Share This Episode
A New Beginning Greg Laurie Logo

The First Jesus Movement | How to Fulfill God's Calling

A New Beginning / Greg Laurie
The Truth Network Radio
August 1, 2022 3:00 am

The First Jesus Movement | How to Fulfill God's Calling

A New Beginning / Greg Laurie

On-Demand Podcasts NEW!

This broadcaster has 1656 podcast archives available on-demand.

Broadcaster's Links

Keep up-to-date with this broadcaster on social media and their website.

August 1, 2022 3:00 am

The home renovation business is a 340 billion dollar industry. Reviving an old home takes some skill and a lot of hard work. Well, God has a blueprint for reviving our culture and He’s looking for our involvement in the project. Today on A NEW BEGINNING, Pastor Greg Laurie continues his opening message in a new series called The Upside Down Life. It’s a look at the part we’re called to play in bringing a spiritual renovation to the world in which we live.

Listen on


Learn more and subscribe to Harvest updates at

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.

Support the show:

See for privacy information.

The Masculine Journey
Sam Main
Truth for Life
Alistair Begg
What's Right What's Left
Pastor Ernie Sanders
Cross the Bridge
David McGee
Clearview Today
Abidan Shah

Today's episode of a new beginning is brought to you by harvest partners, helping people everywhere know God. Learn and while you're there, browse our library of free e-books designed to help you grow in your faith.

We need to be filled with the Holy Spirit called our trash is normal, timid and exciting. Grigori points out of the Lord is making an extraordinary resource available to our only given you the right words to see the vision $340 reviving an old home.

You were gone as a blueprint for reviving our culture, our involvement in the project. Grigori continues his opening message upside down. Why is renovation to grab your Bibles and to the book about X chapter 1 of my messages. The first Jesus movement, though the box was authored by Dr. Lou.

This is the second book that he wrote that was underwritten by a godly man named Theophilus and up. Theophilus also underwrote Luke writing the gospel of Luke. The name Theophilus by the way, means lover of God. So if you want to know more about Jesus you want to love the Lord. This is a good book to study. One of the thing, I would point out about the book of acts. It's an unfinished book. It is never officially ended. Now I'm not suggesting we add to the Scripture. I'm just saying we should not put a period where God has put a comma. The church is marching on the work of the Holy Spirit through the church is continuing on, and were effectively writing new chapters to it today as we serve the Lord in our time.

So let's look now at a few verses from the book of backs chapter 1, and read verses 1 to 4 and share some points with you and I'm reading from the new living translation. My first book, I told you Theophilus writes about everything Jesus began to do and teach until the day he was taken up to Kevin after giving his chosen apostles further instructions to the Holy Spirit during the 40 days after he suffered and died. He appeared to the apostles from time to time, and he proved to them in many ways, he was actually alive and he talked to them about the kingdom of God. There is point number one if you're taking notes before you can change the world. You yourself must first be changed before you can change the world, you must first be changed. Look at verse three. During the 40 days after he suffered and died. He appeared to the apostles. They got their lives changed when they saw Jesus risen from the dead see they never thought they would see Jesus again with a look at his feet traumatized body hanging on the cross of Calvary.

But Jesus rose again and appeared many times over a 40 day. He appeared first to Mary Magdalene, who came to anoint his dead body at the tomb. He appeared after that to Simon Peter that he appeared in the upper room to the disciples and specifically took Thomas was that I won't believe it until I can put my can in the wounds in his side.

He appeared to two disciples walking on the Emmaus Road.

He appeared to Simon Peter again at the sea of Galilee, telling him to feed God's sheep and he appeared over 500 people at one time. This transform them. Jesus was basically popping up everywhere and they knew he was alive and they knew he had risen Izzy before they can change the world.

Jesus needed to change them first on 11, says John writing we proclaim to you the one who existed from the beginning, whom we have heard and seen. We saw him with our own eyes, and we touch them with our own hands.

He is the word of life. Listen to this. If you want people to follow Jesus you must be a good example as a follower of Jesus. Point number two. Here it is. The church had a job to do and so do we, the church had a job to do and so do we go to acts chapter 1 verse seven and we see Jesus saying the father alone is the authority to set the times and the dates and they're not for you to know which you receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you, and you will be witnesses, telling people about me everywhere in Jerusalem, throughout Judea and Samaria to the ends of the year they had a job to do and so do we were still called to tell people about Jesus everywhere. It starts with the question in acts chapter 1 verse six the apostles came and said, Lord, has the time come for you to know. Three Israel and restore your kingdom. But here's the problem they couldn't get over this notion they had as to why Jesus came. They thought he was coming to establish his kingdom. Then in their then he was crucified. Then he rose again from the dead, so they're back on point again.

