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Trust Me and Multiply

Summit Life / J.D. Greear
The Truth Network Radio
December 2, 2020 9:00 am

Trust Me and Multiply

Summit Life / J.D. Greear

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December 2, 2020 9:00 am

See how serious God is about teaching us to live by faith. Before God can do something through us, he’s got to do something in us. Discover the path you must walk for God to multiply your life.

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Jeannie Greer you want to become a great person of faith like Abraham. It's not to be a pleasant experience to lead you to the valleys so that he can show you that he can indeed provide for you. There is going to send you into the storm so that you can see his ability to walk on water above the storms he's going to surround you with conflict so he could demonstrate that he can indeed prepare a table for you in the presence of your enemies.

Everyone who participated in giving Tuesday yesterday was to have you join us in supporting the global mission of God in Germany say on the program were continuing our brand-new teaching series, multiply, so have you considered this question. How serious is God about teaching us to live by. I say pretty serious.

After all, it seems pretty obvious that before God can do something through S God to do something in us discover the path that we must so that God I our lives today are messages titled trust me and multiply gears castigating your Bible to Genesis chapter 12 Genesis chapter 12 we are looking at the life of one of the most important figures in human history with alcohol. Abraham to see how God multiplied his life or eternal significance. Maybe more importantly, were looking at the path that God led him down to accomplish that.

Because, listen, this is the path that you and I will have to walk also if we want our lives to multiply for eternal significance is not what you want.

Don't you want to go through life you get to be ended. Know that you did more than just to pay bills and occupy space and consume resources. I know that you do. I know that's what burns in your heart of hearts, and so the path that you want to get there today were to talk about a very important part of that path called trust.

Trust it would be great it would be great of Abraham's choice to follow God at the beginning of Genesis 12 resulted in an unbroken string of obedience a dazzling succession of faith victories, but that's simply not the case before Abram even gets out of Genesis 12. He's just about given away the whole form. Genesis 12 verse 10 God sends a famine to the region where Abram was state table has to detour down to Egypt because each of the only place that has food Verse 11 where Abram was about to enter Egypt. He says to Serra, his wife.

I know that you're a woman, beautiful appearance when the Egyptians see you there gonna say this is his wife.

Then they will kill me, but they will let you live. So say you are my sister that my life may be shared for your sake.

In other words, somebody bear the powerful to look at you and say she's hot. She 70 she's hot and I would want to be my wife and have me killed so they can have you as my wives want to say you're my sister. That way you could still be the wife. At least I will lose my life. What you call that what you call that is a lack of faith or is that your answer to why ought to be featured on the Jerry Springer show Abram. Do you not believe that the God who promised to make you a great nation. Don't you believe you can at least keep the Egyptians from stealing your wife and I'm telling you this scene is strangely comforting to me because my life has hardly been an unbroken string of successes since I became a Christian. It seems like each epic of my life has been marked by unwavering faith in high school I just could not be satisfied with God's opinion of me after I became a Christian I was still well I got to prove myself to everybody else, it just flat wore me out. In college I wasn't content with God's timing.

I wanted to be one of a girlfriend and I want to be married and I want to get out into the world. When I first became pastor here. I would contend with the ministry assignment that God had given to me. I want the church to be bigger. I wanted to have more impact. I would look at things that God was giving to others of my friends about why given out to me to go.

I look back at my life and I see how every single stage has been characterized by wavering belief.

Why look here at Abram's life and I can count at least five instances where he pretty dramatically drops the ball we got this first one here in Genesis 12 Lori Marino lies about his wife you have another one in Genesis 16 when he gets worried. Several years later because he's like three decades at a God still had given him a son, and so he follows Serra his wife's lead says sleep with my house servant Hagar and and then maybe you get pregnant you are well that's left number two does that Hagar gives birth to a son named Ishmael through Abraham and you would think a success. There is happy Abram's happy everybody's happy.

You really think that you really thought that was good for Abram's marriage, guys.

Put yourself in his position.

