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July 31, 2020 6:00 am
Is there strife in an important relationship in your life. Maybe at home may be at work. Maybe even a church. Maybe it's in your small group. How do you deal with disunity. How do you resolve it you know in your heart. God want you to step up and do something and address it, but the fact is you don't know.
Stay with me. Welcome to this Edition of Living on the Edge shipping trips are Bible teacher of this daily discipleship, outreach, and today Chip continues a series pressing ahead in our previous program. He began talking about the trail for the most painful adversities we ever experience is going to bring us the second half of his talk with some practical insight into what to do, how to not give up. Maybe put things back together again will get your Bible handy and let's jump in strip with part two of his message facing internal opposition. Can you do a little do a little quick Bible study with you ready open up to Exodus chapter 22 okay, go backwards, Genesis, Exodus, second book in the Bible.
Exodus chapter 22 what I want you to get is that this guy is not just like going off like you know what I, like you didn't do that.
What he's realizing is these Jewish nobles leaders and wealthy people are in such violation of the truth of God's word. Exodus chapter 22.
Skim down to verse 25 and it talks about how Jewish brothers in God's economy are supposed to handle lending money. If you lend money to my people to the poor among you, you're not to act as a creditor to him. You're not to charge him interest. That's pretty clear is if you ever take your neighbor's cloak is a pledge you to return it to him before the sun sets for that is his only covering his cloak for his body.
What else shall he sleep in and it shall come about that when he cries out to me I will hear him, for I am gracious. You see what he think this is just often for collateral unit during the day. If a person's really poor, and you might lending some money what he saying is if you take his outer garment that he used, to wear during the day and covering. I mean that's most people.
They had enough food just for today, and this was their covering.
He says you get that back to him.
Don't put him in that situation, let alone take us home was vineyard is about skip over one more you will skip over the Leviticus chapter 25 okay next book Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, again, this is a book about how Jews are to treat one another under God's economy skip down to verse 36 an hour to talk about interest in attitude in the poor and this is what God says. This is how they're supposed to live. It says do not take interest from him but revere God for your countrymen to live with you.
You shall not give him your silver at interest, nor your food for grain.
I am the Lord God who brought you out of the land of Egypt to give you the land of Canaan and to be your God.
If a countrymen of yours become so poor with regard to you that he sells himself to you. You not you should not subject to him as a slave service, he shall be with you as a hired man as if he were a sojourner with you until the year of Jubilee. Every 50 years, where everyone go back for that.
Are you catching the spirit.
One more one more Deuteronomy chapter 24 just work on making her way back to Nehemiah. What I want you to get.
Is there certain things that are absolutely clear. You can't have unity without truth and you can't have truth unless it's enforced lovingly, kindly and clearly with the courage and everyone has influence is what Nehemiah does pick it up in verse 10, when you make your neighbor alone of any sort. You shall not enter his house to take his pledge, you shall remain outside in the man to whom you make the loan shall bring out the pledge to you and if he is a poor man. You shall not sleep with his pledge when the sun goes down, you shall surely return the pledge to him that he may sleep in his own cloak and bless you and notice this shift.
It will be righteousness for you before the Lord your God. You shall not oppress a hired servant who is poor and needy when he is one of your countrymen or one of your aliens who is in the land of your towns now would you say that's a pretty clear rendition of what they're supposed to do in the doing just the opposite.
Let me apply this first in a really big picture how important this is and what happens when we don't do this and we are to do a historical one than a personal one. Historically move the clock back about 7080 years is about a 2025 year swing, but started in the 20s, 30s, when into the 40s and there was a big big debate in the big big debate X essentialism was coming on the scene but it wasn't public yet Nietzsche was writing some things John Paul Sartre came along later.
Do we talk about pragmatism and under his pragmatism to begin to talk about you know if it works. Don't worry about whether things are true. Later situational ethics would grow out of this, but at higher German criticism. What occurred in the major denominations. I mean the ones that Wesley started and Zwingli started and Calvin started in all the major denominations 70 or 80 years ago.
