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Yes, I am the Messiah" - Life of Christ Part 95

So What? / Lon Solomon
The Truth Network Radio
January 3, 2024 7:00 am

Yes, I am the Messiah" - Life of Christ Part 95

So What? / Lon Solomon

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This past week I was down in Orlando.

I had to go down and speak at a conference. So I thought this would be a good opportunity maybe to take my wife and one of my children down and go to Disney World for a day or two. So we went down together and we had a good time. And you know, right out in front of the Magic Kingdom is this great picture-taking spot.

They have a big Mickey face made out of the, you know, the shrubbery and the trains there and everybody takes a picture there. So we were standing there and we took a picture and this lady came running up to me. She was obviously a foreign visitor. And she kind of pointed to her camera, you know, and made it clear she wanted me to take a picture of them.

They didn't speak English. And I said, OK, fine. So about 15 of them climbed in there together in this picture. And I thought, well, you know, I've been in other countries before. I know what it feels like to be kind of weird, you know. So I ought to try to go out of my way to make these foreign visitors feel welcome and warm in America. So I tried to listen and figure out, well, what language are they talking?

You know, I mean, where are they from? Sound like they're from Germany. So I thought, well, this is great. Finally, I got a chance to use all that German I studied in college.

It's been no good to me for anything else. So I thought, OK, I'll count, you know, when I get ready to take the picture, I'll count in German. So down like that, they're all crowded in, you know, like that. And so I did. I went, all right, ready? One, two, three, click, took the picture, big smiles on their faces. And I thought, this is great, man. I feel wonderful. You know, I've made some tourist day.

This is fabulous. The lady came walking back over to me, big smile on her face. I thought, this is great, you know. And I handed her a camera and she, with this big smile, she looks at me and she goes, Gracias, SeƱor.

Didn't quite work the way I planned, you know. Well, the moral of that story is, if you're going to properly respond to people, you really need to know the true identity of the people that you're dealing with. And no place is that truer than when it comes to dealing with Jesus Christ. Friends, the world has never lacked for suggestions when it comes to the real identity of Jesus Christ.

We've got suggestions all over the place. For example, according to modern Jewish people, Jesus was a man, a kind man, maybe even a great man, maybe even a great rabbi, perhaps a prophet. According to the Muslims, Jesus was one of the prophets of Allah, of whom Muhammad was the chief. According to the Mormons, Jesus Christ was a man who worked his way up to being a god, just like you and I can do. According to the Jehovah's Witnesses, Jesus Christ was an angel, the first created being in the universe. According to the Unitarians, Jesus Christ was a nice man who tried to help people get along in a tough world. According to the Eastern mystics, Jesus Christ was an enlightened soul, a guru, a person who had attained nirvana. According to the humanists, Jesus Christ was a great moral and ethical philosopher.

And according to Albert Schweitzer and lots of other so-called scholars like him, Jesus Christ, the way the Bible presents him as a historical figure, probably never existed at all. But the thing that's interesting to notice with all of these folks who at least believe Jesus did exist at some point, the thing that's interesting to notice is they all agree that he was a really great man. You say, well, hey, as Christians, that's good, right? I mean, that should make us feel good that they all think he's a great man.

Well, not really. Because you see, there's also subtly, in all of this, a very subtle denial that Jesus Christ is anything more than a man. False religions, different as they may be in so many other ways, are alike in this one thing, and that is every one of them deny the claim that Jesus Christ is Almighty God wrapped in human flesh. And yet that's exactly what Jesus claims to be. And in our passage for this morning, he's going to claim it again, and we want to talk about is Jesus really the Messiah? Is he really the Son of God? Is he really God wrapped in human flesh?

And if he is, whoa, well then, so what? What difference does that make for us? It's huge.

Let's look at it together. Matthew 26, verse 57. Remember where we are here. Jesus has gone into the Garden of Gethsemane over on the Mount of Olives with his disciples.

It's late at night, wee hours of the morning. A group of Roman and Jewish soldiers have come and arrested him, and his disciples have all run away. That's where we are.

Okay, let's pick up. Verse 57. And those who had arrested Jesus took him to Caiaphas, the high priest, where the teachers of the law and the elders had assembled.

