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Destroying the Fear of Death - Hebrews 2:10-18 - Jesus Is Better

Made for More / Mercy Hil Church
The Truth Network Radio
February 4, 2023 7:00 am

Destroying the Fear of Death - Hebrews 2:10-18 - Jesus Is Better

Made for More / Mercy Hil Church

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February 4, 2023 7:00 am

We don’t like to talk about death; we don’t even like to think about death. But the reality is that the Bible talks about death a lot. If Jesus doesn’t return in our lifetime, death will come for us all. But if death is such a natural part of life, then why do we struggle against it so much? Why does it inspire such a fear that the Bible calls it slavery?


All right.

Well, hey guys. If you have a copy of Scripture, you can take it out and turn with me to Hebrews chapter 2 today at all of our locations. And we are going to be diving in, back in to where we have been studying in Hebrews chapter 2. And today, this is what we're going to talk about. We're going to talk about this concept of death being the ultimate enemy in our life, but the one that Jesus has come to steal its power, to free us from being a slave over the fear of it, to really destroy the one who has the power of it.

And he has done all this in the gospel. Y'all, I think many times in our life, our lives can look like a flurry of activity, but in a lot of ways, it is running away from the reality of death. That every one of us have a time clock that is sort of counting down over our head all the time.

And we don't want to think about it at all. We push against it. I mean, we push against it physically. We push against it mentally.

I'm noticing this. Man, I'm 39 years old. And guys, when you're in your 20s and teens, you'd ever think about anything routine, health-wise, all that kind of stuff. All of a sudden, you start getting a little bit older, and you get around people my age and certainly older than I am. And our congregation now, praise God, has a lot of diversity and age in it. But you see as people begin to get older, man, they don't miss like routine health appointments anymore, you know. They don't just kind of have like an, oh, whatever attitude about it anymore.

Why? Because the reality of that clock kind of over your head, you know, is sort of starting to dictate to you a little bit. And you kind of start feeling those feelings around your own health. And you're kind of pushing against that ultimate reality that's out there. And of course, we want to champion, you know, taking care of ourselves. We're whole people.

But I'm just using that as an example. Like as we get older, we know it's a reality. I think about this with our mindset as well. You know, many of us, I think mentally, we know that that day of us crossing over that line is out there unless we're just the only ones in history, right?

I mean, we, you know, we're logical enough to know that my number is going to be called at some point. And so what do we do? We throw ourselves into kids activities and hobbies and work and the MCU universe or whatever else, right?

It's like, man, we want to distract ourselves away from thinking about some of the biggest questions in life. What happens when we die? I mean, what actually is on the other side, you know?

What will it be like? See, I think deep down, we all sort of understand the normalization, kind of the philosophizing that goes around this concept of death. And I think deep down, we really reject it. What does the world want us to believe?

What does our culture say? Well, death is a normal part of life. I remember 1994, the movie The Lion King came out, okay? I was 11 years old. And I remember watching it and I remember being in the theater because I was trying so hard not to cry because I don't want to get punched in the arm by my buddies, okay? And maybe some of you guys remember when that movie came out.

Third biggest grossing animated movie of all time, you know, almost grossed a billion dollars worldwide in the 90s. And I think about that movie because why is it so popular? Well, I think it's so popular if you've seen it. I'm assuming most of us have probably seen it.

It's so popular, I think, because there's so much human, just human stuff that comes out in that movie. Meaning, man, it's about getting away from shame and guilt, you know? It's about redemption. I mean, it's about leadership. Like, it's about so many things that are just core to who we are. And so that's a good thing, right? But the bad thing about that movie is the whole mantra that comes out of it, that everything in life, including death, is just the circle of life.

You guys have seen this before. Of course, if you watch the movie, the whole premise is undercut by the fact that everybody wants to survive so bad. You know, like, if you want to survive that bad, we all sort of know this actually isn't that much of a normal, natural part of life. If death is that natural, then why do we struggle against it so much? If death is so natural, then why does the Bible say that we, apart from Christ, will be so fearful of it that we will be slaves to that fear?

Because that's what he's gonna tell us today. I think the reality is, and the truth is, we just don't want to think about this very much. We push hard against it. But I think we all kind of know at the very bottom of our heart, man, death is a tragedy. Death is something that humans were never meant to experience.