If you would walk to any single one of those and say this is God's word. Everyone agreed. You need to have a personal relationship with Christ. Everyone agreed Mary was a virgin. Everyone agreed heaven's real Hells real God loves people. Jesus was fully God and fully man. Everyone agreed and then do the German higher criticism to begin to teacher seminary students in a seminary student started going out about 5% of those major denominations began to teach that you have the Bible. I don't know really think it's really true or not. The first 12 chapters of Genesis are probably missed by Jesus was a good teacher but I don't know and and pretty soon a very elaborate scheme to undermine what God said and in the name of love in the name of peace at any price in the name of whom I to judge anyone about 5% turned over. The next several decades, many of those major denominations that love God loved his word into places where you can even recognize what the Bible teaches. In fact moral issues that are black-and-white to non-Christians.
They are now adopting and saying it's fine and here's a recent there wasn't a Nehemiah or if there was skull the fundamentalist controversy and all the fundamentalist were that is become a negative word in most connotations is they were saying that we have to hold in the Methodist Church of the Presbyterian Church of the Episcopal Church of the commendation for we need to hold to the fundamentals of the faith. But often the way they said it, and how they said it was so antagonistic that it alienated people so it's not just confronting there needs to be thoughtful consideration. It's not just that you're angry about things that are being done but you need to be angry without sin. The need to be gentleness and strength, and winsome. This and all I can tell you right now is that the decline of the major denominations that help to God's word. 60 to 80 years ago is just astronomical closing their doors all around the country and all around the world that have a message as one man said you know you if you're liberal pastor you don't believe the Bobby don't believe a little heavy, don't believe Jesus is God you don't believe there's really any hope when you sit next to someone is dying of cancer. Be nice. It's gonna be a great world.
Let's just be kind of okay. There's no there's no message for people dying, there's no message for how to live second area that plays out is is more local and this is one that you know if you want to email me you can prefer you don't, but I've I've just been doing this about 30 years and this is with parents Christian leaders missionaries smart people high-caliber businesspeople and I watched and there's a little journey when the kids get in preteens and teenage years and they start this attraction. And no, get connected to an unbeliever, and the begin to either date and enter into a pretty deep emotional relationship with someone who's not a follower of Christ I can. I may not have these conversations in Hong Kong, Korea, South America, all over with good friends and they'll say something like well you know what you know, I know they're not a Christian and I and I know that Mike my daughter's heart is moving this way and that way it's probably just a phase they're going through.
But I'm really afraid to set clear boundaries to solicit really clear boundaries. I'm so afraid the rebel and I would say you know you understand they are rebelling. This is this is very clear you want to lose your daughter or your sons heart for God allow them to get emotionally connected and date and begin to move in a direction because infatuation is the strongest drug on the face of the earth stronger than cocaine. And when you're infatuated feel like you're a lot.
I got news for you. You can make the Bible or anybody or anything. Say whatever you want and I just watch young person after young person.
Yesterday young person and I can't tell you how many my friends 10 years later another kids are 24, 28, 31, and it started when they were 15 and someone needed to say in our home. You can't be unequally yoked. I'm really sorry this is the way it goes. And you can hate me for 3 to 5 years. I hope it's not that long hoped only 18 months. That's usually infatuation wears off about then. But this is the way it's going to be in our home now. I went through that with three of my four kids. One was like an old man I'm not messing with that is just too much pain to find a different girlfriend fine. I had one who sneaked around we had this and I mean, was there conflict wasn't difficult was it painful yes that he slammed the door and I hate you, dad, and who are you, yes it's really interesting now, with his three kids in the way he thanks me that you know what form, if I would've gone down that path with one of my kids. It was the an issue that wasn't even unbeliever. But it was so obvious that very good guy, very different. Not a fit and I remember the day that my daughter said to me dad what you really think we spent considerable time and I remember having this this knot in my stomach of saying am I can be truthful because if I am this organ have a this can be a wedge in our relationship, and a great guy, nice guy but you know for some of you you're actually the parent you actually live longer. You actually watch this child grow up in your thinking there like this in this verse like this.
