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From Resistant to Receptive [Part 2]

Alan Wright Ministries / Alan Wright
The Truth Network Radio
May 19, 2022 6:00 am

From Resistant to Receptive [Part 2]

Alan Wright Ministries / Alan Wright

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Pastor, author, and Bible teacher, Alan Wright. If you won't let me wash your feet, how are you going to let me give you an inheritance?

If you won't let me wash your feet and serve you in this way, how are you going to allow me to serve you by being put in a tomb for three days? Peter, let me wash you. That's Pastor Alan Wright. Welcome to another message of good news that will help you see your life in a whole new light. I'm Daniel Britt, excited for you to hear the teaching today in the series, Life of Peter, as presented at Reynolda Church in North Carolina. If you're not able to stay with us throughout the entire broadcast, I want to make sure you know how to get our special resource right now. It can be yours for your donation this month to Alan Wright Ministries. So as you listen to today's message, go deeper as we send you this special offer available today. Contact us at PastorAlan.org. That's PastorAlan.org.

Or call 877-544-4860. More on this later in the program. But now, let's get started with today's teaching.

Here is Alan Wright. When somebody's serving at your table, and when somebody's serving at my table, a quarter of them, you want to say thank you to them in the appropriate way, but you're not there to develop a relationship with them, right? At least I'm not... So sometimes you just, it'll come to the table, hi, I'm Samuel, I'll be your server today, and I'm guilty sometimes, I can't even remember later what they say their name was, because it's not because you're being mean, you're just, that's their role, right? So that would be the normal setting if someone's going to start washing Peter's feet while he's reclining at table, it would be an anonymous servant, and therefore it's not intimate. But as soon as Jesus did this, it became intensely personal. And so Peter's like, you can't do this, you're not the slave, and you're not the student, so it would only leave one other situation that would make you understand, and that would be that you're doing something very, very personal, and that feels too close to me. And he says, you shall never, ever, ever do this. And so it is that Jesus is insistent on this saying, if I don't do this, if I don't wash you, if I don't serve you, then you're going to have no share with me.

And when he says that, it stuns Peter, and it really gets his attention. So Peter is resistant because it doesn't fit his picture of who Jesus is, and it is so upside down, and it's so personal, it's so personal to come and wash his feet. It's one thing it's an anonymous slave, but it's something else when it's your teacher, it's your teacher, he's going to come and wash your dirty feet, and they're dirty. We used to go barefoot as kids, you know, play all day in the summertime, and by that night, your feet look like a different color. And sometimes you didn't take a bath that night, and you'd play all day the next day with those dirty feet. I mean, it's like, who has stained these feet a different color? I mean, feet are dirty.

It's the point of contact with the earth. And there was some things like, I don't want Jesus getting that close to my dirt. We struggle on several levels to really open up and receive from God, because we're like little children, and we don't know what God knows.

And sometimes it just feels like we must resist for our lack of understanding, and what seems maybe uncomfortable to us, but we don't understand how much healing, and how much change, and how much love, and how much transformation is going to take place by submitting to Him. When Bennett was, he was three or four, he was little, and he had, I think, an ear infection or something going on, and he was hurting with this, and running a fever with it, and we had an antibiotic that we were supposed to administer orally. It was a liquid, and we had one of these like, you just squeegee it, you know, squish it right into his mouth kind of thing, and he would not take his medicine.

He just blows his mouth at this. He couldn't stand the thought of that bad tasting stuff touching his mouth, and we were just desperate, because he was not getting healed, and we finally, he wouldn't take it. We finally, we called the doctor, we said, what are we going to do? And the nurse said, you're going to have to give him this medicine. It's what you're going to have to do, and she said, as unpleasant as this is, if you will not take it, you're going to have to pin him down, hold his nose, and shoot this medicine in his mouth, and so he has to swallow it.

We're like, are you kidding? We were traumatizing child, so we tried it. We begged, and we pled with him, you know, to take it.

