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You Were Made for More - East of the City, Part 2

Living on the Edge / Chip Ingram
The Truth Network Radio
October 28, 2022 6:00 am

You Were Made for More - East of the City, Part 2

Living on the Edge / Chip Ingram

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October 28, 2022 6:00 am

Are you experiencing the more that you were created for? Do you have a real drive or sense of passion? In this program, guest teacher Ryan Ingram wraps up our new series “You Were Made for More: Facing the ‘Jonah’ in All of Us.” He’ll reveal the last bit of wisdom Jonah’s story has for us Christians living in the 21st century. You’re not gonna wanna miss it!

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I've got a question for you. Are you experiencing the more that you were made for? Are you filled with a sense of passion and energy knowing that you're fulfilling God's purpose for your life? Well, if so, great. If not, stay with me.

Help is on the way. Welcome to this Edition of Living on the Edge with Chip Ingram, where an international discipleship ministry focused on helping Christians live like Christians. I'm Dave Curley, and as many of you know, Chip's our regular Bible teacher, but for the past several programs, Chip's teamed up with his son, Ryan, to teach through the book of Jonah. Now, in just a minute, Ryan will wrap up this new series. You were made for more with the remainder of his message from Jonah chapter 4. But before we begin, if you've enjoyed this series, would you take a minute after this message and share it with a friend?

Now, you can easily do that through the Chip Ingram app, or by sending them the free MP3s that you'll find at Well, here now is Ryan with part two of his talk, East of the City. The purpose of the book of Jonah, first and foremost, is to reveal God's expansive love and mercy for every single person on the planet. Even Ninevites, even the most vile, evil, wicked, brutal culture, perhaps our planet has ever seen.

Even them. Jonah challenges, this book challenges us to broaden our understanding of God's mercy, his undeserved favor. You're like, they don't deserve it. That's what mercy is. And yet we cross our arms as if we ever deserved it ourselves.

You've never come across an ordinary human. You've always come across divine image bearers with infinite worth and value that Jesus loves profoundly. You know, the first followers were wrestling with God's justice when they were struggling under persecution and wondering, God, where are you and when are you going to fix things and why are you delaying? And I think those are questions we wrestle today with, don't we? Like, where are you? We see the brokenness of a world. When are you going to come and fix things and make things right?

And I'm just so tired of all the suffering. And the apostle Peter returns and gives us a new perspective of God's heart that zooms out and understands why it seems like he's not as active as we'd want him to be. In fact, he writes this. He says the Lord is not slow in keeping his promises as some understand slowness. Instead, he's patient with you. He's long suffering.

Why? Not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance. He is slow in bringing justice because his heart is for you to repent. His heart is for every single person to experience his love and his grace and his mercy.

And he's slow not because he's trying to be slow about it, but because his heart breaks for you. He breaks for our world. He longs for everyone to turn from their evil ways, their wickedness, their brokenness, their self-centeredness, their pride, and to experience his love and goodness.

His heart breaks that there are people who will never respond to him and will spend eternity apart from him and his goodness and his love. See the purpose of the book of Jonah is to reveal the expansiveness of his love and mercy and then what it does and what it calls us to in the cliffhanger ending is it's to act as a mirror. You look in the mirror and see what you really look like to examine the state of our hearts, calling us to shift our lives onto the very purpose of God for this planet.

It acts as a mirror. Like I got to look in the mirror and I got to not judge Jonah and that's so easy. So easy to look at other people or other Christians or other, whatever, you know, like they should and I can't believe they posted that and da-da-da-da-da-da-da, no, no, look in the mirror. That's what we need to do as a church is just think and look in the mirror instead of kind of looking through a window casting blame and stones at everybody else.

Look in the mirror. Here's the Jonah and me that I don't want to see. Does my heart really break for God's heart? And for those of us who are followers of Jesus, there's this warning, especially I think many of us who have been maybe believers for a long time. The warning in Jonah is so critical because we see the warning again in Jesus's day and he's this, you can know God's word and completely miss God's heart. You can know God's word and completely miss his heart. Jonah knew God's word. In fact, in his griping about God, he's griping with God's word. I knew you were this.

I knew you were that. By the way, in the Hebrew of that prayer, there's 11 times the word I, I, I, I, I, I, because we can know God's word, but when our focus is on us, we miss God's heart. That's why we see such brokenness in the church. That's why we see such brokenness in our lives because our hearts don't break for what breaks God's heart. In fact, there's a question that I've asked because I think it's the question we have to ask as followers of Jesus, especially as we are growing in the way of Jesus. Does what we know cause our love to grow?

