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Built to Last, Part 4 (cont'd)

Destined for Victory / Pastor Paul Sheppard
The Truth Network Radio
July 2, 2021 8:00 am

Built to Last, Part 4 (cont'd)

Destined for Victory / Pastor Paul Sheppard

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July 2, 2021 8:00 am

The importance of cultivating the right relationships with the people God sends into our lives; seven building blocks for strong relationships.

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Blood may be thicker than water but some things are thicker still. In just a few moments, Pastor Paul Shepherd explains the strong bond that can be forged through godly relationships as he shares his message built to last. But before he gets started, he joins me now from his studio in California. Yes, sir. Every summer, I have that concern and I say, okay, Lord, please help the people to remember that the bills don't stop in the summertime. The gospel is definitely free. I'm glad and I'm able to say to all of our donors, you don't have to even think twice about it. When you give to us, you're helping us. Pastor Paul doesn't take a single dime of compensation from Destined for Victory resources. My church takes really good care of me and I'm so glad that they do.

And so, I'm able to serve the audience through Destined for Victory without any charge to them. But, while the gospel is free, the plumbing costs a lot of money. So even in the summer, I pray that our listeners will be faithful in their giving because the bills continue to come and I want to preach all the way through the summer and let people know while they're enjoying vacations, the word of God stands forever. To find out how you can be a partner or legacy builder with Pastor Paul Shepherd, please visit That's If you can't become a partner but would like to send a special gift today, we'd be happy to send you, by request, Pastor Paul's booklet, Finding Strength in Tough Times. That's Finding Strength in Tough Times, our gift to you by request for your generous donation to Destined for Victory. Call 855-339-5500 or visit to make a safe and secure donation online. You can also mail your gift to Destined for Victory, Post Office Box 1767, Fremont, California 94538.

Again, that address is Destined for Victory, Box 1767, Fremont, California 94538. When God brings people into your life, it goes past even the natural family bond. And the Bible here says that Jonathan looks out for the best interest of David to the point where he protects him from his enemy who is Jonathan's own father and who is the king. In Matthew chapter 12, Jesus tells us that relationships built on a solid Christian foundation form an even stronger bond than blood.

David and Jonathan had exactly that kind of friendship, and Pastor Paul Shepherd explores that now with his message, Built to Last. We're used to the saying, blood is thicker than water. That tells you that godly relationships are thicker than blood. That when God brings people into your life, it goes past even the natural family bond. And the Bible here says that Jonathan looks out for the best interest of David to the point where he protects him from his enemy who is Jonathan's own father and who is the king.

Let me tell you something. Some of us have to learn to let our relationships grow up so that we learn the art of protecting one another. Now, I am not talking about enabling wrong behavior, but I'm talking about protecting people from the enemies who would destroy what God is doing in their lives.

And we must learn the art of protecting people. Let me show you what I mean. Have you ever been in an environment where people began to criticize someone who is not there and the criticism takes on a wrong tone and it is clear that this is not helpful. This is not godly.

This is not designed to be redemptive in any way. This is just backbiting. This is just gossip. This is just slander and it's wrong.

Here's the question. What did you do about it? What did you do about it? And you don't have to be in a certain level of relationship with that individual.

If a brother or sister in Christ is being wronged in your presence, love demands that it speaks up and protects the innocent person who is being wronged and slandered. But let me tell you something. A lot of folks don't do it because it will make you unpopular. I know because I've done it.

Some of you have done it too. I've interrupted a conversation full of gossip by saying, you know, I really don't think it's helpful for us to be talking about this person at all. After all, they're not here to hear it. If it's meant to be helpful, somebody's got to tell them. So what I often say to a person who is letting somebody else have it. Did you talk to them about this? Well, uh, uh. That's all you do.

Just ask a simple question. Have you talked to them about this? Well, no, because they always have an attitude with me. So that gives you the right to slander them? No, no.

