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Defending a Lion, Part 1

Leading the Way / Michael Youssef
The Truth Network Radio
February 1, 2022 7:00 am

Defending a Lion, Part 1

Leading the Way / Michael Youssef

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February 1, 2022 7:00 am

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Up next, a passionate word for you from Dr. Michael Youssef.

This is Leading the Way Audio. First though, a couple of questions. Can you recall the last time you left your mobile phone sitting on the counter as you ran out the door? Think about that. You probably drove no more than a mile and then suddenly began patting your pockets or rifling through your purse, feeling that overwhelming rush of separation from the lifeline that keeps you connected with family and friends and work.

Okay, second question. Where's your Bible? And do you experience that same feeling of separation when you don't have your Bible? Or has the Word of God conveniently moved to an app next to your email? Today on Leading the Way, Dr. Michael Youssef begins a life-changing series reminding you of the uniqueness of the Bible, challenging you to seek God's Word as your only source of power for daily living.

And please do remember, Leading the Way is listener-supported. It's made possible by your prayers and your generosity. Learn how Dr. Michael Youssef passionately proclaims uncompromising truth around the world at ltw.org.

Or call us. Speak with a ministry representative, 866-626-4356. Let's listen together now as Dr. Youssef begins. I have always believed, and I always will believe until the Lord takes me home, that the Word of God is a mighty power when it is read, applied, and obeyed. Through the years, especially at Leading the Way when we started the dual language program and was going on to different languages around the world, and we would offer on radio for most of these countries a Bible in their language, and we would get letters, and believe it or not, I have kept some samples of those letters.

There were thousands of them. One said, I hunger to read the Word of God of which you speak, but I cannot get it in my country. Another person said, I long to read for myself the wonderful truth about Jesus. Please send me a Bible. A third said, I thirst like a man with parched lips in a spiritual desert for God's Word. I must confess to you, whenever I used to read these letters, and I still do read these letters, when I contrast this incredible thirst and hunger for the Word of God, when I contrast that with what is happening for us here in the West, the indifference that we have toward the Word of God, the abandoning of the Word of God, I must confess to you, I deeply grieve.

In the West, just the average home probably has more than one Bible gathering dust. There is no book like it. There is no book like it.

That no book has ever been produced anywhere in the world, or anywhere, anytime in history. In it, God reveals himself to us. And in doing so, he used 40 different writers over a period between 15 to 1600 years. Even though there were 40 writers, 15, 1600 years span, and yet they all consistently tell the same story. The Bible is free from factual contradictions. Its theme is consistent. It is free from human orchestration. If I'm writing the Bible, I'd have kept all that bad stuff out and make people look good.

It is free from human orchestration. It is written with people of varied backgrounds, from kings to doctors to shepherds to tax collectors. It is written in different periods of time in world history.

It is written in different parts of the world, from Europe to Asia to Babylon. There is no book like it. In all of human endeavor, there is no book like it.

Not even close in its uniqueness. Imagine a book that is written 500 years ago, say, about medicine or science. 500 years, not 15 or 16, not 3000 years ago, but just 500 years. Imagine that book is as accurate today as the day it was written.

Impossible, right? And that is why there is no book like it. While it contains 66 books, 40 different writers, over a span of 15 or 1600 years, and it contains various subjects, but it only has one theme. Jesus Christ, the Redeemer. That is the theme of the entire Bible. The books of the Old Testament tell us that He's coming, and then the New Testament announces He's here. Those 66 books in one book, they don't tell 66 stories. No, they all tell one story.

What is it? Man's rebellion against God and God's redemption for everyone who repents of that rebellion. And that is why, to this day, the unity of the Bible has defied human wisdom. The unity of the Bible has baffled the critics. The unity of the Bible challenges its enemies. The unity of the Bible goads its opponents. There is no book like it.

Every prophecy that began by saying, thus says the Lord, it came to pass with meticulous details and precision. It's the only book that I know of that has endured the centuries of being attacked, maligned, barred, burned, and buried, and yet it stands. I remember my one and only visit to China, and I met with some leaders of the underground church, and they were telling me that back in the days of the cultural revolution and the communists, they were shredding the Bible. But the believers at that time picking up the shreds and tried to assemble it together so they can read it. Think about that.

Think about that. Throughout history, people have either loved the word of God or hated the word of God. People either believed it or they rejected it. Throughout history, they have tried to change it. They've tried to modify it. They've tried to undermine its authority.

They've tried to water down its demands. Throughout history, dictators, despots, and potentates have sought to banish it, yet they are all dead and the word of God still lives today. Amen. Amen. Give God glory.

Please hear me right. What tears me up, what tears me up about the Bible today is this. What despots, atheists, communists, godless people fail to accomplish is being accomplished by Christians in spades. You say, Michael, how come? By not reading it, believing it, trusting it, and obeying it.

