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PRCUA Life, protecting life through all its stages. Alright, for my YouTube channel, it's If Not For God with Mike Zwick. Just like, subscribe, and hit that notification bell so you'll be alerted when we have our next video. If Not For God with Mike Zwick, we've got Justin Noop back on. Justin Noop is absolutely on fire for Jesus Christ. He's out there. He's doing YouTube videos. He's sharing the gospel. He's got small groups.
I mean, this man is absolutely on fire. You know, I was looking at this. We were talking about the gifts of the Spirit, and is this still for today? And I was actually looking at Matthew 28, verses 19 through 20, and it says, Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And lo, I am with you always to the close of the age. And I believe it's somewhere else where it says, When you do these things, everybody's going to like you.
You're not going to receive any opposition, and you're not going to have any problems. Oh, no, it's not in the Bible. It's in the Study Bible. Matter of fact, when I was talking to Justin, I think I sent you my show on Facebook, and one of the things that you said is I said, Hey, man, I've heard some good things about you. Do you remember what you said back to me? Yeah. First of all, I was curious.
I was like, Well, who did you hear that from? But, you know, we get a lot of kickback. And so sometimes probably I want to try to defend myself, but I'm like, Hey, you know, we also get a lot of pushback, too, as well. But I can't remember exactly what I said. But you said something along the lines of, you know, I'm glad to hear that, brother. Yeah. Yeah. I took that as an encouragement.
I'm like, Thank you. Because honestly, a lot of the people that want to let you know something, they want to let you know the criticism. And sometimes when you put yourself in the public eye a little bit, you get more criticism.
Yeah. Actually, I send out my show to people, and it's really encouraging. Sometimes I'm like, Oh, you know, I had a guy who said, Mike, that is so encouraging.
I was doubting my faith, and now I'm getting my faith back, and people say it's really good. And then I had another response this morning, and the guy said, Please die. But when I read the Bible, especially the New Testament, Jesus said, He says, If they persecuted me, He says, What are they going to do to you?
That's right. So how do we respond to persecution? How do we respond to people not necessarily liking everything that we're doing? What do you do, John? I wouldn't say I do it perfectly, but I try to respond as the disciples respond. And their response was to the Pharisees, who were their main persecutors, not the world.
Remember, it was the religious leaders that were shouting, Crucify Him, Crucify Him, we want Barabbas, as where Pontius Pilate, living in the world, said, I don't see anything really wrong with this guy. And so how I respond, how I try to respond, is how the disciples respond, and that is, Who are we to please, man or God? Who are we here to please?
So I have to bring myself back down to that point of asking myself, Justin, who are you doing this for? Yeah, it's a good question. I think it's something, especially nowadays, I mean, I think, you know, there was a time in America where it was pretty easy to be a Christian.
And nowadays we're getting a lot more pushback. Not only you, not only me, but people, Christians in general. I mean, you know, if we believe the word of God, we believe the Bible, then you're a racist, you're a homophobe, you're all these things because you simply believe the word of God. But, you know, when I was thinking about this the other day, I was actually putting my son Christian to bed, and I actually had a moment alone with Christian, but he was going to sleep, and it was dark, it was quiet. And by the way, if you're listening to this, you need to have some quiet time. I believe you have to have some time to hear from the Lord, especially if you're busy, I would say, like we are. But I felt the Lord speak to me. He says that you need to just start thinking about heaven.
You need to start thinking about your destination. So I've got Revelation 21 right here, and I'm going to start in verse 1. It says, And that's awesome, man. When I think about heaven and how wonderful it's going to be, I mean, it's absolutely awesome, but we're not there yet. But one of the things, you know, one of my favorite quotes actually by C.S. Lewis, he said that throughout the centuries of Christianity over the last 2,000 years, he says, the Christians who have done the most for this world, he said, so the Christians who, whether it was ending the slave trade, like William Wilberforce, or whether the Christians who stood firm in the Middle Ages, or the early church when they were being persecuted, whatever it was, he says, the Christians who were the most focused on heaven were actually the ones who did the most for this world. He said the Christians who were the most focused on this world did the least for this world. He said, aim at heaven, and many times you'll get earth thrown in.