Love insists that the innocent be protected. But you've got to know that that means you're going to be unpopular sometimes. Because I've shut down a whole conversation. You know, folks get on a roll and you just insert a question like that. Well, who's talked to them about it? Because this sounds pretty serious.

Who's talked to them about it? You'll shut the whole thing down. But you will have pleased God in the process. You've got to protect people from slander. Protect people from gossip. Don't participate in other folks wrong. And if people bring gossip to you, you know, every now and then I run into, I've been passing a long time. Every now and then people say, you know what? People are always bringing mess to me.

If somebody's always bringing mess to you, they must think you're the garbage collector. So the question is, why do you posture yourself in such a way that folks feel free to come bring a bunch of junk about other folk to you? If you're really serious about it, I'm tired of it.

All right, I'll tell you how to do it. Next time they come with some gossip, some stuff that they really need to be saying to the individual, but instead they're saying about the individual, here's what you do. You say, oh, wow, that sounds pretty serious. Well, I think two things ought to happen.

Number one, I think we ought to stop and pray for them. And then secondly, after we pray for them, since you have the information, we ought to pray and then we ought to ask God to bless you as you go talk to them. I'm telling you what I've done.

You know what it'll do? That'll be the last time they ever bring mess to you because the gossip doesn't want to pray. And I've made them pray right on the spot. That's what you get for coming to me, Jack.

We're going to pray right now. And I did this. Oh, man, that sounds that's horrible. You really think that? Oh, no, I have this on a reliable source. This really happened. Really?

Oh, that's horrible. Let's pray that God will have mercy. Listen, since you have the details, you pray and I'll agree with you. I made them pray right on the spot. Such a crazy prayer you never heard in your life.

Why? Because their hearts wrong. And then now trying to gather their thoughts and trying to get pure.

Ask God to bless somebody that they have no intention of seeing blessed. But I'll tell you what, you will have sent a message and that'll be the last time they bring mess to you. And then you send them say, well, listen, don't no need to talking to me. I'm the C party. This is an A and B conversation.

I'm seeing my way out. And you go talk to A and let them know what's on your mind. We have to take it seriously. And you know why it's important for you to protect others? Because one day you're going to need somebody to protect you. One day they're going to be talking about you. One day they're going to be slandering you. Listen, there is a law of reciprocity. The Bible says you reap what you sow. If I don't protect the innocent in my life, one day I'm going to be an innocent person targeted by somebody.

It could be on my job, it could be in my community, it could be in my church, whatever it is. And sooner or later I'm going to need God to raise up somebody who will protect me. And if you want to be protected, the best way to sow protection into the lives of others. And so Jonathan shows us a wonderful feature of covenant living as he protects his friend from the evil intentions of the King Saul. Protection.

Look at number six. First Samuel chapter 23. The sixth building block for godly relationships is sharpening.

Sharpening. First Samuel 23 verse 15. While David was at Horesh, he learned that Saul had come out to take his life. And Saul's son Jonathan went to David at Horesh and helped him find strength in God. Don't be afraid he said, my father Saul will not lay a hand on you.

You will be king over Israel and I will be second to you. Even my father Saul knows this. That is a powerful passage.

Look at what happens. David is once again on the run from Saul. Man when Saul couldn't handle his envy, when he saw the hand of God on that young man, it constantly caused him to seek David's life. And yet again when you get to First Samuel 23, David is on the run. He's a fugitive from a hateful envious king. And he's running literally for his life. And the Bible says Jonathan, his friend, who is the king's son, finds David. Goes out of his way. Goes to another town, Horesh.

And the Bible says when he finds him, he helps David find strength in God. I call that sharpening. What do I mean by sharpening? I get that term from Proverbs 27 17 that says, as iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another. Sharpening is the ability to add quality to a person's character, behavior, or state of mind.

Let me say it again. Sharpening is the ability to add quality to a person's character, behavior, or state of mind. It is the ability to strengthen people where they are weak. Now at times to sharpen a person, you are going to have to encourage and affirm them.

