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Shake and Shine!, Part 2

Insight for Living / Chuck Swindoll
The Truth Network Radio
February 26, 2021 7:05 am

Shake and Shine!, Part 2

Insight for Living / Chuck Swindoll

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February 26, 2021 7:05 am

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Our tendency as Christians is to believe that following Jesus will make life more comfortable. Obeying His commands will yield a better life. Furthermore, we assume that our faith places us inside a protective bubble where we're shielded from persecution. Well, that's not what Jesus taught. And today on Insight for Living, Chuck Swindoll will paint a much more realistic picture based squarely on Jesus' Sermon on the Mount.

But first, we'll begin the program by enjoying an extended time of prayer with the hope that these moments serve as a welcomed oasis in your busy day. You know, it occurs to me that you may have been exposed to something that wasn't healthy, and somehow you've attached that to Christ or Christianity. There's a proverb that says a brother or sister offended is harder to be one than a strong city and their contentions, the word means their resistance, like the bars of a castle. You may find yourself living behind the bars of a misunderstanding where you didn't really witness salt shaken well, just enough to add taste, or light that wasn't shoved in your eyes turned on to full wattage. It's turned you off. I'm especially glad that you're here today, because Christ did neither.

He did neither. Just as a regular habit of life, he represented salt, and he represented light, even said on one occasion, I am the light of the world. It's easy for us to, out of zeal, to push too hard and to cause an offense to you who've never come to Christ. And on behalf of you who have been so offended, I want to apologize for those who gave you the mistaken idea that Christianity is something that's forced onto people.

At this church, you will never be forced into believing what is said or accepting what is presented. We respect the dignity of each individual. You have a brain, you have a mind, you have a heart, the emotions, you respond as you are led to respond. If we are so offensive in our approach, we turn off the opportunity.

We don't want to do that. Our hope is, of course, that you will come to know the Lord Jesus and have a walk with him that is genuine, that it's a good beginning, a good birth is the beginning of a strong life. So your birth into Christ, maybe what you have is your next step.

Take it carefully, but make sure you have taken that step before you try to live out the Christian life. You must have Christ living within before he can come out from you and live his life. Let's pray. We come today, our Father, from all different walks of life. I look into faces of people who are shy, who find themselves uneasy in this place of worship, who are here perhaps because someone coerced them, or some feeling ashamed of something they've done, think there might be something here to relieve the shame.

You meet us where we are. You have a wonderful way of taking us to where you want us to be and doing so in rhythm with love and mercy and a lot of grace. So I pray that all who are here will find themselves at ease.

The ability to relax so that we can listen, so that we can learn, so that might help us as we walk away from print on the page into the homes in which we live, the cars which we drive, and the places where we work, the neighborhoods where we relate to our friends and neighbors. I pray that we might, as a result of being together like this, discover anew the value of authenticity. May our faith be genuine, deliver us from a phony religion. Caution us, our Father, from being offensive in all of our zeal.

May we learn how to live it better than we say it. And then having lived it, may we be for others a refuge, a lighthouse, a hope. Thank you for the fountain filled with blood, drawn from the Savior's veins. Thank you for him who died for us. Thank you for him who died for us.

Not one who was murdered, but one who laid down his life willingly, that we might know what it is to put our life on the line and walk as he walked. Use our gifts to get the message out. And we pray that it will be delivered carefully and well.

Help it to make sense. Help us to relate as we should, even in a world that hates the name of Christ. May we become an attraction to him.

These are our gifts and we give them in his name, and for his purposes, as we ask these things through Christ our Lord. Everyone said, Amen. You're listening to Insight for Living.

To study the book of Matthew with Chuck Swindoll, be sure to download his Searching the Scripture studies by going to slash studies. And now Chuck's message titled Shake and Shine. Don't love the world's system. Don't love the world's opinions.

As J.B. Phillips rendered this paraphrase of Romans 12, don't let the world around you squeeze you into its mold. Politically correct thinking is all about agreeing with the world's system. They love it when you do. They resent you when you don't.

They have words for us when we don't fall in line and fit into the system. We can expect hatred, persecution, and tribulation. Look at the last chapter of 1 John chapter 5 verse 19. We know that we are of God.

We are of God. That's the believer in Christ. Now look at the world. We also know that the whole world lies in the evil one. The whole world operates under his control. The world thinks like the evil one thinks. The world has opinions like the opinions of the evil one. When you get this, you are not shocked or disillusioned. You sigh.

You hurt. When you get the specifics of how that works its way out, as people treat one another like they do, especially as people treat Christians like they do, we're marked out. Let me point out why we can expect hatred, persecution, and tribulation. John 15 verse 18.