And we don't need to fake normalize, and we don't need to distract our way out. What we need to do is sit in the reality that in this broken world through sin, that death is out there, but that Jesus Christ is a champion who has taken death on our behalf so that you and I have the chance to live an eternal life in heaven with him forever. And if we can get that in our soul today, it will lose, Acts 2 says, it will lose the pangs of death. It will lose the power of the fear of death in our life.

Here's the big idea this weekend. Jesus destroys the fear of death by destroying the one who has the power of death. You could say it like this, Jesus destroys the fear of death by destroying Satan's power over us with it, okay?

That's what he's getting at. And he does it through the gospel. We don't need fake normalization. We don't need distraction. We need a champion, and we need to see today that we have one. Jesus Christ is the one who walked out on the battlefield and defeated this Goliath on our behalf, death itself. And therefore, death is still a tragedy, but we can move church from the fear of death to the godly grief over death. We can move there.

We can get there today. And I'm praying much like last week that many of our folks, man, we'll be able to let some things go at the altar today. Some fears that we have for our lives, some fears that we have of our kids, that you know, whatever, over different people in our life, and see the freedom that is found in the gospel. Look what it says in Hebrews chapter 2, For it was fitting that he for whom and by whom all things exist and bringing many sons to glory should make the founder of their salvation perfect through suffering. For he who sanctifies and he who are saying and and those who are sanctified all have one source. That is why he is not ashamed to call them brothers saying, I will tell of your name to my brothers in the midst of the congregation. I will sing your praise. And again, I will put my trust in him. And again, behold I and the children God has given me. Now Hebrew, listen, the book of Hebrews is a big logic equation in a lot of ways, okay?

I've heard a lot of people express confusion in Hebrews and all that. It's really not that bad if we will sort of take it slow and let it build upon itself. That's why we're doing a whole series in half the book.

We'll do another series next year, maybe next summer, in the other half of the book. But one of the things that we, I say that right up front because that's what we're gonna have to do today. We're gonna have to end up seeing some of the logic of the passage. And the logic of the passage for today is this, how is it that sinful people that deserve death can be loosed from the fear of death?

We can be loosed from the fear of hell. And it really comes down to this, that Jesus has done something magnificent for us. And the first three verses here really emphasize what he has done for us in that Jesus has become a man for us.

That's what it's talking about. The first few verses here are all about the humanity of Christ and that's what he says. He has made him the founder of our salvation and he has made him perfect through suffering. Now what does this mean that he has made him to be perfect? I think one of the questions, very logical question, would be to ask this question, hey does this mean that Jesus was not perfect if he is being made to be perfect?

And the answer to that is of course not. What it means is that Jesus is being made into a perfect sacrifice. That's what it means. He is already perfect but he is becoming the perfect sacrifice for us. And to become the perfect sacrifice for us Jesus had to become a man, part of humanity.

The blood of bulls and rams was never going to actually save humanity. These were placeholders that kept us looking forward to what God was going to do. But you could say it like this, Jesus had to become one of us in order to save us. So Jesus is becoming the perfect sacrifice when he steps into this world through the Incarnation.

And we've talked about this a lot over the last couple months. He's 100% God, becomes 100% man. It's a miracle unlike anything else but this is who he is. It's this beautiful miracle of Jesus stepping into humanity and over the course of his life he is becoming the perfect sacrifice as he matures and as he follows God's will at every stage of the game he becomes the perfect sacrifice for us. I've often thought in my life, this is not a theological thing, this is just sort of my own thoughts here. I've often thought, I wonder why Jesus was in his early 30s whenever he was taken to the cross.

I wonder if it had to do with full maturity in the human life, you know, in terms of a full physical maturity. He has become the perfect sacrifice for us. For he who sanctifies and those who are sanctified all have one source.

Now this is what's awesome. Jesus joined himself with humanity so that we could join ourselves with him, right? Like he became one of us so that we could be united with him. Well look what it says, for he who sanctifies him and those who are sanctified us, okay, all have one source.

That is why he is not ashamed, this is so awesome, to call them brothers. Now Jesus having God as a source is not trying to say that he was created in the way that we are. That's not what it's saying. What it's saying is that Jesus has God as Father and we have God as Father, we are brothers. It's talking about this all familial kind of metaphor that is being used where we are wrapped up in Christ. The Father and, you know, Jesus say, I and the Father are one, they and I are one. Like this idea of we are in Christ and he has Christ, he has God as Father and we have God as Father. Now we are brothers and sisters in the faith joined to Christ.

