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May 18, 2021 1:00 am
What's your heart toward the Lord about serving God when I talk about sparkling you will go to Google are you like this is awesome I get to do something for you and for your people are grateful for the opportunity only wanted that should be your attitude. What Jesus did for us. There should be that we will do for him now notice something some of you really gonna relate to this song says we omitted the Lord does not say well so here's the deal, and arrange a disciple you gonna put some awesome knowledge and thoughts in your hand. I'm going to use you as a missionary to go world rod.
You two thirds of the New Testament is already set it arising on the city that they no more, no less, no more will come to cross the bridge with David McGee. David is the senior pastor of the bridge in Kernersville, North Carolina you know you are part of God's plan to reach the world's true and today Pastor David tells how you can be used change people's lives as he continues teaching the book of acts chapter 9 here's David McGee with his teaching. Who are you, Lord, turn with me to acts chapter 9 what's been going on the early church is beginning now to spread out the reason they're beginning to spread out is well. Saul is persecuting the church in Jerusalem and were going to continue on with the story of Saul, so acts chapter 9 verse one reads then Saul still breathing threats and murder against the disciples of the Lord went to the high priest and ask letters from him to the synagogues of Damascus, so that if he found any other way, whether men or women, he might bring them bound to Jerusalem. So here Saul he's been persecuting the church is continuing to persecute the church and he was a big part of the reason the church got scattered outside of Jerusalem, but for Saul who is, this all or nothing got even that wasn't enough, the fact that he had driven a lot of these guys underground outsiders was a good decision. What I hear. Some of them are in Damascus, which is like hundred 3040 miles away about a week's journey is like can I go get some of them there and mess with them. There this job was. He was hot he was hostile towards Christianity as his interest because a lot of times somebody will be hot and hostile towards Christianity and sometimes I'm you know I watch people on television and and I certainly wonder this with you and Madeleine O'Hara who had a lot to do with getting prayer taken out of school.
I looked at that what happened there was a Christian really mean to her first. You know what happened but a lot of times people like that are right on the edge of coming to the Lord that we don't think that's right somebody's hostile to us and are sharing the gospel with the hostile way way from coming to the Lord which no sometimes a shell gets the most brittle right before it breaks to be encouraged to be encouraged with that next time you go to a family reunion or family get together and unite the family members hostile about the gospel toward you, it doesn't mean that there that far. It's really mean the Holy Spirit is now really getting under their skin having a hard time running from the Lord's always try to run from God is trying to drive these Christians not just out of Jerusalem, but he was stranded exterminated. You will the Christians obviously was a very successful verse three as he journeyed, he came near Damascus, and suddenly a light shone around them, from heaven, and he fell to the ground, and heard a voice saying to him, Saul, Saul, Larry persecuting me this is interesting.
Notice the words and far too often we read the Bible we don't pay attention to small details. There's no detail just thrown in there. Jesus is speaking to Saul and noticed the question Saul Solari persecuting me that's interesting what was Saul actually physically persecuting Jesus will know because Jesus had already died and resurrected and then ascended, but in fact he really was persecuting Jesus both spiritually and literally by persecuting the body of Christ. See, we are the church. I know that sometimes we refer to buildings as churches and understand that that's the name that we give into the structure and we can designate you know, the fact is, it's not the building is the people we are the church and and so we try to help you with this by putting the church in a warehouse and hopefully this helps you to overcome some of that separation thing that the church is not the business people, but were called the body of Christ.
The body of Christ to stop and just think about that of the significance of that phrase. This isn't something that we came up with her. I came up with this is what the Bible says actually. Ephesians chapter 4 verse 11 and 12 in this important verses say this. He talked about Jesus is the one who gave these gifts to the church, the apostles and prophets, the evangelist and the pastors and teachers, verse 12. The responsibility is to equip God's people to do his work and build up the church, the body of Christ that leave that verse up there for a moment.
