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Things Jesus Never Said | Bible Truths That Have Been Distorted

A New Beginning / Greg Laurie
The Truth Network Radio
June 27, 2023 3:00 am

Things Jesus Never Said | Bible Truths That Have Been Distorted

A New Beginning / Greg Laurie

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June 27, 2023 3:00 am

Ever play the telephone game? You and some others gather in a circle. Someone whispers a message to the first person, who whispers it to the second and so on. When the last person reveals what he heard, it’s obvious that the message got wildly distorted. Some people seem to play a game like that with their Bible knowledge. They rely on what they’ve heard the Bible says. Today on A NEW BEGINNING, Pastor Greg Laurie takes us to the source to discover some things people said it said that it never said.

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A New Beginning is the daily half-hour program hosted by Greg Laurie, pastor of Harvest Christian Fellowship in Southern California. For over 30 years, Pastor Greg and Harvest Ministries have endeavored to know God and make Him known through media and large-scale evangelism. This podcast is supported by the generosity of our Harvest Partners.

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We're glad you're joining us for a new beginning with Greg Laurie, a podcast supported by Harvest Partners. Get more encouraging audio content when you subscribe to Pastor Greg's Daily Devos.

Learn more and sign up at Harvest.org. You see, we need to follow God's heart, not our heart. Ever played the telephone game?

You and some others gather in a circle. Someone whispers a message to the first person, who whispers it to the second, and so on. When the last person reveals what he heard, it's obvious that the message got wildly distorted. Some people seem to play a game like that with their Bible knowledge. They rely on what they've heard the Bible says. Today on A New Beginning, Pastor Greg Laurie takes us to the source to discover some things people said it said that it never said. You know, there are certain things that people believe to be true that are not true. We call them old wives fables, right? And if you're an old wife, sorry, but this is the expression. Old wives fables.

And we've heard these from our childhoods. As an example, if I drop a piece of food on the ground, if I pick it up before five seconds, it's okay. It's often called the five second rule. That's not true. Because bacteria transfers to food immediately. Here's another one we've all heard from our childhoods. Don't go swimming after you've eaten or you'll get cramps and you could even drown. Completely not true at all, okay?

No science behind that. That tall tale is all wet, okay? So that's not true. How about this one? If you're sick, you should eat chicken soup. It'll help you get better. That one is true.

I love that. And it seems from my life when I eat chicken soup, if I have a cold, it really does help. And they've actually done research on this and found that it actually does help, okay? And there are things believed about God and about the Bible that are not true.

Here's a couple of easy ones. God helps those who help themselves. The Bible says God helps those who help themselves. The Bible does not say that. Now, the idea behind it isn't completely wrong. If I was applying it in this way, for instance, you know you need to go out and get a job and you need to work and be responsible.

You can't just sit around on your La-Z-Boy and binge on Netflix, right? Because the Bible says God helps those who help themselves. Well, I have a better virtue. The Bible says if you don't work, you don't get to eat, okay?

So go get a job. So I mean if you were to get really technical, God helps those who can't help themselves, right? Because when we get to the end of ourselves or really get to the beginning of God, here's another one often quoted. You know the Bible says cleanliness is next to godliness. And that's usually what a parent says when they want their child to get clean, right?

Now I'm all for soap and being clean. But the Bible does not say cleanliness is next to godliness. But there are many sentiments that people carry in life that are simply not biblical. One would be well God is angry at me and he wants to ruin my life.

Some people think this. God's just out to ruin everything that I planned for myself. You know that is so wrong. God's mad at me. God is not mad at you. God is mad about you. If there's one thing that's clear in Scripture, it is this. God loves you.

You see it from Genesis to Revelation. He says I have loved you with an everlasting love. Therefore with loving kindness I have drawn you. The Bible even says God is love. First John 3 one says behold what kind of love the Father has given to us that we should be called God's children. God loves you. God wants to bless you. God wants to give you a life that is worth living. Now let's take the flip side of that and we hear people say God loves me and accepts me as I am.

Right? This is usually said by someone that is probably doing something they should not do. Yeah I know that I go out and I party and get drunk on the weekend but God loves me and accepts me as I am. Well I know that we're getting a divorce and we don't have a biblical reason but still God loves me and accepts me as I am.

I know that I shouldn't do this but God loves me and accepts me as I am. Other variations of this is no one is perfect. One of my favorites hey man don't judge my journey. Yeah might judge your journey a little bit.

Especially because your journey might lead you to the wrong place. The fact of the matter is the Bible tells us that judgment begins in the house of God. A Christian is to be discerning and a Christian is to make judgments. When Jesus says oh by the way their favorite verses are judge not lest you be judged and let him that is without sin cast the first stone.