Does what we know? Like when we get into God's word and I so want us to get into God's word and know God's word. So don't hear me wrongly saying, well, it doesn't matter Ryan said, don't know God's word. No, we need to get into God's word.

We need to allow it to change our heart, convict our heart. The word of God acts like a mirror so that we look in it and we actually adjust and change our lives. James would tell us when we fail to apply God's word, we end up deceiving ourselves.

In fact, you can listen to a sermon and go, that was a great sermon and walk away and not apply it and end up more deceived by feeling better about yourself. Does what you know, does what I know cause my love to grow? Does it cause my heart to break for the things that are on God's heart? Does it cause my heart to beat for the things that are beating with God's heart? Does what I know cause my love to grow so that I'd begin to do and move in the ways that God is moving?

Or am I just stuck east of the city, griping, looking at what's wrong and where I wish God would work and what he's not doing? Tragically, Jonah was depressed about God's goodness, warning we can know God's word and completely miss God's heart. The question, does what we know cause our love to grow? The principle, God is working in big and small ways in your life to realign your heart to his. God's working in big and small ways. And we're kind of fascinated with the big, aren't we?

We want the big. We want God to like have that like, Ryan, you know, moments or show me a sign, you know, or it's just, and he's working in the big and the small. Jonah chapter one, we got provided same word, we circled all that, a great fish, a huge fish. But then chapter four, he provides a plant and then he provides a worm.

Think about that. Big fish, little worm. Still God providing, God working, God showing. And then he provides a scorching east wind and all of it was, Jonah, you're missing it. You're east of the city. You're moving from my presence and my purpose. You're moving farther away from me.

You're missing it. And I want to work in big ways, yes. But also in small ways, he's actively working, actively wooing.

And this is one of those moments where he's actively working and wooing and drawing you towards himself. I think the question then is, how do we know the condition of our heart? I mean, like, how do you really know? And we're not like a very good touchy filly culture anyways, you know, like my heart, Ryan, that feels like, what are you, I don't know. And also, don't we have a profound capacity at self-deception? Can't we see the problems in others?

See the problem in Jonah? But how often do we then justify our actions? Why?

Because we have a good reason for it, right? It's not my fault. It's not my problem. It's not my issue. I'm busy.

Life's full. You don't know the valley. You don't know my workplace. You don't know my marriage.

You don't know my singleness. We have a profound capacity to deceive ourselves. Let me give you three questions from the text of identifying our heart condition.

First question. What gets you worked up? What gets you worked up? I almost put angry there. But I knew there would be too many of us in here that would go, Ryan, I don't get angry. And then we justify ourselves.

Well, that's not me. I don't get angry. I get even. No, I'm just, but, right, I'm not, but what gets you worked up? God's mercy got Jonah worked up.

It was evil to Jonah, a great evil. He was angry, hot, angry. What gets you worked up? I could never forgive them. No, no, I hold grudges. They don't deserve my forgiveness, my mercy, my availability, my time.

What gets you work up? Jonah got worked up. He stood the city and he's griping over a city that responded in revival and repentance.

You compare that with Jesus and you know what he prayed over Jerusalem? He actually weeps over the city. He says, Jerusalem, Jerusalem, you who killed the prophets, oh, how I wish to gather you as a hen gathers his chicks. Jonah's seeing widespread revival and Jesus knows that he's heading into Jerusalem and they're going to kill him too and his heart weeps.

He's like, I wish that I could gather you and draw you in. What gets you worked up? Second question, what do you live for? What do you live for? Jonah was happy over the plant, a great exceeding happiness. Jonah was more concerned about his personal comfort than people in crisis. He's east of the city because of his comfort.

He's east of the city because of his prejudice. He's east of the city and he's more concerned about a plant than people, more concerned about a plant than even livestock. And so often, isn't it true that we spend our days, we're focused and we're living for little things, small things, temporal things, things that are here today and gone tomorrow that vanish plants. And God says, would you live for something bigger, live for something greater, live for something eternal. You know what's amazing about Jesus in Hebrews chapter 12 and it's just coming after the Hall of Faith and we're explaining God's, you know, these incredible faithful people and it talks about therefore for us, since we're surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses calling us to run the race that God marked out for us with perseverance, you know, getting rid of anything that trips us out for the sin that so easily entangles us. And then it says, let us fix our eyes on Jesus. Church, you can do nothing wrong when you fix your eyes on Jesus. You're living in your full purpose when you're fixing your eyes on Jesus. Fix your eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of your faith.