This is not gonna work. And it wasn't a forbidding so what you really think I still remember saying honey I don't think this is can be good will I live I will and I mean she was just head over heels and we had about don't know, 13, 14 month window where our hearts have been so connected all the years and it was just it was as painful as anything I've ever been through with any my kids. Here's what you need understand the there is a reason that about 85% of all of those young people who grow up in Bible teaching churches like this for years after they get either out of high school or couple years out of college. About 85% of them don't walk with God anymore warship is a heart issue. God once your kids heart. Satan wants to take their heart and it can be money, it can be another person, but his goal is to capture your son or daughter's heart and make them believe that success and significance and happiness and fulfillment is going to come through some other person some other way and when that happens, I don't mean the may never come back. But I will tell you what some Nehemiah mom or some Nehemiah dad needed to confront it and open up the second Corinthians chapter 6 and say this is what it says now help me understand how we apply this is a family may say why I don't think my son or daughter relisten to me and I'm not sure I'm ready do some like this and small group bullets.
Let's talk about why Nehemiah was so successful is here's where the application comes because some people have the trade you write some people in your small group of gossip about you. Some of you had terrible relationship in churches that some are you ready a pastor actually lied to you. Contact Christian leaders lie to me because I'd Christian leaders look me in the eye and give me their word and I gave them my word that had to do with six figures and later seven-figure implications and come back and look me in the eye and say will read and write it down to P my word. So here's here's all I know what you I said that because sometimes you're the person is offended and hurt and betrayed. And there's internal conflict and guess what, sometimes, if you're really honest you're the person who's inflicting you the person talking about someone else. You're the person gossiping, you're the person who's better you're the person is causing it. See where God's family and no one's arrived. So let's ask ourselves seat.
There can't be unity where there is unity there is power but unity requires truth and purity. There's a lot of pseudo-unity. Hey man how you doing height of great in the South related told me how this works just as in the South. What you say. Love you hair picture goods facility.
What's that mean it means that when were with people we always said love you hair. Another words, everything's fine and privately someone else was it hate your guts and you I just am am fearful that a lot of the lack of power in the Church of Jesus Christ is a lot of us are living the lives when there's an issue. Love you hair and you get the car and say boy you not think that marriage is going to go anywhere with a better deal with that with her daughter. You know what I know that you know is nothing wrong with maybe a glass of wine here and there that needs an alcoholic. Would you telling on whom I to judge a brother or sister with God's truth to judge to bring to light, to love, to restore that's who you are called to commanded to.
Let's find out what what was it that gave Nehemiah what what gave him this power for people to respond in such a way because resolving conflict takes more than know-how and skill listen to verses 14 to 19, and I'll just summarize what he does. Moreover, from the 20th year of King Artaxerxes when I was appointed to be their governor in the land of Judah until the 32nd year. 12 years. Neither I nor my brothers ate the food allotted for the governor so he had an expense account. He was a governor for 12 years and he said I actually didn't use my own expense account that I could've charged, but the earlier governors those proceeding meet placed a heavy burden on the people it took 40 shekels of silver from them. In addition to the food and the wine and their assistants also lorded it over the people, but out of reverence for God. I did not act like that. Instead, I devoted myself to the work on the wall. Another words, he actually did it. He rolled up sleeves. He modeled it all of my men were assembled there for the work we did in acquiring land. I didn't use my position to get financial gain. Furthermore, 150 Jews and officials ate at my table as well as all those who came from the surrounding nations each day one. Six choice sheep and some poultry were prepared for me and every 10 days in abundant supply of wine of all kinds.
In spite of all this, I never demanded the food allotted to the governor because the demands were heavy on these people because his role is a dignitaries a diplomat. He's the governor. He had people come every day about 154 for lunch or dinner or something and said I can tax the people. That's my right, but out of my own pocket.
I did it because they can't handle it in the notice where his focus is. He says here's a prayer.
Remember me with favor on my God for all I have done for these people.
That's why had courage that in your notes. Here's what I want to get why was he so effective just jot down his example. He walked his talk 12 years doesn't demand his rights when you got up in the morning, there's Nehemiah.
He still got his close on when you worked on the wall. There he is. He's working on the wall when you needed money. He lent you money, but he didn't charge interest to this moral authority when you live out by the way some of you are thinking I need to talk to one of my kids. Some of you before you talk your kids there talk to God because when you say to them honey, this is what you need to do, you're going to hear early see in their eyes will mom or dad, how come you're not doing this so for some of us. The first application is not who what we say is we need to walk around talk. The second thing that gave him moral authority was his courage.
He cared enough to confront. He got mad, but he got mad under control. He didn't compromise. That's what's killing us.