These are the words Jesus spoke in what was called the upper room discourse, words he gave his disciples shortly before he was arrested and crucified. If the world hates you, you know that it has hated me before it hated you. I'm going to show you three reasons the world hates us. Number one, if you were of the world, the world would love its own, but because you're not of the world, that means the world system, but I chose you out of that system because of the world. That system because of this, the world hates you. The first reason is because we're different. The world wants us to be alike. They want us to be as miserable as they are. Let's not stop there.

Look at 20 and 21. Here's the second reason. Remember the word that I said to you, a slave is not greater than his master. If they persecuted me, well, they will also persecute you. If they kept my word, they will keep yours also. But all these things they will do to you for my names sake, because they do not know the one who sent me.

Second reason, because we bear the name of Christ. After all, look what they did to him. Look what they did to him.

Isn't that amazing? The one who never did a wrong against anyone. He fed the hungry. He healed the sick. He raised the dead. He comforted the afflicted.

What was it about? He was so different. You know who gave him fits?

The religious folks. He doesn't fit our mold. He doesn't talk our language. Here's the third reason.

This will put the clincher in it. Verse 22. If I had not come and spoken to them, they would not have sinned, but now they have no excuse for their sin.

24. If I had not done among them the works, which no one else did, they would not have sinned, but now they have both seen and hated me and my Father as well. Number three, we expose their sin. Just being there, they hated him.

Why? Because he took up for the adulterous and said, go and don't sin like that anymore, but we're not going to stone you. You who are without sin, you cast the first stone.

They hated that. There's a counterculture here that Jesus is promoting. He does it in the Beatitudes, the peacemakers, the merciful. Blessed are you when you're persecuted. Persecution is sending you out. That's the reason you're not invited to all the company parties.

That's the reason that they talk about you at the water fountain. This is the reason you don't fit in as a child of God. Now, how do you make a difference in the world? Now, how do you manage that? You look like a prude or you walk in your house, close your door, lock it, pull the blinds and stay away and read your Bible. Is that how you're going to reach your community? I'll tell you, my first real, real honest to goodness, you've heard me refer to this, exposure to the real world was my hits in the Marine Corps and my time in the barracks where 90 plus percent lived with venereal disease, where virtually every guy in the Quonset hut went into the village with the prostitutes right there, night after night, night after night, night after night. Marry the single didn't make any difference. That's what the world does.

United States government brought 5,000 prostitutes to Okinawa to service the Marines. What are we, what are we, animals? Yeah.

Yeah. So I get there and I'm thinking, man, I got 8,000 miles from home, my wife's away and mom and dad aren't here and my older brother and sister aren't around. Hey, I'm on my own.

What do I do? I made a decision if I ever drop my sea bag on the concrete floor. I got to, I got to do this right. I don't want to turn them off because I look like little Lord Fauntleroy running around with a Jesus saved badge and shocked because they're walking around with some disease. I got to know how to do this.

So Lord help me, help me do this. I'm going to be different. That's going to raise questions. I'm going to be known as a Christian.

Okay. Had one Sergeant love to call me Friar, Friar Swindle. That's what I was.

Friar Swindle, come here. And I got to realize they're not going to like it because by my not doing it, they're doing it exposes them. I'm not doing it or not doing it because I'm just not going to do that. I'm not going to go back with a slimy guilty conscience and try to fake it with my wife that I was faithful. I'm going to be faithful or I'm not going to be.

So I decided I will be. I didn't announce it. I didn't put on my locker.

I am faithful to my wife, even though you shucks or none. I didn't do that. It's no way to win people. I just didn't run around the village, hang out with their prostitutes. I just didn't do that.

And I'm just as red blooded and just as temptable as any other human being. But I made up my mind I wasn't going to be like the world system. What was I going to be like? Well, I needed a lot of help. And I got it from an organization called the Navigators and their representative named Bob Newkirk who saved my life spiritually. And I got a very faithful Lord who kept me pure. That's the only testimony I have. So as I attempted, you better believe it. So I happened upon a passage of scripture, Matthew 5, 13 to 16, and I found some answers. Markham, if you haven't already, you are the salt of the earth.

Next verse. You are the light of the world. You're not carrying salt. You're not handing out bags of it. You're not giving out salt shakers. You are. You are the salt.

We'll look at that further in a moment. You are the light. You're not handing out flashlights. You're not lighting torches. You're not putting big, great, big lights right at people's faces. You're the light.

You're not carrying it. You are it. You see, the Beatitudes talk about who we are, and these verses now, salt and light, talk about what we must be when we're with those in the world that we love. When we're with those in the world system, and we're always around them. I hope you never lose touch with them. I hope you never join a monastery. I hope you never become a nun and live in a convent.

As not against Ronald McDonald said, I just say don't go behind a wall to lock yourself away from the world. Stay engaged. Stay involved. Now look, why would Jesus choose salt and light?