He says, aim at earth, and you get neither. How do you keep an eternal perspective? That's funny that you say that, because I actually woke up the other morning, and I was feeling a little bit discouraged, and I woke up immediately with discouragement, and I'm like, I don't like this. So I immediately went into the closet and I began to pray. And I felt like the Lord spoke to me there.
I didn't always hear from him like this, but he said, where's your hope? And all he had to say was that for me to recognize that I had some misplaced hope, and I think that's where a lot of discouragement comes in, is because it's very easy to get attached and focused on the things that are happening right in front of us, the earthly things. But we know, and so that led me into the book of Philippians, and I began to read through that for multiple days in a row, where it instructs us, hey, fix your mind on heavenly things, things that are good, things like this. It gives us instructions on what to fix our mind on. I don't think it's just doing that because it's a good idea.
I think that the instruction in the Bible that Jesus knows that whatever we fix our attention on, whatever we fix our mind on, is going to really dictate how we live. Yeah, absolutely. And I don't know if you're like this or not, but I thought, man, when I get on the radio, I still have to sell insurance. I have three kids. I've got all this other stuff going on. And I said, well, I'm going to be exhausted.
I'm not going to have any time to do this, but I don't know, it's interesting. The more that I get involved with the work of the Lord, it's almost like the more energized I feel. That's right. You ever get like that?
Absolutely. That's what drives me, and the Bible encourages us to stay stirred up. Even the apostles, when they wrote the letters, they would say, hey, I'm not telling you this because you don't know it, but I want to stir you up by way of reminder.
So we see that. I think the early church stayed so encouraged because they were constantly seeing God move. But a lot of people mistakenly think that just because you're a Christian, God's automatically going to move. I think it's a misunderstanding of God's sovereignty because it's not that God can't move by himself, that he can't do all these things by himself, but that he chooses not to. And so his instruction and his commandments are an invitation to pull us into this overarching story of sending out the message of Jesus Christ to the world by accompanying signs. He says, hey, I want to work miraculously through you. It's by my power. It's in my name. The disciples, the apostles would never take credit for the miracles, but they understood that Christ wanted to work through them.
Yeah. And, you know, there's actually a verse in the Bible, and I don't have it up with me right now, but Jesus actually, you know, the disciples, I think, came back to Jesus. And when they were talking, they said, hey, Jesus, you're not going to believe what happened or something like that. You know, we're casting out demons in your name. And, you know, all of these, you know, we're able to, we're preaching you, and these wonderful things are happening. And Jesus actually says to them, he says, yes, he says, you'll do that. You're going to cast out demons.
You'll step on snakes. He says a few other things. He says, but don't glory in those things. He says glory in the fact that your name is written in the book of life. Yep.
Yep. And the cool thing was, is that if you continue to read that, it says that Jesus had great joy. He was excited to see. So some people will downplay that and they'll say, see, don't focus on those things. And I'm like, no, Jesus was happy that they had that excitement, but he was giving them proper perspective. That is, he wanted to tell them the purpose of what you're doing is so that people would ultimately be connected to me because the reason you're casting out demons is because they're a hindrance to the relationship between me and that person.
Yeah. I mean, matter of fact, and we all say, hey, we want to be a Christian. We want, you know, we want to be, you know, I want to be like the famous missionaries or I want to be like the people in the Bible. I'm like, oh, really, you know, the prophet Isaiah it's, it's been said, um, and historians agree on this, that, uh, Isaiah, the prophet, uh, was actually taken by, I think it was King Manasseh and he was stretched out between two trees. And he was actually sawn in half. It was like, okay, you want that? Uh, Peter, uh, was, was crucified, I believe upside down.
Uh, you know, Stephen, the first martyr, he was stoned to death. And it's like, you know, okay, you say you want all these great things, but, but do you, do you realize sometimes what that entails? And so I believe that Jesus tells us that before we decide to go into the ministry or before we, we know what, hey, this is what we want to do. He actually tells us to count the cost. Is that right? That's right.
He does. And so Jesus would, Jesus would give really hard teachings to people when they came to him. So it was a, it was a little bit different from our typical church services now to where we're trying to break down for everything and make it easy and palatable for them to swallow.
Right? Jesus would say things like, hey, um, if you don't eat my flesh and drink my blood. And they're like, Lord, even, even his closest followers came to him afterwards and they said, this is a hard teaching.
