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April 26, 2021 12:00 am
In today's fast-moving culture, loneliness is filling the hearts of millions. The inability to make friends and to keep friends has become a modern-day pandemic. Even many believers have friendships that are merely convenient, shallow, and temporary.
In Eternal Friendships, Michael Youssef's three-part teaching series, you'll see why friendships between believers in the Lord Jesus Christ are for eternity. Using examples from John, 1 Samuel, and Ruth, Dr. Youssef shows what it takes to begin and to maintain lasting friendships -- and the characteristics that make those friendships last forever. You'll learn how to affirm, to encourage, and to be loyal to one another -- and to cherish the eternal relationships you've established through Christ.
Dr. Michael he is introducing this episode of leading the way, titled loyalty intervention for insurance is a friend to be there when he or she has every reason not to be there. Friendships causes a friend to be there when no one else can. That is loyalty and eternal friendships.
Proverbs 1717, seven rest of mountains. All of the brother is born for adversity.
Thank you for joining Dr. Michael you sent for leading today a powerful biblical challenge for the exciting pages of Ruth to help you understand and develop eternal friendships and learn more about leading the way and how you can get involved in reaching the nations with the gospel with Dr. you set give us a call 866626435 sex and where it LTW.org I give you more information later.
Right now, here's Dr. Michael you sent a thought of a story about two friends who were literally insufferable.
They did everything together. World war one back in and so they enlisted together, they trained together, and were shipped overseas together and then we were fighting in the European theater side-by-side together on one particular day, as the bubble was eating and there was a weathering firepower. One of the friends was asked to go further from the trenches, but the rest of them can see how he was wounded and was locked so seriously frightened wound in the fingers and the trenches immediately wanted to jump and go to help him tell the Sgt. yanked him back and he said and what you doing are you crazy you get yourself killed. You can't do that.
He's already dead when the Sgt. turned his back a few minutes later the friend ran toward his friend who was now dying. A few minutes later, the men who ran through rescue his friend was himself wounded and fatally but he came back to the trenches carrying his dead friend on his shoulder and the Sgt. was betwixt between anger and deeply moved by such incredible friendship looked at the man in the trenches. He said he's there and you are dying, it just was not worth it.
And with his last breath. The friend said oh yes it was Sarge. Yes, it was because when I got there the last words he said I knew you would come. Jim I knew you would come to God it was wasn't loyalty in the eternal friendships causes a friend to be there when he or she has every reason not to be there. Loyalty and eternal friendships causes a friend to be there when it is extremely costly to be there. Friendships causes a friend to be there when no one else can be there. One of the great stories that reveals this rich evidence that comes as a result of loyalty in the tunnel friendship is found in the book of Ruth in the Old Testament. Let me tell you the story first before I go to the text, the story is simply this way after Joshua died, Israel fell on a very hard time hard time of their own making. And the reason they were going through a hard time. That was of their own making is because there were doing exactly what God told him in the world is not the God said the temptation for you when you get into the promised land is going to trust in the gods of the fertility trust in the foreign gods going to trust and I both gonna turn your heart away from.
Be careful not to do that and that's exactly what they did and saw during the time of the judges they went through this dark period in the life. In fact, some historians consider to be one of the darkest times in the history of Israel. The Bible said everybody was doing what is right in their own. It was time of upheaval.
It was time of moral failure. There was a time of severe testing, it was a time of temptation. It was a time of being enticed by the surrounding corrupt culture. It was a time of being obsessed with finding the secrets for prosperity. It was a time for looking to bail in the fertility gods for blessings instead of Yahweh that was a time when God's people found it easier to conform to the current of culture to be obedient to Yahweh. That's how Thomas was a terrible time and in the middle of this oblivious to the power and the blessing of God that has blessed them for years and years and years them out of the slavery of Egypt parted the Red Sea provided for them supernatural and miraculously in the town of oblivion to the blessings of God of the past catastrophe struck famine hit the lands and so a man by the name of Elimelech the wife by the name of Naomi and the two sons by the name of my cologne and kill you. So that family of four moved into the land of my web south of Bethlehem there were living in Bethlehem of Judea were Jesus was born in that was nearly 40 miles distance, but Glover listened to me it was a million miles away morally. It was a million miles away, spiritually.
It may only be 50 miles from Jerusalem, but they have gone as far as they could and this good family left the promised land and went to the land of the enemy. This family went from the land of Jehovah to the land of bio they went from the land of fellow shipping with the believers to the land of fellow shipping with pagans. In fact, they went to more escape death.
They went to escape famine because they thought this is a way to get out there, at least temporarily, in order to survive, but three of the four died in more Elimelech family settled in the land of mower. The two boys matter to local girls bail worshipers in the short stay to escape the famine turned into 10 years nebula, but I wanted to listen to me very carefully. I wanted to him the right be careful. In fact, always be careful when you think that you can handle temptation without falling into the temptation always be careful when you think that you can be in a relationship with an unbeliever only temporarily. These temptations have a way of turning into permanent stay in their is a curse number blessed during that time the father and the two boys died.
