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Why God Chose You | Adopted Into God’s Family

A New Beginning / Greg Laurie
The Truth Network Radio
June 13, 2022 3:00 am

Why God Chose You | Adopted Into God’s Family

A New Beginning / Greg Laurie

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June 13, 2022 3:00 am

Genealogy is big business these days. And now more than 12 million people have taken DNA tests to learn more about their lineage – maybe hoping they’re related to royalty! But today on A NEW BEGINNING, as we study the life of Esther, Pastor Greg Laurie points out there’s a lineage that extends beyond the earthly. We’ll see, spiritually-speaking, we’ve been adopted into God’s family through Christ. Indeed, we are related to royalty. We’re chosen sons and daughters of the King.

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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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Hey, everybody, you're listening to A New Beginning, which is a podcast made possible by Harvest Partners. If this program has impacted you, I'd love to hear from you. So just send an email to me at Again, it's

You can learn more about becoming a Harvest Partner by going to It is the best part of the story. So here's a picture. You're in the slave market. You're chained up.

And Jesus comes in, says, I'll take this one and I'll pay retail. He says, OK, I'm your new master. That's wonderful, master. I'll follow you wherever you want me to go. OK, good.

Let's go to the courthouse. Why? Because I'm now adopting you as my own child. That's what God did for us. Amazing Grace, how sweet the sound.

Again, you hear all the angels are singing. This is the day, the day when life begins. Genealogy is big business these days, and now more than 12 million people have taken DNA tests to learn more about their lineage, maybe hoping they're related to royalty. But today on A New Beginning, as we study the life of Esther, Pastor Greg Laurie points out there's a lineage that extends beyond the earthly. Well, see, spiritually speaking, we've been adopted into God's family through Christ. Indeed, we are related to royalty. We're chosen sons and daughters of the king. Now, when we last left Esther, a bad moon was rising. The villain of the story, Haman, emerges on the scene, and now he has come into power, as you recall. The king has put him as second in command. And not only that, but the king has given to Haman his signet ring.

That would be like giving someone your credit cards or giving them your passwords. Haman had access to all the power of the king, and he catches this wicked plot to eradicate the Jewish people from the face of the earth. Why? Well, as we discovered together, Haman was an avowed enemy of Israel, descended from the Amalekites. King Agag was spared, and the Agagites were a race of people, and Haman was an Agagite, so he had a blood feud with Israel. And, of course, our good friend Mordecai and Esther were Jews, so they would be on his hit list now with this plan.

Let's look at Esther 3, starting in verse 5. When Haman saw that Mordecai would not bow down or show him respect, he was filled with rage. He had learned of Mordecai's nationality, so he decided it was not enough to lay hands on Mordecai alone. Instead, he looked for a way to destroy all the Jews throughout the entire empire of Xerxes. Now, that would be the Persian empire, so he's in power.

He wants to wipe the Jewish people out, and he gets the king's approval. So Mordecai catches wind of this plot, and so he, being a government official himself, sends word to Esther, saying, you've got to do something. Meanwhile, Esther is living in the literal lap of luxury there in the palace of the king.

She was secluded and isolated, and knew nothing about the plight of her people. So Mordecai is standing outside of the walls of the palace covered in sackcloth. He's in mourning because of this threat against the Jews, and someone notices him and says, hey, Esther, your cousin's outside, not dressed very well. He looks pretty unhappy. She says, well, send him some new clothes, and they send him some clothes.

Talk about missing the point altogether. And so now Mordecai needs to tell Esther what's really coming down. That brings us to Esther chapter four. Look at verse 13. Mordecai said to Esther, don't think for a moment that because you're in the palace, you will escape when all the other Jews are killed. If you keep quiet at a time like this, deliverance and relief for the Jews will arise from some other place, but you and your relatives will die. But who knows if perhaps you were made queen for such a time as this? Very interesting statement that Mordecai makes to Esther.

Here's what we need to remember. God does not need us. Sometimes I've heard people say God needs us. The reason God created humanity is because he was lonely up there in heaven and wanted some companionship.

Nonsense. God doesn't need anything or anyone. But having said that, it is true that God wants us. It is true that God loves us.