They are accomplishing what these despots could not accomplish. And that is why my prayer throughout this short series of messages that everyone, everyone, everyone at the sound of my voice would be awakened afresh as to the joy and the power that can only come from reading, believing, and obeying the word of God. I know we all talk to ourselves. We all self-talk. And I just wonder how many of us have ever asked the question, why would some people who claim to love God, and they may even claim Jesus as their savior, and yet they will spend more time watching television, playing golf, reading books, socializing, than reading the word of God. Have you ever thought about this? No, nothing wrong with these things. I do all of these things, except that golf thing. I don't understand how to spend money to get frustrated.

I tried it once or twice. But for some reason, we have time for everything, except spending time with the word of God and drinking deeply from it and gaining the benefits. Well, after this very short introduction, I want to share with you, and it's going to be very brief, I want to share four things. The Bible is the only spiritual food that will nourish your soul. And secondly, the Bible is the only power that you can have in your life, power for living. And thirdly, it is the only mirror that will truly reveal to you your true self, the only mirror.

And fourthly, it is a perfect temperature shower that can wash you and cleanse you. Here, let's look at those four things very quickly. First of all, the word of God is the only food, is the only food. I am not against preaching, I preach.

I'm not against reading other books, I write books. But I'm telling you now, on the authority of the word of God, that the word of God itself is the only food that will sustain you spiritually, that will nourish you spiritually, that will encourage you every day. The analogy between the physical body and the spiritual body is often mentioned in the Scripture. That just as our physical bodies need nutrients, need good food, nutritious food for the body to be strong and survive, so is the spiritual food is needed for our spirits. Now beloved, I know, and I know you know, that in this country at least, we haven't missed too many meals. We haven't missed too many meals.

Thank God. I don't want you to feel guilty about it, I just thank God. But how in the world can we go months after months without feeding our spirits on the word of God? We work hard to provide daily food for our families, and that's wonderful, it's good. We work hard to stay healthy, and that's great. We work hard to educate our children, we work hard physically to thrive, and yet, when it comes to feeding of our spirits, feeding of our soul, we think that we can survive in few crumbs that we get here, there, and everywhere.

No. Listen to what God said through Isaiah 55 2. Why spend money on that which is not bread, and your labor for that which does not satisfy? Listen to me and eat what is good, and your soul will delight in the richest affair.

Beloved, listen to me. The reason we are spiritually in a famine, the famine, the spiritual famine we're in today, is because God's people are so malnourished to the point of getting into a coma. The word of God is not only the only food that's worthy of the name for your spirit, but secondly, it is the only power for living. When Romans 1 16 says, one of my life verses, I am not ashamed of the gospel because it is the power, say that with me, the power of God unto salvation to everyone who believes, first to the Jew, then to the Gentiles. And now, we're forever looking for power. I think every single person at some point is looking for power.

We're looking for power over our circumstances when we feel helpless, we're looking for power over our lives, we're looking for power over the challenges of life that we all face. But we forget that the word of God is the only power over sin, that the word of God is the only power over temptation, that the word of God is the only power over our circumstances, that the word of God is the only power over diseases and illnesses, that the word of God is the only power over the challenges of life. The Word of God is not only food for our soul. The Word of God is not only a powerful living. But thirdly, the Word of God is the only mirror that can truly reveal to you yourself.

The only one. And I wondered in my own spirit, now thinking aloud, I wonder because the fact that the Word of God is a mirror that reflects back to us our real selves. That's why people don't want to read it.

I just wondered. I'm not making a statement, I'm thinking aloud. You see, most people don't want to be confronted with their hypocrisy. Most people don't want to be confronted by their double standards. Most people don't want to be confronted by their compromises. Most people don't want to be confronted by their complacency. A preacher preaches about prayer, and they feel guilty, and they're going to start prayer life and they can do okay for a while, then back to normal.

A preacher preaches about the Word, I've got to read the Word of God, I've got to be... But that's complacency. It's the permanent change that God is looking for. So what do we do? Most people stop looking in the mirror, thinking, well, if I don't look in the mirror, I won't see myself, I won't confront my failures, I won't confront these things that I don't like.

Please, please, I'm right on this. The mirror confronts us with facts. And so many would say, because of that, I don't like to look in the mirror. I'm not going to look at the mirror.

James, the half-brother of Jesus, said the following in chapter 1 of James 1, 23 and 24, anyone who listens to the Word of God, but does not do what it says, would be like a man who looks his face in the mirror, and after looking himself, gets away, immediately forgets what he saw. I wonder how many of us really, really enjoy and likes looking in the mirror first thing in the morning when you wake up. And I'm talking about, you know what I mean, when your hair is so disheveled and your face looks like a truck has been driven all over it. Now, in my case, it's a horror show. I mean, it's really scary.

