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February 25, 2019 3:00 am
This is a message from leading the way with Dr. Michael. You sat we pray that it will encourage you in your walk of faith. If you would like to learn more about Dr. you Seth on leading the way, please visit LTW.or we most certainly in desperate need of a special visitation from heaven or direction of our secular culture is growing.
We are desperately in need for an awakening. We need him to rescue us from the terrible spiritual condition that the nation finds itself in. You know if the dark ages were blatant departure from biblical truth. Therefore God raised Luther and Calvin and the Reformation came to Europe, our 21st century we are facing a new dark age is a different kind of dark age. It's a different kind of departure from biblical truth. It is plunging us into a new and equally devastating departure from the gospel of Jesus Christ. We find ourselves in the culture at large, where they have forbidden the name of Jesus from being publicly declared. The Bible is a forbidden book for many a government school, if not most, schools, government officials, corporate executives would lose their job when they take a stand for biblical truth, public prayer, they insisted, must be generic, it cannot be in the name of Jesus.
You can pray in the name of Gaia, the goddess of mother Earth you can praying to Allah you can pray, even in your own name and that's just dandy. As far as I were concerned but not the name of Jesus.
Several years ago actually is been a number of years ago now, I was invited to give the invocation at the big gathering in Washington DC for an organization that is economically conservative, politically conservative when they asked me. I asked three times as it are you sure you want me to pray, and three times they said yes. We want you to pray.
So I got up to give notification. First, I thank God for the great and godly heritage of this United States. And then I concluded by praying in the strong and mighty name of Jesus, and for good measure pride as I always do, for he is the name that is above every name in the name of Jesus every knee shall bow and every tongue will confess when I finished I was walking back to my seat.
I can tell you I can feel the eyes crackling on the my feet literally. I was seated next to a very prominent businessman who in the beginning when we arrived and were talking was friendly enough but when I returned to my seat literally for the next few minutes. He refused to talk to me and I kept bombarding him with questions about his family about his business about everything that I could think of, but alas, all he could do is grant. Finally, he couldn't take it anymore and then he said to me said, why did you have to use that name. Is it what name is it that name is or what name I was one of get the pronounce and I just get it out of his mouth. He wouldn't say it.
He said this is very divisive. This is controversial as you have made this political gathering to be exclusive. You have created division among the people in this room, and on and on. On and finally when he ran out of steam. I began to explain to him do know that what that name means do know that it was the name that literally literally impacted most if not all the founding fathers. How the gospel of Jesus Christ impacted the world I'd rather explain him how, when Europe returned to Vietnam during the Reformation. It gave us Western civilization which you are enjoying without that name. We were still in dark ages and it was nobody but that's the culture at large.
When you come to today's church, my soul, and body miniatures abusing the gospel of Jesus Christ there making his gospel to be whatever it is he wanted to be. Doesn't matter handle can still be a handle as long as they Jesus along the journey. A Buddhist company are still a Buddhist. As long as you think Jesus along the journey a Muslim can still be a Muslim as long as it took Jesus along the journey. Miniatures today teaches that all sins and all immoral lifestyles are accepted, appreciated and blessed by them in those churches that there is no need to repent of sin and take Jesus along the journey is all you need to do and that is why I believe with all my heart that we are becoming so desperate in a desperate situation where we are in dire need for the true and genuine revival awakening, call it whatever order you Reformation it is not surprising to me. Therefore, when you look at the holy pursuit of Romans and the of special verses 1 to 17 of chapter 1 that the key verse that the foundational verses, verse 16 where the apostle Paul said, for I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God unto salvation for those who believe this verse is the core verse not only of this chapter, but the entire parcel and today the reason so many so-called evangelical churches, a blessing same-sex marriage, and transgender all the way to blessing blatant and open disobedient to the word of God is this, they are ashamed of the true gospel of Jesus Christ. So they change it so they modify it so they redefine it so that blank the sharp edges of the gospel so that they might deactivate the power that is only in the gospel. The true gospel.
I know different people react to the word power differently.