Okay Lord, what are you going to establish your kingdom and Jesus effectively says guys would you get off of that. He says soon.

Specifically, verse seven. The father alone is the authority to set those dates and times are not for you to know that I stop focusing on when I am returning focus instead on what you should be doing as you're waiting in the same thing is happening today people as well that that when this Jesus coming back.

Why is Jesus not come back again will he will come back according to his perfect timing and he's already said. No one knows the day of the hour.

Only the father in heaven. So don't focus on when he is coming.

Focus on what you are to do until he returns their job and our job is very clear.

Verse eight you are my witnesses, telling people about me everywhere.

It's inescapable. It's a great commission. It's still here before us to fulfill nothing. A lot of times we study Bible prophecy we get sidetracked and we miss the main point. Bible prophecy is not given to a larger brains. It's given to expand our hearts.

It should move us to want to reach more people with the gospel so they too can be ready for the Lord's return. Jesus is not late though, the appointed hour, but here's what he wants us to do according to second Peter 39 which says the Lord isn't slow about his promise, as some people think he's patient for your sake he doesn't want anyone to perish or be destroyed. He wants everyone to repent, you know, back in 1970 when the Jesus movement was happening were all praying Lord come back. Lord return.

Aren't you glad he didn't answer our prayer. How many of you have become a Christian since 1970, raising up quite a few so thank God he then that's an effort. He's waiting for more to believe. It seems to me there may be one person walking on this earth that will be the last person the belief before the rapture of the church. Can you imagine if you knew who that person was like this.

This dude is this guy get saved we go to heaven. Would you be tempted to put pressure on that guy for that girl. Then you just tell her I wanted to is Christ in your life right now and you leave them a rare boom you're in, have well God knows when that will happen.

But here's what they were to do it.

Here's what we are to do verse eight. You will be my witnesses, telling people about me everywhere in Jerusalem throughout today, Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.

This is sort of the battle plan for world evangelism. It starts in Jerusalem and it goes to Judeo, then this Samaria and to the ends of the doubt for them. Jerusalem was home base for them. Judeo would be the wider area of Israel. Samaria was outside of their country in the ends of the earth was was left over so the same way when we think about reaching people with the gospel. We start with our Jerusalem and what is your Jerusalem. What is my Jerusalem.

It sure home base picture family and guess what the hardest people to reach with the gospel.

Are your family right because you come home one day and said become a Christian.

I'm following Jesus. Right now they're all thinking all know right and then you tell them they need the Lord and they're saying we knew you when you were a little kid. Why should we listen to you of this is why Jesus said a prophet is not without honor except in his own country. Jesus himself did not have his own family totally except him and believe in him till after his death and resurrection more than one occasion they came to take him home because they thought he had lost his mind using so the hardest people to retry your family. It took me well over 30 years to see my own mother come to Christ and so that maybe your situation right now but start with your Jerusalem then you go to your Judeo that's the wider area may be that your workplace maybe that your sphere of influence people you meet out there you go out there and you leave your comfort zone but then you go to Samaria. So for a Jew to say Samaria was for them to go to their enemies, see the Samaritans and nothing to do with the Jews and vice versa member.

The woman at the well said to Jesus, why would you would you talk to me, a Samaritan, don't you know that Jews and Samaritans want nothing to do with each other and Jesus said if he knew what was was speaking to you, you would ask him and he would give you living water point is you leave your comfort zone. You go to people you would not normally go to. I think of our own ministry. We started initially here in Riverside that's our Jerusalem are Judeo is the inland Empire are Samaria will that's going out to California and the rest of the nation and the uttermost parts of the earth are just the whole planet that we been able to go to on any given day at Harvest at Home. We have thousands of people viewing from around the world from places ranging from the United States.

Every state represented to Australia, Canada, South Africa tenure of the Philippines, Ireland, India, Singapore, the list goes on. So you start at home base and you move beyond that Mr. Greg Laurie will have the second half of this message just a moment.