But please listen, listen. Looking at the mirror is precisely what caused me to do something about it. Looking at the mirror is what propels me to hit the shower and do few other things. Some of us do more than others, but that's okay. Now, suppose you look and you see yourself and then you say, well, I don't like what I see, but you know what, I won't do anything about it today. I might do something about it sometime down the road. And then you go to work just the way you are.

That would be a horror show for everybody else. But that's precisely what happens when a believer looks at the Word of God as a mirror and confronts failure, frailty, inconsistencies, and the list goes on and on and on. But thank God, the Word of God is not only a mirror, but fourthly and perhaps the most important. It's a perfect temperature water shower. It cleanses. Ephesians 5 26 says, the Word of God is like a perfect temperature shower. Now, I know some of you think this is a rough translation, but trust me, that's what he meant to say. They didn't have showers back then, but that's what he would have said. Regardless of how terrible you may look, regardless of how much dirt you might have accumulated, regardless of how much filth that you feel you're carrying, the moment you go under the shower, you're 100% cleansed. Can I get a witness?

But here's the thing why I said the fourth one is really the most important, because if you imagine the following scenario, suppose you look in the mirror, maybe you're working and looking like a grease monkey, and you look in the mirror, but you can't do anything about it. You can't do anything about it. You can live with that. Just think about it. How depressing that would be. How frustrating that would be.

I can't change that condition. I think I know you agree with me. You agree with me about the frustration and depression that could result. But thanks be to God that his word is not only a mirror that reveals ourselves to us, but it also a shower that washes us. Get under it. You'll feel 100% better. You will walk away rejoicing. I'm going to explain this, what I mean by the mirror and the shower. You have to understand, the Word of God in tempest is the Word of God.

I don't have the answers. Thank God for that. In 1 Peter chapter 1 verse 22, here's what he said. Now that you have purified yourselves by obeying the truth.

You notice? Not just reading it, obeying it. Now that you have purified yourself by obeying the Word of God. So that you have sincere love for the brothers and sisters in Christ, love one another deeply from the heart. What has this got to do with the mirror and the shower? Everything to do with it. Listen carefully, because I know experientially and I know most of you do.

Here's what it means. You take a good look in the mirror and you see resentment, bitterness. What you do, you go under the shower, the Word of God. And what does the Word of God will do? You will replace that resentment and bitterness by love for one another. See that's what it means. The love of Christ will start pouring into you that the very people that you're having feeling resentment toward, your heart is filled with love toward them. That's when you obey the Word of God. That's what it means. You look in the mirror and you see deep-seated anger, hatred toward someone.

And you immediately go under the shower. And the Lord just in His Word purifies you, cleanses you and replaces that anger with love for the very person that you're angry with. Oh, precious Heavenly Father, I thank you for your sovereignty. And I thank you that throughout these thousands of years and all of the efforts that people exerted in order to distort or destroy the Word of God, you kept it safe for us today.

You have a purpose for that. You said the will of God is your sanctification. For the person who does not know you, Lord Jesus, I pray that they invite you to come into their life and experience the joy of your forgiveness. For the person who has known you for a long time and has got cold toward you and cold toward the Word of God, I pray for a special awakening in each spirit and soul. And so that, Lord, in these last days, we begin to live for you.

And Father, I pray this in the mighty, matchless name of Jesus, amen. Thank you for joining Dr. Michael Youssef for Leading the Way. If you would like to speak with someone about anything you've heard today or previously on other episodes, reach out to Leading the Way's pastoral team.

You can start that conversation with a compassionate and caring team member by filling out a short contact form. Just go to ltw.org slash Jesus. Never before has our nation been so divided, so distracted, so prone to seeking our own way. Yet for the believer, we are called to a hope that does not disappoint. Join Leading the Way's newest initiative, Awake America, a call to God's people to pray for a spiritual awakening like we've never witnessed before. We are asking Bible-believing Christians all over the country to join us as we pray in our neighborhoods, our cities, and on our campuses. Pray that God will bring salvation and revival to our land. Will you partner with Leading the Way by joining this growing movement to Awake America?

Together, we can proclaim the uncompromising truth of Christ. To join with us on this critical mission, visit us online at AwakeAmerica2022.com. AwakeAmerica2022.com. Join Dr. Michael Yusef and thousands of others all around the country in praying for this great nation and our world.

God is at work, and now is not the time to give up, but the time to lean deeper into prayer for God to move. Learn more about Awake America and ways for you to participate when you click over to ltw.org. The ministry representatives can also guide you when you give us a call, 866-626-4356. That's 866-626-4356. Or you can also write to us. We're at Leading the Way, Post Office Box 201100, Atlanta, Georgia, 30325. That's Post Office Box 201100, Atlanta, Georgia, 30325. This program is furnished by Leading the Way with Dr. Michael Yusef, passionately proclaiming uncompromising truth around the world.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-06-03 23:13:04 / 2023-06-03 23:21:58 / 9

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