It's a theological reality, okay? I think about it like this with Faith Ann, you know, we've um, I've talked about this before but if you're new to Mercy Hill, our fourth child is named Faith Ann, she came to us through adoption, almost six years old now. And, you know, it's funny because when she came into our home, she did not get me and Anna as mom and dad without getting AP, Benaiah, and Hattie Jo as brother and sister, right?

There's a lot we could say about that. I mean this is why we, this is why the Bible uses family metaphor more than anything else for the church. It's like, man, we are a family. This is what Jesus is being presented to us as. Like like a brother, like an older brother who has, we have been joined in him but now we not only have God as Father, we have Jesus as brother. We have God as brother.

It's it's just such a cool reality. Now I just called Jesus your older brother. I don't know what that brings up in your mind, okay?

It's like, man, is he gonna beat me up or what? I don't know, okay? What we need to think about though, Jesus as brother is more like ultimate brother, like sacrificial, caring, a leader, you know, Jesus as brother, a defender. Think about Romans 8 17. He is the heir and we are co-heirs. I want you to think about what that means for you. That you are never alone. Not just that you have a father in heaven but that you have a brother.

You have one who sticks closer than a brother. That's what the Bible is telling us here. Hey, Jesus pulls, look, from Psalms and Isaiah to say, I had no problem calling you brothers and sisters.

And I think sometimes we can get a little bit weird about this. Look what it says, I will tell your name to my brothers in the midst of the congregation. I will sing your praise and again I will put my trust in him and again behold I and the children God has given me.

Y'all, I know it's used in the mail here a lot. It's talking about brothers and a lot of times the Bible does this with sons. The reason it does that is because it's trying to make sure that we see the whole church is wrapped up in the inheritance. The whole church is wrapped up and being co-heirs with Christ. And what he's calling us here is his brothers and sisters.

This is awesome. Psalm 22 and Isaiah 8 are great passages that he goes to. The book of Hebrews does this over and over and over where Jesus links himself to us as family. You know one of the things I think we think a lot, and I even did this in this illustration that I just used with Faith Ann, is a lot of times we think oh we get God as Father first and therefore then we end up with brothers and sisters in the faith.

And I think that actually that part of it is really is really true. But when you're getting at it here, when you're talking about how you come in to get God as Father, it's a little more like this. We have God as our Father because we have Jesus as our brother.

It's a little more like that theologically. That we become united with him and through Christ now we enter into life with God as Father. And we have come back into the family of God once again.

You could you know think about another reference if you want to jot this down. Ephesians 1 5. He predestined us for adoption to himself as sons through Jesus. We go through Jesus Christ and this is how we are adopted into God's family. Now this is this you know this is start okay the next verse here so 10 through 13 kind of deals a little bit with Jesus' humanity. He became a man so that he could be the Savior for us and we're gonna still have that in view.

But as we get into verse 14 here he really starts to get into the gospel and how him becoming a man dying death for us loses us from death. And you know what it's like a little bit here? Guys it's like the Netflix series explained okay. I don't know if you guys have seen this it's a few different seasons where it's just like all these little things that you've ever thought about before.

