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The Hope of Christmas - Everlasting Father, Part 1

Living on the Edge / Chip Ingram
The Truth Network Radio
December 16, 2020 5:00 am

The Hope of Christmas - Everlasting Father, Part 1

Living on the Edge / Chip Ingram

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December 16, 2020 5:00 am

It’s been a tough year - so many unknowns, conflicting information, chaos - wouldn’t it be great to get some news you could trust? Chip begins this program by telling us there IS some news out there that never changes, no matter what people think or say. Sound good? Join Chip to hear what it is.

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There's been a lot of deer this year has a lot of unknowns, a lot of conflicting information, a lot of chaos. Wouldn't it be great to get some information you could absolutely know you could trust and have a hope that would never change regardless of what anyone says. That's today welcome to this Edition of Living on the Edge Chip Ingram, Living on the Edge features the Bible helping Christians or Christian in this program.

Chip continues a series called the hope of Christmas.

Christmas is a time of celebration right was fulfilled.

The Messiah was born amazing thing beyond the major prophecies Jesus which is where we pick it up in this program is chip continues to show us real reasons to hold you have a Bible.

Handy open it now to John chapter 14 let's torture for part one of his message, everlasting father Christmas is one of those seasons that I see is a paradox for some it is like joy, family happiness, little kids presence traveling to see grandparents, great food, I mean just it's an awesome time a year and for others it is so I'm a sad, painful times of the year for many to be the first Christmas that they've had with the alpha dad or the son or the wife or the grandfather that died for others it will be the first Christmas that after many many years of marriage she find yourself divorced. For some it will be kids. They can't get back you won't see him. For others it will be the clock ticking and you've longed to be married and it's one more Christmas you're alone. What's your biggest fear this Christmas. We talked about kind of our hope for Christmas.

You know what we wish in our expectations but what's your biggest fear and I like to kinda move beyond the level of what I'm really afraid I didn't get the right present for something so okay with this move on me if you really were honest with yourself. We all have fears and fears are all nice always a hypothetical thing that might happen in the future. What's what you fear this Christmas. Your fear you won't do well by yourself is your fear that there be a big family squabble is your fear that maybe this will be the last Christmas with someone that you love because it is stage IV cancer. Your fear that your marriage isn't working and this might be the last one that you married. What is, maybe it's more macroscopic maybe your fear is like what's happened to the world. Or maybe your future thinking and thinking what's can happen. My kids the way the world's gone or are my grandkids or fear paralyzes us. When God came to the earth to save us from our sin.

He also came to deliver us from our fears and so he wasn't just a wonderful counselor and a mighty God.

He is eternal father in Hebrew literally.

That's father of eternity that there's no confusion here is not like Jesus is eternal father and there's God the father, it's that Jesus is the author, creator of life, the sustainer of life and he is the one who will father or prepare us for eternity.

And when you get eternity really cleared up well. The worst thing that can happen in this life is you die and if there is an eternity that is real, that Jesus is prepared, it does amazing things for you everyday fears. Interestingly, the very last night when Jesus with his closest friends. The disciples they were scared to death. They were paralyzed with fear. The future was completely uncertain. They'd sung a hymn he'd wash their feet they taken the Lord's supper. He was telling him all these crazy things like I'm going to die. Hours later he be arrested can be beaten to a pulp. They would watch you hung up on the cross, they will all be people that are going to get arrested as his followers and on the very last night.

He takes on the role of the father of eternity and he wants to anchor their hope in something that can never be shaken and he wants to do that for you and me turning your Bibles if you will, to John chapter 14 and here we have Jesus as the father of eternity relieving their uncertainty, giving them hope in the midst of a world that is far crazier than ours right now. He says to them what not your hearts be troubled. Don't fear don't be uptight, believe in God believe also in me. In the notice where he goes where does he relieving their fears. In my father's house are many rooms. If were not so what I've told you that I go and prepare a place for you and if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself and notice the purple clause that where I am, you may be also a good father does four things you read the Old Testament and New Testament are psychology, a good father provides for his family a good father protects his family a good father instructs his family and a good father listens and takes care of the hurts and the needs in the process and so he's telling them I'm going to provide for you.