What prompted him to select those two metaphors? Listen carefully. First of all, because the world is in the process of decaying and salt preserves. You're going to help preserve a number of people who would otherwise die early in life through suicide or stupid acts that they are involved in or diseases they catch that they wouldn't otherwise catch. You're going to help preserve the world. The world is in the process of decaying, and you know that. I don't want to sound like an old man here, but the world is worse than it used to be. If you don't know that, you're living in a life where the world is different. You're living in La La Land. We raised our kids in the early 70s in Southern California.

You ready for this? They had bicycles. They hopped on their bikes on Saturday morning, and they rode down to Hillcrest Park and all over the little city of Fullerton, sometime up into Brea. We didn't know where they were. They were safe. Would you do that today?

Not on your life. They'd go to a mall. Okay, we'll meet you at the movies at 5.30. You guys go ahead. You want to do this. You want to do that. That's fine. We'll see you. Would you let your kids free in the mall? You better not. Why? Because they're predators. Our kids always came back.

Never a problem. Southern California. Today, why? Crime rates off the chart. Moral perversion everywhere. Years ago, you had to go to a peep show to see dirty movies. You had to hide out in the stacks of the magazines to look at dirty magazines. Now, are you kidding? Turn your lights off, lock your door, pull your blinds, and turn on the internet. What channel do you want?

Thousands of them available. You can go as deep into perversion as you wish to go pornography, but in the world system, you can't call it pornography. You have a hard time defining it because the world system loves pornography. So what's wrong with you? See what I mean? It's decaying. Salt is needed. We're needed. Furthermore, the world is plunged into deep darkness.

Think about it. There's a growing boredom with life. Increased hopelessness among even those who are well off.

Money never did satisfy anybody. There's human trafficking on the increase. Human trafficking. Little girls, little boys, women, sold to be used and abused and discarded like a piece of trash. Plunged in darkness. There's a departure from orthodoxy and religion.

There's shameless infidelity and fraud and domestic brutality and all these things. What does he tell us? He says you're the salt. You're the light. Get that. Get that clearly in your mind.

You preserve. You're that one light that helps them find their way into darkness. Because you're something on a stick, you're not that big a deal. You just happen to be one who belongs to Jesus. So we sponsor a sprint, spring sprint.

People come from all over. I'm sure some expecting to be button holed. You know Jesus? You're going to run in this race and not know Jesus? We don't do that.

That's no way to handle a spring sprint. They come and they run or they walk or they roll along in their wheelchairs and they're involved in the race and we're fun to be around. They like being here because we're light and because we're salt.

So how do we impact the world? We shake and shine. I like that title.

I like that title. Shake and shine. Salt does what? It adds taste to otherwise bland food.

Not too much. Just a little salt. You ever had food that just wasn't tasty enough and you say, pass the salt. You shake a little salt on you.

Oh man, what a difference that makes. That's salt. Salt also preserves meat.

The pioneers made it in their prairie schooners often because they salted down the meat and kept it as good as they could, as long as it could. Salt preserves. Salt creates a thirst. You have enough salt you get really thirsty. Makes you thirsty.

Salt helps cleanse. God has placed each of us in a social context, an occupational context, a neighborhood context, and yours is nothing like someone right next to you. Mine is not yours and yours is not hers and hers is not his. It's remarkable to see the timeless nature of God's Word. These principles from Jesus readily apply to life in 2021.

This is Insight for Living. Chuck Swindoll titled today's study in Matthew 5, Shake and Shine. And you can learn more about this ministry when you visit us online at Here at Insight for Living Ministries, we realize that everyone comes to Jesus from a different background and burdened by a variety of different issues. But there's one thing we all have in common, and that's learning to set aside our fears and trust in God's promises.

He will deliver on what He's promised. Well, whatever problems are undermining your confidence today, we're recommending a devotional book Chuck has written called Perfect Trust. When you apply the biblical principles he's presented, we believe God will reward your confidence in Him with peace that truly satisfies. To purchase a copy of Perfect Trust, here's the number to call.

If you're listening in the United States, call 1-800-772-8888 or go to slash offer. And then as God leads you, please remember the influence of your donation to Insight for Living. Our website and our mailbox are filled with affirming notes.

Each one tells the story of God's faithfulness as men and women learn to trust in Him. Recently, we heard from a listener who follows Chuck's teaching from Mexico and another in Brazil. And here's another comment from Alberta, Canada that says, Chuck, thank you for displaying true grit during this pandemic. Your daily broadcasts have sustained us tremendously. Well, people from all walks of life are benefiting from the gifts of those who support Insight for Living. Chuck delivers the sermon, our staff puts together the programs, but it's people like you who give flight to Insight for Living. To give a donation right now, call us.

If you're listening in the U.S., dial 1-800-772-8888. You can also give online at Thank you for your generous support of Insight for Living Ministries. Join us again Monday when Chuck Swindoll continues his verse-by-verse study through the book of Matthew, right here on Insight for Living. Duplication of copyrighted material for commercial use is strictly prohibited.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-12-21 10:55:18 / 2023-12-21 11:03:50 / 9

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