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Breakfast With Jesus | How to Prepare for Death and Afterlife

A New Beginning / Greg Laurie
The Truth Network Radio
April 6, 2023 3:00 am

Breakfast With Jesus | How to Prepare for Death and Afterlife

A New Beginning / Greg Laurie

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April 6, 2023 3:00 am

About 30 million people move each year. It’s a lot of work, packing boxes, unpacking boxes . . . but do you know anyone who’s AFRAID of moving? Well, for the believer, death is—essentially—moving. It’s moving to a nicer neighborhood! But today on A NEW BEGINNING, Pastor Greg Laurie has good reassurance for those who are still afraid of what death may hold. As we begin to prepare our hearts for Easter this weekend, we’ll give some thought to death and the afterlife . . . and how to make sure we’re ready.

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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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You're listening to A New Beginning with Greg Laurie, a podcast supported by Harvest Partners. For more ways to deepen and challenge your spiritual walk, enroll in Pastor Greg's free online courses.

Sign up at harvest.org. You do not have to be afraid of death, and I'll tell you why. Because Jesus said, Do not be afraid. I am the living one. I died, but look, I'm alive forever and ever. I hold the keys to death and the grave. So many people are afraid of death.

Perhaps it's fear of the unknown or maybe fear of what they do know. Pastor Greg Laurie has great reassurance. We know a better life is coming so you don't have to be afraid. This is the day when the lost are found. This is the day for a new beginning. Amazing grace, how sweet the sound. Again you hear all the angels are singing.

This is the day, the day when life begins. About 30 million people move each year. That's a lot of work, packing boxes, unpacking boxes. But do you know anyone who's afraid of moving? Well, for the believer, death is essentially moving.

It's moving to a nicer neighborhood. But today on A New Beginning, Pastor Greg Laurie has good reassurance for those who are still afraid of what death may hold. As we begin to prepare our hearts for Easter this weekend, we'll give some thought to death and the afterlife and how to make sure we're ready. This is the day, the day when life begins. Breakfast. My favorite meal of the day. Second only to lunch and dinner. How many of you have had breakfast already? Raise your hand up. You've had breakfast.

Well, not that many of you. How many of you are going to have breakfast after this message is over? All right. I've got the brunch deal.

So you're praying right now, Lord, help them to go shorter today, right? So basically my breakfast starts with eggs. I love eggs. I like eggs scrambled.

I like them over easy. I like omelets. I like eggs in any way, shape, or form poached.

And it's funny because I'll post a lot of things on my social media. But I take a video on my phone of my wife making eggs and it outperforms every other post. She just makes eggs and sometimes I provide running commentary. But I love breakfast. Now I was back in Alabama and they have something we don't have on most of our menus here in California. They have biscuits and gravy. Now that's a next level. I have to admit I like it. Even at the airport there were biscuits and gravy for breakfast. That's great. But however you like to have breakfast it's a wonderful meal.

Nothing to me is better than the smell of coffee in the morning and maybe bacon cooking. Well we're reading a story now where literally the disciples of Jesus were having breakfast with him. What an unexpected event. Because he had been crucified. He had been beaten beyond human recognition. None of his disciples ever thought they would see his face again despite the fact that he spoke repeatedly of his death and resurrection.

He spelled it out. I will be crucified and I'll rise again three days later. And that's exactly what happened. But they never thought they would see Jesus again. And now all of a sudden here he is before them making them breakfast. Now after Christ rose he first appeared to Mary Magdalene there in the garden. And she did not think she was going to see the risen Lord. She had simply come to anoint the body of Jesus. And then she saw someone that she thought was the gardener. And she asked him where the body was.

She saw the tomb was empty. And he said her name Mary. And it was that inflection. That tone that only Jesus used when he spoke her name. And she realized it was Jesus.

And she said Rabboni which means teacher. And she grabbed hold of him and he said don't cling to me Mary for I must yet ascend to my God and to your God to my Father and your Father. That was the first appearance. She saw him before anybody else saw him. Then he appeared to two disciples on the Emmaus road. They're walking along discouraged, downhearted. And he joined them incognito.

Did he have one of those little disguises like the glasses with the fake nose and the mustache. I doubt it. He joins them. They don't know it's Jesus. And he says hey guys let's paraphrase what's been going on.

What's been going on they say. Haven't you heard about Jesus a man mighty in deeds. He was crucified.

And it's been three days since this happened. And Jesus says no tell me about him. And so they're telling Jesus about Jesus.

