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When The Answer Is Delayed Part 1

Running to Win / Erwin Lutzer
The Truth Network Radio
October 25, 2021 1:00 am

When The Answer Is Delayed Part 1

Running to Win / Erwin Lutzer

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October 25, 2021 1:00 am

When we pray for something, we hope for a quick response from God. But God has His own timeline which is not always in sync with ours. How do we handle prayers that are time-critical for us, when God’s answers seem to never come?  

 Click here to listen (Duration 25:02)

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Race is looking to Jesus, founder and perfecter when we pray for something we hope for a quick response from God.

God has his own flock not always in sync with ours. We handle prayers that are time critical for us the answers seem to be anything but today there takes on the challenge stay with churches is running with Sir Blue Square teaching helps us make it across the finish line. Many might say that God's clock runs a lot slower than theirs. You know Dave when it comes to the topic of prayer. All of us have to learn that God does indeed have a different time clock. Abraham had to learn that your God shows them the land and says all this is going to be given to you and to your seed, and there is some of us who believe that some of these promises that God made still haven't been fulfilled, but they will be the reason that this series of messages is so critical is because as a pastor I have seen so many people turn away from God because of unanswered prayer. God has disappointed them and those of the kinds of issues that we have to deal with. And in this series entitled the triumph of unanswered prayer. I answer those objections and give people hope.

I believe that this series will be a blessing to you and would like to be able to make this resource available to you so that you would get all the messages. Here's what you do go to RTW that's RTW or call us at 1-888-218-9337 and now let us be encouraged through God's holy word like to begin today by two quotations from the word of faith.

Preachers, one says using Philippians chapter 2 being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God. Speaking of Christ. Now time to take what is said here and put it on then my whole attitude should be that I have equality with God. Now somebody says well that's hard to think that way.

Well keep saying it. Talk yourself into it.

You have equality with God. Here's another but was not in Christ's mouth that got Bart Emmaus healed the power within Bart Emmaus's mouth. He could have whatever he said.

Jesus was saying. My hands are tied because I can't do anything for you other than what you say many goes on to say God now has your attention and he's looking at you saying what do you want what you want.

Name it baby name it, declare it, speak it confessed and get your list out millions of people are buying into that. We need to rethink the whole business of what the Bible says about the promises of God and what can be claimed and what can't be claimed and why it can't be claimed and today I need to say that the faith healers and those who speak this way, they are not wrong in urging us to have faith. Indeed, the purpose of this message is to increase your faith or not wrong in telling us to do that, but they're asking us to believe things that God hasn't promised and to claim things that God doesn't want to give us, and we need to understand what's going on yes indeed the purpose of this message is to increase faith and to begin to help us to understand what God is up to in our prayer life so that we pray more, so that we believe more so that we trust more and we honor more and we submit our that's the agenda for the next little while. Thank you for taking this trip with me in order to do this I want you to take your Bibles and turn to Hebrews chapter 11 Hebrews chapter 11. Many of us have been in the London and we have seen Westminster Abbey Westminster Abbey. Basically is a cemetery filled with all the heroes of the past in England, the 11th chapter of Hebrews basically is the Westminster Abbey of the Bible. Here are the heroes of faith, not in the Hall of Fame, but the whole of faith and his mighty chapter begins with these startling word now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen those two phrases. The assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen. Basically our parallel expression and the word faith is the assurance that's the word, who posts stasis and it can be translated in many ways. Many of us to memorize the King James. We remember faith is the substance of things hoped for, that's that's good it can be assurance. It can be conviction. It can be essence, it is the firm conviction that what we have hope for and what we believe more is true, and shall come to pass. He goes on to say, for by yet that is by faith.

The people of old receive their commendation. We think of the fact that God gave a promise.

Didn't he that Jesus was going to be born way back in the garden of Eden. God promised bad centuries when by but people kept believing the promise and eventually the promise happened. A good example of that is no. For example, in verse seven it says by faith Noah, being warned by God concerning events as yet unseen in reverent fear constructed the art realize that when Noah built that arc it had never rained yet on the earth. The earth was actually watered by a subterranean phenomenon, and so God says I'm going to send rain and he hasn't even seen the rain and he begins to build the ark.

Talk about a man of faith and then you have various others, and the Scripture also says if we may go to verse three by faith we understand that the universe was created by the word of God, so that what is seen was not made out of things that are visible in other words, we we believe that by faith is a rational faith. Of course it's a rational faith. A theistic evolution cannot account for the world as it is if reason means anything of 2+2 is equal to four. You cannot be an atheist and be rational because you cannot account for the world as it is, you can't get from chemistry to biology to human consciousness and took thought all that because some molecules some dumb molecules were messing around in some slime and they decided without any outside help to get together and become very complicated.

You can believe that. No wonder a French Journal said many years ago that evolution is a fairytale for adults and it was Huxley who said the reason that we believe in evolution without proof is because we don't want God to interfere with our sexual morays that go. Of course we can't prove that the universe was made ex Niccolo by the command of God. But that's reasonable.

