that phrase a come back to the accuser of the brethren, who accused them before our God day and night is been cast down in the overachievement by the blood of the Lamb by the word of their testimony, and the did not love their lives to the death.
Therefore, responses rejoice, O heavens, and you the dwell in them. Woe to the inhabitants of the earth and the seal for the devil is come down you having great wrath, because he know he has a short time powerful words we learn law learn a lot about the devil and his agenda of from these verses are some Takeaway truths since my six-point in this message. The devil knows his days are numbered. The devil knows his days are numbered. Again we read their verse 12 he knows he has a short time and is not happy about.
You might be surprised to know that the devil believes the Bible.
He hates it. He opposes it is in rebellion against what it says. But he believes the Bible is true effect even quotes the Bible to Jesus during the temptation in the wilderness saying since you are the son of God, whether to do thus and so not only does the devil believe the Bible is true. The devil knows Jesus Christ is God in these powerful remember that there would be demon possessed people that would say that Jesus don't cast us into the bid before our time. James reminds us, the demons believe, and tremble all their Orthodox and their beliefs, meaning they believe the Bible is true, they believe Jesus Christ is God, and they believe Jesus Christ is coming again so the devil notices days are numbered. He knows his time is short is like on a wild rampage trying to destroy as many lives as possible so the devil knows his days are numbered. Inherent Revelation 12 God gives the order for Michael did take out the trash if you will.
Satan is dumped and it's interesting because the grammatical construction of this phrase in the Greek that Satan starts this fight so there's a conflict and let me clarify something.
Sometimes you don't think that God and Satan are equal not true like look at some of the attributes of God.
God is omnipotent, which means he is all-powerful, Satan is powerful. These limitations to his bar power. God is omniscient, which means he knows everything.
Satan knows a lot, but not nearly as much as God, God is omnipresent, which means he can be everywhere at the same time. Satan can only be in one place at one time, and so God doesn't do this he dispatches Michael to take care of Satan because Michael is even more powerful than Lucifer. So he says you're done. But strangely, the devil starts this fight. They can be translated. Michael and his angels had to fight the Dragon the wind with the devil start a fight with an angel is more powerful than him under know the answer but I know one thing.
Sin makes you stupid right think all things that people do think of things that you and I have done that they know sense but we came into a temptation. Why, because sin makes us stupid so the devil chooses off Michael and now he's dumped by the devil and his angels are not strong enough to defeat God Michael in the angel so let's close with just a few thoughts about how to overcome the devil and the demons that and these truths are found right here in Revelation 12 bring me to point number seven. The devil does not want to the no contact with accusation one of his main strategies accusation of invective destroying the book of Job, the angels appear before God. Satan is among them. God asked Lucifer what he's been up to resist walking around looking at things going on and then the Lord says, have you considered my servant Job, a perfect and upright men, one that fears God and shuns evil, the devil immediately begins to oppose and accuse all you think Job steers you for nothing. Job fears you and follows you because you've blessed him.
You've given melodic. No wonder he follows you let me have a little time with Job. I'll see what he's made of the Lord allowed the devil to bring a series of very horrible events in the life of Joe Job came through all of this with flying colors, never doubting God but yet at the same time it shows the strategy of Satan accusing attacking that's what he does to us in Revelation 1210 it says the accuser of the brethren.
That's us who accuses them before our God day and night is been cast out.
This is how it works in your life and mine were just going about our business.
Maybe reading the Bible, many sitting in a church service may be praying when suddenly a horrible thought comes to your mind, you don't talk about a horrible thought out wicked evil thought giving you where did this come from boom comes to your mind. And then, immediately, the devil says do you, how could you think such a thing when you're pretty. How could you have such of thought when you're sitting in church supposedly worshiping Izzy he sends the thought and then condemns us or having the thought knocked on our door.
Look, it's not a sin to be tempted.
It's only a sin when I invite temptation in for tea right it's been said you can't stop a bird from flying over your head, but you can stop it from building a nest in your hair. In my case the bird better bring some extra materials because there's no air to work with.
But the point is you know you can stop the temptation from coming. But you don't have to open the door. Listen to this. When temptation comes here something you need to remember. The problem is not in the bait. It's in the bite is not a sin if the bait is dangled in front of you.
It's only a sin if you buy it. It's only a sin if you go for if you rejected well.
The Bible says blessed or happy is the man that endures temptation, for he will receive the crown of life. So there's a reward for that. So there's something wrong with being tempted. It's not a bad thing of some horrible thought comes your mind if you reject that thought. The problem is when you take that thought into your mind entertainment let it turn into something else is another way the devil comes a come to you and say why don't you go ahead and do this in no one will ever know. I know you can get away with this. Listen, you can trust us meet is the serpent remember so we stupidly sued the Loki would take the by, we go after that thing. He offers and then the devil go try beckons as you miserable hypocrite. You call yourself a Christian, after what you just did.
Now he's accusing you before God. How do you overcome him. How do you respond to this. Look at verse 11. Revelation 12. He overcame them by the blood of the Lamb by the word of their testimony, and they did not love their lives to the death. Number one the overcame him by the blood of the Lamb.