Not only is this against Jewish tradition, this is a hard teaching. And he looked at them and this is his response. He wasn't like, I'm sorry guys, that was a little overboard. He said, do you want to go too? I'm like, I look at these stories and I'm like, Jesus, what were you doing?
If you were trying to be popular, you, you were doing it all wrong. But he understood that he would literally filter people because there was a lot of people that were going to be pulled in by the miracles and just what's going on. He wanted to know who the Holy Spirit was drawing. And so he would give them something just difficult enough to where it would turn away the ones with bad motives and the ones who were really interested would draw in and they say, tell us more.
And then he would break it down for him. Yeah. I mean, it, and one of the things I think, especially with what, with everything that's going on in the world right now, I think it's important. We have to have faith. We have to pray.
We have to do all these things. And, but I heard somebody recently say there, there's times where we actually have to have grit. Is that right? Yeah, absolutely. And that, that goes back to what I said before. Like it's because you're a Christian, it doesn't mean that miracles are just going to pop up everywhere.
Right? When Jesus came on the scene, demons had existed, right? But we don't read a lot about deliverance or anything taking like that, taking place like that in the old Testament. But what happens right in the beginning of Mark chapter one, where, where does Jesus, but, but the interesting thing was, is where does he go? Where does he go to cast out demons? The synagogue, Mark chapter one, it says there was a man sitting in the synagogue, probably a very civilized man. Otherwise he wouldn't have been in the synagogue. They wouldn't have left him there. This wasn't the Gerasene demoniac. They sent him out of town. This man was sitting in, you know, what you can consider a church service.
And immediately this man begins to manifest because Jesus did something different than most Christians do today. He confronted the devil and it takes confrontation and exposure before something can actually be removed. Now, if you have an infestation, say you have a termite infestation in your house, right? You have no idea that stuff is in there until you see a clue and then you peel back the wall. But once you peel back the wall, you're not going to put the wall back on and be like, yeah, yeah, well, hopefully that'll work itself out. You're calling the exterminator.
You want this out of your house because eventually it's going to try to demolish your entire house. And I think that's exactly what Jesus was doing when he stepped on the scene. 1 John says, the Son of God was manifest for this, that he might destroy the works of the devil.
He had to expose them before he destroyed them. It actually says that the light shines in the darkness and the darkness will not ever come it. But, you know, it's interesting. We're talking about all this stuff, demons and healing the sick and all the stuff, the stuff that's in the Bible. I remind that to people sometimes. That people don't always like it. No.
Yeah. It's uncomfortable. That's why. I mean, you can look at why are we not doing some of the things that are in the Bible now?
Well, I think, number one, there's a stigma of certain things. People, I just, I don't know enough about it. I haven't experienced it. So I just want to keep it at a six foot distance.
I'll do that. But the problem is, is if you're, if you're any studier of the Bible, you're going to run into it. Listen to this. Most people don't know this, but in the synoptic gospels, Matthew, Mark and Luke, one third of the chapters speak about the casting out of demons. One third of the chapters. So that's why scholars say it was literally one third of Jesus's ministry.
Yeah. I was just going to say, Mark, you know, Mark chapter one, Mark one thirty nine says this, this was, this was his practice. It says he and he went into their synagogues throughout all of Galilee preaching and casting out demons. You know, the I heard a guy not too long ago and he says, if everybody agrees with everything that you're saying, he said that may not be such a good thing. And I actually heard it was Leonard. I think it was Leonard Ravenhill who said this. He says, if Jesus would have acted like most preachers act today, he said he never would have been crucified.
Yeah, I don't think so either. And I mean, but, but you got to think, who was he offending? He was mainly offending the religious, the people that thought they had it all together. I mean, he calls out the Pharisees and they say, they say to him, well, first of all, he tells them that their father is the devil. I'm like, that was bold. And then they turn to him and they're like, we've never been in bondage to anyone.
And he's like, really? I mean, literally Israel has been in bondage to a lot of people, Babylon, you know, different. But he's like, but they were, they were just, they, they had such religious pride that they thought we could never be in bondage to anything. And he's like, well, well, that's why you're not experiencing this gospel truth. That's why the prostitutes and the tax collectors are entering into the kingdom, but you're being, being turned away is because of that pride right there.