It's rational and it accounts for what we have in the world today. Psalm 33 verse six by the word of the Lord was the heavens made in the host of them. The breath of his mouth. I won't even tell you today about the stars number of years ago. Some of us went to visit an astronomer and he showed us pictures of the stars absolutely mind boggling. Millions of light years between them and God says he calls them all by name is got that one named in that one named and they're all different names. Why does the Bible tell us that because God wants us on our faces. God wants to show that he is absolutely Almighty and by his word the heavens were made out of something that did not exist nothing and he spoke, and it happened while by faith we believe that now that introduction.

You'll notice, though, in verse six, one of the most important verses in the Bible without faith it is impossible to please God, for he who comes to God must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who diligently seek him. Now were not going emphasize that today because that's going to be part of the message. Next time, but what I'd like to do today is to give you an example of someone who believed God and how he believed God, and why he is known in the Bible as a man of faith and an example of faith, and his name is Abraham and then will connected with the promises of God the Word of Faith movement and the whole bit. It's all going to come together in the end. Trust me I know where I'm going, even though you don't know yet where you're going and that's perfectly biblical Abraham. The Bible says went out, not knowing whither he went now notice it says in verse eight by faith Abraham obeyed when he was called to go to a place he was to receive as an inheritance and he went out, not knowing whither he went. You'll notice that in the life of Abraham. What he did is he believed he believed in the future against the present. Abraham was living in or of Chaldees. It was a very a culturally astute city for those times and here God says Abraham a lever of Chaldees and go into a land that I will tell you about.

He went from culture high culture to know culture went from a city to an agricultural lifestyle, wandered around, and the Bible says that when he left he not there was going you imagine the discussions that he had with Sarah. Sarah saying Abraham I love you but I do have to ask again how do you know that that was the voice of God. How do you know where we are going. What we really don't all that we know is were supposed to go.

And maybe it'll get clearer later. I'm reminded of when Rebecca and I came to America. This was 1970. We crossed the border with I think about $100 and an old 1965 Buick packed with stuff that's everything that we owned it into the backseat. We were on our way actually to the East Coast. I was supposed to do some graduate work there and we got stopped in Chicago we came in we often thought were going where we do not know had no idea what God had planned for us and in the very same way you and I sometimes have really no idea now when it comes to the land.

Abraham learned the guidance of God. God guide you to the land when it comes to the tense. You'll notice that the next verse says that he was in a tent. By faith he went into the live in the land of promise as a foreign land living in tents with Isaac and Jacob. Now he became a nomad and he learned about the provision of God. And then if you look at the life of Abraham. In the book of Genesis. You'll notice he often built an altar and was the altar that taught him the presence of God. But when God came to Abraham. Abraham believed in the future. Over against the present. He said to himself. The present is more rational. It is better for me it is more comfortable. But Abraham believed in the future.

Any says belief in God in the future is more important than believing in what is best for you in the present there.

Some of you to mind speaking today in God is leading you are not sure exactly where you are going, but you're on your way and when you get there, God will clarify the issues and so Abraham believed he believed in the future against the present. Secondly notice that he believed in the invisible he believed in the invisible over against the visible I'm looking now at verse 10 for he was looking forward to the city that has foundations, whose designer and builder is God.

Now remember that Abraham was a city dweller in God pluck them up and said I'm bringing you to this land and God gave him the dimensions of the land God says I'm giving this to you and to your descendents as an everlasting possession. Abraham wanders in the land. What does the text say as a foreigner. He wanders there as an alien.

He really doesn't belong, even in the land that God gave him why was Abraham so motivated. Why was he so willing to do it. It's because he looked beyond the present. He looked beyond that which you could see and he could see a city whose designer and builder was God. That is amazing to me because Abraham did not have the benefit of Revelation chapter 21 and I saw the holy city descending from heaven from God as a bride adorned for her husband and a great voice came, saying, behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, then he will them and they shall be his people, and he shall be there God that you going to that marvelous description of the heavenly city. Abraham didn't have as much Revelation as we did, but he looked for the city and there were two things about the city that he knew that he loved. First of all, that it was designed by God to whom he had come to trust and to love and secondly he loved the fact that it was in the world to come, and that the chief dwelling place of the city. The person who dwelt in it would be the God that Abraham loved and that's what makes the eternal city so beautiful and so filled with anticipation in the heart of every single Christian you look forward to the city built by God, by which this expression, you know, that gave birth to Augustine's title of that famous book entitled the city of God because Augustine said that the really in this world there are two cities, there is the city of man, with its hopes and dreams and disappointments and when Rome was sacked to the people who belong to the city of man lost everything because this is all they live for. No wonder they feel so violated, but to the people who belong to the city of God that they lost nothing important because they belong to that eternal city and they have treasures in heaven were neither rough nor dust of corrupt and were X to go off who sacked Rome cannot steal so Augustine said let's look forward to the heavenly city. So here's Abraham who believes in the future against the present. He believes in the invisible over against the visible and he knew that the world that world is not as home. I don't want to be an obnoxious Christian.