But Peter followed at a distance right up to the courtyard of the high priest, and he entered and sat down with the guards to see what would be the outcome. Now the high priest here, his name is Caiaphas. It's very interesting that one of the criticisms of the Bible's accuracy, if you ever had somebody criticize the Bible as being not a true book, not a historical book, not an accurate book, is people will say, this is just one of many criticisms. Well, you know, when you go through the Bible, Old Testament, New Testament, you find all these people's names, and then when you go into extra biblical archaeology or history, you can't find any of their names anywhere. So how do we know that the Bible just didn't make up a bunch of names? Now this was true with Caiaphas. We've never found Caiaphas's name anywhere in any documents, you know, any kind of archaeological discoveries outside of the Bible. So how do we even know this guy existed?

That is until November 1990. Because in November 1990, just south of Jerusalem, they had a big old caterpillar backhoe out there digging a hole for a big water park. By mistake, it broke into an ancient cave, an ancient tomb that was underground.

Nobody knew it was there. And inside the tomb, they found six ossuary. Now an ossuary is a decorated limestone box that they put people's bones in. Back then, they took people's bodies, they'd stick them in a cave after you died, they'd wait till all the flesh decomposed. Then after all the flesh decomposed, they'd come back in.

Nobody's going to lunch after this, are you? They'd come back in after that, they'd take all the bones and they'd put them neatly in this little box and put the top on and they'd shove the little box into a little hole in the wall in the cave and that's where you were buried. So I guess it was kind of like, you know, if you didn't have something to do on a Tuesday afternoon, you'd say, well, let's go dig old grandpa up, we'll put him in his box. Well, they found six of these boxes in there with bones in them and on one of the boxes, there was a name and the name that was on the box was Caiaphas.

Unbelievable. In fact, I've got a picture I brought in for you, come up if you want to look at it, of the box that they found. You say, yeah, but how do you know it was the same Caiaphas? I mean, maybe it was some Caiaphas that lived 500 years before. Well, inside of these ossuaries, they found coins because people were often buried with coins and these coins, because of the coins, they've been able to date the ossuaries to between 36 and 70 AD. Those ossuaries are dated.

Now, sounds like, you know, that could be our guy, huh? That he might have died right in that period between 36 and 70 AD. And so here we've got now Caiaphas' bones, huh? This is what biblical archaeology review says. It says, and I quote, very few of the hundreds of people who walk through the pages of the Bible have their names attested in archaeological finds. Now to that very small list, we can add the name of the high priest who presided at Jesus's trial, end of quote. Folks, I tell you all the time, the more we dig out the ground, the more the Bible proves to be absolutely correct.

Unbelievably so. If we had enough time before Jesus came back and we could dig enough up, we'd probably just be able to prove just about everything in there. But here we've got Caiaphas' bones, the guy that Jesus is standing in front of. Pretty incredible.

All right, let's go on and see what happens. Well, the chief priests and the whole Sanhedrin, verse 59, were looking for false evidence against Jesus so they could put him to death. But they didn't find any, even though they had many false witnesses come forward. Finally, two came forward and said, Jesus, this fellow was the one who said, I'm able to destroy the temple of God and rebuild it in three days. Now that is not exactly what he said. He said in John chapter two at the wedding where he turned water into wine, destroy this temple and in three days I'll rebuild it, I'll build it back up. And the Bible says he was not talking about the temple in Jerusalem, the building, he was talking about his physical body and his resurrection.

But these people came in and made this accusation. He said he was going to tear the temple down. Well, the high priest said to him, hey, aren't you going to answer this?

What testimony are you going to give to these men that to the charge that they're bringing against you? But Jesus remained silent. The high priest is really frustrated now. I mean, he said just so look what he does.

So he says to him, verse 63, I charge you under oath by the living God. Tell us straight up right now, yes or no, if you are the Messiah, if you are the Christ, if you are the son of God. I want to know straight up right now. Just tell us.

Yes or no? We have any lawyers here? If you're a lawyer, raise your hand. That's OK. This is a safe place. Not going to throw anything at you. You know, we're not doing anything to you. OK. Isn't it true in American jurisprudence that you cannot make a person testify against themselves if what they're going to testify is incriminating?

Isn't that true? We call it taking the what? The fifth. Sure, you all saw the client. You saw the little kid take the fifth.

Right. OK. What does it say in there? I refuse to testify on the grounds. My incriminating. Don't you all know this?