We really enjoy hearing with Pastor Greg's teaching and preaching touch lives. Pastor Greg, I'm a junior in high school, was raised in church and saved at a very young age, but when I started high school, I fell away from the Lord one day I heard you on the radio and your message helps me see that I need to get my life right with God, which I did. Thank you for all you do and allowing God to work through you. It's a blessing to know the listeners young and old are hearing these messages and God is using his word to talk charged will have Pastor Greg studies impacted your life would you let him know drop an email to will today. Pastor Greg is helping us see what we need to know to join the Lord and impacting our culture for Christ. One final point, we need to be filled with the Holy Spirit to do what God has called us to do. We need to be filled with the Holy Spirit to do and God is called us to do. Verse eight you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you, and you will be my witnesses, telling people about me everywhere. Stop and think about this. These were not intellectuals. These were not even theologians. These were ordinary people. We might call them blue-collar workers today. Fishermen a tax collector. Some others thrown in. How could these guys change the world.

Thomas doubted Jesus was alive. Simon Peter denied Jesus out right. If someone is strong as Simon Peter to be demoralized by the words of the servant girl and the high priest courtyard. How could any of them go anywhere preaching Jesus answers that question. Verse eight you receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you, and you will be my witnesses the way they would do this is with the power they did not already have a power beyond anything that ever experienced before a power to change the world a power to witness a power to share their faith. A power to churn their world upside down and guess what this same power that was given to them to change their world is given to you right now to change our world. It's here now. Nothing seems to be a Pentecost, Peter said this promise that he was speaking of the promise of the power of the spirit is to you is to your children and it's even to the Gentiles and all who would been called by the Lord our God, and what is the promise. The promise of the power of the spirit.

Now the word power is noteworthy from the Greek word, do the myths. The story is told of Alfred Nobel, who invented an explosive elements that he didn't have a name for and so he went to a friend of his is both Greek and Nobel said, what is the Greek word for explosion is friend scented students offer no bells that I'm in a call what I created dynamite and so really what the Bible is seen as there is explosive dynamite power from the Holy Spirit that can be given to you to you and me right now we just need to receive it and I think the problem with this is weak, overly mystified.

The work of the spirit. We think it has always be an emotional experience, and maybe it will be, and maybe you won't be you know when you fill your car with gas. You have an emotional experience. Maybe you do when you see what the price it what if you're driving an SUV or a big truck 100 bucks. I guess yes so you don't necessarily have an emotional experience. When you fill your vehicle but you fill your vehicle and the Bible tells us the governments they empower us with the spirit he wants to Phyllis he wants to do it again and he wants to do it again and again affect every day you should get up in the morning and say Lord fill me with the Holy Spirit. I need this power today to do what you have called me to do in these first century believers receive that power. We have a man in our church to teach is Bible studies and leads worship in an assisted living home here in town's name is the and he was teaching the older folks. How the early church was so bold in sharing the gospel and he pointed out how they relied on the Holy Spirit to do it.

One of the women was listening to them is 82 years old so she took in the heart. They got together the next Sunday and she said I want to give appraisal report be sent when Apogee's as well. I've been praying every day that the Lord would fill me with a Holy Spirit and open up an opportunity for me to share the gospel. She said that she was able to share the gospel with an 85-year-old gentleman who accepted Christ.

I love that.

Sorry that you are never too old to share the gospel. You never too young to share the gospel. This power is available to all of us as we serve the Lord. So we need to take advantage of these opportunities. But here's what I would like to close with this power is here for us right now. And as we start this new series in the book of acts. I want to praying that God would fill us with this power and we would experiences real-time in our life so we can print right now and we can receive this power. You may feel something, you may feel nothing. This is nothing to do with feelings. This is an active state were a promise is given hears of the Bible says if you as parents give good gifts to your children, how much more will your father in heaven give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him.

That's all you have to do. Just ask Lord, would you give this to make the Lord's responses.

Oh yes you like to give gifts to people you know when I buy a gift for someone.

I can't wait to give it to them. It's hard for me to wait till Christmas day for their birthday or whatever it is I want to have it now. The father in heaven is anxious in eager to give you this power in your life. He wants to do it. Do you want to give you know when you're kidding. Christmas is approaching your birthday is approaching your anxious to open your gifts right so you want to give the father wants to give you the gift. This sounds to me like a good combination. This sounds to me like a moment right now. We can receive with the Lord has for us. So I want to do something that I do often with folks accepting Christ. This is for all of us who are believers are ready I would ask you to pray a prayer after me out loud, mean this prayer God will hear this spring. In this prayer. Morgan asked the Lord to give us the power of the spirit.