And they're not doing a very good job. Because they missed the resurrection part. At the end of their journey he reveals himself to them and they say afterwards did not our hearts burn within us. Well he walked with us on the way. Then he appeared in the upper room where the disciples were gathered. And the next day they saw Thomas and said you should have been with us last night. Jesus showed up. Thomas said oh yeah right.

Give me a break. I'll believe that when I can put my hand on the wound in his side and touch the prince in his hands. But the next time they were together Thomas was there.

And guess who showed up. Jesus he says hey Thomas go ahead put your hand on the wound in my side. Thomas says oh my Lord and my God. Then Christ appeared to 500 people at one time. That brings us to the story before us now in John 21. So the disciples go fishing. Peter says I'm going fishing.

The other said we'll go with you. And they fished all night and caught nothing. That happened a lot. Did these guys ever catch fish? Maybe it's because they were always mending their nets. They had holes in their nets.

I don't know. And so a voice from the shore silhouetted because it wasn't quite morning yet shouts out hey throw your net on the other side of the boat and you'll have a catch. And they did it and of course there were so many fish their nets were breaking. And then John the perceptive one says it's the Lord. Peter jumps out of the boat.

He swims to the shore. He comes up on the beach there and Jesus is sitting behind a fire that he made himself. And that's where our story begins here in John chapter 21 beginning of verse nine. When they got there they found breakfast waiting for them.

I love that. They found breakfast waiting for them. Jesus said bring some of the fish you've just caught. So Simon Peter went aboard and dragged the net to the shore and Jesus said now come and have some breakfast.

Imagine this. Right before the Lord is a resurrected physical Jesus now their sadness turns to joy. Their fear turns to hope. You know it's hard when you lose a loved one. Maybe there's somebody I'm speaking to today that had someone they loved that was with them last Easter. And that person has died. And hopefully they died with faith in Christ and they're in heaven. And so you wish you could be with them right now but you aren't.

And it's so hard. That's how these guys felt. And here he was alive again. Risen from the dead.

But it should not have been a surprise. This is why he came to die on the cross and to rise again. You see when Jesus died on the cross he conquered sin.

But when he rose again from the dead he conquered death. Now death is a topic we generally don't like to talk about. We won't even use a word.

The D word. Or we'll say things like well they kicked the bucket. Or they cashed in their chips. We don't like this. Or they passed on.

Okay. But the word death is a real word and it's a real event of course for every person. Well death is scary isn't it? It's the unknown. We don't know what's going to happen. Or at least if we're not a Christian we don't know. We wonder is there an afterlife.

I read an article on a news site about a rock star who recently died at age 33. He was interviewed before his death and he was asked hey if you could get any question answered what would you ask? And he said my question is is there life after death? Wow.

It's a big one. I read another article with a headline glimpses of afterlife question mark and it said and I quote near death experiences are not hallucinations scientists conclude a team of scientists according to this article across several medical disciplines including neurosciences critical care psychiatry social sciences have come up with this scientific conclusion there is life after death end quote my profound response to that is duh I think we all know that intuitively but I don't believe there's life after death because scientists have now concluded there is I believe there's life after death because Jesus told me that you see it's a big difference. Jesus said I'm the resurrection and the life he that believes in me though he were dead yet shall he live. Pastor Greg Laurie will have the second half of his message in just a moment. Emails phone calls and messages from listeners are so encouraging to us and they let us know the effectiveness of these studies. Pastor Greg I first heard you on the radio in the 1990s I'd go through the different stations just to hear you preach your messages about Jesus helped me in such a huge way to get through some really hard times it was the highlight of my day just to listen to you my kids remember and comment on your voice my son calls it the Jesus voice I have found that there's nothing impossible through Jesus Christ. God bless you and your family. Has Pastor Greg heard from you? Why not call us and share your story here's the number 1-866-871-1144.