We've never been in bondage to anything. What about humbling yourself and saying, well, maybe, maybe I am Lord show me and he will. Yeah. And it's kind of like some people, I guess they, I think Jesus said that men avoided the light because the light will expose their works. That's right.
That's right. That's what, I mean, that's what Jesus was doing. It's like, why, why, why was he going around casting out demons?
Was it because it was cool and he wanted us to do these cool things? No, it's because one of, one of his, one of his reasons for coming was to expose what the enemy was doing underneath the surface, that there was an element where people were just refusing to believe, refusing to be obedient, refusing to listen. But then, Hey, there's this other element here. And that is that we are in a war. Paul talks about this in Ephesians six.
Paul talks a lot about this. He doesn't use the specific language that we want him to use, like is used in the Bible or in the, in the gospels. But he's saying, Hey, you're in a war, not with flesh and blood. So don't focus so much on the flesh and flesh and blood, but with principalities and powers and rulers of wickedness and spirits of wickedness and, and things like that. Just understand that there's something going on also underneath the surface that you can't see with your physical eye. You're fighting against that. Yeah. And you know, one of the things that I've seen is that when you, if you look at the movies and you know, like The Exorcist or whatever, or the movies that are coming out now, if you watch the movie, you almost think that the dark side is almost has more power than the light, but that's not true at all.
It's not true at all. And I'll tell you what is a great example of that is because the way we did ministry, we're not your typical family where dad goes on the dad goes off to minister and mom stays at home and raises the kids, right? Our whole family is in it. Okay. We went on the mission field together.
We moved to Nepal and live there together. We ministered together. Our kids come with us and our kids witness the most extreme cases you've ever seen of casting out of demons.
And guess what? Zero fear. My kids will get scared of a bad commercial that pops up before they get scared of a demonic manifestation or a demon speaking through a person. Why is that is because we are teaching them and training them that, Hey, don't don't get all caught up in the manifestation of what this demonic spirit is trying to do, what Satan is trying to do.
And that's blow himself up like the movies in the movies. They empower the demonic in real life. Deliverance is a public spectacle of Jesus's triumph over the evil powers. So every time a deliverance take place, our kids get more and more confident that Christ has overcome. And it's not even close. I mean, I actually watched video.
There was a woman with a blonde hair who was sitting up into a bowl. And I believe when you cast out demons, you you actually tell people to bring a bowl or something. I mean, they can. Yeah. But there's different manifestations. And some people say, you know, do they all look like that? Are they all that intense? Well, no, there's various degrees of what took place.
But people people want it to be a little bit more clean than it actually is. But if you look at the instances in the scriptures, they were pretty intense. And we're just getting snapshots of those in the scriptures, remember? But even the man that brought his son to Jesus, like when Jesus called out this demon, it threw him on the ground and he began foaming at the mouth. He cast it out and they think the boy's dead.
Are we comfortable with that taking place in our church or or are we too civilized for that? Hurt the carpet. Hurt the carpet. Yeah. Yeah. So the. That's right. There you go. Yeah.
Pastor Steve doesn't want his carpet messed up at the church. We get it. But, you know, it's interesting.
And it's that I think the Bible tells us either three hundred and sixty five or three hundred and sixty six times. Yeah. Do not fear. That's right. And I heard a quote.
It's by Dietrich Bonhoeffer. Yeah. And he says that those of us who fear God no longer fear men.
That's what he says. But those of us who fear men don't fear God. That's right. I thought that was good.
Yeah, that's amazing. I mean, don't fear the one who can destroy the body, but both the body and the soul and hell. So I think we need to have a proper perspective of our king, of our King Jesus. And then we can look. We can stare in the eye of evil.
We can stare in the eye of death. And I'm not saying that I've reached these points, but that's why we can look at the apostles and the disciples and see a person like Stephen is literally staring death in the eye. And what does he do?
He doesn't get too focused on the people around him. He looks up and he sees Jesus standing. And there's actually a correlation between what Jesus says on the cross and what Stephen says during his death. And he looks up and he says two things. Well, he says that he sees Jesus and then he says, he says, Father, forgive them along the same lines.
