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A Growing Faith Part 2

Running to Win / Erwin Lutzer
The Truth Network Radio
May 19, 2022 1:00 am

A Growing Faith Part 2

Running to Win / Erwin Lutzer

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May 19, 2022 1:00 am

When resentment, envy, or anger entangle us, our souls are dragged away from God like the two sons of Abraham who parted ways. In this message, we discover three lessons about the desires of the flesh and true submission to God. We cannot live as a child of promise and a child of the flesh at the same time. God’s purpose for the line of promise stands.

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Genesis 21 tells the parting of the ways between the two sons of Abraham and Ishmael was cast out of the house along with his mother Hagar God's clear intention was for Isaac to carry on the line of inheritance from the movie church in Chicago. This is with Dr. Erwin Moser is clear teaching helps us make it across the finish line. We're in a series on strength for the journey. Vasculature your teaching from Genesis chapter 21 where God leaves no doubt as to his choice for Abraham's there are absolutely right Dave. And as I pointed out in the previous broadcast.

That's one of the reasons why there is conflict in the Middle East that cannot be resolved because our Muslim friends believe that Ishmael is the one who inherits the land promises, not Isaac, but you go back to Scripture and clearly God says it is through Isaac that your seed will be called. Let me say something else about Islam, we must recognize that throughout the history of Islam. Often times the church has been subverted. Christians have been under persecution and we must ask ourselves what does all of this mean for us in America even for our own future. That's why I've written the book entitled the cross in the shadow of the crescent those of the kinds of questions that I attempt to answer for a gift of any amount.

It can be yours. Here is what you do go to RTW or call us at 1-888-218-9337 and always remember, no matter what happens God still rules.

Why is it that Ishmael can't be in the same house as Isaac.

First of all because he can't be a threat to the promised seed. But there's another reason in chapter 22. Abraham is asked to sacrifice his only son, the only one God recognizes Isaac on Mount Moriah, and what God is saying is he saying Abraham I have to wean you of all possibility of thinking yes I can go ahead and I can kill my Isaac and then God will use Ishmael to fulfill the promises God says I don't even want that as a fallback position. You must be willing to sacrifice your son, your son, Isaac, and believe even then that God will raise him from the dead, because Ishmael will not inherit the promises.

What's interesting is in the New Testament. This whole story is used as an allegory, that's what it says in Galatians chapter 4, an allegory because Ishmael is seen as a son he seen as a son of the flesh wears Isaac is seen as a child of promise, and the differences between law and grace. And there it is for us to look at that very quickly. I have to give you three transforming lessons that we can learn from this whole story as we try to pull the threads together and ask God to change us forever. I hope that whenever you come to church.

You say God change me today forever first lesson is this God's promises are based on God's power.

God's promises are based on God's power. This past week. Three of us had the opportunity of going to an observatory and speaking to an astronomer who teaches astronomy at the University of Chicago and he was showing us various telescopes and what have you.

And he showed us pictures of the galaxies.

Blotches of ink on this table.

And yet when you shine light on suddenly realize that every blotches hundreds of thousands of stars and he told us that the Hubble telescope. They decided to aim it in space where there was nothing they chose the point in space where there was the least ability to find anything.

They found tons of galaxies and trillions of star I said to him do you think it's right to say that there are as many sands on the seashore of the world as there are stars in the sky and he said yeah he said that could be right. Think of that and he referred to this scripture where God says you can number the stars, which you can't, you'll be able to number your posterity which you can if you can number the dust of the earth.

God said to Abraham, then you can number your own descendents. While you can't do that work and you do the other one those of the two analogies that are used in Scripture and God is L Shada he just decided to throw a party and say I'm going to create a bunch of star just to show what I can do and he did it all in a couple of seconds.

One afternoon, I don't know what it was afternoon or morning, but while L Shada I Abraham walk before me now. The text is open, you have your Bibles. Don't you notice what it says all throughout here. God says I will love that.

Notice it says I will. This is now the beginning of her sex. I will make you exceedingly fruitful. I will make you into nations.

Verse seven.

I will establish my covenant verse eight.

I will give you the land I will be there God. It says in the last part of verse nine. I will I will I will I will. God says this is an unconditional covenant. As we learned in Genesis chapter 15. This is something that God says he's going to do whether people are faithful or not he will create within them a desire to be faithful to his covenant will be fulfilled. God says I'm going to do this if Abraham were able to look into the future I could imagine him having an argument with God at this point they could say God. What if I tell another lie like I did in Egypt. What does that do to the covenant and God says I will be your God and I will establish my covenant with you forever and give your descendents the land is God. What if I have a great-grandson whose name is Jacob, who turns out to be a crook. What elected God's as I will establish my covenant with you and to your descendents I will give the land but God. What if one of my descendents is going to be named David and he is going to commit adultery and then murder somebody to cover it up. God, what does that do to your covenant, then I will establish my covenant with you and I will give it to your posterity as an everlasting possession, but God. What if some of my descendents turn out to be idolaters. I will establish my covenant before you and I will give that covenant in the land to your seed into your offspring forever. But God, what if some of my descendents, end up crucifying the son of God.