We tried every trick in the book. He would not take a medicine, and finally, I just said, honey, we got to do it. He's got to get this medicine, and I went in the kitchen floor, and I pinned him down, and I said, Ann, you hold his nose, and the poor little guy lying there like that, just pinned down, getting abused, and I was like, oh my goodness, and we squirted the thing in there, and you know, he had to swallow, and he got up, stood up, and all he looked at us, he said, do you think that made God happy? It was traumatic. It was very traumatic, and I said, son, you need to take this medicine.

We can't explain to you how much you need this. God doesn't normally pin you down and hold your nose, although Saul on the road to Damascus was something like that, where a blinding light came and knocked him down, received from God, and so we're resistant because we don't know what's going on sometimes, and you have to have a revelation of how good he is, and how healing he is, and how wonderful he is. It's something that we just resist at times because it seems like God couldn't be that good, and we, secondly, feel so unworthy. Just looking back over decades of ministry and praying with people and saying, what is it that causes us to resist? I would say probably somewhere top of the list is people feel unworthy. We know our own dirt, and we feel unworthy, and we feel really bad if somebody else does for us what we feel like we should have done ourselves. This is like, this is like my job, one of my jobs is to take out the trash, and I try to be diligent on taking out the trash, but sometimes, you know, I'm lost in prayer and Bible study, and I forget to take the trash out, and there have been times where my wife has even reminded me that the trash needs to go out, and I have been so lost in Bible study and prayer that I still didn't take out the trash, and the worst thing that happened is for me to look up from my chair, watch it golf, and see her pick up the trash and start getting ready to carry it out.

That's the worst thing that ever happened to a husband is like she's carrying, and that's nothing to make you jump up more than that. No, no, I'm going to take it. I was going to take it.

I've got it. Here, get back, sit back down in there. Let me take the trash out.

You don't want everyone here. Well, I'll just take it out myself then. Nothing feels worse than to have somebody else do for you what you feel like you should have done for yourself. I shouldn't have gotten myself in this predicament.

If it weren't for all my sin and all my flaws and faulty feelings, I wouldn't be in this situation. How can I expect God to come and serve me and wash my feet? I got my own feet dirty.

I should wash them. We're unworthy, we feel, and so we don't want Jesus then to come and get close to the worst part, my feet, my dirtiest, smelliest part of me. I don't want you getting down into that. And I think that we're afraid of intimacy with Jesus sometimes because we don't understand how good He is. I remember, this is just crazy, confession, but I remember early in my life, back like senior in college and early years, I so wanted to just get closer and closer to God. I started going to some meetings where the power of the Spirit was moving. I started getting exposed to some different things, healing ministries and things like that.

I was just so hungry. I wanted more of God. But I remember specifically just having a fear. And one of the fears was to go into a meeting where there's an evangelist or somebody there and he's moving in the Spirit and getting words of knowledge. And he's like calling out, somebody's got a problem on their shoulder and God wants to heal it. And somebody comes forward and they get healed. And I'm like, I just know if I go in one of those meetings that he's going to look out there and call and you there sitting there on the fourth pew, I got a picture of you stealing chewing gum when you're in the second grade. And also, you know, you get this feeling. Do you ever have that feels like if I get really close to God, that's going to just divulge all of my wickedness and I feel so unworthy and all that. Beloved, let me just assure you of this. Jesus Christ came not to condemn, but to save. And he came to bear your shame, not to expose it. That's Alan Wright. And we'll have more teaching in a moment from today's important series. Ever feel like the pressure is always on?

Do you find it hard to say no, worried that you'll disappoint someone? The Bible tells us only one thing about Adam and Eve's relationship in paradise. They were naked and felt no shame. But as soon as sin entered the world, they became anxious, plagued with a gnawing question. What must I do to be accepted?

There is only one solution. The grace of God that lifts our shame. In a new six week video masterclass, Pastor Alan exposes the dynamics of shame and shows the path to freedom, whether as an individual or in a small group. The video series is sure to bring healing and hope. When you make your gift to Alan Wright Ministries this month, we'll send you the digital masterclass videos and study guides as our way of saying thanks for your partnership.