Oh the royal family or sugar or you know whatever you know why is dog man's best friend or just little questions like that and it's like an 18 minute little hit on Netflix of like this is why you know and I haven't fact checked all of them or whatever but I'm just saying it's kind of that idea. This is what's about to happen here. If you've ever thought about okay gee I'm united to Christ God is Father you're trying to put the mechanics of the gospel together. I'm gonna talk about this in a minute. I will say man the Bible doesn't talk about how so much as it talk about what. Okay I will say that like the Bible talks about what it does in your life to put faith in Christ necessarily you know not necessarily as much as it talks about how but if you wanted to have an 18-minute explained video you know here for what the mechanics of it are this is a good one and it starts in verse 14 we already got it all right Jesus has come in the flesh he's gonna say that again since therefore the children share in flesh and blood he himself likewise partook of the same things that through death he might destroy the one who has the power of death that is the devil and deliver all those who through fear of death were subject to lifelong slavery y'all let me just stop right here and just ask you the question all the back from the beginning man do you fear death have you run from it are you afraid of that for somebody in your family for kids for whatever you know we got different ages we got different life stages we got sicknesses we have things that are going on is that a fear is it a reality okay how do we get away from that fear we don't normalize it we don't distract ourselves away from it and we're never gonna outrun it no matter how much physical activity we do we need a champion and that's what the Bible talks about here and and he talks about it right here about what Christ has done that he has partaken flesh and blood so that by his death he could destroy the one who holds the power of death and he could lose us from the fear if I was gonna try to say all of this wrapped up and I know this is not the most succinct thing in the world but this is how I would say it y'all Jesus partook in flesh and blood to destroy the devil who has the power of death and a free slaves from the fear of death what he's saying is that you and I outside of the gospel will be slaves to the fear of death we could try it and you can be slaves a couple different ways you can either be a slave by sitting and wringing your hands and being in fear or you can end up being a slave to the things that you are giving yourself to in order to get away from that fear but either way you're gonna end up being a slave to the fear of death but if we would trust Christ he will lose us from that this this is what's cool to me okay the first part of this passage the scripture says that Jesus is the founder of our salvation that's what he said in verse 10 verse 14 through 15 here he's telling us really how he has founded our salvation but you know what to found means it means to be the author of to be the pioneer of actually what one translation talks about it that way that it's more of a pioneering that Jesus has pioneered our salvation by tasting death for us all remember that from last week tasting death for us all now has loosed us from its power I think about that word pioneer I've told you guys this before I'm a millennial okay technically but I'm a geriatric millennial I'm like the oldest millennial that you can kind of be and maybe some of you guys are in that in that boat I'd characterize my generation by saying this three things if you remember eating if you remember reading books so that you could get a personal pan pizza from Pizza Hut okay if you remember that if you remember you know getting really upset that somebody did not rewind the VHS tape from blockbuster okay or if you remember ever playing you know the Oregon Trail on an old Apple you know Macintosh book if you remember any of those three things you're probably sort of in my generation but I bring that up because I think about my kids I think about what they would do if they if I was like yeah this is the video games we played you know Oregon Trail in school they would laugh hysterically at that but I think about that because that that game right is about pioneering it's about that and we have a picture of what that means you know getting across forging a trail undaunted courage Lewis and Clark you know one of the best history books you know just a total recount of what they did when they opened up you know the passage to get to the West and I think about how it was such an unknown over there you know there were people who said for example when Lewis and Clark were commissioned there were people and books at that time that really thought there would be dinosaurs on the other side of the Rockies you know I mean that's it this is just kind of the way that people were in such darkness then about the world and about geography and all and about all that kind of stuff and so they forged this trail well I want you to think about that founder author pioneer all right think about this word one theologian says like this the pathway to God's family was blocked by sin but that's what Jesus came to do to open the path to God once again to pioneer a way now that was what was said in verse 10 he is the founder of our faith well what do we see in verse 14 and 15 how does he do it he partakes in flesh and blood takes the death that we deserved and thereby destroys the one who has the power of death over us and frees us from the fear of death this is what he has done this is the gospel message he did it by his work on the cross sin deserves death both temporal and eternal it's a separation from God in this life and in the next God would have to be just to punish sin and he is just so he will punish sin this is why Isaiah 53 talks about Jesus stepping in he was pierced for our transgressions he was crushed for our iniquities upon him was the chastisement that brought us peace and with his wounds we are healed why it was gonna be our wounds or it's gonna be his wounds he is opened at the pathway for salvation founded it he is the author of it because he has stepped into our shoes as a man and he has taken death for us all the placeholder of blood of bulls and rams would never save but Jesus as the perfect sacrifice does that for us for surely it was not angels that he helps he loves us right but he helps the offspring of Abraham therefore he had to be made like his brothers in every