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April 7, 2022 6:00 am
Pastor Rick teaches from the letter to the Hebrews
I look over the years of my ministry and I think of all the things that I thought that I would be able to influence towards correction. How often I fail. It's enough to make you want to give except your eyes on the Lord, do what you told and what is best 10 let him work it out through there so that I can stand before him, hear those wonderful words well done. That's what I'm after.
I don't always get it done but I always talk to him about it. This is cross reference radio with our pastor and teacher Rick Gaston. Rick is the pastor of Calvary Chapel Mechanicsville. Pastor Rick is currently teaching through the book of Hebrews. Please stay with us after today's message to hear more information about cross reference radio, specifically how you can get a free copy of this teaching. Now here's Pastor Rick in Hebrews chapter 11 with a brand-new study called battlefield faith. We are in letter to the Hebrews chapter 11 will only take three intense verses so Hebrews chapter 11 beginning in verse 30. By faith the walls of Jericho fell down after they were encircled for seven days. By faith the harlot Rahab did not perish with those who did not believe when she had received the spies with peace and what more shall I save for the time would fail me to tell of Gideon Mubarak Samson Jeff, also of David and Samuel and the prophets battlefield of faith that is the main theme that's coming out of this section were considering from Joshua to the prophets, and as we looking at these servants of faith mentioned by the writer.
Each one was forced to face death and violence.
They didn't have much of a say so in the matter.
These were days of war in their lives and how would they confront them. That is what is of interest to us. This was physical war, and it was spiritual war also and they were put into a situation where they trust God or not. That was their choice. That is our choice whenever we are faced with something as intense as war, violence or anything else. In fact, one of Satan's great tools on churches and Christians in those churches in this country.
I cannot speak for other countries.
I don't live there, but I live here and I see it on the Internet.
I see it in churches seal. I speak with colleagues of the faith.
It's not something that's intense. It's usually a flea respect. Something that lands on our tender feelings and upsets our faith and we feel so justified in falling apart these lessons in the Scripture are here to help us not be that way. What is wrong with the church. What is wrong with us. Why do we have such thin skins. While we spiritually hemophiliacs is a little bit and you bleeding all over the place. My feelings were hurt and have asked Jesus about anything at that point, I go with my feelings while I'm not saying these things to beat the flock beat sheet.
I would hope all Christians would want to hear what I'm saying. I would hope Christians were sick, amen pastor.
We need to be stronger these people. They are not only faced life and death in the face of violence and war, but they faced all the junk in between.
Also by faith we are to face these things or not. That is the story of Hebrews chapter 11 were only taking a small section of them. This morning we have more in the days to come. It was their faith in God that brought victories and I want that I want that for me and I want that for everyone else. Also I look over the years of my ministry and I think of all the things that I thought that I would be able to influence towards correction. How often I fail. It's enough to make you want to give up, except keep your eyes on the Lord, do what you told and what is best you can let him work it out through there so that I can stand before him and hear those wonderful words well done.
That's what I'm after. I don't always get it. Well done, but I always talk to him about it. Whether I do or not, I'm always on my knees in one form or another. Driving a car, mowing the lawn, ignoring other people whatever I may be doing want to do it right you do to well it's now look at this 30th verse by faith the walls of Jericho fell down after they were encircled for seven days.
Now most of you know the story. I don't want to take up too much of our time filling it in, but there was Jericho. This fortified city impregnable by every standard of man so the writer now goals from Moses that when the previous paragraph. That section we had last week to Joshua of the outstanding men in the Scripture 33 stand out to me exemplary in their faith. There was Joseph Joseph, the son of Jacob and mean what could you charge him with maybe that moment where dad father Jacob got it wrong. According to Joseph and blessing the two sons.
That's a minor one then there's Daniel what did you charge Daniel with being too strong in the faith, not feeding liens man was amazing in this Joshua the bypassed one who thinks of Joshua, when you think of great men of the Scripture because he is always in the shadow of Moses when he was a dynamo in the faith and that's was being brought up now if that is not even named by the writer here. He says I faith the walls of Jericho fell yet, the leadership of Joshua God's appointed man did not argue the methods of God. I do, I think about how God doesn't does not do a thing and I argue with him. Does it have to be this way could you not have liked Ottavio would upset some great plan if I were a wealthy man.
Joshua doesn't argue. He simply chooses to believe any acts upon the choice something we fail at.
So often we come we sing praises and then do we live as though we really praise we live as though we really only say I love you Lord, thank you, do we act upon the love and thanks that we give to him or do we crouch around our thin skin as the week goes on.
Something to think about what do I do when pressure comes my way. Well, it was time to enter the promised land, God told them they could have this land by sword, but he said it's going to be yours. There waiting for them at the entrance to the promised land was Jericho.