You may need this someday. You ought to know this one. OK. Well, now, see, you can't make somebody do that in American jurisprudence. But Israel was different. The high priest had the right in Israel by law to involuntarily place anybody he wanted under oath. If he wanted you under oath, he could put you under oath whether you wanted to be or not. And demand that you answer him truthfully on any subject, even if it incriminated you. And this is what he does to Jesus. He says, I put you under oath by the living God. I want an answer and I want a true answer to this question. And if you don't give me a true answer, you are breaking the law and it is sin.

Are you the son of God or aren't you? Now, this guy's not stupid. In fact, he's pretty politically savvy because he knows he wins either way. If Jesus says no, well, then he goes out and announces to the crowd, Jesus, you know, testified he was not the Messiah and the whole thing's over. And if Jesus says yes, it gives him the proof that he's looking for to take it to the next level, to pile it and have Jesus condemned to death.

So he feels he's got him. But here he says, Jesus, here it is. You must be truthful, straight up, yes or no. Are you the Christ? Look what Jesus said. Verse 64. Yes.

That's pretty straight up. Yes. Don't you ever let some highfalutin college professor tell you that Jesus himself never claimed to be God? And that it was his followers who made this up and claimed it for him?

Not true. I mean, how much clearer could it be than right here? Are you the Messiah, the Son of God, God in the flesh? Yes. Yes, Jesus said.

It is as you say. Verse 65. Then the high priest tore his clothes as an outward act of agony and shock. And said he has spoken blasphemy. Why do we need any more witnesses? Look, you've heard the blasphemy. He claimed to be God.

What do you men think? And they all answered and said, he's worthy of death. He's worthy of death. So they spit in his face and they struck him with their fist. Luke tells us they blindfolded him first and they struck him with their fist and slapped him and said, all right, now you're the Messiah prophesied to us. Who hit you? You're blindfolded.

Which one of us hit you if you're so smart? Folks, it's one thing to claim to be God. That's what Jesus claimed. But to authenticate that claim is something very different, huh?

I mean, I can walk around and claim to be God if I want, but to authenticate it is different. What did Jesus Christ do to authenticate his claim that he was God? I'd like to give you the fastest course in proving the deity of Christ on record. I'm going to do it in about five minutes. We're going to talk about what Jesus did to authenticate his claim that he was God wrapped in human flesh. And I've got six quick things to give you.

Ready? Here are the ways that he authenticated it. Here is the way he demonstrated that he had powers and privileges and prerogatives that only God has got. Number one, Jesus demonstrated that he had a power over disease and sickness, first of all, that only God could have. Remember when he healed in John chapter nine, the man who was born blind? What did the man say after Jesus healed him? He said, hey, in the whole history of the world, there's not a record of anybody healing a person that was born blind.

You must be God. And Jesus went around with a power over disease and sickness and infirmity that no doctor has ever had or ever will have. Even with all of our modern medicine, we don't have anything that even approaches the power over disease that Jesus had. Why did he have it? Because he's God. Number two, Jesus had a power over the forces of nature that only God could have.

In Matthew chapter 21, remember, he stood there and he cursed a fig tree and the fig tree withered up and died. That's pretty impressive. You know, I just had Maryfield Garden Center come out and redo my front yard. You don't even want to know what it costs. Don't ask.

Really, too depressing. You say, well, why did you do that then? We didn't think you spent money very freely. Well, I don't. But the reason I did it is because I didn't have a front yard, really.

I had a dandelion farm. You understand what I'm saying? And I'd go out there every year and I would say I'm going to win this year and I would lay stuff down and I'd squirt stuff on them and I'd spray stuff on them from the hose. Those things are unbelievable. I mean, they are unbelievable. They have a life of their own. And I'd pull them, you know, yank them up and whatever. And I just could not possibly get rid of them.

So I just said, forget it. Come on and plow the whole thing under and we're going to start over. Now wouldn't it be great if you could walk out in the spring and walk around to all those dandelions and all those weeds and go die, die, curse you, die. And they all just shrivel up and die?

Wouldn't that be fabulous? Try it sometime. Just don't let your neighbors see you out there doing it. But go in the backyard sometime and just try walking around going die, die, curse you, you, die and see what happens. I wouldn't expect many of them to shrivel up, would you?

Why? Because you're not God. But when Jesus cursed a tree and said, shrivel up and die, it did it. Jesus walked on water. That's pretty impressive. Jesus was out on the middle of the Sea of Galilee in a huge hurricane where he stood up and said, hush up.

