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One Small Step

Summit Life / J.D. Greear
The Truth Network Radio
March 1, 2021 9:00 am

One Small Step

Summit Life / J.D. Greear

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March 1, 2021 9:00 am

When most of us pray, we typically spend the bulk of our time telling God about our needs and desires. There’s nothing wrong with that, in and of itself, but what does it say about our hearts? Do we really want God, or just his blessings?

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JD Greer looking for God is looking for a cure for leprosy. But God used his search for a cure to lead into something even greater is my question for you. What is God in your pain had something Jan better than the cure for your ailment and what is it was something so valuable that after you got it you forget even mentioned the healing that you got for your ailment right. I'm your host Molly minutes and I'm so glad to be back with you know when most of us pray we typically spend about our time telling God about your needs and desires. Interestingly, there's nothing wrong with that. God tells us to ask the question we should be considering is what might that say about our hearts today. Pastor JD asks us to take a look inside and consider whether we really want God or just his blessings wherein a two-part teaching series called something better something greater if you missed any of the previous messages you can find them all.

JD Greer.com don't forget this is the last week to get the companion study guide.

So make sure that you check that out value on the website for now let's dive into today's study, one small better something greater.

I will tell you stories probably my favorite story in the Old Testament.

I'm serious, I will destroy more than David and Goliath lines. The more the Jonah and the big fish fry second Kings chapter 5 verse one Naaman commander of the Army of the king of Syria. Some translations by the wayside. Aramaeans same thing was a race and mighty man with his master. By the way, the word great is that work a goal in Hebrew just means larger-than-life mighty is a mighty man in high favor because by him. The Lord had given victory to Syria victory over whom by the way, important victory around Israel. It was a mighty man of valor, but he was a leper. Not a huge but leprosy was the most feared disease in the world began. In those days during today's novel answers as he began a small patch of white skillful powdery that would break out into a rash slowly spread over the whole body until it dead and the nerve endings are bodily extremities begin to fall off like your fingers and your toes would result in your facial features losing their shape. You become grotesque to look at his high labeling it was highly contagious.

There was no cure for it all. So you were put outside it was just the worse it was a death sentence to be outside rehabs for the next 10 or 20 years until you die in isolation verse two now the Syrians and whether rage and carried off a little girl from the land of Israel, and she worked in the service of Naaman's wife. She said her mistress with my Lord were with the prophet who was in Samaria. He he would cure him of his leprosy. So Naaman went in and told his Lord means the king thus and so spoke the girl from the land of Israel, the king of Syria said go now and I will send a letter to the king of Israel will write you a cover letter to Naaman when taking with him 10 talents of silver 6000 shekels of gold and 10 changes of clothing scholars by the way, say this was an enormous amount of money hundred and 50 pounds of gold 750 pounds of silver might be.

The clothing is old but I like you. All this of Southpoint bought some stuff. Nordstrom's scholars say that disclosing theirs is very expensive, especially this kind of clothing, particularly most people would never own a Santa Claus like this got you where you got invited to the Oscars you start this kind of stuff Amanda got going in after this right here is what is fiber six when they brought the letter to the king of Israel, which read when this letter reaches you know that I sent you, Naaman, my servant, that you made cure him of his leprosy on the king of Israel read the letter, he tore his clothes and said not God, to make alive. But this man seems word to meet cure a man of his leprosy only consider and see how he is seeking a quarrel with me.

I know it is up to try to pick a fight with me. He's given me an assignment.

I could never fulfill use this as an excuse for why should a man of God her the visual tour is closely sent to the king you ICC did live near the policy was way out of the backwoods, he said to the king saying why you torn your close let them come now to me that he may know that there is a prophet in Israel. Elisha get this perceived by the spirits that there was a greater purpose in Naaman's leprosy and a greater purpose was that Naaman come to know God.

So Naaman came with his horses and his chariots will notice the plural. This would not of been a subtle thing and this would not of been impressive to the children of Israel did not help looking at other one look at that cavalcade of Escalade must be important. Syrians that have rated their people to like you, but I'd like you but I just went to be snatching your people by so sorry baby, that's what they did in the and then he went home and stood at the door of Elisha's house first analyzer set up want this messenger to him, saying, go wash majority seven times in your flesh will be restored.