What then I have spoken I will establish my covenant before you and I will give you the land and to your posterity as an everlasting possession. Why can God talk like that, it's because God is not a man, he is God. L.

Shada, I and when you and I enter into a covenant with God. When we claimed the promise he who believes in me has everlasting life, and we had saving lead believed in Jesus we enter into a new covenant, and it too is an unconditional covenant is it will. God, what if I sin.

He who believes in me has everlasting life, they shall never perish, neither shall anyone pluck them out of my hand. But God but God. What if the time comes for me to die and I'm full of doubts and I begin to think about going into the vast unknown then in my heart I am now dealing and wondering whether Jesus is able to meet me on the other side.

What then God. They shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my because God is God and the apostle pulses in the book of Timothy. He says even if we believe not then become faithless.

He says God will not change in God remains faithful because he cannot deny himself, and that is upon that that we stand today. The promises of God are back by the power of God. God L. Shada, don't you love it, God L Shada God Almighty second lesson is that God's promises are a test of our own submission. Take it slowly God's promises are a test of our own submission. How do you think Ishmael like being told that he was not the child the promise lies so me, didn't like it very well. He was mocking Isaac later on his own.

History shows that he was always angry with his cousins, the descendents of Isaac, and you have the whole history of the Middle East, all filled with conflict and envy. We can understand that. I guess because to us. We say you know it's unfair that what we all would say it's unfair. Ishmael gets blessing, but he doesn't get the same blessing as Isaac's unfair resentful anger, complaining to God. Ishmael would've been better off if you have said you know I'm gonna let God be God and if God wants to get the promise to Isaac.

I am willing to accept whatever blessing God gives me, and God does give him blessing and if he had capitalized on the blessing that God was about to give him. He may have indeed received more blessing from God. But when you and I are resentful because God doesn't treat us all alike.

As we've learned he doesn't treat Hammurabi like he treats Abraham and he doesn't treat Ishmael like he treats Isaac when you and I become angry with God because somebody has been blessed more than we have. We are then in a position where the blessings that he does give us cannot be enjoyed and cannot be multiplied because we not allowed God to be God.

Jesus tells that awesome parable in the 20th chapter of Matthew where he says at the end of the day. Those who came early in the morning. They agreed to for a denarius a day in the vineyard and then later on, there were those who showed up as late as 5 o'clock in the evening they worked one hour and the time came to get paid.

And wouldn't you know it they got paid a denarius to the ones who came early were angry yeah we agreed for a denarius, but it's not fair that you should take somebody who works in one hour and give him the same to us and we have borne the heat of the day it's not fair. Member what Jesus said as he said cannot I do what I will with those who are my own. Are you envious because I'm generous I want to give to Isaac something that I haven't given to Ishmael, don't I have that right can't God do as he wishes with you and me are you resentful today because you've not received the same blessing that somebody sitting next you have it will not help you in your walk with God. It will diminish you and the blessing of God will be diminished and not increased until you and I say I'm gonna let God be God. Dr. Riley who wrote the notes for the Riley study Bible tells an interesting story of when he was on American Airlines and some people were asked to go first class because they ran out of room in the coach department but he was not among them.

So you know you see these other people were sitting next to you and they could to go first class, but he's not.

So he began to say no to himself and others. This is unfair, and his mind went to that parable in Matthew chapter 20 and then he read it this way, did you not agree with American Airlines for a coach seat yeah aren't you getting a coach seat.

Are you envious because American Airlines is generous. If they want to if they want to take somebody who's in coaching give them first-class treatment cannot American Airlines do as it wills with those who are it's all you resentful because God is generous. It's amazing how we change things when the shoe is on the other foot, one day my daughter and I were flying somewhere and we were taken from coach and we were put into first class and United Airlines. I didn't write a letter to United and say what kind of a schlocky outfit you guys run anyway.

I pay for a coach seat and get first-class treatment now known and I thought to myself.

It's about time. That's what I when we are the recipients of blessing. We think it's about time. But when somebody else gets to go first class and we are in coach we say it ain't fair.

Listen the second lesson is this the God's promises are a test of our own submission willing to rejoice in the success of someone else in the blessings of someone else, or you can become resentful and angry and leave the people of God and leave church because it ain't fair. There's 1/3 lesson and that is this that the true nature of Ishmael, the true nature of Ishmael is revealed when Isaac is born the true nature of Ishmael is revealed when Isaac is born. Here's Ishmael growing up and he is a wonderful boy. I'm sure it's 14 years old is a little brother is not just your average little brother. It's the little brother that God chose to be the inheritor of the promises. So what happens when the boys being weaned. Ishmael mocks because after all, it ain't fair. But the true nature of Ishmael is revealed in the presence of Isaac. You and I find that our lives are going along quite well. I've I've heard testimonies to that effect and then suddenly you accept Jesus Christ as your Savior and now suddenly you have an allegiance to Jesus and the devil, and the flesh begin to mock, and they become angry and they say that your allegiance was to me and now that you received Christ your allegiances over there and you begin a whole sense of conflict accepting Christ as Savior doesn't always bring immediate peace.