And then it says this, this is amazing. What did Jesus live for? The very same thing that he died for. Who for the joy set before him, scorned the cross. Who for the joy set before him, he took on the cross, scorning its shame.

Well, what was the joy set before him? It was you. It was you.

It was you. God from eternity past said the joy set before me, I will endure the cross and death itself to welcome you in, to bring you in, to become part of my family, to be in relationship with me. It's what he lived for. It's what he died for.

You are his joy. What gets you worked up? What do you live for? Finally, what are you concerned about?

You want to know the condition of your heart? What are you concerned about? God's question to Jonah, should I not be concerned about this great city?

Should I not be concerned about people? Jonah east of the city. He's concerned about himself, his comfort, just whatever he wants. And then you see Jesus, and isn't it amazing? Think about this. Think about that the Pharisees who knew the word of God, remember, you can know the word of God and completely miss God's heart. The Pharisees who knew the word of God completely missed the son of God, who was the word of God incarnate. And so when the son of God showed up on the planet and is doing the things that God does and doing the things and getting after the people that break God's heart and working in ways, the Pharisees who are the most religious missed it, didn't get it. In fact, on one occasion, which happened many times, they're saying to him, why in the world do you eat with tax collectors and sinners?

What's wrong with you? And then Jesus tells a parable to explain the heart of God, what breaks God's heart, what he's concerned about. In fact, he gives three stories, you know it, the parable of the lost sheep, that what breaks God's heart and what God lives for, what God's concerned about, what God goes after is when if he has 100 sheep and 99 are in the pen, if there's one lost, he's going after the one because the one matters to God. And then he tells the parable of the lost coin that a woman had 10 coins and lost one.

And she did everything to find and search that one lost valuable coin and in both of those stories he says there's more rejoicing in heaven over one sinner who repents, one person who recognizes their need and turns, then 99 righteous, like heaven rejoices. And then he builds it to the climax. It's the story of the lost son or we know it as the prodigal son. And the prodigal son says to his father, hey, I want my share of the inheritance. Now there's two brothers, there's an older brother and a younger brother. This is the younger brother. And everybody goes, of course it is the younger brother.

That's a younger brother move. The younger brother says this and the father, again, God's heart and response, instead of shaming, instead of even giving him a lecture, he gives him the inheritance. The son goes and squanders all that he had on wild living, eventually destitute, he's working with pigs and he's starving. And I love how the text says it, he says, then he came to his senses and realized even servants live better than he was living in his father's household. And so he made his way home and he rehearsed his speech and he's working on his way home.

And I love it. It says that the father saw him a long way off and he ran to him. What no proper man would do, patriarch in the ancient day, would ever run because you'd have to lift your garb and run and expose your legs and it was completely humbling.

He would never do that. He does that and he runs to his son and he gives him a brace. He doesn't even allow his son to finish. His speech puts on the ring of sonship, the sandals and a new garment on him and welcomes him home.

And again, there's no lecture. It's just the father with open arms saying welcome home. And then he throws a party.

I love it. He kills the fatted calf. And then we get to the point of the story. We get the heart of God for all of humanity wherever we're at that it breaks his heart. And that is the reason Jesus came.

I came for every single person to experience my grace and love that none should perish but all come to know me. And the point of the parable, like the point of Jonah, is to draw our attention to the older brother because he's, remember he's talking to the Pharisees who knew God's word but didn't know God's son. See the older brother sees the party and instead of celebration, he's outside the celebration griping, just like Jonah is outside the city griping. The father goes to him and says, son, come in and celebrate. Your brother who is dead is alive, who is lost is found. We have to celebrate and he's got on his mind fairness. He doesn't deserve it. And he says, son, we had to celebrate.

All that I have is yours. Come into the celebration and celebrate. Your brother is lost, is found. And like Jonah, Jesus ends the story right there and we don't know. We don't know how the elder brother responded.

We don't know if he went into the celebration or if he stood outside judging, critiquing, condemning, feeling self-righteous. And just like Jonah, the call is for us. Not to judge the elder brother, no, it's to see the elder brother in us, to see the elder brother in me, to see the elder brother when I look down and I judge someone, look down when I don't reach out, look down on people and I'm just simply treating people or I just want to live for my own comfort, my own ways and gripe about when it doesn't go my way.