You shall be duly Elisha got to see him myself came in that big, which means they are probable to see them sitting on the couch not to Vladimir Putin showing up at my house in my neighborhood is dual cavalcade of tanks and limos and major something that he shows up in us and I want my interns says I'm sorry Mr. burden Dr. Greer is a busy afternoon and he is not able see you today.

Looking to see me with my my my feet up on the couch watching TV as I can but he says if you jump in this River seven times whatever you need to be taking care of okay go side by interns on the second house will Naaman as you can imagine is angry and he went away. Verse 11. Behold, I thought he would surely come out to be a standout call on the name of the Lord his God and waved his hand over the place and cure the lever verse 12 are not Obama, and far far the rivers of Damascus are not better than all the waters of Israel, could I washing enemy clean background it when I made this journey. Oh and by the way the Jordan River. Your signature never seen a picture of it in their. I have been there. You want to call River is not impressive is money and he's like why would I go to Craig. I can always mighty rivers. There are 15 miles password was its way out of the way so he turned went away in a rage and they think they would like the meatloaf of the Old Testament.

I would do anything for healing, but I won't do that I will not do that and you children of the 80s.

I just got that reference blessings on you.

Okay the rest of you look it up rage. By the way, rage is the Hebrew word for heat heat, which means his blood is boiling's like I normally do, go back and look about and I will destroy this area is blood is boiling. He's hot.

Verse 13 when his servants third is again his servants came near and said to him, my father if it was a great war, the prophet spoken you when you have done it didn't just say he always said he was washing the claim if he told you to go get the berries also plan on the other side of Mount Everest told you to swim upstream on these mighty rivers and put the toenails off Dragon to make some broth with you done that told you was watching me clean and not worth the chance were the least taken a risk losing all the loses your pride. So we went verse 14 he dipped himself seven times in the Jordan, according to the word of the man of God, and on that seven time. His flesh was restored like the flesh of baby is clean and can you imagine one time, 23 times. No change 456 times. Nothing goes in that seven time probably angrier than he was. Even before he went in the water he comes up at seven time and suddenly that spot is gone and the skin of a baby. Verse 15 then he returned to the man of God. The always company came and stood before him first time face-to-face Elisha stop a minute would you say is going to save your life right.

He has healed you from leprosy.

What would you say it's probably a come out of the like for you for saving my life and to restore frequent that's what I say. Was he sick, behold, I know that there is no God in all the earth, but in Israel, not the first mention of leprosy, not the first mention of healing.

Elisha said God's purpose and this was not just a pure love for God's purpose was to introduce the center to God. Naaman went looking for God is looking for a cure for leprosy.

But God used his search for a cure to lead him to something even greater than the cure for leprosy. What is God, here's my question for you. What is God in your pain had something beyond better than the cure for your ailment and what if it was something so valuable that after you got it you forget even mentioned the healing that you got for your ailment element to call the what-ifs forever minute because here's what I've learned I learned that all of us, regardless of how well our lives seem like there together on the outside have an area or to that we would just rather keep covered and on the outside everything she got it all together your successful halftime you believe it to then in a moment of sobriety or maybe it's when you're alone or maybe it's at night or something triggers it is area broken this will get exposed the secret habit that you can't break how many executives do I know you have everything together but have a habit that keeps him on the Internet to 1 AM, but they're terrified about you being exposed one day because they know what it will do their family. It's a problem you can't resolve something in your past that you can't shake that every once in a while will rear its ugly head.

Or maybe it's just a deep unsettled unhappiness invisible to everyone else but that is rotting you on the inside.

Or maybe it's a secret paralyzing fear that when it comes out it just it just destroys you to be a fear of your own mortality could be a fear of your wife leaving you could be a fierce of it happening to your children. Or maybe you come up against an obstacle that you feel powerless to overcome a health setback.

The loss of a loved one you lost your job last time this year or last year this time utilizing a lot different than it does right now is there something that's come up spots that you would love for God to take away what is God's purpose and that problem is to get you to ask a bigger question that was a question so big that when you got it answered it would make the problem that you're doing with seem so trifling it's almost forget to mention it.

What if what you were looking for was 10,000 times greater than what you were looking for.