Satan has his obstacles to hinder every spiritual progress that we set out to achieve. In Christ, he always has his fortifications right there at the entrance and when they're not at the entrance there later on there waiting for us as it was Iwo Jima hit the beaches that whirly was the opposition the anticipated but it was there found out about it later to the Jews.
The city was invincible to Roman legions. It would've been quite a challenge. And yet, it had to go down this passage into the promise of God may be God's promised you something and you set out the cross and do it there's Jericho. It has to go down. If it does not, it will attack you from the rear.
It will take you out.
So as we discussed Moses with the Passover. He kept it by faith trusting in God that led them out of slavery of Egypt's bondage and then by faith he led them through the wilderness and all of the scary and deadly things. There could have consumed the people the Amalekites. The Edomites starvation, thirst, so we see faith taking them through taking them out of Egypt taking them through the wilderness and now by faith we see Joshua taking them into the promised land by sword this time they would have to work for archaeologist cannot deny that something catastrophic happened to Jericho and it was instant it wasn't slow and drawn out. They found that the houses still had much grain much food something suddenly happened to that place. It was Joshua. That's what happened to that place the hand of God using his servant Joshua was the catastrophic event for that which oppose God's people so easy to preach about the stuff is so easy to listen to the stuff. It is imperative to listen is imperative to preach on it because without that there will be no forward progress of the church and it has worked in the church for centuries. In spite of our difficulties and shortcomings. What must've broken the heart of Paul when he had to write to the Philippians into two women that just one getting along. Can't you to get this right can you not resolve this. You do not have to have birthday parties for each other. Can you live like you believe in what you say you believe so there they were sitting in the pew. That morning the Philippian letter was read and their names are singled out in front of everybody try that today you might have a lawsuit faith that we belong to it as well packaged. What are we going to do with the receipt of this package. In contrast to the generation that could not cross into the promised land because the faithlessness the writer brings up Jericho and he says this was a different group. This was a different generation. In fact their leader. He too was once a slave this group coming in that trusting God. You see, Israel wandered and wandered for 40 years as judgment from God because of their faith vastness because faithfulness matters do we believe that we believe that when faith is absent from any event going on in our lives. The outcome is less than victorious is less than pleasing.
It is less than right, and so the writer says, by faith the walls of Jericho fell down and they were encircled for seven days. It was brought down by an extraordinary and a miraculous event, not one Canon not one shot was fired to bring those walls down. It was the act of God and so he is telling his audience.
Again, who is tinkering with the idea of leaving Christianity to go back to Judaism, he says, remember what faith does, don't quit. Don't give up you belong to the winning side. Verse 31.
If you look with me at verse 31 by faith the harlot Rahab did not perish with those who did not believe when she had received the spies with peace. While there was preparation work going on before the armies arrived. Yes the spies had to go on this reconnaissance mission was very dangerous.
They survived by the hand of God, but not just the obedient march contributed to the loss of the city and the victory of the Jews. Not only would there be lives lost in Jericho there would be lives saved. The difference would come down to faith so Rahab appears early in the story. The conquest of Canaan at the threshold of the conquest of Canaan Jericho again would be lost with the family of a harlot in the harlot herself they would be saved. Ephesians 28. We all know this verse, those of us who love the Scripture by grace you have been saved through faith goes on and that not of yourselves, it is a gift of God is something gotchas here. You did not earn it.
It is something that God is just getting it is his goodness and she is the picture of that with an open this up a little bit because it merits our consideration in detail. By faith the harlot Rahab did not perish with those who did not believe a harlot that works strikes us right between the eyes stands out a harlot, but good enough to travel with Joshua.
That's how the story plays out and that's not the whole story either. There's all a lot more surrounding this woman, and it is all good. From this point on her life changes. It blossoms becomes what she failed to be without the people of God.
Once the people of God showed up everything change because she submitted by faith.
Yeah, we got that name Joshua I would just say it's a Hebrew name Moses tailored it for the man Joshua gave him the name it means Yahweh is salvation, how would you say it in the English language Jesus.
Jesus is the translation of Joshua and the Hebrew word from the Greek into the English Jesus a harlot, but good enough to travel with Jesus that is been the story since the days of Christ. How many of such characters, and worse walk with Jesus.
What the Pharisees that he sits in he eats with sinners.
Thank you Lord. He still does it. And we acted out every communion table.
We take we acted out, the Bible does not for a moment applaud her behavior towards the one she turned to by faith, the right got.
She opted out of being judged and dying with those under judgment. Those who did not believe old is a whole lot of applications coming out that little point if God saved this woman who believed he could've saved anyone in Jericho except for one thing, faithlessness should know the story. The story below 40 years old.
The caravans had brought news of what God was doing in Egypt. When Moses was doing it is spread throughout the ancient world everyone in Jericho knew the story they know the story what was happening in the wilderness with Sihanouk of those kings, how they fell at the sword of the Jews.
