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May 16, 2022 8:00 am
If you keep enjoying God's blessings and ignoring him. One day you going to stand in the courts of heaven before the great judge and all these blessings that God has given you are doing this so as witnesses against touches everyone may be viewed as a parlay that the fact is that you are always a breath away entering eternity. Thank you for joining Dr. Michael Yousef for leading the way as he takes us for a deep dive into the book of acts. This is a series called looking up when lights got you damn you can learn from the experiences of Paul about letting the abundant Christian life. Life doesn't feel so abundant and do remember that leading the way is listener supported make possible in your neighborhood and in neighborhoods just like yours.
All around the world by God's provision to God's people learn email@example.com now is Dr. Michael yourself with words on keeping your integrity intact. Have you ever thought about how a sports team when to win the game.
People will literally bow down and adores him to lose the game.
They want to stone them with tomatoes on rock legs give you an answer to this question that I'm raising in your minds and because I thought about this a great deal and wanted to listen to. I'm going to tell you men, women and young old. One of the most dangerous things in life is to seek off popular boys and girls in school want to be popular and being popular becomes the most important thing in the school often bring pain upon themselves and be disappointed and discouraged many a times balance uphold popularity they hold it up for the children is a life that will be disappointed and will pay a very heavy price pastors and ministers and Bible teachers and leaders of all stripes. I can tell you without a shadow of doubt that if popularity is the goal of your life, you will end up compromising and becoming ineffective in serving God. Why is seeking off the popularity can be so demoralizing one going to be so dangerous and devastating because the crowd by nature is fickle because the crowd by nature is for Jackson Hole because the crowd by nature is mercurial because the crowd by nature is changeable, just like the wind, because the crowd by nature unstable and therefore you cannot build your life goals on popularity defamed all journalist of yesteryear was Greeley of the New York Tribune said years ago and I quote he said fame is a vapor popularity is an accident. Riches takes, rings, and those who choose you today will curse you tomorrow. Only one thing endures character and of court, my beloved friends I want to tell you the longer I live the more I realize that integrity is a precious commodity. It is very fragile, but it's a precious commodity. And unless you protected unless you guarded unless you feed upon the word of God unless you have it anchored in Jesus Christ unless you do that on a daily basis, moment by moment every single day, you soon will discover that your integrity building blocks begins to crumble and fall apart like you promised him a right you cannot keep your integrity intact.
Being popular is your lives. Goal King Saul gives us the best example of this. The Bible is full of examples and yet somehow we keep repeating that same mistake over and over and over again that others have made sale of Israel was a man who did not know how to protect his integrity and that is why halfway through his kingly service.
He found that integrity is building blocks began to fall apart and this is how it happens, it happens with precision. Every time listen carefully, my beloved friends I want to tell you it first begins with pride when pride takes hold of us will not let go. Be careful of pride.
You might call it ego. You might call it insecurity or my call in this recall of the other thing but all it is his pride, pure and simple. And it is the one sin that condemned by the Lord Jesus Christ. When pride took hold of King Saul's life. He began to believe his own press releases. He began to think that he did it all himself, forgot to give God the glory had forgotten to give God all of the credit when pride takes over. The next step.
The second step is that he was blaming everybody around him for his disobedience to the Lord and never himself and you begin to blame other people for your troubles instead of looking in the mirror and then the five step is acting or role-playing.
And that's precisely what Saul began to do. He began to role-play repentance, he began to act as if he is repentant when he's not. Be careful of pretending to repent that is more dangerous than not repenting. Be careful about role-playing your spiritual life.
Be careful about thinking that you know everything about everything so that you'll find yourself going through the motions but on the inside.
There is no change. How many times so laws that my son, I'm sorry but he wasn't really sorry at all the limitations something if you're a person who has compromised your integrity. There is good news there is good news if you compromise your integrity for popularity. If you compromise your integrity for financial gain. If you compromise your integrity or desire to control those other people who are with you. That is good news and the good news is that there are three steps that just as our three steps for those building blocks of integrity to crumble the three steps for the rebuilding of the building block of your integrity.
Listen carefully. First of all admitted treatments genuinely admit your failure receive the forgiveness of God. No role-playing truly repent from your heart. Secondly, find a good honest friend who's going to keep a secret.
A good honest man. The woman who is going to keep confidentiality and then ask him or her to hold you accountable to walk with you and your road to recovery and in the third thing that you must do is you begin to set your goal in life not popular, not financial gain. Not domination, not power up one thing and one thing alone, and that is the glory of Jesus Christ. If you write that is your goal in life and you begin every single day to live up to that call up almost to the world might be falling apart but you standing strong. James sure once said some of the most talented people are terrible leaders because they have a crippling need to be loved by everyone.