Right? That's our way of saying go away and stop talking to me Christian with your Bible. Now it is true Jesus said judge not lest you be judged but a better translation would be condemn not lest you be condemned. But this idea of God loves me and accepts me as I am needs to be looked at. So is it true that God loves me and accepts me as I am?

I would say technically the answer is yes. But now let me add another statement to it. God loves you and accepts you as you are but he doesn't want to leave you that way. So I don't have to do something to earn the love of God. I have the love of God. It is extended toward me even as a sinner. While we were yet sinners Christ died for us the Bible says. Jesus says for God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten son.

So he loves me but he doesn't want to leave me the way that I am. The classic example is the story of the prodigal son. He sinned against his father. He came to his senses. He decided to return home and the father saw him and ran toward him and threw his arms around him and kissed him and hugged him and said rejoice this my son who is dead is alive again. He who was lost is found and then he said get this kid a bath and some clean clothes. Because the boy had been hanging out with pigs. He didn't smell right. He needed to clean his life up. He needed to learn that cleanliness is next to godliness right.

So this is us. We come to Jesus with all of our sin with all of the things that are wrong and God says I love you. I accept you as you are. Now repent of your sin and live a new life and I'll give you the power to do that from my Holy Spirit. So that's a commonly believed idea and then the Bible even says keep yourself from the love of God. That doesn't mean do things to earn God's love but what it means is stay in a place where God can actively show his love toward you. Stay away from things that would separate you from God.

Okay here's another one that we've all heard. Follow your heart. Just no matter what in life just follow your heart. It's similar to God loves and accepts me as I am. Variations of this idea would be the heart wants what it wants.

What does that even mean? The heart wants what it wants or listen to your heart and you will find the truth. Now when we use this phrase heart in English in our culture today we're primarily speaking of our emotion.

In Hebrew culture when the Bible says love the Lord your God with all of your heart soul and mind it didn't make that kind of a distinction. It would include your mind as well as your heart but we'll say follow your heart. In other words follow your emotion and we use this phrase about our heart all the time. If someone is very emotional we'll say they wear their heart on their sleeve right. If we're sad we say I'm heartbroken. If we're insensitive to the needs of others we'll say you are so heartless and then we wonder why someone doesn't care. We say where's your heart?

Well maybe they should check their sleeve because that's the last place they left it right. Then there's countless songs about the heart. Bruce Springsteen had a hungry heart. Billy Ray Cyrus had an achy breaky heart. Maybe that's why Toni Braxton sang unbreak my heart because Billy Ray gave her an achy breaky heart. And then the Bee Gees sang how can you mend a broken heart especially an achy breaky heart. But then Celine Dion reminds us that the heart will go on even if it's achy breaky and it's been broken right. Okay so should we follow our heart? No.

Why? The Bible says in Jeremiah 17 9 the heart is deceitful above all things and beyond cure who can understand it. You see we need to follow God's heart not our heart. And as we fill our minds with the word of God our mind changes and our heart changes. Ezekiel 36 26 God says I'll give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you. And then we're told in Psalm 37 4 take the light in the Lord and he'll give you the desires of your heart. When you get your life aligned with God's will. When you get your prayers in sync with what God wants for you he will give you the desires of your heart because the desires of your heart will change.

But if you just say follow your heart and follow your emotion you can get into a lot of trouble. Pastor Greg Laurie will have the second half of his message in just a moment. You know when you've walked in the very land where Jesus himself walked you'll gain a whole new appreciation for the truth of scripture. Hey everybody Greg Laurie here inviting you to the Harvest Ministries Israel tour April 9th to 19 2024. This will be an unforgettable journey through biblical sites and a unique opportunity to grow in your own faith. Listen spots are limited be sure to sign up as soon as possible at israel.harvest.org.

Again it's israel.harvest.org. I hope to see you there. Well today Pastor Greg is presenting a fascinating message called Things Jesus Never Said.

Glad you're along for our series in the book of James. Here's another thing people believe trust your gut. Just trust your gut. I don't know I'd like to trust my gut. I don't know my gut gets me into trouble. Maybe I'm hungry in the evening and I'm driving home and and my mind says you should just have a nice salad.

The gut says Taco Bell right the guts. Trust your gut. Now sometimes we're maybe having a conversation with someone and we get a sense.

You could call it intuition. Like I don't know if this person is on the up and up. I don't know if I trust that person and there's some value there. We have certain insights maybe but the Bible doesn't teach us to trust our gut because our gut or our emotions can get us into trouble. In Proverbs 16 25 we read there is a way that seems right to a man but the end thereof is the way of death. So instead of trusting our gut we need to trust in the Lord. That's what the Bible teaches. Proverbs 3 5 says trust in the Lord with all of your heart. Lean not into your own understanding.