Some feel threatened by the power others are intimidated by power. Others want to blank the power of others still want to put the defense mechanism up when it comes to the power, especially the power of the gospel and because Jesus's name is power power that demands repentance and submission so they modify it in order to blunted spell beloved, listen to me. I am aware of the fact that I have many critics, some of you will not know this but it doesn't matter. I have many critics among the compromising pastors in the professing Christians, but here make your pledge and that I will never at the cost of death will try to water down or modify the gospel on the part of the gospel of Jesus. One of the great versus that has fashioned my public ministry life is Ezekiel chapter 3 verses 16 to 21 for it tells us if our watchmen on the wall over city sees danger coming and does not speak up here will be held responsible for what happens next and the people's blood will be on his hands. However, if he speaks up and the people refuse to listen. Their blood is on their head. So as long as God gives me a breath. I will I will and I will speak up.
So why am I starting with verse 16 is already told you it is the cornerstone around which the epistle is built, it is the key. It is the key verse that unlocks the entire parcel. Now you might know this that are more commenters written on Romans probably than any other book.
And yet it is the most neglected and many are church after all it is the epistle.
As I said that is impacted Augustine and therefore Christianity for centuries and when that died down. God used the same epistle to ignite the Reformation and bring transformation to Europe and the world and it was the epistle to the Romans that ignited the passion of John Wesley which gave us a wasteland revival simply because it is a complete treaties of the Christian faith every document that is necessary for salvation is in the epistle to the Romans. But here's today's problem.
The reason the church of Jesus Christ has lost its power lost its impact is because they modified the gospel itself and the gospel when it is modified when it is watered down with a solution that power is lost.
In fact, Oxford dictionary gives us 18 major definition of power, the Greek language has 88 words and every one of them get translated into English as power.
I want to show you some of them. They have the word cutoffs that word means a power to dominate the power to rule in the Bible said that Satan exercises that power over those whom he dominate over those who are in his camp he exercise that I wrote power. The second word is exclusive, which is the power of delegation or permission in the gospel of John chapter 1 verse 12 says as many as received the Lord Jesus Christ. He gave them power or he gave them permission to be called the children of God, then there is the word that Paul uses here in Romans 116.
The Greek word dynamic costs from which we get the word dynamite through the wood to get the word dynamic and that is beloved the power of the gospel is different from the other powers. Today's many evangelical preachers are exercising their power because they have lost the power of the gospel so they do. The power manipulation and part of marketing and the marketing techniques. No wonder they mislead people into thinking that the gospel does not have power to change people into new creatures in Christ that the gospel has no power to transform their mind from our sinful nature and make us holy, that the gospel has no power to make them what God wants them to be created them to be rather than what they think or what culture think they should be in the Roman culture power workshop sure power was an iron yoke and Paul is saying that the power of the gospel is far superior. Why because it breaks the iron yoke of sin because it shatters the chains of addictions because it flings open the iron gate of darkness and sin. It is the power of God unto salvation and beloved, I am not ashamed of it. Not only that, but he was not ashamed of the gospel, but when I don't allow the part of the gospel to work in me when I don't submit to its authority when I don't believe it with all of my heart when I try to live by man's teaching and man's interpretation and man's methodology I lose the power of the gospel, I lose my power with God; narrowminded that Mike only bigoted may call me every name in the book, but I am not ashamed of the true gospel of Jesus Christ. For it is the power of God unto salvation to all liberally not just to me, everyone who believes, beloved, if there is no power in the gospel. Why call yourself a Christian is been nothing whatever else not want to make a confession to Becky under when I was in a different church there was a temptation for me. There was pressure put on me to swim with the current difficult.
The temptation was to seek the acceptance under the guise of relevance. I was tempted to rob the gospel of its power in my life just as many doing today. I don't remember sharing this with someone a different idea) talking about this and asked him to pray with me and a few days later, he sent me a cartoon clipping of Peanuts cartoon in this particular cartoon or Linus had just thrown a stick to Charlie Brown's dog Snoopy. Now, obviously, is been doing this and the dog runs often prevented Charlotte and the dog drafted and bring it back, but this particular time he throws the stick and then Snoopy Connor looks and doesn't move. And then he's what he said. He said I want people to have more to say about me after I'm gone. Then Jesse was a nice guy and he chased after sticks. Beloved lease agreement.
I know what is like when Satan and the world forever throwing sticks for us to change. I know what it is another temptation. I will tempted to chase sticks but when you realize that this dynamic costs of the gospel hands down is superior, you'll stop chasing sticks.