And there was total calm. That's impressive. In fact, it was so impressive that the disciples said, who were in the boat at the time, scared out of their wits, the disciples said, who is this person? Who is this person that even the winds and the waves obey him? Well, this person was God. That's who he was. Number three, Jesus demonstrated a power over demonic forces that only God could have. In fact, even the Jewish leaders acknowledged this. They came to him and said, how do you do it?

Because if we could do it, we could become millionaires. How do you do this thing? And you know what he said to him? Luke chapter 11? He said, hey, when a strong man is guarding his house, his possessions are safe unless a stronger person comes along and the stronger person overpowers him and takes all his things away. You know Jesus' answer? His answer is the reason I have power over demons is because I'm stronger than they are.

That's my answer. Who's stronger than demons, folks? The only one I know is God. Number four, Jesus had a power over the events of time and space that only God could have. He knew in advance all the details of the cross. He told him to his disciples. He knew in advance which one of his disciples was going to betray him. You say, well, you know, he had a one out of 12 chance.

No, no, no. He wasn't guessing. He knew. Remember the woman at the well in John chapter 4?

She went back into town and she said, hey, you guys got to come see this. This is a guy I've never seen before and he told me everything I've ever done. How could he know that? In John chapter 1, Philip went to get his buddy Nathaniel and bring him to Jesus. And Nathaniel was miles away and he was sitting under a fig tree when Philip showed up to call him. And when he arrives to Jesus, Jesus says to him, oh, Nathaniel, an Israelite in whom there's no inauthenticity. Nathaniel said to him, how do you know me, boss?

We never met. And Jesus said to him, you know, Nathaniel, I saw you when you were sitting under the fig tree out there when Philip called you miles away. And you know, the immediate response of Nathaniel is to say, you are the son of God.

You are the king of Israel. How else can anybody see me miles away and know what kind of tree I was sitting under? Jesus had an incredible command of the events of time and space. You say, Lon, how did he know this? Did he call Dionne Warrick's 1-900 number?

No. He was God. He was God. Number five, Jesus had a power over the passions of the human flesh and of our human nature that no human being has. In John chapter 8, he says to his enemies, when they're arguing about whether he's Messiah, he says to his enemies now, not his friends, which one of you, Jesus says, John chapter 8, verse 46, can convict me or can show, can prove me guilty of any sin.

Wow. Which one of you can bring up even one thing I've ever done that in any way was wrong or broke the law or was sin? And if you read the passage, nobody could bring one up. Try saying that to your wife sometime. See if she can bring anything up.

She'll bring it up without you even asking. Try saying that to your roommate. Try saying that to your children. Which one of us could make a comment like that to our friends even, much less to our enemies and have them have nothing to say? Gosh, all you have to do is drive with me for about 15 minutes and you got half a page, you know, of stuff. But Jesus said that to his enemies.

They couldn't produce anything. Who could have power over their own passion like that except God? And last of all, crowning proof of all is the resurrection. Romans chapter 1, verse 4 says that Jesus was demonstrated to be the son of God. Here's how he was authenticated to be the son of God by the resurrection from the dead. Folks, the reason that Jesus rose from the dead was not to convince himself he was God, but to convince us. He knew he was God. And it's interesting that no other religion, no other philosophical system in human history claims an empty tomb for its follower.

Not Buddha or Confucius, Mohammed, no rabbi, not Karl Marx, not George Bernard Shaw, no humanist that I know of. And the reason is because none of them claim to be Almighty God in the flesh. But that's what Jesus claimed. And he rose from the dead to prove that his claim was entirely correct to convince us, to confirm to us that he alone is the Messiah, the Son of God, God wrapped in human flesh and the true messenger from God to man.

Now that's the fastest course you're ever going to get in the deity of Christ. But it's all true. And I think the evidence is overwhelming. And so it leads us to the really important question. And what's that question? So what?

What difference does this make? Jesus Christ is God. OK, Lon, great theological truth, really great. You know, it's great to have good theology, but big whoop. Doesn't make one bit of difference to my everyday life at all. Oh, wait, wait, wait.

Yes, it does. You see, if Jesus Christ is really God wrapped in human flesh the way he says he is, it means a huge amount for your everyday life and my everyday life. Here are just a few. I'm not going to develop them. I don't have time. It means, first of all, that Jesus Christ is Lord of the universe and everything in it. Not you, not me. This doesn't belong to us. It belongs to him. It means, second of all, that he deserves all the worship, all the praise, all the allegiance, all the loyalty that you and I can muster. It belongs to him. It means third of all that he, Jesus Christ, is the center of the universe.