I'm going to place and I want to be close to you notice the assumption and you know the way to where I go, I been teaching for three years. Thomas said him, Lord, we do not know where you're going.

How can we know the way Jesus said to him, I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the father except through me. If you had known me, you would have known my father also. From now on you do know him and have seen him. Now think about this. He's been teaching him for three years.

He's modeled it. They'd been to the Old Testament text.

They watch miracles. He's raised people from the dead, he's prepare them.

He's going to turn over the mission of God to probably the youngest one was maybe 17 or 18 years old and the oldest maybe 2324 25 years old.

These are young men that matured much earlier in those days and this is the last night and he's assuming by now you get it. You understand really who I am where I'm going. If you see me using the father notice. Philip says, Lord, show us the father and that will be enough for us and Jesus said, have I been with you so long and you still don't know me, Philip, whoever has seen me has seen the father. How can you say show us the father. Do you believe that I am the father and the father is in me the words that I say to you I do not speak on my own authority, but the Father who dwells in me does his work. Believe me that I am in the father and the father is in me, or at least believe me on the basis of the work that I do not care what you get. He expects them to get it yes sees the wonderful counselor.

Yes, he's obviously the mighty God. He does miracles that no one can do these claim to be God. He's taught them on the way on the truth and the life. John 118 says no man is seen God at any time. But Jesus has explained him literally the word he exegete if he if you see me since you seen the father is the last night and they don't get it.

He's wanting to give them hope.

You want to know you don't have to be afraid because no matter what you go through in this life.

I prepared a place for you and all the promises I made to the country. Why didn't they get it.

What I mean. This is the last night, why didn't they get it. What part of who God really is. Didn't they understand before I go there. Can I just tease your thinking just a bit to say why don't we get it. What I meant to suggest is that they had a warped view of God is very warped view that they grew up in homes like we grew up in homes and they got an idea about what a father is like from their fathers and their fathers were imperfect. Just like ours work and I can tell you that the imprint that a dad has for better or for worse, is huge on the child. Moms and dads both have major impact, but in all the sociological research. I wrote a thesis on this. The dad has the major impact in a child's moral development and the father has a major impact on a child's sexual identity. The mother father had about equal impact in terms of their self concept or self-image, and so we get this warped view of what God is through our data to her parents but there's also a culture we live in a culture there's lots of ideas about God.

Right you have a God. I have a God, you had your God, I'm okay you're okay.

What was even worse then I did some research. Actually, that I had never read this before and I found some research about some documents that tell us the view of God during the time when Jesus came to earth, the Jewish concept of God was based on a traditional interpretation of the law and not the teaching of the Old Testament and the prophets, the concept of what was of God is that he was very very far away. He was abstract transcendental, but you couldn't touch. In fact, when the as the culture change in the Greek world changed.

The Old Testament was translated into Greek. So the common people could read it more easily, and about the third century BC and when they translated from Hebrew to Greek three or four of the major passages where God has contact with men like when Moses goes up on the mountain. The Hebrew talked about him seeing God face-to-face they change it. They actually change and say what he went up on amount or when God came down with Abraham in Genesis 18 it says it seemed as though their concept of God was. He was so far away so distant that he was a law keeping rule maker but you could never be close to him. That's how these Jewish boys grew up but it gets worse. There was a group called the scribes and the teachers and the scribes remove God from all contact with man and their view of God was.

Not only unscriptural but not even spiritual list. Can you imagine as a little boy or girl growing up. This was there. This is how they pictured God. He's pictured in the Talmud of Jerusalem as the great Rabbi this is God. God studies the law three hours each day and he observes the ordinances he keeps the Sabbath he makes valves and on their accomplishment. He's released by the heavenly Sanhedrin. Can you can imagine thinking that's what God is like.

Thus, the external ceremonial concept of religion at last took complete possession of the future world it through a mesh of its enslavement to the letter, even around God himself.

The prophet spiritual concept of Jehovah was lost. The glow of lovingkindness, which beheld the face of God faded utterly way there only remained in Judaism of that day a being he was called the holy one interesting, perhaps, to ascribe, but whom no one could really love to get close to. So what did Jesus do, he came to explain the father. He explained it to them.