Now look when you're a Christian. The spirit is inside of you are ready when you are Christian. The Bible says your sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise.

So this is not receiving the Holy Spirit. This is receiving. Listen the power of the Holy Spirit were talking about a very specific promise in acts 18 you shall receive power, after the Holy Spirit comes upon you to be witnesses for me and Jerusalem, Judea, Samaria, and the uttermost parts of you, so this is a specific prayer of receiving the power of the spirit. When we all stand as we pray this prayer so I'll pray and you pray after meeting if you want this power in your life. Just pray these words Lord Jesus called me to be a witness called me to reach the world with the gospel, but I have not always done that as I should, but I want to start doing it like never before. But I need help promise the power of the spirit to me know. I receive that power fill me with your holy's. Give me a new boldness. Give me a new courage I receive it from you now in Jesus name I you just receive power in your life. Let God's Holy Spirit permeate every crevice of your being and give you that boldness that he wants you to have Pastor Greg Laurie with important prayer asking the Lord to empower us for the responsibilities ahead. Glad you joined us today here on a new beginning for the launch of our new series in the book of acts while were so happy to make available pastor Greg's revealing book on the life of popular actor Steve McQueen. It's called Steve McQueen the salvation of an American icon pastor Becky came to Christ. When most people considered him one of the elite movie stars of his day, but he realized something was missing me what is that teach us about reaching out to everybody, including those that look like they have at all. That's right Dave you know I don't care how a person looks on the outside inside. Everyone is empty. Everyone is lonely. Everyone is afraid to die, and everyone is searching, Steve. The Queen was the number one movie star of his day.

Some people that are listening know who he was. Others don't let me put it into the modern context. Let's just say that Tom Cruise came to Jesus Christ and started talking about it would not make an impact on culture. Let me take it a step further.

What Johnny Depp came to the Lord.

Okay, so no dig Johnny Depp and take Tom Cruise and put them together. Tom Cruise is known for doing his own stunts I Johnny Depp is known for his offscreen crazy behavior McQueen was that and more. He was a guy who was always getting into trouble.

He was a guy who made a mess of his life.

A guy who did his own stunts and thank you. He drove his own racecar in the film that he did call Del Monte did his motorcycle stunts and the great escape, so this was a guy who was a man's man. He had it all together seemingly on the outside but he was searching and very few people know that the number one movie star in the world.

Steve McQueen came to Christ. Now he came to Christ. A number of months before he found out he had cancer. Sometimes we will they go. Steve found out he was sick and then he became a Christian know it's not bad at all. He became a Christian when he was the number one movie star in the world and actually was attending church regularly. He wanted to be an usher in church. Imagine having Stephen Queen helping you find your seat in church, but not radically transform Steve's life so I written a book about it and it has interviews with people that knew Steve well, including his widow Barbara McQueen also Leonard to wit Steve's pastor and others that knew Steve very well in his day, and they help put the story together this amazing story of the unlikely transformation of the number one movie star in the world. So if you want to know more about how Steve's life was changed and how your life can be changed or how someone you know who seem so far gone can have their lives changed then order your copy of Steve McQueen the salvation of an American icon from us here at harvested. We will send this to you for your gift of any size and by the way whatever you send will be used to continue to teach the word), a new beginning and get the gospel out so more people like Steve McQueen can come to know Christ as an investment that reaches beyond this life and were so thankful for your generosity. It's the only way we can meet the expenses of bringing these daily studies your way to contact us today with your donation and be sure to ask for your copy of Steve McQueen the salvation of an American icon. You can call us at 1-800-821-3300. We can take your call anytime 24 seven that's 1-800-821-3300 forgers go online to harvest.or will next time pastor greatly just into the action-packed second chapter of acts as our study series continue the series involving upside down. Why join us here on a new beginning*Bible teacher Greg Laurie everybody thinks are listening to this podcast to learn more about harvest ministries follow the show and consider supporting it.

Just go to and find out how to know God personally go to and click on know God

Get The Truth Mobile App and Listen to your Favorite Station Anytime