In a world so quick to say shame on you, it's time to let God's grace take the shame off you. We are happy to send this to you as our thanks from Alan Wright Ministries. Call us at 877-544-4860. That's 877-544-4860. Or come to our website, PastorAlan.org.

Today's teaching now continues. Here once again is Alan Wright. He loves you. If my children have something that would be humiliating or shameful to them, I want to protect them, not put it on display. He bore your sin and He bore your shame. You can trust Him.

He covers us with His grace. You can let God come in to the worst part of who you are, even the part that nobody else knows about, without fear, because His love for you is so sure and He already knows everything about you. He already knows everything you've done wrong, everything you ever will do that's wrong.

He knows all the dirt between your toes already, so He cannot at any point be disillusioned with you and you will never have Him hang His head in disappointment. I think I was in fourth grade, might have been fifth grade, but I was a good kid and so I didn't do things, you know, that were bad in school. My buddy Bruce was a prankster though.

He did. He got in trouble. We were very good friends and I love Bruce and we hung out together and he was fun, but he did stuff. I don't do that stuff. I was a good kid and so on the last day of school, it was always one of those things like kids are trying to pull some kind of prank, especially on the bus on the way home on the last day of school. So last day of school, fourth grade, and Bruce has brought water balloons that he's going to throw out of the school bus on the last day of school.

We're not talking about bringing guns, knives, and cocaine. We're talking about water balloons. It was a different day, but anyway, I was like, he said, why don't you take some? I'm like, no, Bruce, no. So finally, I put some water balloons in my backpack as well and as we were getting on the bus on this day, the teacher, our teacher, my beloved teacher, decided she was going to search everybody's bag before they got on the bus.

And I was like, oh no. And she found some water balloons in Bruce's bag. She's like, oh, Bruce, I knew something like that.

Let me have these. And she was gone and then she'd kind of routinely check my bag because she knew that Alan wouldn't have anything wrong. And there were the water balloons and I'll never forget her face.

She was like, oh, like I was the last hope of a really good kid. And it's just like, face just sank, just sank like that. There's a little part of all of us that feel like you get really close to God.

He's just going to like, he says, face is going to come down. Let me just tell you about who God is. He is the one who lifts up his countenance upon you. And so it is that Peter's resistance is like our resistance in all these ways. But the number one reason that Peter didn't want Jesus to wash his feet is the same reason, number one reason that we're most resistant to being filled with the Holy Spirit and filled with God and receiving from God. And that is he didn't yet understand the gospel. But when you really understand the gospel, it turns everything upside down. Peter will one day make amazing sacrifices in the name of Christ. He will one day give up his life without thought because of the assurance of heaven. But what he realizes over time after Pentecost is that the empowerment for servanthood doesn't come by Peter doing things for Jesus. This has been on display in Peter's life before. I'll never leave you though others fall away. He denies them three times. Tell me to come into water.

I'll walk on the water and he sinks down in the water. The commitment that Peter makes to Jesus is flimsy. And so the gospel is not about you making the strong commitment to hold on to God.

The gospel is about what God has done to make a strong commitment to hold on to you. If you build your life on what you pledge to do for God, then it'll only lead towards two possible results. It'll either lead towards pride in which you say, look at me and what a good job I'm doing.

I'm better than other people. I serve God more than other people. Or it will lead to rebellion where you say, I've tried hard to do good things for God in order to be blessed, but I always keep failing and therefore I give up and I won't try anymore. And Jesus says to Peter, if I don't wash you, you have no share with me. And when he says this word share, probably it would have brought to mind one of the primary meanings and usages of this word for it is the same word that is used in Luke chapter 15 when the prodigal son comes to his father and says, give me my share of the inheritance.

It's an inheritance word. And what Jesus is saying is if I don't wash you, you'll have no share in the inheritance that I want to share with you. This is mind bending, but this is what Jesus is saying to Peter.

He is saying, I have come so that you will share in the inheritance that should have been reserved only for the son of God. What he's saying is that if you don't let me wash you, then you won't have the inheritance that I came to give to you. And so Peter doesn't understand this fully, but he says, well, not just my feet, but my hands, my face, my head, my whole being, and probably Peter's just thinking he means I need to take a ritual bath or something.