You and your wife can have kids and so one night in frustration. She says I want you to sleep with our maid and see if you get her pregnant so you do and she does you think your wife is gonna be happy about that. Anybody anybody that Don that would raise your hand and say I think the be good for our relationship. No, Sarah is intact, so she starts abusing Hagar just for doing what Sarah asked her to do and Abram spineless wonder that he is at this point says okay you girls work that out when you let Sarah abuse her drive around that slaps abate number three Genesis 17 God reappears Abram to renew his promise to give them a sign through Sarah and Abram laughs at God, the father of our faith stalls in God's face failure. Number four.

Finally, Genesis 20 Abram or Abraham runs into another king who scares him and he lives again again about Sarah being his wife says she's my sister so the king won't kill them that this was weird because it brings us back full circle to the beginning that I know somebody was reading through the life of Abraham.

Just as were doing a series of the end of their like to reread this like having dj vu work to be.

It's in there twice. It's the same situation that he repeats what it's almost as if the author is saying, Abraham is no better the end and it was at the beginning we still have the same struggles of faith when his old man of faith is when he was a less old man of faith. I don't know about you but I'm feeling a lot better about my life right about now aren't you. Here's what we learn from Abraham's journey here for things number one God grows our faith by testing it. God grows our faith by testing it right after Abram started to follow God. God calls the famine so that Abraham would have to go to Egypt to play three new Abraham will be scared for his life.

God was testing Abram and trying to grow his faith. You see, we don't just make a one-time decision to follow God and then move on. God has to grow and test our faith because faith is our most important spiritual muscle that you see actually works like a muscle. They say that you can only strengthen a muscle when you strain it when you when you when you were constrain a muscle. They say you produce thousands of tiny little errors in the muscle and then it grows back stronger. That's the science of exercise. That's how God grows. Our faith puts us in situations where he tears us so that he can grow us back stronger jaw.

I see this happen so regularly in people's lives. I would say it is the standard experience for every new Christian, without exception, you come to Jesus and pretty soon you're going to go to an experience for your to start asking questions like why how is God going to provide for me now.

I know people when they become Christians in the series would God lose their jobs you have and the like. Is this how you reward me is how you're taking care of me know he's testing your faith or you say am I gonna be able to make it through this difficult season of my marriage. I thought Angela be different. Things are going a lot smoother, but instead you're in the middle of this drop is God to be able to provide for me here or he will allow people to turn on you. Seems like quite often when I see a high score college student come to Jesus. A lot of their friends turn on one of the friends turn on and turn their backs and it's it's like God is behind that asking do you value these do you trust these more than you trust me, faith is the most important muscle in the Christian life and God is committed to strengthening it in you is your core muscle faith is not just how you began the Christian life. Faith is the whole thing. We say that faith that that that that if it is not a diving board often would you jump into the bowl. Faith is, where is the soil in which everything in the Christian life grows to God is committed throughout your whole life to testing your faith and stretching it and growing it. Which leads us to number two in testing our faith.often brings us to the very brink thing about this God could have given Abram a son immediately after he followed them in Genesis 12 it could've been like the very next you know Malta very next week. Amy Sarah gets pregnant, but he didn't do that. Bessie he waits get this 25 to 35 years and it was only 70 become a lot a life behind. And why would God wait that long. If God is determined to give them why wait for three decades that actually fulfill the promise well with her back to the illustration of the muscle workout specialist talk about something called muscle failure may say that when you really want to strengthen the muscle you gotta push until I can go any farther. Do you literally can't lift anything else and only then when you go to muscle failure will begin to multiply in its capacity. That's exactly what God bless your faith, he pushes it to the brink he pushes it to faith, failure, only then will he multiply it in you that you see if God had given to Abram a son immediately. It would've made Abram rejoice, but it would not have grown his faith in God is not just after giving you joy. He does want that the most precious possession. He says you have more precious than gold itself is the faith and so he is committed to increasing that in you and he is going to push you to the point that it tears and it breaks down so that he can grow it.

Abraham had to feel his total helplessness in the face of sterility. He had to feel his hopelessness in the face of Sarah's barrenness.

If he was to cast himself utterly upon the arms of divine promises and really grown his faith. Here's my question for you is God doing that with you right now is God pushing you to the brink. Listen the way that you become an Abraham is not pleasant is not to listen to me preach sermons like this is what I want to Dylan a blueprint sermons on a regular take notes and I want to be an awesome, great.

If you want to become a great person of faith like Abraham. It's not gonna be a pleasant experience.