So you should pray for me that I not become too obnoxious at times but I've done it on at least two occasions, maybe more. I prefer to forget some of them but you know how it is your at an airport and the woman behind the counter says well Mr. loser is Dallas your final destination who Dallas isn't my final destination.

Heaven is my final destination but for today I'm stopping in Dallas. Your right you got that right folks, we belong to another world where headed to somewhere else and Abraham is saying that he can believe in the invisible over against the visible which is exactly what faith is by faith we believe in the unseen, because we heard a word from God by faith. We believe that were headed to heaven because God is first faith in our heart and God is given us the confidence that we belong to him. Abraham also believed he also believed in the reward over against the suffering reward over against the suffering because I can imagine that Abraham often thought about the decision that he made to leave of Chaldees.

He often thought about the discussions that he had with Sarah and with other members of his family about his decision and it seemed so silly.

Why give up a good culture and a safer environment with all of your friends and go to a place where you don't know anybody in urine nomad and your with a bunch of pagans who all that they know really is violence.

Why would you do that, it makes no sense.

But Abraham knew something about the call of God.

He knew about the reward. It's the Old Testament version of the New Testament statement that the suffering of this present world is not worthy to be compared with the glory that shall be revealed in us and you look for example of Moses. It says in about Moses in verse 26 he considered the reproach of Christ greater wealth than the treasures of Egypt. What a sermon that is about Moses, for he was looking to the reward and if you know anything about King tut's tomb. You know something about the treasures of Egypt and Moses said that he's willing to say no to all that why because he looks forward to an even greater reward and so Moses and Abraham and all of the other saints listed in this Hall of Fame. The 11th chapter of Hebrews. They believed in the eternal reward over against present suffering present questions present a hardship for them.

There was this faith that reminded them that this world is not their home. They were just a passing through. As the old song tells us now. I can imagine that when Abraham was there in the land. There were discussions that took place from time to time. In fact, the Bible tells us about all of the discussions that with the Hittites and what have you and the Scripture is clear that Abraham interacted with the people of this world.

I can imagine they'd say to him Abraham what he alone will how was Abraham supposed to answer that God had told him as soon as he got there walk the length and breadth of the land. All that IL that you can see I've given you from this river to this see from there and and God gives him the dimensions and says this is yours and your seed. I'm giving it to you as an everlasting possession, but now I Hittites says to Abraham, how much do you own and Abraham has to say nothing, I will nothing as a matter fact when Sarah dies, he buys that Caleb McPhee love appeal and I think is the correct pronunciation depending on where you put them facets.

He buys this cave for Sarah, and he gives the Hittites, I read the story yesterday. It's near hadron. He gives the Hittites 400 shekels ice Abraham we like it affect your good guy will give it to you please A versus no, I'm not going to take a dime from unique counsel for hundred shekels.

The Bible says it was weighed out 400 shekels of silver, so he buys it, and then later on when he dies he gets put into the same cave because he bought the cave he could be buried there too, so that's the way in which Abraham dies was not interesting. Now notice what the text says I'm in verse 13 these all died in faith, not having received what was promised will that's interesting, but having seen them and greeted them from afar. Having acknowledged that they were strangers and exiles on the earth.

They died verse 16. But, that is, they desire a better country, that is, a heavenly one.

Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he is prepared for them a city. Verse 39 and all of these though commended through their faith, did not receive what was promised. Since God had provided something better for us that apart from us. They should not be made perfect. The idea there is they did not receive the benefits they did not receive the experience of the promise of the coming Messiah.

For example, but they could not be perfected until Messiah came, so they all died in faith and Abraham dies not seeing the promise. I can imagine if you lived in our day I were to faith preacher would've come to him and said Abraham. What's the deal.

Yes indeed, my friend, this is Pastor Luther and that preacher probably would have said name it and claim it you know there are many promises that God has made to us that have not been fulfilled, but they will be fulfilled.

The other day I was speaking to somebody who had many physical ailments and I reminded them that they do not have a problem that a good resurrection will not solve. In other words, God will keep his promises. I believe that this series of messages will not only be a blessing, but a challenge. Your children need to listen to these messages because perhaps they have been disappointed with God, who is not answered their prayers for a gift of any amount.

These messages can be yours in a permanent form in CD. Here is what you do go to RT W Let me give that to you again. RT W or call us at 1-888-218-9337 did I say that to quickly here it is again 1-888-218-9337 you can write to us at running to win 1635 N. LaSalle Boulevard Chicago 960614 running to win is all about helping you find God's roadmap for your race of life. A lot of us getting antsy when waiting more than five minutes that McDonald's old to be Abraham, God gave him promises wouldn't come to pass for centuries. He died before any work fulfilled. Next time I'm running to win more from the book of Hebrews about long-delayed premises for Dr. Erwin looked certain this is Dave McAllister running to win is sponsored by the Moody Church

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