Why am I taking time to warn you and myself and want everybody else was listening to me is because acts chapter 14 gives us an example of two men of God overcame that insidious temptation. Acts chapter 14 shows us how to men of integrity were victorious over that insidious temptation, how to men of commitment to Jesus Christ. I only Paul and refused to be tempted of fall into the temptation of pride and popularity. Turn with me please. Acts 14. The first seven verses, Paul and Barnabas go to I can you and there in that city. Paul preaches the gospel and they got the predictable response.
Those who believe the gospel and therefore repented and rejoiced in the good news of the gospel and then the will of the religious leaders who incited the crowd in order to persecute Paul and Barnabas and throw them out of town but beginning at verse eight of acts 14. Paul and Barnabas go down from I can empty olestra and there they see this crippled man from birth through the part of the Holy Spirit.
The apostle Paul heals a man who has been crippled from his birth in the pagan crowd goes berserk is no other way to describe. They just went berserk look at verse 11 of acts 14 is what they said they said the gods have come down to us in the likeness of men. And in a typical crowd reaction in a typical mass hysteria. They said but all of us is Zeus and Paul is helpmeets and the next thing they were doing the priests of Zeus and Hermes comes in the bring a bunch of bulls and goblins there were ready to offer sacrifices to Paul and Barnabas in the ready to bow and worship them, and they thought the gods have come among us. The Bible tells us that because of the language barrier for a few minutes. Paul did not understand what's going on and Barnabas did not know what's going on and I thought that my return I give an offering unto the Lord, which would be nice but that's not what they were doing and as soon as Paul and Barnabas discovered what they're trying to do mainly worship and offer sacrifices to them. They told her close is a sign of being horrified out of horror. They told her close.
What is this all about.
I wanted to listen very carefully. This is very important because you have to understand the background to what they say. Wanted the call Barnabas use what I call Paul Hermes and why do they want to worship them well in the city of Leicester there was a mythology and that mythology was recorded by a Roman poet by the name of all that he died in the year A.D. 17. The mythology goes something like this. The gods Zeus and Hermes once came to earth into the city.
Olestra disguised as human beings.
And when I arrived in olestra. They asked for hospitality.
They wanted accommodation they want somebody to feed them but they knocked on 1000 doors. Nobody will offer them hospitality but there was a peasant man by the name of Philemon and his wife by cross who took those gods into their humble cottage, poor as they were offered of all they had in the midst goes on to say that later on. The gods rewarded Philemon and his wife are turning their humble cottage into a temple for Zeus and Hermes, but then they destroyed the rest of the population of Leicester through flood all in revenge for not receiving accommodation.
Meanwhile, this fictitious man for Lehman and his wife became the first priest and priestesses in the Temple of Zeus and Hermes now after for Lehman's wife's death, they turned into two stately trees to trees so you can imagine this pagan population olestra. They thought Paul and Barnabas because they feel this crippled man from birth. You can imagine the reaction when they saw this man walking and talking when he is never done so.
All I can think of is this is gonna happen again.
In this segment we want to repeat the mistakes of our ancestors. We don't want to commit that sin again.
So now we don't offer these people, not just hospitality gonna worship them because they are gods Zeus and him and I don't put them on a pedestal.
The gonna worship them and ask a question I want you to think about this.
What is the temptation that Paul and Barnabas were facing at that very moment. Think about it.
What is that temptation I can tell you what it is.
Let them have their fun. What's wrong with them having this experience we will accept what they doing and then we can tell them about Jesus after we get some respect in this new city we been thrown out of every Senate is an opportunity for us to get some respect get some relief from the persecution man let's just get some respect. We can tell them about the gospel.
Let's get some acceptance here from this society and after we get accepted and that they consent to their lives in their homes and into the culture we can share the gospel with him. Well is not harmful, living them practice the cultural mill you is terrible temptation, terrible temptation.
After all we going to be relevant to them. You don't have to get drunk to be relevant to a drunk Paul was indeed relevant business doubt about it. He was indeed relevant. He did not preach a sermon sermon that we saw and other times when he went into the synagogue and he talked to them about Moses and about Abraham and the God who delivered his people. He did not talk to them about the backdrop he did not talk about the prophecies in the Old Testament none on you. These people have no background in the Old Testament whatsoever.
They have no knowledge of the God of the Bible knowledge of the God of the Hebrews.
They knew that they understood that and therefore they were relevant to them. Listen to Paul's testimony or sermon. In fact, is a summary of the stone in his mind.