The pieces there, but sometimes it's preceded by huge conflict because now you realize what the flesh is really like.

Flesh is only happy when it's served when it's when it's encouraged when it's honor that's that's what the flesh is, but it will not will not accept the authority of Jesus easily. That's the point of the apostle Paul in the fourth chapter of Genesis what he was saying is, is that Isaac is the child of promise. Ishmael is the child of the flesh, the child of the flesh represents the law and is soon as we accept the promise and we accept what God is done, we find within us the resentment and all of those things that the flesh brings about an what Paul says is allegorically speaking, cast out the slave woman and her son because you can't have two different ways to live you can't live under law and grace. Simultaneously, you can't live as a child of promise in the child of the flesh. At the same time get rid of that which stands between you and entering into God's awesome promises love to tell that story that you probably heard me tell before happened in the lobby of the church many years ago when a woman came to me and said you know I was living with this man. We were unmarried. Now I've accepted Christ as Savior. So I've asked him to leave and he won't and I said well I said you know it's very clear you have to move out because committed Christians who are interested in walking with Jesus. Don't live together without being married in a size that you have to leave.

She well it's more difficult than that I own the apartment all all right little bit of truth there changes it and she said I've told him to leave any well now here's the question how does 120 pound woman get a 200 pound man out of her apartment to good question. I told her I said you know if if nothing else, you have to go to the police and get an order of protection. Then have them remove a.m.

Well she did that. Eventually she got rid of them. I'll tell you to get rid of the things of the flesh and the things that are wrong are really really difficult and you have to do it with authority. She didn't have the strength to do it herself she needed the authority of the law and we need the authority of Jesus to say to the flesh leave because I'm living by promise.

I'm living by the spirit I'm living in the freedom of Christ, and I will not be bogged down by the things of the flesh that keep dragging my soul away from God. So that's our agenda, but the true nature of the flesh is not revealed until the spirit comes. That's what the flesh lusts against the spirit to spirit against the flesh because they're vying for control there vying for interest in you not need to cast out the flesh and walk in the spirit. If you've come that far in your Christian life. And if you love God today would you bow your head with me in prayer our father, we thank you today for your love and grace that brings us to this hour to this moment, we thank you that our faith is in God L shad I we thank you that your promises are absolutely absolutely secure. Despite our tendency to disbelieve them. We pray in Jesus name that you will help all of us to respond to whatever truth God has shown us today. For those who feel a sense of insecurity may they be granted the ability to cleave to your promises for those who are angry because they been bypassed when the blessings were handed out, give them a spirit of submission to capitalize on the blessings that you've given them so that you can get the more and we asked for those of us who struggle with the flesh and the spirit. Whatever gods talk to you but would you talk to him right now silently where you are. You've never accepted Christ as Savior. You can do that, even where you are seated. You can say Jesus, I thank you that you died for me. I receive you is mine, and I believe you, I embrace you in my heart say Jesus accept you is the one who died for me as my substitute give a burden that you've not transferred to the shoulders of Jesus do it come to his father because we are very very needy, very needy, very prone to deception very prone to self protection come by your spirit and make us real people living in life of eternity. In Jesus name, amen. This is Pastor Luther and if I might have a word with you. I would say this if you don't love God, almost certainly, you have never been born again, because when the Holy Spirit of God does his work with in us. He implants with in us a love for the father.

I hope that you love the father but let me ask you this.

Are you willing to be persecuted for the cause of Jesus Christ throughout history many Christians have experienced persecution and different lands, particularly in Muslim countries. I've written a book entitled the cross in the shadow of the crescent and one of the chapters is on persecution. How can we distinguish between those who buckled when the pressure was on them versus those who stood tall and lived with the consequences.

Or I might say died because of the consequences. I think that this book will be very instructive and for gift of any amount.

It can be yours. Here's what you do go to RTW and if I might say thank you so much in advance for helping us because of you the gospel of Jesus Christ is going to thousands upon thousands of people through this ministry go to RTW or call us at 1-888-218-9337 asked for the book the cross in the shadow of the crescent and once again the info RTW or go to the phone right now and call 1-888-218-9337 you can write to us running to win 1635 N. LaSalle Boulevard Chicago line 606141 day Abraham came out of his tent and saw three men standing there, men were not ordinary men. He knew he was in the presence of the Lord as Hebrews 13 says, some have entertained angels without knowing next time I'm running to win. Abraham learns of God's coming judgment on Sodom running to win is all about helping you understand God's roadmap for your race of life for Dr. Erwin looked certain this is Dave Callister running to win is sponsored the Moody Church

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