They had no children and so in fact none of them could have imagined in their wildest imagination when they left Bethlehem to go tomorrow up whatever agent got such a tragedy would've occurred when they met that 50 mile trek from Bethlehem did not realize that the utopia is going to turn into agony of soul that the dream has turned into a hellish nightmare that the desire for prosperity turned into grinding poverty but is a problem. Back then you got three widows and back then a window does not have a male relative to support her was worse than a destitute that's how Thomas and Saul Naomi looks at her two daughters in law and says you'll go back to your gods, you go back to your country you go back your families because now I'm going to go back to Bethlehem and I'm hoping against hope that my God shall provide a male relative who can provide for me and have bitter experience not only wanted to be alone.
Sometimes we experience bitterness in life with you want to be alone. We don't want to talk to anybody yet. That's the wrong time to be alone in her generosity, though she wanted her daughters-in-law to go back and experience some happiness in life have maybe remarry and have children experience some sort of joy after the sorrow one girl or pop said okay if that's what you wanted to do all go back and she left, but the other daughter in law by the name of Ruth and remember this again. Ruth was a Gentile, a pagan idol worshiper of the Bible names the book off to her room would not go back. Ruth was a loyal friend. She was loyal to her mother-in-law. She was willing to cast how law was Naomi know many preachers use this text as a sermon of four weddings a while. It was wonderful because it connotes the loyalty and the commitment that should be in the marriage but the principle is even greater than that of a marriage. Of course, is the supreme place where commitment and loyalty should be exercised, but in all internal friendships. Loyalty is what God is looking for. Listen carefully. I have learned loyalty for the Lord Jesus Christ and loyalty to believers to friends and internal friendships can develop and I have no doubt in this incident here in the book of Ruth.
I have no doubt in my mind that it was Naomi's faith that it was Naomi's testimony that Naomi is trusting her God that it was Naomi's God that exhibited their life that was manifested, and how life was the thing that attracted Ruth to her mother-in-law.
I wanted to him the right place because such loyalty is hard to comprehend and fickle culture. Such loyalty is probably laughed at by some such loyalty is probably condemned by others. Some people probably think it's foolishness.
Others think it's impractical other problem with that is outmoded.
Such loyalty which is indispensable in a true friendship is what God exhibited with us. In fact, today's loyalty can only be described as tempering its duration limited in its benefits and the benefits it received from the friendship is exercise only when it proves to be beneficial and helpful, but loyalty and a term of friendships walks with a friend down the road. Even if the streetlights are not left that stays with the friend when everybody else leaves love the friend when everybody else does not risks.
It's all reputation when everybody else gives not a wit, and Ruth said listen to her words. Ruth said I don't care where you go there where you live. I don't care what kind of future you don't have.
I'm going to be with you facing with you. There is no doubt in my mind that somehow deep down in Bruce's heart set familiar Saul Naomi trusting in Jehovah God, though they were far away from the promised land. The plot away from your wife that were far away from Jerusalem. Yet she saw her again and again in the midst of her agony in the midst of her Valley trusting in the living God.
She saw Naomi going through bitter experiences, but she herself never become better. She saw Naomi's faith to be in her mighty God and she said to herself. I want that God, by God to be my God I want. I got to be my God, I want to worship him.
I want the God who said I'll never leave you nor forsake you that's confident faith, love and listen to me confident faith is always always anchored in the God of heaven through the Lord Jesus Christ and God rewards that faith in abundance.
He really doesn't see that in a minute.
God bless Ruth out of her socks.
I mean he just open the windows of heaven, I'm going to show you in a minute and I was thinking about the difference between confident faith and wishful thinking. Administrative read the story many years ago about a woman who was on a cruise ship, and out throughout this cruise ship she would go and look and gazes at the face of one man saw the trip dinnertime to find a place where she can be looking directly at Beckman on the bridge. She would look at the man all the time off the few days of this she began to freak this manna reminded audiences everywhere he goes, this woman looking everything she's looking at and finally picked up the courage and went to her and said no ma'am do I know you from somewhere she's on I don't know you don't know me but you just remind me of my third husband is that's nice how many husbands have you had. She said to let us go wishful thinking that I couldn't play but listen let me tell you about the rich evidence of loyalty in a confident face you see when Naomi and Ruth headed back to Bethlehem. Ruth, that loyal friend went immediately to work. It was Morris way below minimum wage. She want to support herself and her mother-in-law, but instead of doing the job was below minimum wage. She ended up having lunch with the CEO and executive suite in the great but not on the CEO that wealthy man turned out to be the kinsman redeemer is it what sat well in the Old Testament law, particularly Leviticus 25 the Bible said that when a man dies, the nearest male relative to marry and provide an heir as well as provide for that widow and so this CEO. This man Bowers turned out to be the kinsman redeemer is her provider Bowers was not only a godly man. Bowers is not only a good man and a wonderful man, but it did not hurt the situation to be rich. And so he ends up marrying Ruth is a while is not great no no no no that's not it hasn't begun yet the dividends haven't even begun to materialize yet that is not all that evidence of Ruth received for her loyalty to her friend and her friendship and her maternal friendship. She was conceived as you brought a boy into the world and she named them all bed when all but grew up he was married and had a boy and he named them Jesse and when Jesse grew up had a bunch of boys and the youngest of them was named David, but that's not all that's not the end of the road here.