He doesn't understand that Jesus is prefiguring the bigger cause for his coming. And that is not to wash feet as humiliating a task as that was, but to come and do something altogether more unimaginable to die on a cross. He's essentially saying, Peter, if you won't let me wash your feet, how are you going to let me die for you? If you won't let me wash your feet, how are you going to let me give you an inheritance? If you won't let me wash your feet and serve you in this way, how are you going to allow me to serve you by being put in a tomb for three days? Peter, let me wash you. Peter, let me wash you.

Let me come into the area of your life which you feel most unworthy and wash you as white as snow. Let me come so close to you that my very life comes into you. Peter, he is saying, I have come to usher in a new covenant. The covenant of the law was about external code and what you do to try to live up to that code, serving God. But the new covenant is about something altogether different. It's not about you because you have affection for Jesus or fear of Jesus, trying harder and doing a better job.

It's about a change from within. The time is coming, Jeremiah prophesied, in which I'll put my law inside of them. What God wants to do is change us so that what we want is different, so that when we serve him, it's because we want to. The old covenant said, serve God, obey God, because that's the way it will go well for you.

The new covenant says, serve God, obey God, because you've been changed on the inside by the power of the Holy Spirit and you want to. Let me wash you, Peter. Put your name in there. Let me wash you, Alan. Let me teach you. Let me serve you. Please let me fill you. Please let me feed you.

Please let me nourish you. Please let me guide you. Let me instruct you. Let me strengthen you. Let me pick you up. Let me give you joy. Let me take your burden. Let me deliver you from evil. Let me, Jesus said, change your life. And when you see it, you see what he's done for you, that's when you begin to easily receive, because the Son of Man came not to serve, not to be served, but to serve and to give his life as a ransom for many. That's the gospel. Alan Bright and the conclusion of today's teaching, From Resistant to Receptive. We're continuing in the Life of Peter series and Alan is back here in the studio in a moment with additional insight on what we've just heard and today's final words. Ever feel like the pressure is always on?

Do you find it hard to say no, worried that you'll disappoint someone? The Bible tells us only one thing about Adam and Eve's relationship in paradise. They were naked and felt no shame. But as soon as sin entered the world, they became anxious, plagued with a gnawing question. What must I do to be accepted? There is only one solution, the grace of God that lifts our shame. In a new six-week video masterclass, Pastor Alan exposes the dynamics of shame and shows the path to freedom. Whether as an individual or in a small group, the video series is sure to bring healing and hope. When you make your gift to Alan Wright Ministries this month, we'll send you the digital masterclass videos and study guides as our way of saying thanks for your partnership.

In a world so quick to say shame on you, it's time to let God's grace take the shame off you. We are happy to send this to you as our thanks from Alan Wright Ministries. Call us at 877-544-4860.

That's 877-544-4860. Or come to our website, PastorAlan.org. Alan, part of the mission is to proclaim the gospel of grace. And so then, as we will often speak about legalism, and I think, you know, so often I'm guilty of doing this, thinking of that as such a major negative influence in our lives, it has to be people who are out to control and manipulate. But so often, I think, as we see in this type of teaching, legalism is often accompanied by people who are well-intended.

They want to do right, good, holy things. So well-intended. Peter was well-intended. I mean, when he resisted Jesus washing his feet, you'd have to say he was well-intended. He wasn't meaning, at that moment, he wasn't saying, I want to reject you, Jesus. He just didn't get the gospel yet.

He didn't get it yet. And here's what I want to say to listeners. God came for you in the person of Jesus Christ.

What evidence more could there be of the magnitude of his love for you? To hear him speaking to you, let me wash you. Let me love you. Let me transform you. Let me fill you with my Spirit. Let me teach you.

Let me guide you. In other words, he's saying, don't be resistant to the good gifts I have for you. Receive freely. For as you receive, then you'll have it to give away. Today's good news message is a listener supported production of Alan Wright Ministries.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-04-13 11:05:56 / 2023-04-13 11:15:07 / 9

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