The key verse around here and I'll tell you why, because far too many people think Christianity is a spectator sport I think will note the body of Christ that you know you you go and visit a church on Sunday and there's a guy standing up there talking and he's got some people that help them and they basically are supposed to do everything. I'm sorry that's very biblical. What this book says is that my role and the team got is assembled. Our role, our responsibility is to equip you guys to do the work of the ministry's understand if you came up with the church wears a spectator sport is not that complex and I don't make any apologies for that. That's what the Scripture points us to be part of the body. Now understand sometimes party body gets hurt when he gets hurt you rapidly manage a new care for some of you have been wounded and understand we want to wrap our 11 arms around you when we want see God pour out his mercy and his grace upon you.
But there comes a time when you step out in faith and you begin to serve the Lord, and if you continue not to serve the Lord well. As part of the body that is not functioning your younger you may not understand this but told her he, the more this will mean something to you as you get older parts of your body. They don't work like they used to. It's interesting thing when parts of your body. Don't function sometimes they fall asleep. Never have that happen.
That's really annoying because each product you are trying to walk in Ellison you know your you know and and everything I got wood to her to let you know. You know, but parts of the body are like that should be should be awake and serving the Lord and again were called the body. The body of Christ. Another place for Sprint and swell 20 sentences is now all of you together. Christ body in each one of you is a separate and necessary part of C we all join together to think it's a pitiful thing.
The watchers people serve together like pour out their life together and yes there's challenges in last 30 there's a tough time, sometimes with it's an awesome thing to see it fit together because he I have certain weaknesses and disperse certain weaknesses. But as we joined the other weaknesses are covered. That's a beautiful thing that happens in the body of Christ.
But if you're trying to do a Lone Ranger thinking what happens. Your weaknesses are uncovered. There's nobody watching your back if you will. Verse five Paul answers and he said who are you, Lord. Then the Lord said, I am Jesus whom you are persecuting is hard for you to kick against the goat on that explain the good thing is just a minute. But notice the question. Who are you, Lord. Interesting question.
Let's get the picture. Saul was raised in Tarsus will find out some of these things later. But Saul was raising parts as well. What you may not know it's you know he was school there and that may not mean anything to you but it was, like the hail that the Harvard and the Yale of the day it was the third largest university city in the world behind Alexandria, Egypt and Athens, Greece.
So he was well schooled any winter. Jerusalem was trained under gamma Leo who was a famous Rabbi for instructing people in Judaism all that training. He was religious, serving the church so zealously was trying to wipe out people he perceived as being against but he didn't know God is no God and no God was such a relevant picture for us because all over the try this work. There's people sitting in places called churches that don't know God and they won't even get the chance. In the service to come to know God and that saddens me because somewhere in their mind they think will you know I am doing this doing that I'm going to church and give it a little bit. I'm okay. Jesus said there's going to come a day when people will approach him and his fiancée depart for me in their responses. Interesting to say. But when I did this and I did that I gave to the poor, and I did this that the other and Jesus's return to them and say we didn't do enough to turn to them and say you know what I don't know you. I don't know you don't know me Christianity.
So what you know it's a Jesus, you got to know how you come to know Jesus. While it starts by asking him to forgive you percent you straighten up your license line right and all those other little things we have. It's coming him and asking him to forgive you of your sins and then you begin a walk and a journey with him through that but you know Saul was fighting against God. He was fighting against God, and he was hurt himself see this this thing go when it really was an plow animals oximeter are different things. Those animals tend the and they can kick in. It can be very painful. So what they used to do they have these goads which were much like spears. They were spears at one point in this way as the ox or whatever was pointing that way. That way, and they went to kick the person behind them. They would hit that goat and pretty soon they would begin to learn not to try to kick the person I'm sure it took some mama while some of you your kicking against the goats and it hurts in your life right now is painful because your continuing the fight against God's gonna get tiring and if you wonder who's going to tire out first, let me assure you it's not going to be God is going to wear you out.
Saul found himself worn out and the Lord said you know you hurt yourself. As you try to run for major try to fight against me. You're hurting yourself. No wonder how many people in this very room this morning that describes fight against God. You hurt yourself and your hurting people around you. Your hurting those that love you because you're fighting against the Lord, you know, we often try to blame God for our pain. We often try to blame others for our pain going. You realize he's inflicted more pain on you than anybody else that you let somebody else problem usually lies within her own heart.