That's what happens here. What does Jonathan do? He finds David. He knows David is in a very discouraged frame of mind. After all, God's hand is on him. He knows God has destined him to be the king, and yet the present king is trying to kill him.

And he's done nothing wrong. You know that state of mind you're in when you have been totally innocent, but someone continues to treat you like you are guilty? And you know the discouragement of those moments when all you've done is act in the best interest of people, and all they've done is try to backstab you. That hurts your feelings. I don't care how holy you are.

That hurts your feelings. And listen, when you're in that state of mind, if you're in connectedness in relationship with other people, God will raise up the right person at the right time to come and help you. And along comes Jonathan, and the Bible says he helps David find strength in God.

What does he do? He tells him, David, don't be afraid. I know this looks bad, man, but don't be afraid because God is going to protect you. He said, you are going to be the king, and I am going to be second to you. Now the significance of that statement is, Jonathan is the king's son. By all right, he would expect to be the next king.

But he's saying, this isn't about me, this isn't about us, this is about God's will, and God's hand is on you to be the next king, and I am going to be second to you. He said, so I need you to be encouraged. You can't give up now. You can't faint now. The Bible says, don't become weary in well doing. Why?

Because in due season, you will reap if you don't faint. We'll be right back with more of today's Destined for Victory message from Pastor Paul Shepherd, Senior Pastor at Destiny Christian Fellowship in Fremont, California. Listen to the broadcasts on demand at That's, and there you'll also find a host of great resources in our online store.

Well, if you love someone, you'll affirm them, encourage them, but you'll also be willing to rebuke them if necessary. From the life of King David, here's Pastor Paul with the rest of today's Destined for Victory message, Built to Last. I come to tell somebody, you're too close to faint now. I come to tell somebody, you are too close to your help, too close to your victory, too close to your breakthrough. You can't give up now.

God is waiting to usher you into your next season. You've got to remember it's dark before the break of day. You've got to remember weeping may endure for a night.

And sometimes that night seems awfully long. Oh, but you've got to hang in there because joy is on its way. And Jonathan shows up to tell David, man, don't give up now.

Don't throw in the towel now. God's got something ahead of you that is better than what's behind you. And you've got to strengthen others in the Lord. Sometimes sharpening requires affirming and encouraging, such as you find in this text. But at other times, sharpening, in order to sharpen someone, to add quality to their character, their behavior or their state of mind, sometimes you have to rebuke them. See, it's not always affirming. Sometimes to add quality to someone's life, you have to pull them aside and say, you're wrong about that. The way you're behaving is not right. Or you can just say it to get away, God don't like ugly.

And you're looking pretty ugly right about now. Listen, be sure that sharpening sometimes requires that I redemptively set you straight. Here's the way it's put in Proverbs chapter 27, better is open rebuke than hidden love. Verse 6 of Proverbs 27 says, wounds from a friend can be trusted, but an enemy multiplies kisses. You know what that means?

If you have somebody in your life and they're always grinning, always smiling, always telling you you're wonderful, when even you know you're jacked up. That's not a friend. That's an enemy. They may think they're a friend, but you're treating me like an enemy when you are enabling my wrong behavior.

The Bible says an enemy multiplies kisses. A friend will shake his or her finger in your face and say you are wrong. You need an attitude adjustment.

You need to go somewhere and get yourself straight. Open rebuke. You got to cut people sometimes to heal them. Just like a physician.

See what you're talking about? You want to heal me and you're talking about surgery. Well it's going to require the surgery to cut out what is making you sick, what is killing you. It is hurting to heal.

Now the surgery is definitely going to hurt you for a season, but it's designed to heal. Wounds from a friend can be trusted. See, just because somebody has a sharp instrument in their hand or in their mouth as they talk to you doesn't mean, I thought you were my friend. I am your friend. That's why I'm telling you the truth.

