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Give Me This Mountain | All In

A New Beginning / Greg Laurie
The Truth Network Radio
February 23, 2024 3:00 am

Give Me This Mountain | All In

A New Beginning / Greg Laurie

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February 23, 2024 3:00 am

During Jesus’ earthly ministry, He didn’t restore sight to just one eye. He didn’t feed most of the 5,000. He didn’t calm the storm on only half the Sea of Galilee. And He didn’t give part of His life on the cross to pay for some of our sins. As someone has said, “Sin had left a crimson stain, and He didn’t wash it light pink.” Today on A NEW BEGINNING, Pastor Greg Laurie points out how Jesus gave His all . . . and the only appropriate response is from us is to give our all.

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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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Today's episode of A New Beginning is brought to you by Harvest Partners, helping people everywhere know God.

Learn more at harvest.org. And while you're there, browse our library of free ebooks designed to help you grow in your faith. If you want to finish well, if you want spiritual longevity, you must wholeheartedly follow the Lord your God. Pastor Greg Laurie points out how our walk with the Lord needs to be a sold-out, fully devoted, completely surrendered commitment to Christ. Look, if you're going to be a Christian, be a Christian.

If you're going to do this, go for it 100%. And the problem is we have a lot of half-hearted people. 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 where life begins. During Jesus' earthly ministry, He didn't restore sight to just one eye. He didn't feed most of the five thousand. He didn't calm the storm on only half the Sea of Galilee. And He didn't give part of His life on the cross to pay for some of our sins. As someone has said, sin had left a crimson stain and He didn't wash it like paint. Today on A New Beginning, Pastor Greg Laurie points out how Jesus gave His all. And the only appropriate response from us is to give our all. Why don't you grab your Bibles and turn to Joshua chapter 14.

And the title of my message is, Give Me This Mountain. So I look back on my life and I can see that God was in control. But I have to say one of the surprises of my Christian life is seeing some people crash and burn spiritually. People that I never thought would fall away, fell away. You know it's funny you meet certain people and you say, I don't know if they're going to make it as a Christian. And they end up doing really well through their Christian life. And others you think, oh man they're going to make their mark in the world and change the world and God's going to use them.

And they just crash and burn because of bad decisions they made. But then there are others that start and they finish well. That's who we want to be. We want to start this race well. We want to run this race well.

And we want to finish this race well. Well we find that here in Joshua 14. Before us is the story of a man who both started and finished his race well. He's not as known as well as Joshua. But him and Joshua were friends. Joshua and Caleb. Caleb is the man I want to talk about. Because the scene before us here in Joshua 14 is where the tribes of Israel are now receiving their inheritance that God has given to them. And now Caleb speaks up. Now Caleb is 85 years old. And he's been waiting for this day for a long time to get his portion of the land. And in Joshua 14 verse 11 Caleb says, I am as strong this day as on the day that Moses sent me. Just as my strength was then so is now my strength for war for going out and coming in. So give me this mountain. I love this old dude. Probably raising up a bony old arm.

Give me this mountain. Why did he have this strength? He gives the answer in Joshua 14. Drop down to verse 7. I was 40 years old says Caleb when Moses the servant of the Lord sent me from Kadesh Barnea to explore the land of Canaan. I returned and gave an honest report but my brothers who went with me frightened the people from entering the promised land.

Now underline this. For my part I whole heartedly followed the Lord my God. Don't miss that. He's giving us a secret.

He's giving us a life hack if you will. I wholeheartedly followed the Lord my God. If you want to finish well. If you want spiritual longevity you must wholeheartedly not halfheartedly follow the Lord your God. Look if you're going to be a Christian be a Christian. If you're going to do this go for it.

Go for it. 100 percent. And the problem is we have a lot of half-hearted people. But Caleb was not half-hearted. He was wholehearted. You know six times in the Bible instead of Caleb he wholeheartedly or wholly followed the Lord his God. Numbers 14, 24 even God says because my servant Caleb has a different spirit and has followed me wholeheartedly I'll bring him into the land he has entered.