In all of your ways acknowledge him and he will direct your paths. Here's something else Jesus never said. We need to love ourself. Love ourself. You need to love yourself more. The problem is you don't love yourself enough.

So untrue. You love yourself. I love myself. When someone takes a picture and you're in the picture who do you look for first? And then what do you say don't post that.

Why I look fat? Don't post it. Let me photoshop it quickly. You know what's our favorite form of photography? Selfies. You know we love ourselves already.

So this is pretty much an established fact. In fact we love ourselves too much. But wait doesn't the Bible say love your neighbor as you love yourself so therefore the Bible's teaching you to love yourself?

No. The Bible is saying it's obvious you already love yourself. Can't you love your neighbor as well? See the Bible actually teaches the opposite of loving yourself. It actually tells us that we are to love the Lord our God with all of our heart soul and mind and put Christ first. Sometimes the variation of this is I'm trying to find myself. Usually before someone does something really stupid they'll say I'm just trying to find myself. Jesus says if you want to find yourself you need to lose yourself or dedicate yourself to me.

He says if any man come after me let him deny himself and take up the cross and follow me for whoever will lose his life will find it. Here's another one. I deserve to be happy. I know what I'm doing is maybe not the right thing but I deserve to be happy. Well really? Well the Bible even says it.

No it actually doesn't. Now it's not that God wants you to be unhappy. God wants you to be happy in the right way. I mean back in A.D. 397 Augustine said everyone whatever his condition desires to be happy. So this pursuit of happiness is not unique to modern times. Mankind has always wanted to be happy and the problem is we go about trying to find happiness in the wrong way. Oh if I was famous I'd be happy or if I had all this money I'd be happy or if I did this or did that I would be happy and it's simply not true. When comedian Dave Chappelle was making millions of dollars he said he was not happy and he was quoted to say the higher up I go the less happy I am. That's why it shouldn't be a shock to us when we read of some celebrity overdosing on drugs or going into rehab for the 30th time or sometimes tragically even taking their own lives.

It's because they've climbed to the top and they found out there's nothing there. See when you don't have it you may think yeah one day maybe though if I won the lottery then I would be happy but then you find out no that's not where it is. So it's not wrong that you want to be happy you just need to go about finding that happiness in the right way. I deserve it. Do you deserve it?

Let's not get into that. If we're going to talk about what we deserve I'll be blunt with you. You deserve to be judged for your sin and so do I. So don't say to God I deserve to be happy. The Lord says well are we going to go there?

Okay let's take it another way. Can I be happy? The answer is yes. Does God want me to be happy? Again the answer is yes but you'll never find happiness by pursuing it. You'll find happiness by pursuing the Lord.

Right? The Bible says happy are the people whose God is the Lord. Luke 11 28 says happy are those that hear the word of God and keep it. So if you want to live a happy life live a holy life. Live a godly life and put the Lord first and you will find that happiness will come as a result. Here's another one. God wants me to follow my dreams. Well not exactly.

It's not bad to have a dream but sometimes your dreams are not the best dreams and sometimes you might get what you want and your dream might turn into a nightmare. So here's what it comes down to. I want to find God's plan for my life. Listen to this. God's plan for your life is better than your own.

Put his will first and that's hard for us to do because that goes back to my first point. God's against me. God hates me.

Wrong. God loves you. God has a plan for you. It's a good plan.

So understand that. Now coming back to my dream. Okay I have my dreams. So dedicate your dreams to the Lord. Okay Lord this is kind of what I think I want but I can tell you after living a few years that I can look back on my life and thank the Lord he didn't answer some of my prayers.

Right? Thank God for unanswered prayers. The Lord said no. God if you loved me you'd let me know.

I love you and that's why I'm not letting you. And you'll know this one day when you get older and you look back in retrospect and realize my plan for you is better than your plan for yourself. Listen God is omniscient. It's a theological word that simply means God is all knowing. God knows everything. He knows everything about you and me and all of us. In fact the Bible even tells us in Psalm 147 verse 4 he determines the number of stars and calls them each by me.

Can you imagine that? God knows all the stars. So in 2021 the James Webb telescope was launched. The results are blowing the minds of astronomers and scientists. This space going infrared telescope captures previously unobservable planets. Stars and galaxies right up to the edge of space and beyond. This is the creation of God that we've never seen before. And astronomers now estimate that there are a hundred thousand million stars in the Milky Way and outside of that millions and millions of other galaxies.

And what did we just read? We read that God knows every star each with its own name. Boy I'd run out of names fast if it was up to me. Rover, Bob, Larry, Mary.

I don't know. I mean every one of those stars has a name that God has given them. That's how I bring this up because if God has named all the stars and all of the galaxies out there does he not care about you?