Satan comes uses you're not worthy to approach God don't even think about praying my response so true, so not worthy to approach God, but I'm not approaching God on the basis of what I've done for God. I'm approaching God on the basis of which he has done for me. It's very easy for us as Christians to get into a little self righteous works trip and by that I mean we think.
All because I done X, Y, and Z. I worthy to approach God away. I read my Bible today I read five chapters.
I can approach God and pray oh I been a good Christian and I haven't sinned, at least that I know of. I can approach God Nono I approach God on the basis of what Jesus has done for me. My access to God.
As a result of what happened on the cross. Hebrews 1019 says, dear friends, we can boldly enter heaven's holy place because of the blood of Jesus.
This is the new life-giving way. The crisis open for us to this sacred curtain by means of his death for us out of the overcome the devil by the blood of the Lamb. How do we approach God through the blood of the Lamb. Listen to this.
At the cross of Calvary were Jesus died, he dealt a decisive blow against Satan and his demon forces Colossians 214 says he obliterated the handwritten document of ordinances against us and nailed it to the cross, having stripped off and away from himself. The principalities and the authorities and he boldly made an example of them. The principalities and the authorities are the demon rankings the demon powers. Christ overcame them enter through the blood of the Lamb that I can approach God's will is a may be sure what to me right now you say no, Greg, and so unworthy to approach God. That's true during worthy never were worthy never will be working but you can come to Jesus. Right now the blood of the Lamb is I don't know what that means images a Lord I know I'm a sinner.
I know that I fall short of your glory. But I know that Jesus died on the cross and shed his blood for me and I'm going to approach you. Now with my need. Ephesians 213 says you are sometimes far offered been that made near by the blood of Jesus over first only read if we walk in the light as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another and the blood of Jesus Christ cleanses us from all sin. Listen to this.
This is an important one. You will never overcome the devil if there's unconfessed sin in your heart you will never overcome the devil if there's unconfessed sin in your heart, look when sin remains unconfessed. There is a wall between us and God. Again, if we confess our sin for someone nine is faithful and just to forgive us our sin and cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
You say, but what is it mean to confess our sin that mean I have to confess every sin of ever committed no because you probably don't even realize how many sins you've committed, but it means that you see I acknowledge I send Lord the word confess means to agree with.
And in this case your agreeing with God. So like if you and I went out for a burger and we both said that was an awesome burger.
We agreed together so when I'm confessing my sin. I'm agreeing with God. God says sin is bad, I agree.
Lord, it's bad. I confess okay but if I don't confess my sin, the devil can get a foothold in my life and Ephesians 427 we read these words don't give the devil an opportunity to lead you into sin. Another translation puts it this way.
Don't let the double get a foothold in your life looking.
How could he get a foothold in our life. Listen now as the verse continues on by holding a grudge by nurturing anger by harboring resentment by cultivating bitterness. So if I cultivate bitterness.
I can give the devil a foothold in my life. Is it what is it mean to cultivate bitterness cultivate you and I'm sick and planning something I'm watering that I'm tending to it.
I'm letting it grow.
You know bitter people are not happy to keep it to themselves. They want to go and talk to others what you think about this. I think it's wrong you think of strong don't cultivate bitterness or harbor bitterness. Another way is harboring resentment that person hurt me and I refuse to forgive that person know the reality is, maybe the person didn't hurt you but you think they did. Regardless if they did or they did not harboring resentment can give a foothold to the devil nurturing anger that verse as you nurture it it instead of saying I don't want this anger.
I want to extinguish the fire. You nurturing your putting gasoline on the fire of anger you like to keep it going alike to be mad. You know some people are potentially mad about something, so that the same thing that is always angry about something. By doing that you give the devil a foothold in your life, and finally the verses holding a grudge holding a grudge, you heard me. I'm not going to forget I'm not going to forget on the remember this forever. This is really problematic in marriage and I went driving a disagreement with your spouse and they say will I remember the time you said to me 25 Years Ago Way what 25 years ago Joan harbor a grudge. Don't give the devil a foothold in your life. These believers overcame the devil by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony. See when I'm working with Jesus Christ, I proclaim the gospel to other people. Listen in the spiritual battle the way we move forward. The way we gain ground. The way we take enemy territory is by preaching the gospel look at the armor of God spoken of in Ephesians 6, the helmet of salvation.
This shield of faith, the breastplate of righteousness is sort of the spirit which is the word of God, then it says having your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace.
So footwear that the Roman soldier would where they would be boots with cleats in them to give them a firm footed. This would enable them to move forward. So what is the footwear eyewear to gain ground in the battle of life. It's the gospel I proclaim the gospel.
I tell people I believe in Jesus Christ to note Jesus said where the church and the gates of hell shall not prevail against us. We quote that often the gates of hell will not prevail against us. Someone might ask, what does that even mean I'm not sure but I like it.
Let me tell you what it means contextually back in the days of battle in the first century, when you would go to an enemy fortress.