866-871-1144. Well today's message is called breakfast with Jesus. Pastor Greg is helping us consider the afterlife and how to be prepared. You know when I was a kid I was terrified of death and I thought about it a lot and I think the reason I was terrified of it was my thought at that moment of my life probably you know 12 13 years old was when I died I would no longer exist and I could not comprehend the idea of no longer existing so it was a very scary thing that I thought about but now as an older man I am no longer afraid to die and I'll tell you why because Jesus said do not be afraid I am the living one I died but look I'm alive forever and ever I hold the keys to death and the grave you do not have to be afraid of death Jesus has told us this now he has the keys I'm glad he has the keys if I had them they would be lost by now because I lose my keys I lose my wallet I lose everything but Jesus has those keys that doesn't mean I look forward to death but I do look forward to heaven heard about a preacher that was talking about heaven one Sunday and he asked this congregation a question how many of you would like to go to heaven tonight everybody raise their hand except one little boy he didn't raise his hand so the preacher asked again how many of you would like to go to heaven tonight everyone's hand went up again little boy didn't raise his hand then the preacher looked at the little guy and said son don't you want to go to heaven tonight the little guy said yes I would like to go to heaven but I thought you were getting a load up right now so it's like I want to go but not now right we want to go to heaven as Christians the apostle Paul said I desire to depart and be with Christ but I need to be here with you listen no one loves life more than the follower of Jesus Christ because we see life in another dimension we see life as a gift to us from God we're appreciative to God for it we can see nature as his handiwork we can enjoy the simple pleasures that he's given us we don't need drugs to make that better we don't need alcohol to escape from it we have this relationship with God so we love and we cherish life having said that we know a better life is coming so you don't have to be afraid and man life goes by so quickly you know it's amazing I think about my own metabolism how it's changed Jonathan mentioned earlier that I started preaching when I was young so we would do services in the evening and and afterwards I would go to a take-up Mexican place called Nuggles anybody remember Nuggles it's really good it's really I wish they'd bring it back it was good so I would get something called the Macho combo burrito at night after I preached this is like 10 o'clock I'm eating this thing it was a size of a sleeping bag it was big no problem my young metabolism handled it great now I couldn't even think about such a thing my generation the baby boomers we've gone from acid rock to acid reflux we we have to think about these things but life goes by so quickly and we realize that we realize that we need to be prepared for the next life some people say wow you know I'll change my appearance I'll inject this or I'll stretch that or or you know take all these healthy things and eat healthy kale and tofu and okay fine go for it enjoy it as you push your dog around in a stroller most likely I saw something worse than someone pushing the dog in a stroller recently someone had a cat in the stroller and then some girl from our youth group I'm not making this up showed me a pig in a stroller they're in a mall pushing a pig in a stroller and it was a big pig I'm thinking this has to stop now this has nothing to do with anything I'm just getting off on things that bug me okay but I read about a 105 year old woman from Texas her name is Pearl Cantrell she's had seven children they asked Pearl what is this secret to your longevity how did you make it to 105 years she says I have a one word answer bacon wow bacon someone should take that pig in the stroller over to Pearl she's gonna have a party for sure but we have to face these things head on and as I've said Easter was the death of death death used to be an executioner the resurrection just makes him a gardener and it's something we all face but remember it's not the end okay so let me just share three takeaway truths about what this all means to you number one because of the resurrection of Jesus one day I will receive a new body isn't that great to know you know when Jesus rose from the dead it was effectively a preview of things to come because we too one day will be resurrected first Corinthians 15 20 says the truth is Christ has been raised up the first and a long legacy of those who are going to leave the cemeteries but we have to wait our turn Christ is first than those with him at his coming understand this Jesus Christ rose with a real body in a real world in a real way with a real voice he wasn't a phantom he wasn't a ghost he was a real person he still bore as we mentioned the marks of the crucifixion even after he rose so that's a reminder to us that when we receive that new body God has for us you will still be you you won't become another person you'll be a radically righteous resurrected you secondly because of the resurrection of Jesus our new bodies our glorified bodies will be much like his first John 3 2 says beloved now we are the children of God it's not been revealed what we will be but we know when he is revealed we will be like him for we will see him as he is we will be like Jesus our bodies will be like Jesus so what do we know about the body of Jesus number one it was recognizable including the scars from the crucifixion secondly he did not have the normal limitations that people have he could appear and disappear at will thirdly he ate food what's he doing here in John 21 he's making breakfast making it he could have just snapped his fingers and boom eggs benedict blueberry pancakes huh what did they have that back then doesn't matter he's God he could have done it but what does he say bring some of the fish that you have caught he goes I want to use the fish you've brought and I bet Jesus was a great cook don't you think and so he made that meal for them and it's a reminder that just as Jesus ate in his glorified body we will eat we will eat too so when we get to heaven there's going to be the wedding feast of the land Matthew 8 11 says people will come