Wow. So Caleb mentions a place called Kedesh Barnea. 45 years earlier the people of Israel delivered from the bondage of Egypt come to the brink of the promised land.

And the point of entry was this place called Kedesh Barnea. Instead of just going in and taking the land that God gave them they decided to send 12 spies in. 12 spies. And the spies went in and came back with two different reports. We had the majority report and we had the minority report. They all saw the same thing but they saw it differently.

First there was the majority report. Ten spies said oh man we don't want to go into this land. Man the people that live there they're gigantic. They're huge and and we will lose. They have massive fortified cities.

There's no way we can take this land. See their problem was they had a small God and as a result they had big problems. But the minority report. Two spies that were sent in named Born and Bond.

Not really. Joshua and Caleb. Joshua and Caleb saw it differently. They saw the same thing but they said oh we can do this. God will be with us.

We'll conquer this land. That's because they had a big God. When you have a big God you have relatively small problems. When you have big problems you have a relatively small God. God is not shrunk. It's your view of God.

It's the way you see God. And so that report was given. Well the people didn't want to believe the minority report. They didn't want to listen to Joshua and Caleb. They went with what the majority said and as a result said none of you people are going to enter the Promised Land. Now one of you except Joshua and Caleb. So now fast forward all these years later that first generation of Israelites they're gone. And all that's left are Joshua and Caleb. So Joshua who has led them into the Promised Land is now giving up parcels of land to the people.

Bringing me to point number two. To have spiritual longevity and to finish well you don't follow the crowd. For 40 years Caleb had to listen to the complaining of the other people. And he put up with it. And he didn't capitulate.

He didn't keep in. He stood his ground. And if you want to be a strong Christian and have spiritual longevity you've got to stand your ground. Because people will try to drag you down.

People will try to pull you away. You've got to stand on your ground. In your own two feet. In your own faith. In your relationship with the Lord. Someone sums it up so beautifully. Blessed are happy as the man or the woman that does not walk in the counsel of the ungodly or stand in the way of sinners or sit in the seat of the scornful. Sorry to point to you when I'm saying that but it just fits all of you honestly. But his delight it goes on to say is in the word of the Lord and in it does he meditate day and night. I see you on this side much more that way.

I'm joking. But you know he doesn't do certain things. He doesn't walk in the counsel of the ungodly or stand in the way of sinners or sit in the seat of the scornful. But instead he meditates and he studies. He contemplates God's word. So he did not capitulate to the crowd. He followed the Lord.

Not the crowd. Point number three. To have spiritual longevity you need to take God at his word. You need to take God at his word. You see Caleb hung on to the promise of God to him for all those years.

And five years go by and ten years go by and another ten years go by and another ten years. Forty years he's still waiting. Have you ever struggled with God's promise to you?

You thought well God you promise he sings to me and I don't see them happening. Are you in a storm right now with no end in sight? Are you in a trial that you're wondering is this ever going to come to an end? One time the disciples were going across the sea of Galilee and a great storm came and they thought they were going to die. And suddenly Jesus comes to them walking on the water. But it's worth noting that Jesus came to them the Bible says in the fourth watch. When is the fourth watch? That's the time just before dawn.

Which means they had been struggling against this storm for nine long hours. They had probably given up hope and then who shows up walking on the water but Jesus himself. And he may come to you in the fourth watch like Lord are you ever going to come? He says yeah I'll come when I'm ready. And when you're ready maybe when you're completely exhausted.

Maybe when you've stopped struggling. Maybe when you stop fighting with me and you just call out and say God if you don't come through for me I'm going to drown. The Lord's saying ah that's what I was waiting to hear.

Let's go. And he'll be there for you and come through for you in your storm. Pastor Greg Laurie will have the second half of his message in just a moment. Hey everybody I want to encourage you to join us for something we call Harvest at Home. It happens every Sunday at harvest.org and on our brand new app Harvest Plus which is available on your mobile tv devices. Download it now and you can watch Harvest at Home with Christians from around the world as we worship together and study God's Word.