But here's the deal. He wants to explain it to you every problem that you have and I have and they had goes to this one core issue. We have a faulty view of God your warped misconceptions as innocent as they may be as sincere as they be whenever you're wrong about what God is like. It impacts every relationship. It impacts how you think it impacts all your relationships with others.

It's how you view yourself some of you have a God it's almost unconscious that she so hard to please. It doesn't matter what you do, you can never measure up to it and you live with constant guilt, constant guilt for others.

You have a God that you're afraid of, and you live with fear, fear, fear, and all you trying to do is manage all the stuff and how I do more right and what about this and what about that the God of the world that we live and in some places you gotta make pilgrimages and pray five times a day or seven times a day or give this or do that and there's a list of rules and rules and rules and rule the basically people have no idea who the God made the earth is. But Jesus came to let you know exactly who God is that he is working to go on a journey, and it might be a very profound one for many of you because what Jesus did for those disciples that gave them hope he's going to do for us instead of all those things that I just read Jesus took them back to the truth, the word of God and he showed them in the prophets and Moses and from the Psalms. This is who God is and then he gave them a snapshot. He told a parable where he says this is what God is like any actually called him a father. In Luke 15 and he tells them a story that this is what God is like that absolutely blew their mind would be unlike any father they've ever ever experienced, and then later when they heard him and had this saw the intimacy of how he prayed, he taught them to pray and use some words that they would just think it's blasphemous. You could never talk to God like that. So here's the journey want to take you on. I want to walk you through an Old Testament picture of God and show you how Jesus modeled every aspect of it, would you turn to Psalm 103 Psalm 1031 of the classic Psalms in the first five verses. It's a call to remember. Bless the Lord, O my soul, bless the Lord, O my soul and forget not one of his benefits talked about he feels is all your diseases, he forgives all your sins renews your youth. Like the Eagle Justice this picture.

Let's remember how good and kind and loving God is and if you skip down to verse seven it says he made known his ways to Moses, his acts to the sons of Israel.

If you remember his acts were mighty in the parting the Red Sea. The manna his acts were powerful. There was a fire by night in a cloud by day and it moved. There was water out of the rock they saw all those acts and yet almost all of them didn't believe in it. Moses set up. I don't want just the benefits or the acts of God, I want to know your ways member.

He prayed show me your glory. I want to know you will want personal deep interaction and in verse eight. What we have is is God beginning to reveal his ways. Inspired by the Holy Spirit as David says this phrase in its repeated all through the Old Testament. The Lord is compassionate and gracious, slow to anger and abounding in lovingkindness.

That's sort of like a canopy of you want to know what God's like in a sentence the other prophets will say this little beaver throughout the Psalms. The minor prophets will say this if you want to know what is God really like he's compassionate. He feels he cares.

He's gracious that the reward he's generous, he's slow to anger. He's not down on people. He's not rigid he's not distant. He's not unapproachable. In fact, he's abounding that it's a picture of overflowing with water flooding out of something he's abounding in steadfast love.

And it's this key Hebrew word cult has said it's a loyal covenant love that you now to someone and love them regardless no matter what. And then as though he wants to explain what this God is really like it says he will always strive with us. Verse nine or keep his anger forever. He doesn't treat us as our sins deserve reward us according to our iniquities for his high as the heavens are above the earth, so great is his love for those of us who fear him.

As far as the east is from the West so far has he removed our sins from us for just as a father has compassion on his children, so the Lord has compassion on those who fear him. He's mindful of our of our frame are frailty our humanity that were merely dust and in that picture you have a picture of God, and God the father. That is 180 different than what all these good Jewish boys following Jesus for the last three years have ever ever understood and what Jesus did with his life. Was he modeled the compassion the graciousness of God. And so what I want to do for you on it. I want to take you on a little journey on a walk through those verses and I will just quickly show you the God that those disciples begin to understand and then the anchor of hope that he is a wise counselor if there is a powerful God but is also he's the father of eternity that you can trust for this life and for the next verse eight he says the Lord is compassionate and gracious, slow to anger and abounding in kindness the word compassion member. When Jesus saw the multitudes, he came down he saw the multitudes in the text says in Matthew nine and he had compassion on them because they were like sheep without a shepherd and assist compassionate. The Greek word is sunblock night and it's literally it's something literally from the bowels.