He's gonna lead you through the valleys so that he can show you that he can indeed provide for you.

There is going to send you into the storm so that you can see his ability to walk on water above their storms. He's going to surround you with conflict so he can demonstrate that he can indeed prepare a table for you in the presence of your enemies. God is serious about teaching you to live by faith because faith is not an addendum to the Christian life. Faith is not up part of the Christian life. Faith is all of the Christian life lesson in order to multiply. If you really want to multiply to eternal significance. You were going to have. To learn to exercise faith. Paul compared everything to God is given to us in the seed the event in three major categories what God given you your time, your treasure and your talents. I told you there two things. You know the seed most seed you grind up for food and eat like grain or you can take the same seating you can planted but here is that the catch. If you will when you planted, you remove your ability to eat that seafood is what you put into the ground. You can't get access at any longer and so there is an inherent risk implanting because you're taking your hands off of what you could use right now and you're hoping that implanting it will come back, multiply, there's an inherent faith required implanting and that is always a little terrifying date. Read the story about some farmers in the Midwest to hundred hundred 50 years ago that mold moved out there because of these just incredible form for you about the produce I could be I got for the American Midwest.

And so after moving out there they went through in Oklahoma. One of the worst droughts in American history like 10 years of no rain and so many of these farmers. They say by that last year after a decade had used up all their seed and just just surviving on with her family and so they got great many of them had about a year's worth of seed left and in order to play. You had a plan about six months I here's the catch. If you plan six months of it you got only six months enough left to eat right to view plan in the fall and then you plan six months and you will get sick when you get done eating there better be harvest their if not, you got nothing to your family are starving. You got no money so these farmers 1939. This excruciating choice of organ a planner or we just gonna hold on to this and survive on the ones in 1939 who actually did plant though the rains came back that year and they have one of the biggest crops that they'd ever seen God continually does that with you he puts you in those situations where he says, are you going to trust me enough that you release these things to me to give me a chance to multiply them during this multiply season.

He is going to call some of you to give and the sacrifice in ways that honestly scare you may not be that huge in terms of a balance sheet but for you there big question is going to be asked to you is do you believe that God can multiply what you give to him that he can take care of you and bless the world of the same time, because the only way. Listen the only way that you and I will multiply is when we begin to live and give. By faith/CS Lewis. He said the only safe rule when it comes to your generosity.

You want to rule the only safe rule to give until it scares you because only then do you know that you are living by faith.

If you are after a nice, safe, neat, tidy life where you just cannot you do Christian things you come listen to Christian sermons and I'm not talking to you right now but if you want have a life that matters for eternity.

You want to have a life of eternal significance. You can only follow Jesus with total abandon and you have got to live. Whether it's your time, treasure you down you go to do so in a way that just as God hears the sea and you're not the multiply and take care of me and bless world the same time. The only way the only way to follow Jesus is with total abandon was a place I used to know some friends of mine for got married several years ago it was.

There was a when I lived in upstate New York.

It was called split rock Canyon that nobody except locals knew it was there so some showed it to me. You pull your car out the side of the road on the interstate gonna walk through this little path, about 300 yards into the woods when all of a sudden the ground just dropped away and there was this little stairstep waterfall on the first part of it was about 2535 2130 feet and adopted a pool and then another few feet.

It was another waterfall and was about 35 feet into another pool and in the canyon on the side just went you stayed the same height and so some of my friends showed me a bit of now they are no like if you want off of this sidedness Canyon and you just jump with all your might.

You can land in that second pull down there about 75 feet away right now, here's the catch that. Here's the deal.

If you were to measure the amount of like distance horizontal. You had to cover.

You could never do it in a broad jump is like try to never do it because you were in the air so long. The trajectory would tear you safely into the pool. But the deal was you couldn't just walk off to the side and just step is wrong with total abandon and just delete you say JD, did you do it.

Heck no I did not doing I should think about. I did it not that trip I did it.

Later trips but I was so terrified in it.

I cannot claim any manliness at it will at all, but it was just you can't do it if you had your bet. It is also true with the Christian life. You cannot walk forward and multiply.