If you look at the passage he understood that these people were worshiping nature therefore had to begin by talking about the God, the creator of nature these people worshiping creatures and therefore they have to begin by talking about the God who made all the creatures. These people were worshiping myth and reality and, therefore, the apostle Paul was telling them about the real God who became a real man who preached real good news who died a real death. He was resurrected real resurrection and he's coming back really really coming back to judge every human being. That's what Paul's message to the people of Leicester. This was a sermon to the pagan audience. He never tried to get along. He never tried for personal gain and personal acceptance closes the years shut his mouth.
Never try to mislead them he never tried to get them read the small fine print. He spelled it out up front and beloved friends. Here's a message for today here's a message for those who worship nature. Here is a message to those who still follow the defunct theory of evolution is a message for those who are self gratification seekers is a message to those for soft worshipers listen to it very carefully.
You may need to preach it tomorrow morning, your neighbor, your friend in the message is this stuff comes from the word of God, that every meal you eat that every drop of water you drink that every breath you draw that every enjoyment of the sunshine that you experience every enjoyment of good health that you have every dollar that's in your pocket every particle of air that you breeze.
They are all a gift from the Creator God is half of the sermon given the other half.
If you keep enjoying God's blessings and ignoring him. If you keep on receiving God's gifts and acknowledge him. Not if you keep on taking from him and taking from him and give the credit to others. The science and whatever it may be both yourself one day you go to stand in the courts of heaven before the great judge on that dreadful day and all these blessings that God has given you are going to serve as witnesses against you, but if you will turn to him.
If you acknowledge his son the Lord Jesus Christ, that he had died for you if you worship him alone. If your life is anchored in adorning him. If you commit your life to him and him alone then the story will change. It will change radically.
Linda on the supposedly dreadful day is not dreadful for you because on that day you will be justified on that day you will be pronounced guiltless on that day you will escape the judgment of God on the day you will experience firsthand the forgiveness of God on that day you will be with him in heaven. That is the message that our generation but to prove the fickleness of the crowd. Here in chapter 14 verse 19 of the book of acts, the very people the very people who wanted to worship Paul and Barnabas Zeus and Hermes. Now they got so stirred up and installing them almost to death.
The same people day. The Gallup poll said that their popularity is over 90% in the next day it plummeted to zero. That is why my beloved friends if you know Jesus Christ as your Savior and Lord.
You do not live by the popularity poll you live by the authority of Jesus Christ, you cannot live by the world's popularity index. Remember the crowd in Jerusalem one day said hosanna blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord and then four days later, they said if I have his blood is on us and our children the very people who wanted to offer Paul and Barnabas a sacrifice and worship them wanted to kill them, the very people who wanted to be a five.
Paul and Barnabas wanted to destroy.
In fact, look at verse 19. Again, acts 14 effective thought Paul was already dead.
The stone him so much and so hard that everybody left with will he died is only good, but Paul gets up and he leaves the tricking of blood from restaurant to the city of Derby and there. The Bible said he preached again he preached again ask you this question as I conclude, I pray that God the Holy Spirit will keep the question in your mind for the remainder of your life, not just a reminder of the day. What is the goal of your life is the goal of your life.
The glory of Jesus Christ is the goal of your life to bring glory to the name of Jesus Christ. If it is not when you make that be the goal of your life today will you because I want to tell you any other goal that is not anchored in this one will bring misery will bring disappointment.
We but when your goal is anchored in the glory of Jesus Christ alone. If your goal is to bring honor the name of Jesus Christ, the world would be falling apart all around but you will stay on top of the world. Thank you for listening to leading the way, spreading the gospel for more than 30 years of spiritual questions no one to share those with leading the way Pastor would love to speak with you just start your firstname.lastname@example.org/GSS is desperately in need of truth and hope leading the way is meeting the challenges facing 2025 campaign witnessing dramatic impact across new technologies and audiences to keep the vision 2025 initiative to reach the next generation for Christ leading the way notes the podcast candid conversations with Jonathan, you said which just celebrated its 100% already had a conversation that the podcast wildlife in 95 countries click any conversation to teach me about talking to friends and teaching apologetics dating and marriage, and more with changing our cooling is the same. Leading the way.) The Second media landscape using to reach the valve today to conjointly leaving the base level at what God is doing well 53. Find out about the many ways that you can stand with Start giving us a call 866-626-4356 866-626-4356, and online. LTW.org, LTW.org this program is furnished by leading the way with Dr. Michael you sent passionately proclaiming uncompromising truth around the world