It means you know that deep you know in your gut when you feel something like you feel so sorry for someone. It almost something happens down deep in here. That's this word but but unlike our concept. It's not empathy it's not like I really feel bad for you. Biblical compassion is you feel it in your always act every time.

The text says that Jesus has compassion he acts so he teaches them first. Then he feeds 5000 and then he talks about the Old Testament manna and that he says on the bread of life and so he's helping them see that was the father, a good father does what he delivers out of Egypt, he provides the manna he protects from evil and so what does Jesus do, he's in the synagogue, as he starts his ministry he opens the text of Isaiah and he reads about the Messiah when he sits down and says it is fulfilled in this day is claiming to be the Messiah and is a demon possessed man and he cast out the demon he delivers the very first act he delivers his powerful, and then he feeds 5000 and how many member 12 baskets to represent the 12 tribes. I've come to provide for my people member.

Everyone has much as they wanted to eat and or 12 baskets left over many defeats 4000 and it's and in the Gentile, the Greek area and their seven the perfect number.

I came I'm compassionate I care. I'm gracious you can have as much as you want. I'm not down on you and slow to anger. I'm patient care. I'm abounding if you could fathom that God is like that, that he's your heavenly father. And if that made it from your intellect to your psyche to your emotional imprints your life would be completely different. Your fear level would dissipate your anxiety level would vaporize because the creator of the world is your personal wonderful counselor who has supernatural power is going to guide you as the father through eternity and promises to take care of you and then in the next versus what we see is how Jesus modeled this through his life. Notice he will not always strive with us, nor will he keep his anger.

The word strive in some translations is chides literally. It is, he won't accuse you and bring you into court, you might just jot down he's merciful. For this when you mess up when I mess up right and we do what what this is saying is he doesn't want to punish you if there's any way that he can sort of delay justice or take you off the hook or not give you what you deserve.

That's his desire. You won't always strive with us he won't bring us into court does he keep his anger forever. Unlike some of those people that are problem people in your life.

God doesn't hold grudges. Can you imagine if you could just get out of your mind. His arms are crossed. He's not down on you.

He doesn't remember the stuff that you didn't remember that big mistake and when you were younger and gosh that abortion you had or that un-biblical divorce over there.

You know, no one knows about this thing that you did hear that lives in the back of your mind doesn't strive he's just he's holy but his heart's desire is to forgive the care is not dealt with us according to our sins, nor rewarded us according to the iniquities. I mean there's times like trying visualize my my Moto be like to be Peter, John or James and you have this picture of this rigid distant pretty angry, upset God, that you gotta do all this stuff, no matter what you do, you can never live up to it.

Living with this guilt and then this Jesus comes along and he does these miracles and then he gets tested and the religious leaders want to kill them so they set a trap and a woman is caught in adultery and figure this one out like what you just walking around while we can.

Adultery situation here. It was a trap and they caught them. But only one person ends up Jesus feet member. The woman thrown at his feet and Jesus. So it is he can break the law. The law says she should be stoned and Jesus and his winsome wisdom is the divine counselor since I didn't come to break the law. I'm going to fulfill it. And so those of you here without sin, pick up the stones and you start you fulfill the law says the older ones again to walk away, because if you been around for a while and you have even a remote level of honesty you realize you to spend a lot and they left and then everybody left woman, where's your accusers does no one condemn you know neither do I he doesn't deal with you. According to your sin or reward you according to your iniquities. Is he just yes now go and sin no more, except the cot that you serve or do you have stuff stuck in the back of your mind what you did last week or last month or last year or 10 years ago and somehow thinking it in my warped view of God, especially in the early years on doing better in the early years when I would sin and really mess up. It was like I just would like. I had to punish myself at least two days.

I feel terrible I feel terrible I feel terrible and and then you not want to go to church because get the Christian do not just made me feel more guilty and so I would try to do some good things and like okay I'll read like double the chapters is normal right heart Readmore the Bible maybe I'll give someone some money and my okay now I such a warp. You've got is a complete performance orientation, I had no idea that when you have a broken spirit contrite heart you just say God I got no excuses. I forgive me but just a quick reminder you're listening to part one of his message, everlasting father series, the hope of Christmas 700 years before Jesus was born. The prophet Isaiah wrote to God's people to give them hope chip used a little bit of that text for this series because the hope. Isaiah wrote about is for us to.