It's killing families and kill denominations and kill small groups to kill people in the workplace you're a follower of Christ. Don't compromise. Third, his love the people matter to you how much well if if I would look at the P&L statement for Nehemiah name. I was your money goings that always tell you where your heart is what out of his own pocket for 12 years. Here's the money I paid for this. I handle that. I made some loans where your time goes and where your money goes and where you're any energy goes you can think whatever you want about what matters. That's what matters. Nehemiah love people and he loved her not to the point where he did a little something that made him appear that he was loving. He did things cost. Finally, his integrity. He feared God verse life first for me on this one is Proverbs 29, 25, the fear of man as a snare. I mean if it's any help for you when I come to patches like this.
These are not like my favorite passages. I like passages like God loves everyone. Everyone today were going to get a popsicle together and in it, here's the deal. We either skim over one of these and any other than what we talk about like this was about Vietnam. I did that's important back then, but we never get down to what it means today. God wants you to change.
He wants me to change, and he's given you his word and his spirit and he wants you to be a Nehemiah in your world. That's how your homes going to change. That's how your small group is in a change. People on all those companies live in the life and appropriately wisely at the right time, with no sense of self-righteousness, speaking the truth in love, and saying it in such a way were the people work go. It's kind of hard to argue with the guy comes in early treats people well is generous to what she's faithful.
I mean, I know I know is one of those Christian type people.
But if we had 100 of those working here would be like, you know, 100 X on our profit and you have moral authority and were all afraid were all people pleasers to some level, but at the end of the day. Nehemiah said you know I'd rather be afraid of God and not doing what he wants me to do and afraid of what people think. So, in summary, the leverage of your life is what gives weight to your words. It's your life motto perfection. Absolutely not.
But your life, your authenticity when your kids hear you say I blew it. This came out of my mouth I outburst of anger.
When you walk in you know what I was watching something that I would let you watch and I should be watching. I'm sorry I told got I'm sorry you know what that does gives you credibility you live in out and something happens in the heart and the soul of your children and your friends with people in your small group.
As you blaze a trail and you're a Nehemiah we spur one another on the love and good works of other people realism to be like you want to walk with God like you.
That's how great things get done. This is the last prayer on earth of Jesus and he says father. This is my prayer that these followers of mine could be one even as we are one. I want people to hear, not just these present disciples or followers but the disciples that will hear and believe from them, which is all of us. The last 2000 years. I long for them to have a unity and a connectedness and authenticity want with one another that when they see how they treat one another and how truthful they are and how pure they are authentic. They are able to know but the father who sent me, and so father I know it requires courage. I know that is your spirit speaks, there's people going all my lands. What does this mean what do I need to do and so before we move on. Can I just ask you to stop. Stop in your tracks and just as the spirit of God to whisper clearly what's my next telling you want to obey except his forgiveness ask for courage will be right back just quickly this message facing internal opposition is from his series pressing ahead using key chapters from the book of Nehemiah chip explains the truth about adversity where it comes from what to do when it threatens to bring you down and then how to keep pressing ahead no matter what Scripture calls Christians over comers but for many of us that just sounds like religious talk like spin too hard or too painful and we don't see how it's possible to rise above our circumstances which it reminds us with God nothing is impossible whether your adversity comes from circumstances, people, or even yourself with this series you will be encouraged to remember there's always hope to check out your resource options for keep pressing ahead. Just go to LivingontheEdge.org or tap special offers, discounts are available for a limited time before I come right back and talk about some application to today's message I want to share something that's on my heart today for the past almost 19 years Living on the Edges had the privilege of ministering to people all around the world today through radio books, Internet video churchwide campaigns Living on the Edge is literally touching millions of lives every week with the power of the gospel, God is at work and I just have to tell you is every single week. I will come across an email I get a letter I get a note I get it from pastors I get from people in other countries and all surrounds the same thing of I heard God's word. Or I was in the small group or on the pastor and I taught this series and let me tell you what God did, and what I want you to know is that you're a part of that we have a Living on the Edge, family, or team that the only way this is happened for 19 years is you have supported financially this ministry and you have prayed and I just wanted to stop and say thank you to say thank you for what you've done. I wish you could read the emails. I wish you could go to some of the countries that I've been to in and I it's a really weird thing to actually see the things it together we've produced in all these different languages and and people have taken our content, then they put on TV all over China and Japan and Romania in the Arab world in South Africa and and you just can't shake your head when you think 19 years ago we were on one local station and it was once a week and so thank you and I think God's best days for Living on the Edge or in the future, but it's gonna require adding team members and family members who really get is not just hearing a message or we do your small group stuff. It's to be an ambassador to be a teammate only get on board.