respect so that he might become a merciful and faithful high priest in the service of God to make propitiation for the sins of the people to make it right to pay for the sins of the people and this he is laying foundation here that we're not gonna get to till next summer okay I mean the next summer when we get into this again about the idea of a perfect priest right to make propitiation for the sins of the people for because he himself has suffered when tempted he is able to help those who are being tempted what it's saying is that Jesus partook of flesh and blood he came and took the sufferings of this world in order to become a man so that he could be the perfect sacrifice to free us from death he took what we deserved so that he could give us what he owed he became up like us so that we might become like him now some of us okay some and this is where we're gonna have to this is where we're gonna have to make a decision today some of us some of us want to may want a better explanation than that and here's what you're gonna realize man the Bible talks around this a lot but it doesn't really give us maybe any more even than this what do I mean I mean when you're talking about the gospel you got all these metaphors man is it a debt paid is it ransom you know is it a marriage is it unity you know is it is it freeing the captives I mean you got all this stuff that goes in but here's the question that we have today do we have enough to understand it I absolutely think so we deserve death Jesus takes death he springs us from the power of the one who holds the power of death Satan and now we don't have to be afraid of death anymore I think we have enough what we're gonna have to do is decide if that's enough and realize that the Bible talks about the what a little more than it talks about the how you know CS Lewis talked about this in mere Christianity where he says and I love this he's like hey before anybody ever started talking about the theories of nutrition for thousands of years people just ate their dinners and felt better and were strengthened by it and what he gets out in this concept what he's getting at I think in that in that illustration is there's a lot of illustration there's a lot of thoughts around nutrition and that kind of stuff maybe some of them right maybe some of them wrong I bet in a hundred years they're all gonna be undone and rewritten or whatever but people are still just gonna like man I'm gonna eat my dinner and be strengthened you know he talks about that in mere Christianity in the same way that he talks about the gospel that we are going to need do you know exactly how it works there are different ways to think about it the Bible presents different metaphors for it but in the end the question is no no do I put my faith in it do I trust that in God's wisdom it is his death for mine his death my reward and it springs me from the fear and if so then we would put our faith in him admit that we are sinners believe that Christ has done everything necessary to save us and confess him as the Lord of our life and when we do that it can free us from the fear that we carry around the fear of death itself and that's where I want to begin to land here okay and really talk about the application of this what's gonna be different tomorrow than it is today man let's get away from the fear of death by talking about trusting Christ so here's the application let's trust Christ to free us from the fear of death all right trust Christ to free us from the fear of death I think one of the keys to this passage y'all is seeing the link between the power of death and the fear of death only very clear theologically here okay I think there is more in the power of death than just the fear of death but I do think in this passage that's what he has in view that the power of death is in the fear of death look what he says he might destroy the one who has the power of death that is the devil and deliver all those who through fear of death were subject to lifelong slavery this is the aha moment in this passage okay are we apart from Christ slaves to death no that's not what it says now maybe you can make that argument too we're all gonna die so I mean you know what this says is that we are slaves to the fear of it and so what we end up with is a gospel that not only saves us but it saves us from the power of the fear of death here in this life I mean this is this is strong language y'all what does it mean to be a slave to something it means that you don't get to dictate what you're gonna do and and have autonomy and that type of thing right that's what it's saying here that we would be dictated to that we would be the slaves of the fear of death here here's a way to put some skin on that right what sinful patterns or thought patterns in your life is the fear of death directing you toward for example the fear of death can drive us into constant motion so that I never slow down enough to think about the big things in life one one thing one guy was reading said it like this he said man I want you to imagine imagine you're in the airport imagine you're in the Atlanta Airport just the the hub right in the middle of the airport you know be terminal you're writing all those stuff and you're just kind of you know it's funny life is a little bit like that just in general like look around at the airport and see everybody is moving constant motion we're going going going going going and it's like wait a minute that's not just the airport man that's just kind of life life is a little bit that way in our families in our neighborhoods on our campuses at our workplaces why could it be that we're trying to run away from something could it be that we're trying to distract ourselves from the power of something well the fear of death can also dictate to us and start to push us it's a grabbing on to other saviors false saviors man I got to get away from death I'm gonna grab on to something else that will save me I was watching this documentary the other day about this Iraq War veteran who has you know had a lot of PTSD and things like that and he has sort of found salvation these are his words you know found salvation in doing wild animal capture rescues in the Central and South American jungles where they're you know these you know they go in and where there's a lot of illegal mining and and a lot of illegal you know logging and stuff like that a lot of these animals we get hurt or something and he's kind of found a salvation if you will and helping to rehabilitate these animals and the whole documentary is