Here's what he said for those who live in a land of deep darkness a light will shine and they will rejoice for unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given, the government will be upon his shoulders and he will be called wonderful Counselor, mighty God, everlasting Father, Prince of peace. Now that's hope that'll keep you going this Christmas season. God wants you to know he has a plan and it's a good one. You know this would be a great series to listen to every now and then with the chipping remap. It's always handy if you like CDs take advantage of the current discounts online that LivingontheEdge.org remember the MP3s are always free shipping on one of the great blessings of radio or podcasts or even listening on the app is that it's usually a very private experience. I mean you can focus on the teaching and have God really speak to you why it's right Dave, but it's more than just a private experience for those that listen to the radio listen to the app listen online over 44 million times people listen to the teaching of Living on the Edge in 2020. Think about that 44 million times that that doesn't even include satellites and things were doing all around the world. But the question that always comes to my mind is when people get ministered to. In that way. I wonder if they really recognize all that goes into making that broadcast that podcast that Abba reality what people may not understand is that it's a very expensive proposition to buy airtime to pay a staff to do the technology to upload things on satellites but you know what we love to do it.

Here's what I would ask if this ministry.

If those broadcast have been a blessing to you if they'd helped you draw closer to God or have a better marriage or learn how to forgive someone, would you partner with us. Would you give to Living on the Edge this month and here's the good news is a great month to give because, thanks to a small group of friends of the ministry. Every dollar you give in December it gets doubled 10 to 2000 goes to 200,000 goes to 2000, it's phenomenal. It's a group of people that believe in what were doing and if we helped you.

Would you help us help others. Dave, would you take a minute and tell people how they can get on board today. Absolutely, if Living on the Edges making a difference in your life you like to help others receive the same blessing.

We'd love to have you join us to send a gift. Just go to LivingontheEdge.org Donate on the app or give us a call at triple late. 333-6003. Again that's AAA 333-6003 and thanks for doing whatever the Lord leads you to do as we wrap up today's program. You know sometimes I think it's helpful to sort through or reduced the complexity of what we hear or read or study and in the teaching there was one core phrase that I use that I think is really worth remembering, and every time I struggle and I do struggle with you not getting my mind around who God really is right think it gets foggy for all of us. I remember this phrase it comes right out of John chapter 1 Jesus came to explain the father that literally I love the little Greek word there it says Jesus exegete in the father and for those Bible students, you know the word exegete means to explain something to make real, to make plain to make understandable so if Jesus explained the father then Jesus compassion with Peter when he betrayed him, is how God feels about us Jesus patients with Nicodemus and his lack of understanding is how God is patient with us. Jesus wrath that hypocrisy in the moneychangers who were taking financial advantage of others is how God responds to hypocrisy today.

Jesus, unwavering spotlight on the Pharisees who accused the woman of adultery is how God the father looks past things and says what's at the heart of things and what's going on in people's lives as opposed to this letter of the law, accusation entrapping her and finally his broken heart.

When Lazarus dies reminds us when those we love the high because sin brings death breaks the father's heart and he feels our pain with us. All of those are little snapshots of in the Christmas season we call Emmanuelle. It means God with us. So he came so we could know exactly what the father's like Jesus reveals what God is really like. So you could know this Christmas season. You are loved. You were valued. He's provided forgiveness and he wants you to walk with him and walk with him in power and truth and integrity and the actually understands everything you're going through right now. So one should bow your head, get some time away and just have a very private conversation with your heavenly father who loves you. Just before we close. I want you to know that as a staff we ask the Lord to help you take whatever your next faith step is that there's a way we can be helpful. We'd love to do that. Maybe give us a call at triple late. 333-6003 or connect with us@livingontheedge.org and while you're there you'll find resources on all kinds of topics, many of them absolutely free will, I hope you'll join us again next time. When Chip continues his series.

The whole response told them this is Dave bruit saying thanks for listening to this edition of living only a


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