I need to explain something to you here about the most important you not ashamed of something unless you been tempted to feel ashamed of the thing and he tells us in first Corinthians chapter 2 verse three he said I came to you in fear and trembling, and then in chapter 118 and 23 he said he tells her that he understood the message of the cross is a stumbling block not going to be very bold here is to say, not a single person at the sound of my voice, who at some time when they seek to serve God with all of the heart when they seek to live for Christ when they seek to witness for Christ when they seek to proclaim Christ, who had not felt the temptation of being ashamed of the true gospel listen to me. Jesus knew all about the spout of temptation of being ashamed of him. He knows all about it and that is why in Luke 838 here's what he said if anyone is ashamed of me and not only meet my words is the thing on motion, the Jesus years, but are you ashamed of his words using the Lord makes it very clear if anyone ashamed of me and my words in this adulterous and sinful generation, the Son of Man will be ashamed of him when he comes to his father's glory with holy angels that are professing Christians in this city and many other cities who are embarrassed to identify themselves with Bible believing churches you know and I know we have friends who love Jesus friends who know the Lord Jesus and they took themselves week after week by going to churches where they feel falsehood where they hear untruth preach from the pulpit. It was Gen. William Booth, the founder of the Salvation Army. Whatever you think of him. He's a man of conviction and he was brought into trial by the church hierarchy and the accusation was that he taught that people are going to hell unless I saved through the blood of Jesus Christ and not the church or not. This is not the other thing and in the middle of the trial it was in a huge church in England. The big trial public trial, people everywhere up in the balcony down in the church and and then the prosecutors, church leaders gave him one last chance to change his mind and his beloved wife was in the balcony and she heard this and so she brought up and she held a white handkerchief and start waving it to Livermore William know when you going to need more women and men of God like this today. Well, as usual, I got carried away with this key verse that forgotten to deal with the text but but I will deal with the text.
I hope you have the Bible open in front of you as we look those first 17 verses for the reason the apostle Paul was not ashamed of the gospel. First, in verses 1 to 7 because his identity is in Christ, and secondly, in verses 8 to 14.
He had a vision for life God's vision for his life. And thirdly, he knew his source of real power. Verses 16 and 17. Let's look at those very quickly. First, Paul was not ashamed of the gospel because he knew who he is and whose here's he knew that his identity is in Christ, beloved, listen to me in the day when so many people are mixed up about who they are in a day when it is fashionable to question your agenda and even in churches in a day when you have no sense of identity in a day when so many following celebrities and superstars without thinking in a day when so many church leaders want to be liked by the secular sinful culture. It is refreshing to see that the apostle Paul knew his identity and whose here's that he is a bond slave or a bondservant of the Lord Jesus Christ. It is refreshing. It is refreshing. I know this will not fly Wall Street and will not endure among the Hollywood elite will not be accepted by the secular media, but my beloved friends. This is the healthiest self perception.
You can have one sooner that all has been given to you by grace and has nothing to do with it. It's all given to you by grace that anchors you in your identity in Christ, the Mrs. C Paul saw himself as bondservant of bond slave the Lord Jesus is the greatest privilege is the greatest honor that he could receive in life.
Another all source of reasons why people serve why the minister that all sorts of reasons I never question people's motive. There are some who serve and minister at a sense of duty. There are some who serve in minister in order to earn favor with God. There are people like Qaddafi's and three John verse nine who like to serve because of the prestige that the ministry offered him other serve for their own purposes and fulfill their own agenda. The other still server minister is good for business, whatever it may be.
Here's the truth, any service or ministry that is not done of a sincere desire to glorify the Lord Jesus Christ is not worth 1/2 a hallelujah secondly, Paul was not ashamed of the gospel because he knew he has a vision for life. The average person that just exists. The average person has no vision for life. And yet Paul had a vision in his life and ministry and he tells us that part of that vision is to grow and be with the Roman believers. He trusted God that this was God's vision for him even though it took some time and was longer than he expected. And sure enough, my goodness, it took so many detours ended up in prison in Jerusalem and in Caesarea, and then he went on a ship that took forever and got wrecked along the way. It was a disaster. And yet God fulfill his vision for Paul and ended up going to Rome justice division that God gave our bag every one of you to have a vision.