So again join us for Harvest at Home at harvest.org or on Harvest Plus. Well Pastor Greg is highlighting some important principles today from our look at Caleb the man who wholeheartedly followed God. Number four to have spiritual longevity you need to fight to the very end. To have spiritual longevity you need to fight to the very end as the Christian life is one of constant growth in learning, taking on new challenges, looking for new opportunities.

It's not living in the past but changing the present and preparing for the future. It never stops though. Now some people say well I'm retired. Okay that's nice you no longer do the job you've done for so many years. But you never retire from the spiritual life you know that right? Because the moment you retire is the moment you're going to start losing.

It's the moment you're going to start being defeated. There was an old man who had been walking with the Lord for many years. So a young man came up to him and said old man I have a question for you. He says yes. He said my question is is there ever a moment that I will reach where I will get past temptation when I will no longer be tempted. The old man said yes when you're dead.

Okay so that's it. It's going to rage to the last moment of your life on earth. After 45 years of patiently waiting Caleb makes a statement in verse 11. I am as strong this day as the day that Moses sent me.

He never grew weaker. And what did he do with that strength? We read in Joshua 15 14 Caleb drove out the three sons of Anak from there and it identifies their name. He went to an area called Hebron. Hebron was a treacherous area. It was a tough area and the inhabitants of Hebron were fierce warriors. Effectively Caleb said give me the toughest part of the land.

That's where I want to go. Give me this mountain. I wonder if others laugh sort of snicker give him this mountain. Oh yeah give him this mountain.

That's exactly what he wanted. You know we all have mountains to climb in life and it may vary from person to person. Are we going to run from it? Are we going to run toward it? As people get older as I said sometimes they retire they start kicking back but that is not what you want to be doing.

You want to run every day as though it were your last day because one day it will be. We think we'll live to be old and maybe you will and maybe you won't. That's up to God.

The Bible says our times are in his hands. My son Christopher went to be with the Lord when he was 33 years old. We never planned for that. We never expected that. It changed our life. It was the hardest moment of our life. God was there for us.

It's still there for us but it was a devastating devastating loss for our entire family. And it reminded me of when I used to race Christopher. Christopher was a fast runner. He was a long distance runner. I was more of a short distance runner when I was in high school. I could sprint but then I ran out of steam. Christopher could run forever. So sometimes we'd be walking along maybe on the beach and I'd say Christopher I'll race you to that rock right there.

I always picked a mark that would favor me. Short sprint I'm good but then I tire out. Let's race to the rock and I would beat him every time and I felt very good about that.

I would be a long distance runner. I felt very good about that. I could still beat him in a race. He's a young man now and I'm still beating him in a race. And one day we're walking down the beach I said Christopher I'll race you to that rock. He said okay dad and boom we go and he passes me and he wins.

I was very depressed. He won the race and he also beat me to heaven and he's been there for many years now and we'll see him again. And on his tombstone we wrote these words and nobody ever would think about what you're going to write on the tombstone of your child but we had to do it. And we wrote the words of Paul where he said I fought the good fight. I kept the faith. I finished the course.

He finished his course and he's in heaven. And I bring this up because some who are young think well I'll think about this when I'm older Greg you know. I don't need to do it. I'm young. Okay yeah you're young but what if your race ends sooner than you expect it.

And listen to this. I believe very strongly Jesus Christ is coming back again. What is happening what is happening in our world is cause for great concern. And Bible students should be careful attention to what is specifically happening in the Middle East. These events could escalate quickly into something far larger. And it could end up being a fulfillment of what the Bible says will happen in the end times. The prophetic events are a lot like dominoes that are closely stacked together. And once the first domino falls then the others will fall in rapid succession. So my understanding of Bible prophecy which is perfect.

I'm kidding but I think it's right you know of course. But my understanding of Bible prophecy I think the next event on the prophetic calendar is the rapture of the church. After that we have the emergence of antichrist.

Sometime after that perhaps we have the attack of Magog against Israel. Then we have the tribulation period. Then we have the abomination of the desolation.