There would be a door and that would be the door in the fortress of the door in the castle or whatever would be you had to break that door down. You see that so many movies they have the battering ram in the pouring the heart oil on the people coming in right and then leased at the door on fire in a breakthrough. So the idea of saying the gates of hell will not prevail against us is 81, wherein spiritual battle gaining ground by preaching the gospel, the devil will not be able to stop. See, so they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb of the word of their testimony. There were gaining ground through proclaiming the gospel and then finally they loved not their lives to the death. What is that mean means that these folks realize that their lives belong to God, they realize that their times were in his hands that God was in control. We can overcome the double wide because greater is he that is in us, Jesus, as that he that is in the world. Let me close with an illustration from the great writer CS Lewis. Many people know Lewis for the Chronicles of Narnia and other books that he wrote, but I Lewis was in many ways a Christian apologist, which means he was a defender of the faith, but he was such a literary giant a great intellect but at the same time, he had a way of bringing these great ideas to people in a way that were understandable, so even a child could take hold of them.
So one of Lewis's books was called the Screwtape letters and their imaginary conversations between the devil and his demons and their strategies. So Lewis writes in the Screwtape letters, and I quote there is a legend about Satan and his scams. Finally, their strategy for attacking the world that securing the message of salvation. One of the demon says I got the plan master speaking to the devil.
When I get an urgent take charge of people's thinking. I'll tell them there's no heaven. The devil response, they will never believe that the book of truth is full of messages about the hope of heaven through sins forgiven. They will believe it. They know there's a glory yet future. On the other side of the room.
Another demon says I got the plan.
I'll tell them there's no hell no good. He says Jesus while he was under talk more of hell. Then he spoke of heaven they know in their hearts at the wrong will have to be taken care of in some way. Then Lewis writes a brilliant little input in the back stood up and said I know the answer. I'll tell them there's no worry, and he's the one Satan shows no hurry.
All yeah the devil comes and says there's no heaven there is no hell he lies to us all the time. But here's one that works more effectively. There's no hurry. You don't need to get right with God today you can put this off for a week for a month for a year for a decade for the last part of your life. The devil whispers in your ear tomorrow, but the Holy Spirit says today. Today is the day of salvation wasn't of this, you can enter into a relationship with God and Christ can come and take residents in your heart so you'll never be alone again. Listen the devil's real and if you're not a Christian you don't have any power to resist the devil, he can manipulate you. He can control you. He can even possess you, but if Christ is living inside of you. You are under his divine protection you need Jesus in your life.
Yes, the Angels of the Lord heaven working probably in your life getting you to hear this message that I'm sharing with you right now. The answer is you need Jesus Christ to die them across for your sin and for mine and paid the price for every wrong you have ever.let me tell you one more thing about angels before I close the Bible says that the there's joy in the presence of the angels in heaven over one sinner that comes to repentance, so when one person believes in Jesus. A sinner coming to repentance.
Repentance means realizing I've sinned and turning from that sin and turning toward God. There's a party in heaven. So you want to help contribute to the heavenly party the angelic celebration. When would you believe in Jesus right now baby I'm talking to somebody that's been under the control of a vice for a long time. Maybe it's alcohol baby it's drugs. Maybe it's something else you try to change your life but you been unable to. You're not gonna save yourself anymore than a person seeking and quicksand could pulled himself out you need help from someone else that someone is God. You need to seek God, I've come to the end of my rope on calling out to you right now and am talking to somebody that just as been even more aware of the emptiness in their life. You've chased after all the things this world offers thinking the make you happy and you're just more miserable and sad. Effective even thought is my life even worth living. Yes, it's worth living. Let me come back to a statement I made earlier quote from Jesus resist the theme. Speaking of the devil comes only to steal, kill and destroy. Then Christ in Contra says but I have come that you might have life and that more abundantly. Here's your choice. The devil offers death.
Jesus offers life, the devil offers misery.
Jesus offers fulfillment.
The devil in effect offers help in Jesus offers heaven with 21 God loves you. He has a plan for your life but only you can call out to the Lord and be saved. Only you can asked Jesus Christ to come into your life to forgive you of your sin and here's what I want to do as we close now I want to just pray a simple prayer. Sometimes we call it the sinners prayer is not an official prayer from of the Bible is just a prayer based on biblical principles that a person can pray where they are seen. The God I need you I want your forgiveness. I want Jesus in my life. I pray this prayer a long time ago. And Christ came in the my life and he can come into your life as well. So listen if you want your sins forgiven.
If you want to know that when you die you will go to heaven if you want to fill that big hole in your life if you want Jesus Christ to be your Savior, Lord and friend pray this prayer with me right now. You can print out loud if you like you can pray it in the quietness of your heart.
If you choose to pray this prayer. If you would please pray these words or Jesus. I know that I'm a sinner but I know that you're the Savior who died on the cross for my sin rose again from the dead. Jesus I choose to follow you from this moment forward. Thank you for hearing this prayer.
I ask it in Jesus name, amen. Everybody thinks or listening to this podcast to learn more about harvest ministries follow the show and consider supporting it. Just go to harvest.org and find out how to know God personally go to harvest.org and click on know God