What if God really was his own greatest reward. What he was the pearl of great price. What he was the treasure hidden in a field it up. You found him going to let everything else in your life glow including healing for leprosy. After you have found the treasure and him much of it you got even mentioned. When he finally stood in front of him one of those something so valuable that whatever you do finally stand before God. The first thing that comes out of your mouth is not what he did about that problem. What he did in reconciling you himself, what if that happens, try to give you a full explanation of why people suffer is not my purpose is to simply get you to assess question if you never asked what if God had a greater purpose in your pain point of the story is not that every lover who has of the Jordan River is divine healing for leprosy before the stories show you how sinners find God, or better yet, how got five centers waxwing at city and unpack that let me finish the story because this is way too good. What about to share with you has very little to do with the plot of what I'm explaining is the point, but I just can't. Just to get it you have to finish it so except now present from your servant says name is Elisha, but he Elisha said as the Lord lives, before whom I stand, I will receive nine Naaman urged him to take it, but he refused a fabulously wealthy guy was to give a gift to a pastor, but he refuses.

I don't know of any other situation in the world war that has ever happened is certainly never happened here okay see Elisha knows that to receive this gift might confuse everybody watching. Remember, Naaman had started this process thinking that he could purchase this miracle by his riches in the ended up giving this if he ended up giving this gift, even in gratefulness. It might lead people to assume that he had been able to purchase it and the one thing but one thing that has to be understood about the gospel is that it is a free gift of grace for 17 will Naaman said if not, please. At the beginning your servant to mule loads of earth of dirt for from now on, your servant will not offer burnt offering or sacrifice to any God of the Lord is quite a job in it was gonna scholar say what you do is planning to do is spread out that door whenever he offers a sacrifice is the sacrifice of the God to be on Syria landing feels like to be more honoring God him sacrifice it to God in Israel.

So to get live in Israel they bought Israel there is never in the Bible that is never instruction given is made that up. He just made that up.

But it gets better. Verse 18 in this matter. May the Lord pardon your servant my watch this when my master goes into the house of Ramon's remote false God when I my master.

The king goes in the house of a false god to worship their pennies leaning on my arm when I bow myself in the house of Ramon. May the Lord pardon your servant in this matter. And Elisha says go in peace.

What else were you at first I struggle with my will Elisha be like oh, unless you take up the cross and you say calling unless you put your hand flat never look back and remember be for God.

That's what I said I'm right and what's Elisha said, what is the point of that point.

I believe Naaman's obedience is imperfect, but it's a start. And God receives it and ask a lot of Christians forget this and talk like you come to Jesus and no returning overnight just mature, spirit filled radical Christian right your voice of your wife suddenly transforms her kids your are also now in all your gangsta rap music on your iPod transforms and are instrumental overnight. It just happens is not true.

You start out as a baby you crawl, you drool running the stuff you break things and that's okay because you come in the right direction.

God you see is a very compassionate father. If you're serious about repentance. He's serious about receiving unit matter how screwed up your life actually is and how long it takes us to unscramble that you become somebody Walter Jesus.

I'm not excusing compromise and neither is Elisha. These are simply recognizing that there is a path of maturity that you have the wall down a flight. A lot of Christians forget that a lot of you come here and this is probably the worst of fact. You come here for like you start acting like you're a mature Christian like everybody's judging you because people do that but they should be doing it because we all understand that if we exposed you all the things in our licensee we are that mature radical leader right so what you gotta do is you gotta get on the right direction. You gotta let God work this out and you by living your offer you the bigger point.

The story I told you about Naaman storage. Mattel tell how each of us will meet God. Here's what I wanted to use rest of my time to show you two things, so you first of all why Naaman came to God and the second lamina show you how Naaman came to God to why he came to God and how he came to God.

So number one whining again to God, let's think about Naaman for a minute.

Naaman was the ultimate insider was not right. You couldn't get more into the inside circle the Naaman once he had everything he was. He was a very successful general. He was a hero.

He was a celebrity is highly regarded. That's what it means. Every goes, people buy dinner pay for his grace right. He's the Prime Minister, when it says he's on the king's arm teams friend. That's what it means he's the ultimate insider, but he is about to become the ultimate outsider leprosy put you on the outside faster than anything else, because not only would it destroy your strength and disfigure you the moment. People knew that you had a big sewing outside the bottle so contagious. It will be around in Israel you have to shout unclean when somebody got within 30 feet of you. Leprosy was a sentence of banishment and death. Naaman had found a spot of death.

We don't know when. Where was he took off his armor one day and there was that little patch but Naaman would never have found God if it had not been for that spot is spot of death became his portal of eternal life. My question for you. Do you have a spot. Do you have something that feels to you like a sentence of death. You need that you just can't overcome. For the first time.