The rebuilt temple of the Jews is defiled. Then we have the battle of Armageddon. Then we have the second coming. Then we have the millennium.

All these events kind of tightly placed together. But the first domino has not fallen yet but it could happen at any moment. And the Lord would call us home. So don't be doing anything you would be ashamed to be doing if Christ were to come back.

So whatever you're doing factor that in. Well is he okay if we have lunch? He's cool with that. Have lunch.

Enjoy. Is he okay if we like watch Netflix? Depends what you watch.

I don't know. No. No but seriously think about the Lord as you make your choices in life and as you make decisions you're going to live life. You're going to enjoy life. But at the same time you're right with God. Wholeheartedly follow the Lord your God.

That's what I'm saying to you. Don't follow him halfheartedly. One of the signs of the last times the Bible says 1 Timothy 4 1. In the last days some will fall from the faith giving heed to seducing spirits and the doctrines of demons. So we talk about all the signs of the times. This is one that is often neglected. There's going to be an apostasy which means a falling away.

That will be a sign of the times. And that's one of the things that surprised me I have to say. People that I have personally known. Men and women of God who fell away. But the good news is if you fall away you can still come back home to your Father. You can return to the Lord. The Bible says seek the Lord while he may be found.

Call upon him while he is near. Let the wicked man forsake his way and the unrighteous man his thoughts and let him return unto our God who will abundantly pardon. You can return to your God. So maybe I'm talking to somebody right now that well they haven't been wholeheartedly following the Lord.

They used to. Years ago after they came to Christ they were all in it. Just love the Lord. Love the Word of God. Love church. Love worship. Prayer.

Sharing their faith. They did it all and then as time has passed they've just kind of you know I'm not as intense as I used to be about all used to be about all that and now you're kind of half-hearted and you've made some bad decisions and you're probably reaping the results of those bad decisions. You need to come back to the Lord.

You need to make a recommitment to him. That's what God will forgive you. But then there might be someone else here who's saying I I've never even done it the first time. I've never asked Jesus to come into my life.

You should do that now. So we're going to pause for a moment. We're going to pray and I'm going to extend an invitation for anybody here who has never asked Christ to come into your life to do it now. I'm also going to extend an invitation for anyone that has fallen away and needs to come back again.

It's never too late to come home to your Father who loves you. Your Father in heaven. Let's pray. Now Father we pray that you will speak to everyone that needs you today. First for the person who has not believed in Jesus yet I pray that your Holy Spirit will convict them of their sin and convince them of their need for you and that they would come to you now and believe. And maybe there's someone here that has joined us who is not sure if their sin is forgiven. You don't have the hope that you'll go to heaven when you die.

You have a big hole in your heart you've tried to fill with all the things this world offers and you've come up empty time and time again. Jesus Christ who died on that cross for your sin rose again from the dead and he stands at the door of your life now and he knocks and he says if you'll hear his voice and open the door he will come in. Listen if you would like Jesus Christ to come into your life if you would like him to forgive you of your sin pray this out like pray this out loud this is where you're asking Christ to come into your life pray this with me now.

Lord Jesus I know that I'm a sinner but I know that you're the savior who died on the cross for my sin and rose again from the dead. I turn from my sin now I choose to follow you from this moment forward be my savior and lord be my god and my friend thank you for hearing this prayer and answering this prayer in Jesus name I pray amen. An important prayer from Pastor Greg Laurie today here on A New Beginning. He's been leading a prayer with those who are making a decision for the Lord today.

It's a day they'll never forget and if you've just made that decision we want to welcome you into the family of God. Would you let us send you something to help you get started in living as a believer? It's Pastor Greg's New Believers Bible. It's an award-winning version of the Bible that has hundreds of helps for those who are new to the faith and we'll send it free of any charge when you contact us and ask for the New Believers Bible.

Just call 1-800-821-3300 call anytime 1-800-821-3300 or write A New Beginning Box 4000 Riverside, California 92514 or go online to harvest.org. Well Pastor Greg we're so excited to talk about a brand new project here at Harvest. Yes. Many listeners know you designed a gospel tract many years ago. Millions have seen it.