I know this stuff to hear because we like to think will so ensues it isn't going so did that but our biggest problem is in here and it's also the problem.
We don't like to deal with and it comforts us to run on the little women words is why are you kicking against the Saul, Saul, why is everybody else get and you said so are you kicking against the goads partners will be right back with more from David McGee on cross the bridge right now there's a word from associate pastor DA Brown. We want to take just a minute to pray for some cities in our listening audience specifically read sport Roseburg Seaside Selma Sprague River in the Dallas and Oregon and also Hammett in Pennsylvania. Father, we thank you for the cities. We thank you for the people living in them.
We pray that your Holy Spirit would pour out and draw many people until personal, intimate relationship with Jesus. Father we pray that many people would be healed, who perhaps have had bad experiences in the past God that they would receive forgiveness and forgive those in their lives who has offended when we pray that you draw people in the Bible teaching church is that you get the pastor's wisdom and discernment father to love the flock to serve them well or we pray for all the city leaders that we would honor the respect that you will give them wisdom and discernment, father, or that it might go peaceable with us will we love you we pray that you would bless the people living in the cities. In Jesus name, amen, amen. Thank you brother and now get back to David McGee as he continues teaching verse by verse, verse six, so he talked about Saul trembling and astonished said, Lord, when he wanted and then the Lord said to him, arise, and go into the city and you will be told what you must do as an interesting passage and in its mention here.
Acts chapter lines also mention acts 22 and X 26 Saul retells the story of Saul's name later will be change the policy that were not there yet but why did Saul keep telling the story is an awesome story. It was this is the story of his conversion and let me encourage you to share that story often not about Saul years because is a very powerful thing.
But notice what Paul says Paul says Saul all users were Saul is okay your Lord to kick against in his first response is what you want me to do what he omitted.
I love that question not want to live God and do what you want me to do. My father taught me a lot about leadership needs to say something that stuck with me all the as a young child at thing go to work as a you got go work know I get to go to work. Stuck with me because I grew up understanding that a job was nonowners possibility but a privilege and a blessing to others saying he had his once your leadership to get to work half days or 24 hours a day.
Affects 12 to 12 hour day now what you want me to do.
Let me ask you question friend what's your heart towards your Lord when when I talk about serving God when I talk about sparkle and start your goal go to Google are you like Lord.
This is awesome I get to do something for you and for your people. I'm so grateful for the opportunity and what he wanted. That should be your attitude after what Jesus did for us. There should be no thing that we won't do for him now notice something some of you really gonna relate to this. Saul says we only do the Lord does not say well Saul, here's the deal. I'm gonna raise you up on than a disciple yet. Gonna put some awesome knowledge and thoughts in your head I'm going to use you as a missionary to go world rod. You cannot write two thirds of the New Testament is already said it, arise, and go on the city. Step eight.
No more, no less, but no more see a lot of times we want the steps laid out for us doing what will Lord show me ABCD and E and F and then all step and they argue that many of you were in the military percent player in the military need to know basis. We are on a need to know basis with God when got to step in a usually just waits to see what we do and were not willing to step in a show you be some of you waiting for the whole plan to unfurl in front of you before you step in a I'm sorry God doesn't work like that is never done it with me. He didn't know Saul life lesson here following Jesus is made up of many small steps. What town we look for the big steps with chitosan. Here's the small ones we think make me do this and how we do that, God let you know what I want to take small steps as you learn to walk then you'll be strengthened.
See there's there's a process to you. Don't you know you don't you don't enter your two-year-old into the Boston Marathon to be around 26 mile teaching the wall and there's a there's a realism to that member is like six years old.
My parents ever drop me off at a public pool hardly swim a lick and then they were taken up sign-ups for the swim team. I figure I'll drive back to my parents as kids went out upwards renting is that you can't even stand in the 3 foot over your head.
See, there were steps that I needed to take in the steps that we need to take in and know God, God will give you dreams and visions about doing things for him. God will fill your heart and fill your mind with stuff that he desires for you to do in the small steps are part of. I don't know where we got our mind that God is the dream kill you know that well back. I say that all serve God. He's going.