I am your friend. That's why I'm rebuking you. Because that's what you need right now.

You need somebody to set you straight. Especially people who are, you ever had these folks in their life and everybody else around them is just making them feel wonderful and you see a glaring problem. Well that's why God has you in their life.

Because you're to cover their blind spot and you see that problem and you point it out. I'm not an enemy. An enemy has a sharp instrument called a knife and they'll stab you in your back to kill you. But a friend has the instrument of surgery and they'll give you all the anesthesia you need. You know I love you right?

That's anesthesia. You know I love you. You know you're my boy right?

You know you're my girl. That's anesthesia. When you see that coming, get ready. Surgery is about to hit.

But after the surgery you're better off. Sharpening. Play the role of sharpening. Sharpening in people's lives. Sometimes that means encouraging and affirming.

Sometimes it means rebuke. But it's all that they might end up better. One more point and I'll let you go.

The seventh building block of relationships that last is loyalty. In 2 Samuel chapter 9, by the time you get to 2 Samuel chapter 9, years have passed. Jonathan is long dead.

David is now the king, has been the king for many years, is on the throne. Jonathan his friend and covenant brother is dead. And in 2 Samuel chapter 9, it opens with the words, the king asks, is there no one still left in the house of Saul to whom I can show God's kindness? Years after Jonathan is dead, David is saying, you know what, God used that relationship to bless me so much. That not only was I a blessing to Jonathan in his lifetime, but I now want to be a blessing to him in his grave.

How can I do that? If there's somebody in his household who's still alive, I will treat them with the kindness I once treated Jonathan. And he asked a question and finds out that Jonathan has a son who is a grown man himself at this point and is crippled in both feet. And the Bible says, David calls for him, he lives down in another town, he lives down in Lotobah, and he calls for him and brings him to the palace. And he says to him, because of your father, I will not let you live in poverty.

I will not let you live in the slums. He said, you will always dine at my table. I will take care of every need you have for the rest of your life. Some of us have to learn that love must be loyal. Loyal enough to say I'm with you to the end. I'm not with you just in the good times. I'm not with you just in fair weather.

I am with you to the very end. You don't need somebody to ride with you through the good times. I need somebody to ride with me when it gets thick. I need somebody to ride with me when friends are few, when money is short, when I'm just hanging on to my faith, just believing God.

I need somebody to stand with me then. I don't need Little Red Hen friends. You remember that story, Little Red Hen?

She decided she's going to do some baking, tried to get folk to help in all the different stages. None of them wanted to help, but when it was all done, everybody wanted to eat. You ever have people in your life like that? Don't want to help you through the thick times, don't want to encourage you when you're down, don't want to lift you up, don't want to sacrifice for you and all that. But soon as God starts blessing you, here they come grinning.

No, no. God wants to bless you with some people who will practice a loyalty that says I'll be with you when it's thick and I'll be with you when it's thin. I'll be with you in the sunshine and I'll be with you through the storm. And the Bible says Jonathan was blessed when he was dead because David's loyalty lasted past his lifetime. And he said I'm going to bless your son and show him the kindness that God has poured out in our lives. I want to encourage you to build your Godly relationships on these seven building blocks and you will discover God taking your relationships and your life to the next level. Thanks so much for joining us for today's message, Built to Last. If you'd like more information about the Destined for Victory ministry or the special offer for those that give generously this month, be sure to stop by our website, That's

And I stopped by on my way to heaven to tell somebody that when you're blessed, you're blessed. But not everyone will like it. Not everyone will appreciate it. Not everyone will celebrate it. Because as sure as you do the will of God in your life, you're going to discover that there are some people who don't like it. That's next time in Pastor Paul Shepherd's message, Dealing with Haters. Until then, enjoy your holiday weekend and remember, he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion. In Christ, you are destined for victory. You
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-09-25 08:11:32 / 2023-09-25 08:20:09 / 9

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