It's the call for us to look in the mirror. And this is the prayer I want to leave you with. Would you make this prayer for you this week? Heavenly Father, would you break my heart for what breaks your heart? Would you do a heart work in me? I don't want to be east of the city.

I don't want to be outside the city, outside the celebration. But I recognize that's where I'm at. I recognize there's parts of me that have that. Would you break my heart? Would you do a fresh work? Would you do a heart work in me for the very things that break your heart? Before we go any further in this broadcast, I just want to pause and I'll ask those of you listening to my voice right now and you know that God is speaking to you and you realize that you're at a turning point in your life. For many, you're a believer in Jesus, at least you've prayed a prayer or you've gone to church and you believe in God, but your life, you're not walking with Him. And that last line about God, would you do a fresh work in me?

Would you break my heart for the things that break your heart? That your life really is about your agenda and not God's and you realize you need to make a change. Can I encourage you right now with me, step in, say to the Lord, oh God, I'm sorry.

I want to walk with you. Lord, I want to turn away from the things and the people and the things I'm chasing and I want to ask you to forgive me right now. And then I want you to text or call the best or most godly Christian you know or your pastor and say to them, you know, I realize my priorities are out of lack. I've not been in the scriptures, I've not been very faithful to church. God just spoke to me. I was listening to a program and I realize I need to begin to walk with God afresh, but I know I can't do it alone.

Would you make that call, send that text? And then there's others of you that you're listening to this broadcast and you're wondering to yourself, I'm not exactly sure why, but you recognize that you don't know Jesus, that your sins aren't forgiven, that you need to receive him as your Savior and your Lord. And you're probably wondering, I sense God working, but I don't know exactly how do you do that?

Well, the Bible says, as many as receive him Jesus, to them he gives the right or the power to become children of God. If you believe in your heart and confess with your mouth, he says you will be saved, you'll be delivered, you'll be forgiven for your sin. And if you'd like a personal relationship with God the Father through the Lord Jesus Christ, you are an act of faith away. And at this very moment, you can just say to God, Lord, I need you. I know I'm not perfect and I know you are.

I fall short. I have done things wrong that I'm ashamed of and I come now and ask you to forgive me and cleanse me solely based on what Jesus did on the cross. I believe your God, I believe you paid the price, I believe you rose from the dead and I want to receive you right now. Lord Jesus, come into my life and forgive me, make me your son, make me your daughter. And as you prayed that, probably like I did early on in my life, very imperfectly, the Lord understands your heart. He's forgiven you and I want you to call or text the greatest Christian you know that I want you to It's all one word, We have some information absolutely free that will help you grow in your new relationship with Jesus.

That's right, Chip. If you just prayed to receive Christ, we'd love to put a resource in your hands called Starting Out Right. This is a tool that will help you gain a clear biblical understanding of what it means to put your faith in Jesus. Request this free resource by calling us at 888-333-6003 or visiting and clicking on the New Believers button.

That's or call 888-333-6003. Let us help you get started in your faith journey. Well, Chip's still with me in studio and Chip, I can see you have one last thing you'd like to share with our listeners. So, we have a few minutes left.

Why don't you go ahead and do that? Dave, I appreciate that. I just want to stop and pause with a very select group of people. Your people that pray for Living on the Edge, I know because you write and tell me and your people who give financially to Living on the Edge. And as I have communicated the gospel of Jesus Christ, it is the power of God to salvation. And we know that when we share the gospel like this on a broadcast, literally hundreds and hundreds of people come to Christ. And so you're a part of that.

And we have reaped, not because we're special, but because the gospel is the power of God to salvation. But I want to just celebrate that reward and thank every one of you who pray and thank every single person who gives to this ministry. People's lives will be different forever and ever and ever because of you.

Thanks so much. Thanks, Chip. Well, if you're already a financial partner, thank you. With your help, Living on the Edge is ministering to more people than ever before.

But if you're benefiting from Chip's teaching and haven't yet taken that step, now would be a great time to join the team. To send a gift or become a monthly partner, go to or text the word Donate to 741-41. Let's donate to 741-41 or visit App listeners, just tap donate. Well, before we go, I'm going to remind you that the Chip Ingram app is an easy way to share messages or complete series with others. So whenever you're encouraged by what you hear, I hope you'll pass it along to a friend or loved one who'd benefit from it and be sure to tell them how it made a difference in your life. Well, until next time, this is Dave Druey saying thanks for listening to this Edition of Living on the Edge.
Whisper: small.en / 2022-11-09 19:39:30 / 2022-11-09 19:45:25 / 6

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