on him him working with the these cats these wild jungle cats and nobody's ever been able to reintroduce one to the wild and that's what they're trying to do and he makes this statement in the documentary he says and he's holding the cat and he says I'm saving this cat but really he's saving me well that's fine until they're out taking a walk one night as he's teaching him to hunt or whatever and the cat hits a trip wire for a poacher and BAM gets killed just like that and all the sudden the things that was saving you is gone and he goes into absolute despondency I mean just despair years until he finds another cat and I haven't finished the documentary yet okay so I don't know I don't know how it goes but the idea is you know are we looking for things to grab on to that get us away from thinking about the ultimate things and it will save us in a way or think about it like this man it can drive us into a deep place of worry and fear maybe it's not even over our death but maybe it's the death of somebody that we love you know I don't want to be overly dramatic here and so I don't want you know because I know we got people facing a lot of different things but I was I was reading back through my journals this fall when Faith Ann was in the hospital she was in the hospital for a couple days and you know what echoes to me I didn't say it like this in those journals but it's like man what is actually at the bottom of those fears that are coming out as I'm writing it's like man it's it's really ultimately man the fear of somebody not being here that's what it is there are constant fears maybe around health and the health of others what is it at its root core what is it all the way at the bottom of it is it not the slavery to the fear of death what about many of us who are running so hard to get away from the fears that come from really feeling like what happens after death is gonna be hell for you because there's no way that God could forgive someone like you you know you're working tirelessly to try to right all of these wrongs in your life but at the end of the day you got a few skeletons in the closet you're like man God's gonna send me to hell for this and so we're running and we're trying and we're we're in fear of death because of what we feel like is gonna happen in the afterlife y'all one of the things I was thinking about with this passage is this concept of how demonic the fear of death is when you see that the gospel is what destroys the one who has the power of death and frees the slaves from the fear of death you got to see how spiritual this is and you know what the Bible tells us how spiritual is when he says in 2nd Timothy 1 7 for God gave us a spirit not a fear but of power I've told you this before y'all fear is a spirit the prowling lion 1st Peter 5 8 seeking whom he may devour Satan a liar and a deceiver speaking into our life and trying to make us afraid of what comes next even for the believer afraid it may be God will let go of them and all of a sudden you have begun to believe lies that your salvation rests upon what you do in your work you're worried about what happens in the next life rather than understanding that Jesus has done all of that work for you the Bible tells us who Satan is and he is using this weapon against us John 8 talks about how he is such a deceiver and a liar maybe some of us are sitting right in that today and this is how I want to close y'all my my thing my thing for you is this man let us not run to distraction or normalization but let us run to Jesus our champion who has defeated death so that we no longer have to fear it let's don't run to distraction like many of us do hobbies Disney Plus more broken relationships man that black dog is still coming for every one of us we're never gonna get away from it we can keep trying to distract distract distract you know on January 2nd damar hamlin hit ty Higgins and collapsed you guys saw this it was all over everywhere all right it was it was super scary it was super sad right I praise God man they worked on him and and he came back and man being such an athlete and all that it was just a freak accident you guys saw this it was in a NFL football game and I thought about that because man we praise God that tomorrow is able to you know come back from that and all that but I just had the thought of like why does this arrest the country so much there's a lot of sociological factors there's a lot of debates around different sports and all that stuff so I'm not putting that aside I'm not I mean I mean I'm putting that aside for a minute I'm not I'm not dismissing it I understand it but I just thought to myself guys there's 25 to 2700 heart attacks a day in this country and you know I mean almost a million a year and you know what happened with tomorrow I don't know if you even call it a heart attack it was a cardiac arrest from a blunt you know trauma kind of thing that just was so crazy but why did it why did it get into this fabric of society in so much the way that it did and I can't help but wonder if it's because you had millions of people that are staring at a television maybe even in hopes of being distracted from the very fact that life is but one second away and all of a sudden through this tragedy that happened to him and praise God he's okay but you know because of what happened it shook us to our core of like all the sudden like man I'm sitting here watching this game because I don't want to think about stuff like this and all said it got thrown right in my face man that's gonna happen one way or another we're not going to be able to distract ourselves out of the wrestling match that comes with the big questions of life and so if you're here today and that's what you're doing I would call you man think about this stuff deeply don't run from it don't normalize it man this concept of it's all normal no it's not the circle I love the movie Lion King all that okay this concept the circle of life man that's the Bible is totally against that what the Bible tells us there's a few things that humans were never meant to endure divorce is one and a lot of people have gone through that you know the pain of that pow you know death is one we were never meant for this may God never meant for this in the original creation and therefore it is a tragedy but through the power of our champion Jesus we can move from the fear of it into godly grief but we don't need to normalize okay then what do we do well the right answer according to the Bible is to see that Jesus Christ I said in the intro stepped onto the