Yeah. But you turned this static printed piece into an animated series. It's been brought to life. Yes well it all started with the living water tract so back when I was 17 years old I just accepted Christ and in my art class we had the assignment you need to do a cartoon strip. Well that's the easiest thing in the world for me because all I do is draw cartoon strips and so I thought well now that I'm a Christian I wonder if I could do a cartoon strip about my faith and so I heard Pastor Chuck Smith talk that week about the woman at the well and how she was trying to fill a void in her life and Jesus said if you drink of the water I give you'll never thirst again because it will well up as a fountain inside of you you'll have living water.

So I thought that's what I'm going to call it living water. So I drew this little cartoon character and I just sort of laid the gospel out in this living water tract. So I didn't really know Pastor Chuck I was just attending this church but somehow I found out where he lived. I knocked on the door of his home I said hi Pastor Chuck my name is Greg Laurie I just accepted Christ and I drew this little cartoon tract based on your sermon. Well Chuck looked it over I saw him smiling and then he said to me can you reformat this in a different size because I'd like to print it. Well I'd never really had anything printed before. I was very excited I went back reformatted it brought it to Chuck they printed it they printed around 10,000 they were gone immediately then they printed a hundred thousand those two were gone then they ultimately printed well over a million and they went all around the world.

So we would just give them out to people it was a way to start a conversation. So with the popularity of the Jesus revolution film we told the story of the Little Living Water Tract and a lot of people are interested in it saying I want to see that Living Water Tract. So we thought why don't we re-envision this let's bring the Living Water Tract out now but maybe modernize it a little bit and even more what about animating it. So what we have now is an animated version of the Living Water Tract for you to have as a tool to share your faith. So I can't show it to you unfortunately but I can let you hear a little bit of it. So here is a little excerpt from this little animated film that we've done the adventures of Ben born again and yellow dog and the title of the cartoon is bridge out and this is when Ben opens up the Living Water Tract and yellow dog is reading it for the first time. Give a listen. In the beginning God created man to have a friendship with him.

Daddy! But God also gave man a choice. He did?

Because God wants us to love him because we choose to. Let me guess that didn't go well. That's true. Man said no. See you later big guy I'm doing my own thing. So man was separated from God because of sin. Oh way to go man way to ruin it for the rest of us. I'm not done. God is so holy he sets a goal of perfection and we all fall short of that. Yeah I see tell me about it.

But don't worry that's where Jesus comes in. Oh wow that's cool. So there's a little teaser if you will of what this cartoon sounds like and Dave I'm very excited to announce that this new animation of Ben born again and yellow dog is available right now on all Harvest streaming platforms. You can go to harvest.org you can go to our new streaming platform that's called harvest plus and see for yourself the first cartoon in a series of adventures that are yet to come. This is the living water track brought to life through animation.

Yeah that's right so check it out today. Each episode is the perfect length for a child's attention span if you know what I mean and there are so many biblical lessons tucked in between the action and humor. Thanks for recognizing our commitment to bring the gospel into innovative new settings so we can reach more and more people people of all ages and that's only possible through your support. Please partner with us so we can keep touching lives for eternity and Pastor Greg wants to thank you tangibly for your gift with a newly redesigned living water tract in comic book form.

It's the resource that launched it all and we'll only be able to mention this resource a short time long or a short time longer. So get in touch with your donation today call 1-800-821-3300 call anytime 1-800-821-3300 or write a new beginning box 4000 Riverside California 92514 or go online to harvest.org and remember you can watch this first episode for free there at harvest.org or through the Harvest Plus app. Well next time Pastor Greg brings us the final message from his study series Joshua Living in the Land of Promises. Join us here on A New Beginning with pastor and Bible teacher Greg Lord. Hey everybody thanks for listening to A New Beginning. This is a podcast 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 / 2024-02-23 05:37:32 / 2024-02-23 05:48:11 / 11

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