It is true that he longs for relationship and friendship with us. Now, here's the question. Can God reach lost people without us? Yes. But does he want to reach lost people without us?

No. Because the Bible says how will they hear without a preacher? And how will they preach unless they are sent? How beautiful are the feet of those that bring good tidings of peace. So here's what Mordecai is saying to Esther.

Girl, listen. If you don't act on this, God will raise up somebody else, but don't think you're off the hook here because you'll die along with the rest of your fellow Jews. But did it ever occur to you that you are where you are because God put you there? I mean, did it ever occur to you that cranky neighbor, that difficult to deal with coworker, that person that you come into contact with on a regular basis could be your mission field?

Did you ever stop and think about praying for that person by name and praying for an opportunity to engage them in a conversation to lead them to Christ? And so she was chosen by God and we've been chosen by God. That brings us to Ephesians.

Pop over there really quick. Ephesians chapter 1. Why did God choose us? How many of you believe you've been chosen by God? Raise your hand up.

That's good. Why do you think God chose you? Well, here's the answer in Ephesians 1 verse 4. Just as he chose us before the foundation of the world that we should be holy and without blame before him in love, having predestined us to adoption, you might underline those words, adoption to adoption, as sons by Jesus Christ himself, according to the good pleasure of his will. I heard the story of two brothers who were signing up for Little League. They were to write down their birth dates, which they did. But the coach noticed they were both born on the same year, but they were born two months apart. He said, wait, I'm a little confused about you two brothers.

How can you be brothers and both be born in the same year a few months apart? And one of the boys said, we're adopted. The coach said, oh, which one of you was adopted? They both said in unison, we don't know.

What do you mean you don't know? How can you not know which one of you was adopted? They said, well, our dad said to us he loved us both so much he couldn't remember which one was adopted. I told that story to my wife and she said, how could a father be so stupid?

I said, you're missing the point. It's because the father loved the boys both, and we've been adopted into God's family. Notice the verse says in verse five, according to his good pleasure, that we're predestined to adoption by the pleasure of his will.

God is happy to have done this for us. You know, when you have kids, how many of you have children? Raise your hand if you can. How many of you have grandchildren?

Raise your hand. It's different when you have grandchildren, isn't it? You know, because the role of a parent is to raise a child, to be responsible, to teach them what right and wrong are, to help them develop a work ethic.

Most importantly, to show them how to have faith in Jesus Christ. The role of a grandparent is to fill the child with sugar, give them toys, have fun with them. I'm exaggerating, but the point is that a grandparent can be more indulgent than a parent can be. It's sort of the reward we get for parenting. And it's a punishment on our children for the misery they brought us. Because we returned their child to them full of sugar, right? But you know, I do things for my grandkids because I want to.

Because I know always with the parents, it's do your homework, go to bed, brush your teeth. So I come to them and say, who wants to go get ice cream and buy a toy? Well, they like that idea.

That's my good pleasure. I enjoy that because I enjoy seeing them have a good time. I figure, you know, they have enough responsibilities, and it's not like I only fill them with sugar.

We have wonderful talks together about a lot of wonderful things, but we have good food while we're doing it as well, you know? But the idea is that this is my good pleasure, and it's God's good pleasure when he adopted us into his family. I mean, think about that adoption. I don't know about you, but I was adopted.

That's where I got my name, Laurie. I never knew my biological father. In fact, I found out later in life that the guy my mom told me was my dad was in fact not my dad at all. And so I did track down my biological father years later after my mother had died. The problem was he had senility was setting in, and he didn't remember my mother.

He didn't really know who I was, and so it was a little underwhelming to say the least. But the one man of all of my mother's husbands, and she had seven and a lot of boyfriends in between, the one man that treated me like a father should treat a son was a gentleman named Oscar Laurie. And he cared for me, and he disciplined me, and he tried to teach me right from wrong. And it was heartbreaking to me when I, as a little boy, was taken away from him because I always regarded him as my dad. And one of my great joys in life is I was able to go back to the East Coast where he lived and track him down in my young adult years when I was just starting to pastor, and I was able to share the gospel with him and lead him to Christ.