Not you, not me. He is the center of the universe. And what's more, he should be the center of our universe. Number four, it means that his death on the cross is different from any other death in the history of the world because he's not like anybody who's ever lived in the history of the world.

It means more than the average death. Number five, it means that the Bible that he gave us is the authentic manufacturer's handbook and it means that the way to have a healthy, functional, blessed life is to live a life according to the principles of this book, that these are not just nice suggestions, the way the machine works right. And since he made the machine, he's the one who can tell us how it works right.

And it means, number six, that if Jesus Christ is really God, everything he said about eternity is exactly and absolutely accurate. Everything he said. I got an article here from the Post about Timothy Leary. Anybody know who Timothy Leary is?

Okay, a few of you guys. Timothy Leary was a professor at Harvard and he accidentally went on a trip to Mexico and took some LSD and he got so turned on by this thing that he became an LSD advocate back in the 60s. In fact, he invented the phrase, and you know it, turn on, tune in, and drop out. Well, now Harvard fired the guy because, I mean, you know, Harvard can't have a guy on their staff going around talking people into doing LSD, I guess.

I think they got people on the staff doing stupider things up there myself. But anyway, he's got cancer now. And this article was about his response to cancer. He said, when I found out I had cancer, that it had metastasized, and that I was terminally ill, I was thrilled.

This guy's dropped one too many acid pill, you think? He said, I was thrilled. He said, I've been waiting for this for years. Okay, well, and the reason he says, if you read the article, is he says, I want to show people how to die with dignity because he says at the end of the article, when you think about it, there's nothing to lose, there's really nothing out there to fear at all, and I'm going to show people how to fade away into nothingness with dignity. Well, if Jesus Christ is God, and if everything he said about eternity is accurate, Timothy Leary's got a big surprise in store for him, and it's not going to be a happy surprise, because that's not at all what Jesus said about eternity, that you just fade out into nothingness with dignity. Jesus said, he who believes in me has everlasting life, and he who does not believe in me will not see everlasting life, but the wrath, the anger, the judgment of God abides on that person. Jesus said, unless you're born again by me, you will not see the kingdom of heaven. Jesus said, unless you believe, John chapter 8, that I am the Son of God, you will die in your sins.

Jesus said, I am the way, the truth, and the life. Nobody gets into heaven unless they get in there by way of me. Now, that's what Jesus said about eternity, and he said, if you go out of this life and you don't have eternal life, you go to a very nasty place.

You don't just fade into nothing, you go to a very nasty place. If Jesus is God and he's telling the truth about eternity, then that's what eternity is really like, and Timothy Leary is wrong and horribly misguided, and there's nothing to be excited about if you don't know Christ about going out into eternity. Folks, if you're here and you've never trusted Christ in a real and personal way, if you've never trusted what he did on the cross for you as your only payment for sin, if maybe you've let the world convince you that there are lots of ways to get to heaven and maybe you just fade into nothing and there's nothing really out there to fear, well, in order to really believe that, you're going to have to say, Jesus Christ lied about eternity and he's not God because that's not at all what he said. He said there's a lot out there to fear if you don't have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ.

If you're not trusting the death of Christ on the cross to pay for your sin, there's a lot out there to be afraid of. And if you're here and you've never done that, boy, I sure hope you'll think back. You can't just say, well, if the world says this and Jesus says it, was Jesus God or wasn't he? If he's God, he's telling you the truth about eternity and everybody else is wrong. They haven't been there, they haven't seen it.

He has. Last of all, let me say that if Jesus Christ is really God, it means that once you become a Christian, you get the universe's most powerful advocate on your side. You get the universe's most powerful helper on your side to assist you and me with our problems, our struggles, our heartaches. It means that we have a living, risen savior who cares about us and who loves us and that's great, but beyond that, who's powerful enough that he can intervene into the affairs of the world and he can take care of us. It's one thing to have somebody that cares about you, that's nice, but if they can't do anything to help you, that's only part of what we need.

We need somebody who not only cares about us, but somebody who's powerful enough that they can actually help us in our trouble. If he's really God, then he can do it. Hebrews chapter 4 says, we do not have a savior who can't be touched by our weaknesses, who doesn't understand what we're going through. We have a savior who was tempted in every way like we are, yet without sin, so he can be compassionate. Therefore, let us come boldly to his throne of grace, that we might receive help when we're in need and grace for our trouble.