He does. In fact if it concerns you it concerns God. Psalm 56 says you keep track of my sorrows. You've collected my tears in your bottle.

You've recorded each one in your book. So you can take a step of faith today knowing that God knows your tomorrow. He's already been there. He's getting things ready for you. So don't follow your dreams. Follow the Lord who has a better plan for you than your own. Good encouragement and clarification today on A New Beginning. Pastor Greg Laurie's message is titled Things Jesus Never Said. You know Pastor Greg, our radio program has heard on hundreds and hundreds of stations across the country and I've had the privilege of getting to know a number of the station managers of those radio stations and I've gotten to know a gentleman named Rick McCleary quite well. Rick just retired just recently but he was the general manager of a couple of stations in Minnesota that carried our radio program and he sent me an email saying and he sent me an email after watching Jesus Revolution and I wanted to share it with you. He said please pass on to Pastor Greg how much I appreciated the movie Jesus Revolution. You might remember when the book came out I was also intercepted during the Jesus movement. I wound up helping to run a Jesus people home in Fargo, North Dakota.

Oh wow. I was baptized in a lake with a dozen other ex-hippies. It was an incredible experience.

Anyway during the baptism scene in the movie I cried. It brought back so many memories of that time. Eleven years later the Lord led me into broadcasting and then I retired 40 plus years later in 2021. Please thank Greg for his obedience in following the Lord these many years later.

Wow. Well thank you very much for that and God bless you and the Jesus movement went all across the country. It wasn't just in Southern California but so many people say their favorite scene is when my character Greg a very young Greg played by Joel Courtney powerful performance finally accepts Christ and is baptized.

Now I know this is radio and I can't show you how powerful it is visually but I think as you just listen you'll be able to see it in your mind's eyes. So let me set the scene. Greg and Kathy are at Pirates Cove which is a little beach in Newport. Kathy has just been baptized. Greg has heard the gospel at this point but he hasn't made his commitment to Christ so he a bit reluctantly walks out into the water and there he is greeted by Lonnie Frisbee played by Jonathan Rumi best known for playing the role of Jesus and the chosen and they have some words together and a prayer takes place.

Listen to this. Greg right? Yeah.

I've been praying for this moment since I first met you. Have you decided? I don't know. You want to decide right now? Yeah.

Yeah I do. And pray with me. Lord Jesus I know I'm a sinner. Lord Jesus I know I'm a sinner. You are the savior of the world.

You a savior of the word. I ask you to come into my life. I ask you to come into my life. I repent for my sins. I repent for all my sins. And I accept you as my lord and savior my god and friend. And accept you as my lord and savior my god and my friend. In Jesus name. In Jesus name. Amen. Greg I baptize you in the name of the father and of the son and of the holy spirit.

Amen. I want you to see that scene and here's how it's going to happen. I want to send you a DVD of the Jesus revolution movie. You'll see that scene and many others that will move you in a significant way. I've seen this film with many audiences around the country and individuals sitting in my front room and elsewhere and so many times people tear up.

It's a flashback for some. They remember their baptism but we've had other people say I want to be baptized. I heard one story of when this film was shown in a theater. Some people wanted to come to Christ and be baptized and they literally baptized him in the fountain outside of the theater.

So this these stories are crazy that we're hearing. They're amazing and so I want to send you a special edition of the Jesus revolution on DVD. It has bonus content including a custom message that we shot on the beach as the sun was setting in Newport beach where I present the gospel and it even has a prayer that a person could pray to accept Christ and there's some other special features on this DVD we'll send you for your gift of any size. Now I'm going to ask you to be more generous than normal because we do have to pay more for this resource and so we're trusting that you will send a generous gift to us so we can continue to preach the gospel and teach the word of God right here on A New Beginning.

Yeah and we do appreciate your partnership with us that makes these daily studies possible. So get in touch today for your DVD of Jesus Revolution and we'll also include a free streaming code and we won't be mentioning this much longer so contact us soon. Call us anytime at 1-800-821-3300. That's 1-800-821-3300 or go online to harvest.org. You know there's nothing like hearing the word of God and worshiping the Lord together. I want to encourage you to join us for something we call Harvest at Home. It happens every Saturday and Sunday at harvest.org. You can join Christians from around the world as we worship and we study the word of God together.

So join us for Harvest at Home at harvest.org. Well next time more insights on the reliable wisdom found in God's word as we continue our studies in the book of James. Join us here on A New Beginning with pastor and Bible teacher, Greg Laurie. A New Beginning is a podcast made possible by Harvest Partners, helping people everywhere know God. If this show has impacted your life, share your story, leave a review on your favorite podcast app, and help others find hope.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-06-27 05:31:41 / 2023-06-27 05:41:29 / 10

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