So that was a great joy to say thank you for what you did for me, and now let me sort of return the favor a little bit, but the Lord put that all together. But to be adopted is a great thing because you're really chosen. You're chosen by the person, by the parents. And God has chosen us to be his adopted children.

I mean, the Bible uses different pictures to describe us. We're like a slave out in the open market. And that's why the Bible says you've not received the spirit of bondage like a slave, but one of adoption whereby you cry Abba, Father.

So here's the picture. You're in the slave market. You're chained up. No one's bidding on you.

No one wants you. And Jesus comes in and says, I'll take this one and I'll pay retail. He doesn't even bargain for you.

You're so grateful to have been purchased. He looks like you'll be a nice master. He says, OK, I'm your new master. That's wonderful, master. I'll follow you wherever you want me to go. OK, good.

Let's go to the courthouse. Why? Because I'm now adopting you as my child. That's what God did for us. He took us out of the slavery of sin and adopted us as his own child. That's why we have so much to be thankful for. We were chosen by him.

And here's something amazing. Look at verse six of Ephesians one to the praise of the glory of his grace, by which he made us accepted in the beloved. Pastor Greg Laurie will have the second half of his message in just a moment. We're so encouraged when we hear that Pastor Greg's teachings are making an impact on people's lives and relationships. Dear Pastor Greg, I listened to a message you recently gave about going to someone in our past and forgiving them.

My flesh didn't want to do it, but I know that obedience brings a blessing and we are to be obedient to God and not our flesh. I don't know how your message came to me today, but it came at the right time because God's never late, right? He gives us what we need when we need it.

And I needed your message today. Pastor Greg, may God bless you and your family. It's a blessing to know that God is using his word to touch hearts. How have Pastor Greg studies impacted your life?

Would you let him know? Drop an email to Greg at Harvest dot org. And now Pastor Greg continues his message based in the book of Esther with additional insights from Ephesians called Why God Chose You. I want to tell you something that may blow your mind right now. I'll start with a question. How many of you believe that God the Father loves God the Son?

Raise your hand up. How many of you believe he loves the Son? Okay, now here's something I'm going to tell you. God the Father in heaven loves you as much as he loves Jesus Christ his Son. Did you know that? So don't ever doubt that God loves you.

You say, well, what is that based on? Well, that's based on the statement of the Lord himself in what is the real Lord's Prayer. In John chapter 17 verse 22 he says to the Father, may they experience such perfect unity that the world will know that you sent me and that you love them as much as you love me. Look, I stand accepted in the beloved. The Bible says, what does that mean?

I stand in Christ. So stop with the I'm not worthy. I don't deserve it. You never deserved it.

You'll never be worthy. Bottom line, God chose you. God forgave you.

God adopted you. And you stand in Christ loved as much as the Father loves his own Son. On the cross, God treated Jesus as if he had personally committed every sin ever committed by every person who would ever believe, though he committed none of them.

Let me say that again. On the cross, God the Father treated Jesus as if he had personally committed every sin ever committed by every person who would ever believe, though he never committed any of them. That's called the doctrine of substitution. Listen, he died in our place, our substitute. God punished Jesus as though he lived your life that we might become the righteousness of God in him. So he gave his life for my life.

And that is why I have this position with God. Jesus lived to the age of 33 years old. Jesus could have done everything he came to do, literally, over the weekend. He could have just descended from heaven, died on the cross, rose from the dead. Done deal.

You're all good. But he walked among us as a man for all those years before he began his public ministry, which was relatively short. Why did he do it? Because he lived a perfect life.

He was righteous in every way, and he passed every single test. 33 years old. My granddaughter Stella and Lucy were talking to me a while ago, and they said, Papa, that's what they call me, how old do you want to be when you're in heaven? You know, people ask, how old will we be in heaven? It's like, you know, because if you make it to 99, do you want to be 99 in heaven? Probably not.

Right? Do you want to be three in heaven? Probably not.

So I said, I don't know. I say 33. That's a good age. And I said, by the way, that was the age of Jesus. And then my granddaughter Stella said, well, that was the age of my daddy, Christopher, who is in heaven. Our son, Christopher, went to be with the Lord when he was 33 years old. And then she thought about it for a moment and said, hmm, there must have been a reason.