Although David was a king of Israel and his great-grandmother was a Gentile woman but God honored her regardless of her race regardless of her background she honored God and God honored her. She trusted God and God trusted her not only to be the great-grandmother of King David of Israel but to be, through whom the physical descendents, the Lord Jesus Christ, the Messiah, a Gentile woman. Give me a break. God is a God of grace our God is a God of mercy, God is an honorable God. Ruth the woman from whom become the physical descendents of David and the Messiah, the son of the love and tell you something I would get what's practical and pragmatic and effective and convenient. Don't tell me what works. Show me loyalty and I'll show you dividends paid sooner or later.
It may take time but it will pay because is going to be paid by God himself. Indeed, Bowers himself became a type of Christ in the Bible he become a type of Christ, who is our kinsman redeemer tell you about our kinsman or you don't hear about them, about our kinsman redeemer is see our kinsman redeemer found us in the fields of sin kinsman redeemer found us in the fields of the misery of guilt.
Our kinsman redeemer found is bound in chains of sin and when nobody else would redeem humanity's when nobody else will come forward even in our kinsman redeemer and bring this to us forgiveness of our sins are kinsman redeemer is the one who blesses us richly all kinsman redeemer is the one who never leaves us no for sixes are kinsman redeemer is the one who provides for all of our needs are kinsman redeemer is the one who has us in the very hollows of his hands are kinsman redeemer is the one who comforts us with all comfort, all kinsman redeemer is the one who is our tower of strength in times of troubles are kinsman redeemer is the one who is our fortress from our enemies are kinsman redeemer is the one whose everlasting arms on the leases are kinsman redeemer is the one who rides the clouds for our help as I can give God praise.
The question is for you and for me. How about loyalty to what about our loyalty to the friendships of loyalty to the bride of Christ.
The church, what about that Lawrence.
We know he blesses gives generous dividends for loyalty and friendship. I want to tell you something. There is nothing will make an unbeliever set up and take notice and see loyal, see Jesus in that's how the government that through my disciples, how by going around and screaming a home run in an he said by having love one another how they got to know. Thank you for joining Dr. Michael you sent for leading the way.
If you'd like to learn more about what it means to live a life in Christ, and we want to invite you to speak with one of our pastoral team members. You can start the conversation and scroll through a lot of helpful frequently asked questions on spiritual life and living. When you visit LTW.Ord/TSS) in hearing from people all over the world saying that during this month of Ramadan, praying from Western friends. Well we are here in the heart of the Middle East not only praying from a conference where a ministry right here, both in Egypt and provide him elsewhere so I want to thank you first of all for your prayers and we are so delighted to be broadcasting and Easter service Easter in the East comes a month later and so there Easter is going to be on my second will record like we did at Christmas. We had a special presentation music and the celebration of the season and outreach doing the same thing for Easter. Prayers will be deeply appreciated. You know, God has let us hear even though 52 years ago I got out of here thinking a little bit back here I am coming every year ministering serving Christian community meeting with the top Christian leaders and leaders of this country and other countries in order to facilitate the proclamation of the gospel of Jesus Christ were so blessed with the favor that God has given us and we continuously serve any way we can take me long time to tell you about all the great things God is doing in North Africa, but suffice it to say your prayers, your partnership your encouragement through the years. I don't think I could survive without and I know that the say the same thing. First of all to say thank you. Continue to pray continued to stand with us to partner with us so that we will see the mission until the return of Christ.
Jesus said in Matthew 24. This gospel of the kingdom must be preached around the world and then the end will come. As we see the signs of being with taking the gospel and places nobody is able to go. That's God's favor. So thank you for your partnership. Please continue to pray for us continue to partner with us and I know that in heaven you will reward will be equal if not more, than mine because that's a biblical principle. Those of the stuff receive the same reward as those who went into the back so thank you so much and God bless you. Learn more about the worldwide impact of leading the way at 8666263568666264357 look around the interactive website how Dr. you sent and team intact might LTW.LW.this program is furnished by leading the range with Dr. Michael connect with us through our YouTube channel. Twitter and other social media networks