Can't remember the exact words, but they basically they don't know what they're doing. So how can you stare death in the eye and the people that are killing you? How can you have the boldness to say, Father, forgive them? And then, Lord, I commit my spirit to you, just as Jesus did on the cross. That was because his focus was on Christ. And he knew that the things around him were temporal. But being with his king was eternal and he was willing to give up everything to experience that.
Absolutely. I mean, in the show that I did last week, I was talking about Hebrews 11. It was having that eternal, eternal perspective, kind of like we were talking about at the beginning of the show. But one of the verses that comes to mind is Hebrews 12 two. And it says, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him, endured the cross, despising the shame and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. You know, when I think about it, Jesus, you know, he's king of kings, Lord of lords. If he wanted to, he could have come down here and they could have made him king. I think they wanted to make him king. He could have ruled the world. He could have done this completely differently. But he came, as a matter of fact, there was a verse where Jesus says, somebody's like, hey, I want to follow you. He's like, oh, really? He's like the son of man doesn't even have a place to lay his head.
He was homeless. But I believe that the reason why people have been able to endure over the years is because they've had that eternal perspective. One of my favorite songs, and I've been listening to this a lot lately. It says, I have decided to follow Jesus. I have decided to follow Jesus.
I have decided to follow Jesus. No turning back. No turning back, though none go with me.
That's right. I still will follow. Though none go with me, I still will follow. Though none go with me, I still will follow. No turning back, no turning back. The world behind me... That's right. Keeping that perspective on Jesus, the cross before me, the world behind me, the cross before me, the world behind me, the cross before me, turning back.
No turning back. And so, in the last three minutes that we have here, there are some people right now who I believe are scared. They're scared by COVID. They're scared at the economy.
They're afraid of everything that's going on into the world. What would you say to encourage those people? I would say, just like we have already spoken about, if you're losing hope, remember, if there's fear, discouragement, you know, the Bible says that hope deferred makes the heart sick. I would sit back and ask the Lord, where is my trust? Where is my hope?
What am I focusing on? Because you'll see all throughout the New Testament that they'll be constantly pointing you towards an eternal hope because faith is the substance of what? Things hoped for. Things hoped for, right?
Right, right. Well, if you don't have, if you're hoping in temporal things, if you're hoping in the things that you see around here, you're going to be let down a lot. You're going to live a life that is a constant up and down emotionally. Hope, hope, hope, let down. Hope, hope, hope, let down.
But there is one thing that will never disappoint, and that's Christ and His finished work. So you focus on that and you take time. A lot of Christians don't do this. Take time practically to dwell on eternity. Just picture yourself. Sometimes I do this in my own quiet time. Picture yourself standing before Jesus and I'm saying, good and faithful servant, come on in.
Yes. That will eclipse every problem you have. Now do that on a regular basis and watch how your life changes and how it's driven changes and what you're willing to go through when you know in the corner of your mind, this is what I'm doing it for. Remember, Jesus went to the cross because of the joy set before Him, not because of what was at hand. It's like that song, and the things of the world will grow strangely dim. That's right. In the light of His glory and grace. Justin, we're glad to have you back on.
I was going to ask you, you have a YouTube channel? That's right. It's Unshakable Kingdom. Yeah, it's funny, you read Hebrews 12, but if you keep going in Hebrews 12, you'll read a little bit something about a kingdom that's being handed to us that is a kingdom that cannot be shaken. That's actually, I had a dream and that's the scripture that the name of our ministry, I guess you can call it, came out of is because we want the Lord, we believe the Lord is shaking off traditions that are hindering the body of Christ.
And all that will remain is the kingdom, which can never be shaken. Yeah. I mean, if all that the church is, is a building. Yeah. Building that you go to once a week, then there's not really a lot of power in that when you go out into the world. But if it's true, what Jesus said, that the kingdom of God is within you. Yeah.
Then everywhere we go, we're able to bring the church. So Justin, man, I'm so glad to have you back on today and think we're going to have you on for another show. I love to talk to you and I'm grateful for the great work you're doing. So thank you. I appreciate it. It's a pleasure being here.
If not for God. All right. For my YouTube channel, if not for God with Mike Zwick, just like subscribe and hit that notification bell.
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