I thought that was interesting. And then Lucy said to me, I want to be two when I'm in heaven. I said, you want to be two? Why do you want to be two? She said, because I miss the old me. That's Lucy and Stella in a nutshell right there.

Those comments. You know, I'm not trying to be a psychologist here for a moment, but I don't know what kind of dad you had. I already told you I didn't have a dad.

So I had no point of reference to speak of except for Oscar Laurie, which was pretty short lived, actually. But maybe when you think of a father, you had a distant father, an uncommunicative father, maybe a cold father. Then again, maybe you had a super affectionate father, a loving father, a nurturing supportive father.

I don't know. But whatever father you had on this earth, I just want you to know that your father in heaven is better. Even if you had an awesome dad. Or maybe you had. Yeah, it's true. Maybe you had a horrible dad.

I don't know. But your father in heaven is perfect and he loves you and you've been made accepted in him. Listen, you are here on this earth for a reason. God has a plan for your life.

God put Esther where she was for a reason. We need to find that reason and we need to do what we can to bring honor and glory for the Lord. There's two things we can do with our lives. We can chase after the empty promises of this world and just waste them. And many do.

They waste their entire life. Or you can say, I want God's will. I want to discover God's plan. I want to take the position He's given to me, whatever it is, wherever it is, and leverage it and use it for His glory.

Let me close with this. How do you know if you're chosen by God? Well, as I said earlier, believe in Jesus Christ and you'll prove that you are. Now, I would assume everybody here would already be a Christian. But I don't think we should always assume that. Because it's possible there's someone here who has never asked Jesus Christ to forgive them of their sin. It's possible that one of you is here at this study and you're thinking, I'm not really sure if my sin is forgiven.

I mean, I want to think that, but I'm not sure of it, but I would like to be. Listen, remember this. Jesus died on the cross for your sin and He rose again from the dead. And now He stands at the door of your life and He knocks and He says, if you'll hear His voice and open the door, He will come in.

Doesn't say it's all predetermined and you have nothing to say about it. You can open the door or you cannot open the door. Yes, He can be resisted. It's not an irresistible grace. It is a resistible grace. That is why the Bible says, harden not your heart if you can hear His voice.

So you do have a choice in the matter, a big choice. But if you want to prove you're chosen by God, I urge you to believe in Jesus Christ right now. And if you're not sure that you do, I'd like to give you an opportunity to as we bow our heads in prayer.

It's all by our heads right now. Everybody praying. Father, thank You for loving us so much that You sent Jesus Christ to die on the cross for each of our sins. He stood in the gap for each and every one of us. And Lord, we are so thankful for that.

And then He rose again from the dead. And now, Lord, we know that You offer Your forgiveness to anyone who would believe. So I pray now for anybody here, anybody watching or listening, wherever they are.

If they don't know You yet, help them to come to You, help them to believe in You. Now we ask. Amen. Pastor Greg Laurie with an important word of prayer today here on A New Beginning. And if you'd like to make that change in your relationship with the Lord today, Pastor Greg will come back in just a moment to help you do that.

So please stay with us. Have you heard about Pastor Greg's new book? It's called Lennon, Dylan, Alice, and Jesus. It examines the way so many of the top music artists had it made, but their lives soon unraveled. And you know, Pastor Greg, I've tried to imagine what it must be like to be extremely famous. You know, where you can't even go to the grocery store without a mob developing.

You can't even open your window blinds for fear of paparazzi with telephoto lenses. And that's the point you make in the book. These music stars have a lot of stuff, but they have a lot of stress, too. Yes, they really do. I mean, it's been said, careful what you wish for, you might get it. And these are people that got what they wished for, and then it even went beyond their wildest dreams.

But the problem is that dreams, in many cases, turn into a horrible nightmare. You know, when you look at the founders of rock, if you will, they called them the millionaire quartet. Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis, Carl Perkins.

They were all produced by a man named Sam Phillips, who had Sun Records. These guys came from abject poverty, in some cases. They were just country boys. All of them was sort of a gospel foundation. All of them were taken to churches, young men, and of course they all rebelled against it.