from the east and the west and take their place at the feast with Abraham Isaac and Jacob in the kingdom of heaven how cool would that be you you can have a meal with people from the bible I mean imagine that for a moment James and John you know Elijah so if your meat is undercooked you could say Elijah could you call a little fire down from heaven kind of torch that me thank you Elijah I could use some salt hey lot could you pass the salt oh lot get over it you're so sensitive no but seriously these are inside bible jokes right okay you have to know the bible to get these jokes but we'll be reunited with loved ones loved ones that have preceded us to heaven many of you may remember Randy Alcorn Randy's a friend of mine he's been here many times and he wrote to me the best book on heaven of course not including scripture but it's called heaven and he he's such a great guy and loves the lord and he loves his wife Nancy but tragically his wife Nancy recently passed away from cancer and so I've talked to him and texted him and and he texted this back to me he says you and Kathy know what those firsts are like without your loved one I've been thinking about how Nancy won't need to say he is risen but we'll be able to look into the eyes of the one she loves and say you have risen it warms my heart to think of the two of them together with my mom and her mom and many of our friends smiling and I'm thinking of her meeting your Christopher too he's risen he writes Isaiah 25 promises he'll swallow up death forever can't wait but we have to wait a little bit longer see that's how a believer looks at death isn't that great good reassurance about life and the afterlife today here on a new beginning pastor Greg Laurie is presenting a message called breakfast with Jesus and there's more to come well pastor Greg I ran across the words of Ruth Graham she said our daughters Swiss in-laws once gave my husband a Swiss watch eventually it stopped working but no local watchmaker could fix it so the next time we were in Switzerland we sent it directly to the company that made it they had no problem the ones who made it knew how to make it work again yes it's that way with a marriage isn't it if we're looking to fix it we need to consult the one who made marriage yes it's very true and God has given us so many truths in the Bible about how to have a strong and lasting marriage you know another statement that Ruth made about marriage is a good marriage is made up of two forgivers and I think that love keeps short accounts you have a conflict you need to resolve it to the best of your ability and not let the sun go down in your wrath but you need to forgive and you need to forget and and you need to appreciate and love and value and honor your spouse and let them know you have to verbalize it to them they can't read your mind and I can't think of a better resource that I could offer you that are married out there and even some of you that are single why not learn about marriage before you get married and this resource I want to talk to you about is called the marriage devotional written by my friend Levi Lusko along with his wife Jenny it's a very practical book it's a biblical book it's it's something that's going to help you strengthen your marriage it's devotions you go through each and every day Levi how many devotions are in this book and how long would it take to go through one with your spouse well there's 52 and that will last you either a whole year or a month and a half depending on how you approach it whether you need more intensive focused work or you have the leisure of a whole year I think if you gave you know 15 minutes you could do it but honestly you could spend an evening bring it with you on your date night as you go through it you you would read through the content in just 10 15 minutes we didn't want a high bar there if you look up the verses but if you take the time to answer the questions and to do the activities that we recommend it could last you definitely an hour and we also know couples that you will read it by themselves and then come together and share their answers so there's no wrong way to go through it but you know you're gonna get God's word the bible opens with the marriage in the in the book of Genesis the bible closes with the marriage in the book of Revelation and in the dead center is the book of Song of Solomon where God really puts his stamp of approval on this institution of marriage that he created that he knows how to get the best out of and that he wants to be a powerhouse for evangelism Ephesians says that marriage is meant to be a picture of Christ in his church yes so if our marriage our marriages are operating how God wants them to the result will be people coming to know Jesus we know that we have listeners right now that have strong and vibrant marriages we know that there's some folks listening right now whose marriage is in trouble and I think I'm probably speaking to someone who has their marriage hanging by a thread and maybe the threads on fire well we have help for you hope for your marriage and it's called the marriage devotional we'll send it to you for your gift of any size this month to help us continue on with our ministry the marriage devotional written by Levi and Jenny Lusko order your copy right now I think this is one of the most important resources we've ever offered here on A New Beginning yeah and we're ready to send it your way we're so thankful for your partnership you know we don't have any large organizations covering all the expenses of bringing you these studies now it's listener support that makes it possible so as you invest today we'll be glad to send you the marriage devotional to say thank you you can call us at 1-800-821-3300 that's a 24-7 phone number 1-800-821-3300 or simply go online to harvest.org well next time more insight to help prepare our hearts for Easter weekend join us here on A New Beginning with pastor and Bible teacher Greg Laurie hey everybody thanks for listening to A New Beginning this is a podcast made possible by Harvest Partners so for more content that can help you know God and equip you to make him known to others or to learn more about how you can become a Harvest Partner just go to harvest.org
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-04-06 05:25:11 / 2023-04-06 05:34:30 / 9

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