They had no reason to not believe I chose not to believe anyway they died in their unbelief. She did not.
She could have said to the spies you kidding me this a ragtag of wilderness wanderers to come in here with breaks and pitchforks spears and swords that you got from the dying army of the Faro you think you want to come in here and take these walls down.
I don't think so. That is what she could've said that would've been a human reason without faith human reason goes so far without faith it needs faith catapulted to the next level. She got she got it right.
She trusted in the Lord in her own words. Joshua chapter 2 verse eight, or Yahweh your God, he is God in heaven above and on earth beneath the covers everything is the whole thing it is that the exclusion of all the fake God's business angle, your God is the God in hours or less, or does she not saying that she sang the God of the Jews is God and there is no other quite a powerful revelation facing that she was because had she not entered into this agreement, she would have been slain with everyone else. She knew her life was less than what it should've been. So she changed sides, something we try to do on behalf of lost souls.
We try to convert them from the fruit of sin and unbelief and rebellion against the God of heaven and earth convert them to the God of heaven and earth come into salvation, it says here when she had received the spies with peace when not made right with God by the work we do, even if it's for him, but we all made right for good works is Grayson is the goodness of God that brings us to his side and keeps us there. We are supposed to behave as though we obey him that were going to do something now that we have been saved for purpose. His purpose not ours is purpose, whatever it may entail look at next session about the side of faith that cause blood.
This side here though.
Again, these are the war clouds over the people that they are facing. Ephesians 2 again needs to be reread the little bit more to it. Ephesians 2 verses eight through 10 for by grace you have been saved through faith, trusting God, according to his word and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God not of works, not of deeds, lest anyone should boast.
Bragging about how I did this for God had actually helped about that Dave Boyd God is fortunate to have me on his side. That would be the stupidest thing a human being could say.
And yet it is said, there are those that think that God owes them something that somehow they going to survive death. They is going to work out for them and worked out got them this far will carry them. The rest of the way they are drunk with their unbelief. Don't say that as their enemy is just true. Hopefully it will resonate with someone who may be falling for that.
He continues in Ephesians 2 in verse 10 for we are his workmanship, his pole IMO is poetry we get our ringers word poetry from that Greek word translated workmanship for Lima, created in Christ Jesus for good works, good deeds, which God has prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.
So her good deeds did not savor as said, but we are created to do good deeds, God is expecting that from us out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks and the life moves on out of what's in the heart, all sorts of wicked things. But if the heart is touched by God. It will be fruitful.
Things to come out, you know it's true. You sat through sermons where the Holy Spirit is convicted you and you have felt yourself resisting. If you been around Christianity long enough, some pet gripe that you don't want to let go of yet because you feel justified or wounded or whatever it is you hear the Lord speaking of love and forgiveness and what he did for you and you harden not your heart deceitful and desperately wicked above all things. Who can know it. God, yeah. And then God tells you about a so you can know what to do something about to shut your mouth and work it out with him instead of justifying yourself and no exception, but I work hard to reduce rebukes from the Lord. I try to stay a step ahead of him. He's fast.
Should we not, what would happen if all Christians were determined to be perfect you fail, but the pursuit of that perfection would take you to an altitude you would otherwise never come to in your own strength. It does count.
Don't be discouraged. Discouragement against like the silver was in the days of Solomon.
Like stones on the ground schedule can be picked up anywhere so cheap it's on your dashboard in your car it's in your left shoe.
It's in your right hand. It's everywhere.
Anybody can be discouraged takes a child of faith to work through this life. Not without discouragement and spite of discouragement.
Yes. So what I know you're there I can get you out of here. What I want to do what I gotta do you want to sit there than sit there, but I have work to do.
That has to be our approach to something like that.
Maybe you're a nicer personality and use it well okay you can sit there to scare Newton that told me had I choose my tone filthy animal you're going to be there fine which Explorer you discouragement. It's there for Rahab is a type of the unbeliever converted to belief by the grace of God in the presence of those who refused to be converted. Here are some points from the life of Rahab.
She needed a regime change is a ruler in our life. You know all of that old song say what you want about the singer of the writer but it's a fact. You gotta serve somebody is either going to be the Lord of the devil. You've got to serve somebody. If it's the devil you need a regime change leadership needs to change. She recognize that another point is that while she was trapped in sin should being a harlot and approaching judgment until the people of God King. That's true with sinners is not there under the condemnation of Christ of God for being sinners and then the righteous are used by God to bring them into the knowledge of Christ, even Saul of Tarsus. It was not directly converted by other Christians who is but without those other Christians in their lives never would've been on that road to Damascus with the Lord intercepted so we count every one of us move you've been listening to cross reference radio the daily radio ministry of Pastor Rick asked Calvary Chapel in Mechanicsville, Virginia.
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