We have a savior we can take our problems to, take our struggles to, take the issues of life to and be absolutely sure that not only does he care and not only is he compassionate and not only will he connect with us, but even better, he's powerful enough to intervene and make a difference. And he can do it in some amazing ways, ways you can never imagine. You know, last year, I coached Little League. Okay, you all know that. Everybody knows that, raise your hand. All right, I'll keep telling you, everybody knows that. Okay, and my team was undefeated. How many people know that?

All right, good for you. I think coaching had something to do with it, but we also had some good players too. And it was a great year. Well, you know, the next level up is the highest level of Little League and that's called majors. I thought, well, you know, it'd be cool to go up and coach majors. And so, at the end of the summer last year, I wrote a little letter and said I'd be interested in getting a majors team.

I don't know what the protocol is, but here's my letter. You know, you say, well, you know, how did it look? Well, it didn't look good because I found out I'd made some enemies along the way. Now, I didn't try to make any enemies, but I did.

My wife feels that one of my spiritual gifts is making enemies. But I don't try to do it. It just happens wherever I go. I don't know why it happens.

It just happens. So, I'd made some enemies. Now, folks, this is a very political deal. Capitol Hill is a piece of cake compared to Little League politics.

It's unbelievable. And so, I'd made some very formidable enemies, as it turned out. One of the enemies I made was this lady who last year was one of the officials in this political system. And I knew if she had anything to say about it, I was not going to get a team. Well, lo and behold, in September, guess what happens?

She gets elected president of the league. That was it. I started putting my cleats away. I knew it was over. This is not going to happen. I told Brenda, this is not happening. I told my son Jonathan, this is not happening.

I would say my odds of getting a team are between zero and minus 50%. This is not going to happen. And my son Jonathan, who's 10, said to me, Dad, God can do anything. And I said, well, you're right, Jonathan. You're absolutely right.

Because, see, my job is to encourage his faith. So, I'm like, Jonathan, you're absolutely right. You're right. Keep praying about it. But inside, I said, you and I both know I'm not getting a team. So, it was okay. It was okay. I grieved it. I grieved it. I dealt with it. I worked it through. Sure enough, I didn't get a team.

The teams were announced. My name wasn't on the list. I dealt with it. And I knew I was going to be okay. Needed a little bit of therapy, but it wasn't that expensive. And I'm okay.

It was okay. And Jonathan kept saying, you know, God can still do this. And I'm like, Jonathan, the team's already, I mean, what, you know, but you're right, son. You know, God bless you.

Keep praying about it. So, I come into town. I was out of town.

This was about three weeks ago. And I come into town on a Saturday night. And Jonathan said, you know, the lady, the president of the league, called you. Wants you to call her back. Maybe you got a team. I said, Jonathan, don't get your hopes up, pal. I don't want to disappoint you.

I did not get a team. It's probably some minor little thing she wants to talk about. So, I call her up on the phone. And I go, hi, how are you? Fine, how are you? You okay? Yeah, I'm okay. How did that, you know. So, anyway, then she says, the reason I'm calling you is because I've had a little situation come up.

That I'm wondering if you might help me with. Okay, well, what is it? She said, well, you know, my husband this year was going to coach a team. She's the president.

He got a team. That's good politics. Makes sense to me. You know, that's the way the deal works. So, I said, yes, I knew that. And she said, you know, my son was on the team.

I said, yeah, I know that too. She said, well, my son came to me this past week and said he don't want to play baseball anymore. I said, oh, isn't that interesting? She said he wants to play lacrosse. I said, well, what'd you do? She said, well, we tried to talk him into playing baseball and everything, but he just adamant he wants to go play lacrosse.

So, he's quit the team and he's going to play lacrosse this spring. I said, well, okay. She said, well, my husband doesn't want to coach a team that my son's not on. I said, well, you know, that's logical. You know, I can appreciate that.

She said, so, I'd like to know, are you still interested in having a team? I said, well, I don't know. You know, it's really late timing here. This was my moment. I'm going to enjoy this. I said, well, I don't know.

You know, the timing, it's really late. And, you know, I've already kind of made some other emotional plans here, you know. And she goes, no, I really could use your help on this.

You know, I really would appreciate it if you might consider taking this team. Man, I'm having, this is fun. I'm having a blast. So, I said to her, I said, well, you know, I didn't think you liked me. I said, I didn't think we got along. I'm very surprised that you would call and offer me a team because I didn't think that you really thought very much of me. Oh, I'm having fun with this. This is good. She said, well, you and I have had our differences.