But interestingly, every one of those founders ultimately came to realize they needed to turn to Jesus. Elvis struggled through the years. He often sang gospel songs. There's a lot of fascinating revelations about Elvis Presley in this book, Lennon, Dylan, Alice, and Jesus.

Jerry Lee Lewis is the only one alive still of the four. But in recent interviews, he's talked about his need to get right with God. And of course, Johnny Cash became very strong in his faith. I wrote a whole book about him, as a matter of fact, called Johnny Cash, The Redemption of an American Icon. And then finally, Carl Perkins, who wrote Blue Suede Shoes and other great songs.

He was a raging alcoholic and actually came to the Lord while he was on tour with Johnny Cash and took his bottle of booze and threw it into the ocean and committed his life to Christ and serve the Lord for the final years of his life. So yeah, these guys experienced it, and in some cases, girls experienced it and saw the emptiness of it. So this is a very honest book. So I start the book with these words. There'll be three surprises when we get to heaven. Number one, some of the people we thought would be there won't be there. Number two, some of the people we never thought would be there will be there. Surprise number three, you'll be there. So these are some of the people you never thought would be there who will be there, because no one is beyond the reach of God.

Yeah, yeah, that's right. Well, we hope you'll contact us for your own copy of Pastor Greg's new book, Lenin, Dylan, Alice, and Jesus. The subtitle is The Spiritual Biography of Rock and Roll.

There are so many lessons to be learned from the lives of dozens of artists who show us where the pursuit of fame and fortune ultimately leads. And we'll send this book your way to thank you for your partnership. It's only through the investments of listeners that we can continue to bring Pastor Greg's insights your way each day. So thanks for prayerfully considering how you can help.

And we'll thank you with the book Lenin, Dylan, Alice, and Jesus. Just call us at 1-800-821-3300. That's a 24-7 phone number, 1-800-821-3300.

Or go online to Well, Pastor Greg, if somebody listening right now knows that they need to make a change in their relationship with God, they can do that right now, can't they? They really can, and I think some people might say, well, what, pray while listening to the radio?

Absolutely, because guess what? Jesus Christ is with you right where you are right now. And if you want Jesus Christ to come into your life and forgive you of your sin, if you want to invite him into your life, why don't you pray this prayer after me right now? In fact, I would even encourage you to pray it out loud.

Let's pray. Lord Jesus, I want you to come into my life and forgive me of my sin. I thank you for dying for me on the cross and then rising again from the dead. I choose to follow you from this moment forward. Be my Savior, be my Lord, be my God, and be my friend. Thank you for loving me and calling me and forgiving me. In Jesus' name, I pray.

Amen. Now, listen, as you just prayed that prayer, maybe you felt something emotional. I've had people write me and tell me of how they prayed with me at the end of our radio broadcast and tears came down their cheeks or they felt a great joy. Maybe one of those things happened to you or then again maybe you felt nothing. Listen, irregardless of how you feel right now, I want you to know a fact. If you prayed that prayer and meant it, Jesus Christ has come into your life.

Why do I say that? Because the Bible says these things we write to you that believe on the name of the Son of God, that you may know that you have eternal life. That verse doesn't say so you can think you have eternal life or hope if God's in a really good mood you may have eternal life.

No, it says you can know it. And if you just prayed that prayer and meant it, Christ has come into your life. So let me say to you, welcome to God's family. Yeah, and we'd like to help you get started in living your new life with the Lord. We'd like to send you some free follow-up materials called our New Believers Growth Packet. Just get in touch and we'll send that packet right out to you. As I said, it's free of any charge. You can call us anytime night or day at 1-800-821-3300.

That's 1-800-821-3300. Or go to and click on Know God. Well, next time Pastor Greg advances the story of Esther. We'll contrast the two men, Mordecai and Haman. One an honorable man, the other an evil man. And we'll see how each reaps what he sows. Join us here on A New Beginning with pastor and Bible teacher Greg Laurie. This is the day, the day when life begins. Thanks for listening to A New Beginning with Greg Laurie, a podcast made possible by Harvest Partners. Helping people everywhere know God. Sign up for daily devotions and learn how to become a Harvest Partner at
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-04-05 21:44:39 / 2023-04-05 21:55:36 / 11

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