battlefield and he defeated this ultimate Goliath for us John 3 16 the verse that many of us know right for God so loved the world that he gave his only son that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life Jesus was made like us to help us to bring us out of the fear of death we trust in the gospel that we have been made brothers and sisters if you want to say it that way man we have been united that's really what it's getting at we've been united with Christ if we have put our faith in him he died the death that we deserve and God in his kindness counts that for us and when we believe that the power of death truly is destroyed because John 3 16 we get an eternal life and hell is not wait not well waits for us on the other side it is heaven it is a full consummation of the kingdom of God that we will live in for all time and forever right so if you are if you're not a believer let me let me apply this to the you know those who don't believe yet you're not a Christian I'll apply it to the believer will be done all right if you are not a believer let me just ask you this question are you distracting are you normalizing are you philosophizing would you trust Jesus Christ today would you trust him there is a reality of death that is coming and we have this thing in our culture okay it's like my truth your truth you know it's like man I you know I you know it's fine it's for you it's for death is one of those things that is like man is a hard reality you got to make some decisions about what you think around that you know I think about when we come up against reality it's not just the way we want it to be or not this is funny we went a few of us went to the I fly thing you guys seen this in Charlotte where it's like you get to simulate skydiving it was it was kind of crazy we had some churches that were mentoring and we went out there for an afternoon session and hung out with those guys it was super fun but this was so funny to me they have a weight limit on the thing in terms of the way that it operates okay so one of our guys at Mercy Hill Jonathan Yarbrough he's a Mack truck okay he could lift a Mack truck he is a Mack truck all right if you know him he's one of our he's our director you know he directs our mission sending all that kind of stuff and he's just I mean he's just huge man he just works out a ton and just this big old boy and it was funny to me because they got ten people in the I fly Lane and they go to him and they single him out because he's over the weight limit he's like 250 pounds there's a weight limit I'm like well yeah I mean he's you know he's huge and they make him walk out there with two instructors everybody else gets to step into the I fly thing and you just kind of almost like you're jumping in to fly you know and I'm him they just tell him you got to go out there with no the fans not on nothing and just lay down okay just lay down like this and we're gonna put two instructors around you and then we're gonna turn the fan on and you're gonna slowly you know they lift him up and it was funny because in our culture I thought man it's weird that they would single one out like that you know like I thought man can they even really do that it was one of these moments where I was like hey guys we can have all the philosophy in the world but when there's a reality you know so like hey man if you weigh a certain amount and you happen to freak out it's gonna get real hairy in here because you know there's only one instructor and all that and you're a big old boy so what do you mean he is a Mack truck okay you guys know and I just thought about that I thought man you know we can have all of the my truth your truth all that kind of stuff until there's a reality it's like when it's a hard reality death is a hard reality it's not like your truth my truth whatever well we've got to decide is like man what is the truth now you may end up disagree with me on that but you're gonna have to say I'm wrong and you're right or vice versa right but what I would say today is man don't don't distract don't normalize man let us run to the champion and Christ is there waiting for you all right and I pray that you would come and give your life to him today and you could do that by talking to any of our pastors by talking to our prayer counselors by talking to somebody who brought you man let's take that let's let's take care of that and get that nailed down today and Christian let me just say this and we'll be done all right man can we stop distracting can we stop normalizing and can we place our trust in Christ who is the destroyer of the one who holds the power and he is the freer of the slaves of the fear of death man are you feeling today in a way that is not in accordance with your new identity as a son or daughter meaning man I feel afraid you know and and that happens in our life man emotions are a tangled up thing okay I understand that well what we are called to do is to give that over today very much like last week the application for this weekend is to say God I trust that I am free in you you have taken death on my behalf last week you have tasted death for us all you have done that for me and I want to live like a free person because a free person I am and I want to be free from this fear of death because that is what you have won for me you know what's on the other side for the Christian one of the pastors I listen to said it like this man you kill me you plant me in the next life and watch me grow that's all that is out there for us so let's move from a fear of death to a godly grieving over the tragedy of it man let us try as hard as we can not to be afraid of it and let's give this back to God so man let's go into a prayer right now and then we'll have an opportunity to respond father we come before you and Lord we pray that you'll move across our church and across our campuses this weekend God I just pray we've done such spiritual work in the book of Hebrews because it's what you do and when I just pray that your word would be that sword that is just cutting into us today and doing heart surgery and Lord I pray this weekend there would be believers who find that their hope in you unbelievers who find their hope in you and I pray that would be believers who walk in the freedom that you have secured for us and they lay down some of these fears that we're walking around with today in Christ's name we pray amen
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-02-04 16:16:30 / 2023-02-04 16:33:10 / 17

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