You know, and I hate the cold is gonna send me the last car you know I hate that he is going to send me to the debtor. Now, you believe in the lot you step out to serve the Lord and what you find is more joy and more peace than you ever knew existed. As you serve is not the dream killer. That's not what this book.
This book says he's going to do more than you can imagine more than you're able to even comprehend or think about that… Of those things now I understand and I sent you, gotta God to them. If you will, and so as you can live for the Lord and can't all be about ministry but the Lord does one raise up people.
Verse seven and the men who journeyed with him stood speechless, hearing a voice but saying no one is kind interesting people there with Saul who heard the voice but into anything that may strike some of you resort is really not that bizarre you realize there's people here this morning that will hear, but they won't see the hear me talking about coming to Jesus to be forgiven of their sins, but they won't see him as their Savior will hear me talking about serving the Lord and in surrendering your life to him, but they won't see it. The sad thing. I hope that doesn't describe you hope that you not only hear but see in verse eight. Then Saul arose from the ground and when his eyes were open he Saul no one but they let him by the hand and brought them in to Damascus and he was was three days without sight. Neither ate or drank, we see several people in the Bible that they were given slight to Saul is on the few people that site was taken from. I think it was to allow him some time to think about what it just happened. I think about. He was on his way to persecute the church. Also he finds out that he's working and forgot he's working against God. You understand there's going to be a horrible mono for some people when they get to heaven stand in front of Jesus's noggin be allowed in as a been persecuting Jesus in the name of God in the name of religion.
Sad. I guess in a way towards other believers and followers of Jesus we need to be a little bit tolerant. I using that word. I am religiously tolerant about what the weather year Muslim are your Buddhist or your Baha'i or whatever you can all come to a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ. That's my definition of being religiously tolerant be different than other people. Verse 10 that was a certain disciple Damascus named Ananias and he and to him. The Lord said in a vision, Ananias said here I am Lord. Verse 11 said, Lord, send them arise and go to the street called straight and inquired at the house of Judas for one called Saul of Tarsus for behold, he is praying. Verse 12 and in the vision he has seen a man named Ananias coming in and putting his hand on him so that he might receive his sight in this part of the chapter, we got three main characters of you will. We have Saul we have Ananias and we have Judas. These are interesting names are that these are not names that you think of when you think a spiritual great. We were in the book of Samuel timeout Saul and how he just blew it over and over a few chapters ago retirement. Ananias lied to the Holy Spirit and struck down, and then you got Judas.
It was the deceitful one who betrayed Jesus. And here we have these names popping up again but something wonderful is going on with the three people that can be by accident. That's my design. You know what God's in the redemption things that have happened to you that are bad and negative and painful God was to redeem the friend you know for sure that your sins have been forgiven. You can know right now only Jenna short, simple prayer simply telling God you're sorry and asking him to help you to live for him. God wants you to pray this prayer so much that he died to give you the opportunity and the ability to ask him to forgive you. Please pray this prayer with me out loud right now. Dear Jesus, I believe you died for me that I could be forgiven and I believe you were raised from the dead that I could have a new life not done wrong things I have sent and I'm sorry. Please forgive me of all those things. Please give me the power to live for you. All of my days in Jesus name, amen it friend of you prayed that prayer according to the Bible. You've been forgiven you've been born again, so congratulations for you just made the greatest decision that you will ever make. God bless you, if you prayed that prayer with David for the first time we'd love to hear from you visit, cross the bridge.com and click on God's plan for new life to receive our first steps package with helpful resources to help you begin your walk with Christ. God wants to bless you and encourage your relationships today. Whether you are married, considering marriage or engaged to be married. We have a resource for you pastor David wants to send you his four part video series allies stay friends. Allow God to minister to your marriage through his word today. This was an unforgettable weekend that encouraged many marriages and you and your spouse can be encouraged to allies stay friends is our thanks for your generous gift today to help more people hear God's truth on this station and beyond, so they can cross the bridge from death to life. Please visit cross the bridge.com today to give a gift of any amount and get your copy of allies stay friends ODA before we go.
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Throughout today, the heart, but David McGee those are terrific and it's easy and it's free so folks sign up firstname.lastname@example.org. Thanks again for listening and join us next time. As David McGee continues teaching verse by verse through the book of acts