So yes, I'm gonna get the resources I'm getting use it in my small group or my church and I'm gonna listen as I go to work or when I'm working out on the treadmill, but I want to pray and I want to be a financial partner and if you're one of those people that give sporadically.
The next best step for you is if you could give on a monthly basis and whatever the amount, whatever God leads you cannot imagine the help would be to know each month X dollars are coming in. And if you're one of those people that say you and I think he wants to read three years ago and you know I just haven't thought about it that much. I benefit that I just really haven't thought about that much would you give a gift today would you come to just get on board and work and ask God to help us help Christians live like Christians in America and all around the world like never before were seeing him doing it, but we need your help to send a gift to Living on the Edge Donate go to LivingontheEdge.org and click on the donate button or give us a call at 188833360034 chip in the team.
Thank you in advance for your partnership with us as we were wrapping up our teaching time in today's program. I really ask and answer the question why was Nehemiah so so effective and he was effective because of his example. I mean he he walked his talk. It was his courage. He cared enough to confront it and it's interesting.
It was his love, people really mattered. He cared about the people that were getting ripped off and finally it was his integrity.
He feared God, and those were the outline points but the fact of the matter is, at least in my life.
Pastor now for what's getting scary almost 30 years. It's not knowing those things intellectually that drives me to confront a situation that I know needs to be addressed and so what I want to talk with you about is I can only imagine there's probably a number of issues that probably need to be addressed that most of us won't do and thus we get over to hurdles hurdle number one. Who am I to say anything to them. My life is pretty messed up myself. Okay, I can't say you know their marriage is drifting for sure's you know he's a good buddy and I know is drinking too much now in or I got the situation where those parents men that kid that kids going to rebel because of how they're treating her, but I meet who am I to say anything, let let let me address that you don't have to be perfect. You need to own your stuff you need to address whatever you need to address, but you need to go to someone with a humble, gentle attitude and say you know what I've got a lot to work on and this is just my perspective, but I'm really concerned about you. You know, I mean having a beer now and then is one thing more or a glass of wine after meal but I've known you for a long time and I'm watching a progressive pattern of alcohol that really scares me, or I'm I'm watching your facial expressions and sort of what's happening with you and your wife. I sense a big drift in my right here I'm your friend see you if you own and say I don't have it together and you go with sorted this. I really care about you. I'm not saying there always can respond positively but I will tell you that you can't not go just because your life doesn't have it all together because your life never can have it all together that the other issue is you feel like I don't know how that's the second hurdle. I just don't know exactly what I would do. Let me just challenge that I think the deeper issue is do you care enough about this person that you're willing to do what Nehemiah did and that's face the rejection of someone that you want to like you and it might be a family member might be a coworker might be somebody at church or in your small group and you can do this well, and there's the notes that I've given you here in following Matthew chapter 18 the content about how to do it is one thing but let me tell you this.
At the heart of it is do you care enough about this person to confront them with gentleness and with grace but with the truth. The people in my life that I look back on and say they love me they love me they love me and they change the course of my life were people who told me things I didn't want to hear who pointed out things that were going to take me in places that would be very very harmful and negative. If they didn't care enough to confront me now. I'd love to say that I just responded positively.
At first, to all of them. I didn't but I will tell you, as I look back and shortly after I did the people who love deeply care enough to confront who has God put on your mind right now that you need to lovingly, gently, get a couple coffee and with a kind voice say you know I'm pretty concerned about something about your life and this is what it is make the appointment.
Do it today because the unity to flourish in the body of Christ love them enough to tell him the truth. You know a great way to stay engaged and connected to chip in Living on the Edge is with the Chip Ingram up, you'll get free access to all of chips recent messages is message notes and much more.
And not only that, but it couldn't be easier to call or email directly from the yeah will be with us again next time. When Chip continues his series. Keep pressing ahead. Until then, this is Dave Drewry saying thanks for listening to this Edition of Living on the Edge