That's an understatement. She said, but I believe we've worked them through and that we're going to do just fine together. Which being interpreted means I'm desperate.

You understand that? So, I said, well, I tell you what, I said, I'd like to talk to my wife and I'd like to think about it. She said, we know I'm really in a hurry here. And I said, well, I know you are, but I'd really like a couple of days just to talk to my wife and think.

Now, I knew I was taking that team. I didn't need to talk to anybody or think about it, but I was enjoying this. And I said, I'll call you back in a couple of days. Is that OK? Well, yeah, I guess it'll have to be. And so, folks, all I can say is this year you can call me coach.

All right. Now, hey, listen, does God have a sense of humor or what of all the teams that she has to give me? And it hurt to give me a team. I guarantee you it hurt this woman to give me a team.

She had to give me her husband's team. Does God have a sense of humor? Is this great or what?

And when I got off the phone, Jonathan said, I told you. Well, nothing like being rebuked by a 10 year old. You say, but Lon, we don't really care about your Little League team. What is the point? We could care less. Well, the point is this. The point is that God cares about things in our lives that even seem inconsequential to the rest of the world. A Little League team compared to the problems of this world, to the problems of people's lives is a tiny, minor little item.

But you know what? God loves us so much, folks, that God cares even about the little stuff. If it's important to you, it's important to him. He cares about you and everything that's important to you. He cares about. And the neatest part is not only does he care about it, but he's powerful enough.

He can intervene whenever he's ready and he can make it happen. I'm telling you, if somebody would ask me, I would have bet every cent I had in the world and taken 10 to one odds. I would never have seen a team and I'd be a broke man today. It could not happen. Humanly speaking, it could not happen. But it did.

It did. And there are things in your life, I'm telling you, that you're looking at as problems and obstacles and heartaches and pain, that you're saying it just can't happen. Whoa, hold on a second. If you have a dead savior, I'd say you're right, but you don't have a dead savior. You've got a living savior. And if he really is who he said he is, God wrapped in human flesh, there is nothing that he can do, folks, if you're willing to give him the problem. The problem is when we give our problems to Christ, we usually give it to him with our agenda attached. And see, I can tell you there's two things about giving Christ our problems that I can bet you. Number one, he'll solve them, but he'll never solve them according to your agenda. I promise you that. And number two, he'll never solve them according to your timetable.

See, your timetable and his timetable are always different and his is always slower than yours is. Promise. But if you give him your problems and your heartaches and your pain and your obstacles without your agenda attached, without your timetable attached, and just give him the freedom to attach his agenda and his timetable to your problem, and then take his power and intervene, he'll do for you stuff you would not believe if you'll just give him a chance. And that is because he's who he said he is.

He's who he said he is. I want us to bow our heads for just a moment. Can we do that? If you're here this morning and you've got some really tough problems, much bigger than Little League, but even if you've got some little problem that's just really driving you nuts, whatever it might be, and you know Christ is your personal savior, I'd like to give you 30 seconds this morning to take that problem, to pull your agenda off of it, to pull your timetable off of it, and then to hand it to God. Say, because you are who you said, I'm going to trust you to attach your agenda, God, your timetable, God, to my problem, and to intervene when you're ready, and great will be the intervention thereof. I'm going to trust you.

Let's do that. Dear Heavenly Father, thank you that you are who you said. Thank you that you're not a dead God in a bone box somewhere, but that you are the living, risen savior of the universe. Thank you that your power is not limited. You have power over disease. You have power over demons. You have power over the forces of this world.

You have power over even the forces of life and death themselves. Thank you that when we trust you as our personal savior, you become our caring, connected advocate. We love you for that, Lord, and I pray today as people have given you all kinds of problems, that you would attach your agenda and your timetable to those problems, and that you would do what you know is best in terms of intervening in each one of these situations. Father, help us keep our hands off of it.

Help us not to try to manipulate you or control you, but to give you freedom to do what you know is best in the time that you know is best with our lives, because we can trust you. Help us to never underestimate your power to intervene, God, because you are the living God, and nothing is too hard for you. Replace those problems we gave you, Father, with the peace of God. Help us walk out of here with that, not the heaviness of our problems. We pray these things in Jesus' name. Amen. Amen.
Whisper: medium.en / 2024-01-03 09:43:39 / 2024-01-03 10:00:11 / 17

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