Your marriage is dissolving and you'll know what to do with it maybe is something one on your children.

Maybe you just had children, you suddenly felt overwhelmed about the responsibility that it's a habit you can't break.

How do I get rid of the spot is nothing I try can overcome it. What if God had a greater purpose for that spot and it was to show you see something deeper. That was really broken in your life and that you would've never thought about it until that spot appeared.

Maybe your spot is that you really will be a part of that entering like Naaman was was little to be for Naaman was CS Lewis wrote an an essay years ago called the inner ring never read it it it's great company basically said there are three groups of people. What first. All he said everybody. Everybody has what they consider to be an inner ring in your career failure personality. It's different, but everybody's got the inner group will be hard at work. So if your high school guy when you're in your high school is almost always the athletic you know, kind of the jock had a guy that you will be a part of that group. You're very aware of recent studies outside as you mature changes in your older becomes like to be part of the guys make a lot of money into this every year and everywhere who can and who is out. Lewis said you got three groups you get people who were in who are worried about when they get kicked out. This is and you got people who are not really want to be in. And then you got people who have given up on the pursuit of trying to get in and out cynical and they just self righteously make fun of all the other people were trying to get it when I read that in college about that explained by Dr. high school experience right there because I cafeteria cities recruit European right in different ones that you got that you like for God to get the job Ruben the cool guys guys want to be a part of that group and then you got a group of people on the other side of cafeteria Canada you have the kind of whatever their dolls are deadheads.

Whatever the hell I got with a self righteously were given up on that but essentially it's all the same thing they feel like outsiders and we want to be insiders and Lewis said the reason that were like that is because instinctively we know were on the outside. And so what we want as we want to be on the inside of some rain that will tell us that were on the inside. He said, but we do what we fail to realize is that outside this goes by way deeper than that ring that were thinking about running outside of God's ring goes back to little mysterious scene in the garden of the were Adam and Eve. The first effect of their sin was up till just before was averts about about any sent they felt naked and Lewis said no matter who you are, how much you've accomplished if your naked selector on the outside right you follow your naked onto Hamlet. How much money you have a car you drive. If you're sleepwalking and you suddenly in the next few minutes come to our campus in your life but make it right.

It doesn't matter that you drove Alexis here this morning and that you make $500,000 a year you want to get on the outside that's what nakedness doesn't Lewis what he said was the ultimate spot you see is sin in the circle that we been excluded from his God's circle and so leprosy is for us a picture of Sam which is why thought about so much of the Bible. Sin deadens that grows in you and corrupts you more more over time you lose feeling your soul has a disease and its terminal you ever realize that maybe never have. Most people don't always little sponsor to sporting the fact that there's a real spot and that spot is terminal and it's growing because the wages of sin is death for all have sinned see them fall short of the glory of God.

There is none righteous, not even one thing all together become unprofitable.

We've turned away, going to our own way, the soul that sins, it shall die because it's been important in the man once died after that the judgment you carry around in you, the sentence of condemnation of death and one day you're gonna stand before God and all that's going to be exposed and all that leprosy is going to be out there the leprosy of the soul and you're gonna stand condemned God put you flat on your back with another thing to finally get you to consider where you stand with God and the condition of your soul. You will learn to call the good thing. That's why maintain the goddesses got put them on his back assured of a deeper problem and that was leprosy on his heart new your heart over time that thankfully God has the cure leads to eternal life. You're listening to Summit life with Pastor Arthur in theologian JD Greer. Visit us@jdgreer.com we live making all these resources available to you free of charge.

Helping you die deeper into the gospel throughout the we can only do so because of people like you give to support this ministry. When you donate to Summit life really getting to your fellow listeners people across the country and around the globe who are growing in their knowledge of God.

Your feet, getting let me encourage you to get on board today. When you donate a suggested level and $29 and were thinking by sending you this study guide that goes on with our current it's titled something better something greater study and Elijah and Elisha requested a copy when you get we invite you to become gospel partner partners join our team by getting regular automatic monthly gift ministry. How is the gospel through radio online resource. We left the family today.

I will visit us online@jdgreer.com Molly benefits in you doing today. Be sure to listen again tomorrow as we keep one more small like fully committed to Christ right here on Senate life. Janie


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