It is God's vision for you and if you ask him. He will give it to you just stay still in his presence long enough so he may communicated to you.
I know I know what I'm talking about when I was 16, 17, God gave me a vision longer to be in United States of America, how to have a global ministry.
Can you believe that I knew it after the Six-Day War. The embassy closed as it will that vision officers not from God must be my own fancy idea, but God opened the door that took me a short detour. Oh what a detour that was it was a fabulous teacher. The only places open for me is Australia a dig of 19 I left Egypt and I went Australia and work with God. He gave me the most fabulous wife met a I had a great theological education.
I was ordained and had some godly friends, but three of our four children were born there but in the end God brought me back to the vision that he gave me back when I was 17. Is it when you last got to give you a vision.
He will and when you have God's vision for your life even when you experience detours you will not be discouraged when you have God's vision for your life, you will not have somebody else's vision.
When you know that you are obeying God's vision for your life, you will not need to fret during the hard times during the sharp turns and Paul not only had that one purpose and that is eventually going to Rome is in verses 11, 12 and 13, but he also had a purpose that for going there. He wants to be of mutual encouragement.
That's the vision beloved, you know this and I know this when encouragement is only one way and one last one last very long.
The great apostle Paul was not only anxious to go there to give them an encouragement but to receive more encouragement is a he was, not arrogant to think that he is the only one who can encouragement impart encouragement development, but they him as well in you that is going to need their encouragement is going to need their support in order to send him on his way to Spain possess a vision of God for his life. Verses 14 and 15 policies for service as an obligation, namely, not an obligation to God put him under nonanonymous plaintiffs because of God's saving grace of his life he felt indebted to pass the good news to others. Who was Paul obligated to God, to whom does he make payment for that obligation. The people beloved.
I know many Christians give God an occasional credit. Many Christians give God the lipservice. Many Christians praise God only with… And not with the substance but Paul felt that he is and that God for saving him God in the put him on the bed that he put himself under the then he said, are all the gospel to make it known to others is a fact. There are two ways you can get into debt the government borrow money from tobacco forever. You borrow money that pushing that but there's another way that you can get into debt and brother Mike over here gives me some money and he said I wanted to give the money to Zach, as long as the money in my pocket I'm in debt right until I disperse it until I take it to the people to the person to whom is designated as the second wife of getting into debt.
That's the debt that Paul is talking about here. God entrusted him with the gospel to pass it on to others. This equipment Jesus gave your solvation not so that you will sit in the pews of salvation for the rest of your life and I hope he wasn't the president others. Jesus entrusted you with some financial resources, not so that you might spend it all yourself. Know that you might help others use it for him.
UNI debtors in the sense of stewardship. This account of that is talking about stewardship of God's salvation stewardship of God's resources and stewardship of God's blessings him} God used someone's time to bring you the message of the gospel for you to believe it. God use somebody else's talent to bring you the gospel so you can believe it. God use somebody else's treasure so that you might hear the gospel and now he's entrusting us to make it possible for others to hear and respond to the gospel. Paul is not ashamed of the gospel as he knew he was in whose he will secondly he knew what was going thirdly finally, Paul knows the source of his power. Verses 16 and 17. The moment you get uppity and you think that you got where you are by Yorkshire with by Yorkshire charm by your own talents and hard work. Look out look out look out look up urine dangerous territory. You really are. Verse 17 this is a verse upon which 500 years of reformation has been built. This is the first in which your life and mine ought to be built every single day, every moment of every day. Paul actually he reports Habakkuk chapter 2 verse four, the just shall live by faith. The just shall live by faith. The site together in the Bible often speaks about faith in three different tenses speak about faith past faith present in faith future past the moment you come to Jesus Christ confessing your sins and saying only a blood can save me you God for me, but the place somewhere back in the past with the place in my lower back in 1964.
That's faith past. Then there's faith present in the present tense this day. This moment every moment of every day. I am exercising faith in the living God to strengthen me to empower me to pull me forward to continue faithfully serving him that his faith in the present. Then there's faith in the future will I know but I know but I know that the moment bars are closed and death. I will open them at the face of Jesus past, present and future.
It's all of God is all his power of his grace all of his love