If you're going to hedge your bets, you have to run and jump with total abandon. That leads us to a question were in the world you get that kind of confidence. Where do you get the courage to plant the seed that you have where you get the courage to shop question number three or save number three confidence to risk. For God comes only from comprehending the commitment of God.

Abraham shows us a confidence arrest for God comes from comprehending the commitment of God. We know we know that Abraham eventually got this.

How do we know that well Genesis chapter 22 were not going to look at it today will get more in depth to it will later but after God finally gave to Abram.

This promise son Isaac after he gave the son he asked Abraham when Isaac was about 15 years old. He asked Abram to offer the sign up as a sacrifice now really go more in depth in this later, but Isaac was not only what Abram most loved in the world is not only his most treasured person. Possession whatever Isaac was Abram's only hope for the future of his family and his nation. We don't dissuade vendors represent what he treasures most.

It represents all his hope for the future and God says offered as a sacrifice and Abraham in Genesis 22 doesn't got immaculate and go through with it will get to that later. He stops and before he does about Abraham is willing to put that thing he loves the most. And I think you trust the most on the altar. But here's my question. Now, after failing again and again and again. After being the kind of guy who would throw his wife under the bus, not once but twice. How does Abraham finally get the confidence to do.

I think I know, I think I know Genesis 15 gets about to go there. Genesis 15 verse three Abraham is in one of his doubting moods.

God reappears to him and says this, Genesis 15, three. Fear not, Abram, I am your shield and I and your exceeding great reward.

And Abraham says report will thanks God that's awesome you taught me a new worship course, I'll be happy to sing to you. I just know what he said is rude. After God reveals this to a neighbor says behold you give me a son. That's all he says if God appears you that this is what a responsive unionism for my son Mike 92.take him outside the shows in the stars and says as many as the stars are the Tiger offspring to be Abram min occurs that famous verse for the apostle Paul says shows us how we get saved Abram in Genesis 15, six Abram believed the Lord was credited to him as righteousness. But you also how people saved in the Old Testament same way they were in the New Testament there say by believing on the Messiah. Abram believed that the Messiah would come.

We believe the Messiah has come, they believe, for we believe backward.

The direction is the different but the object is the same.

Abraham believed God's promise to God to keep his word and God credited to him as righteousness.

Just like God credits us as righteous and we believe God raised Jesus from the dead. I believe God said so this point. Genesis 56 what Abraham but then after the most famous verse on faith in the whole Bible. 56 Abram said verse eight by Lord God now will I know the words he doubts again now is doubting two different things here in these two components always form the substance of your doubts. The first part of the doubt is God. How do I know I can trust you. It's been like two decades God he really can keep your the second component is how can I trust me God you not proven to be pretty unreliable. What if I screw this up to those of the two pieces of what causes a doubting you God I don't trust you and I can trust me. You know what God's answer is pretty awesome front and I we are attracted verse nine, chapter 15, and I'll summarize incinerated gutters. You and I trust you and how you trust me okay go get five animals, cow, goat, Ram turtledove, and a pigeon. I want you to find a ditch and want to cut them in half.

I don't support either half of them on either side of the ditch that the blood flows down the ditch and makes a river of blood while they're supposed to make this covenant at sundown, so verse 12 as the sun was going down deep sleep fell on Abram, a dreadful and great darkness fell upon him, and a smoking fire pot and a flaming torch. By the way exact same words to use to describe the presence of God in and in Exodus when we document Mount Sinai the fire of his own is in the light of his presence passes between the thesis on that day.

Watch this, the Lord made a covenant with Abram. The Lord made a covenant with Abraham but who didn't walk through that that river blood Abram didn't you. In those days, the king made a covenant with a servant. It was customary for the sermon to walk through the river of blood alone because it was assumed that the king would keep up his in this is the only covenant in recorded history where the king goes through, and the servant does not.

The meaning is very clear.

God is saying if I fail to keep up my side of the bargain. I will pay with my blood. But if you fail to keep up your side of the bargain. I also will pay with my blood. I'm going to be responsible for both sides. He holds up his side of the deal as well as ours when we feel that is both undeserved and unbelievable. Thank you for listening to Senate life with JD Greer were in a study called multiply and as always you can find the full teaching series as well as transcripts free of charge@jdgreer.com. The online teaching archive and these daily radio broadcast made possible by listeners like you when you gave your helping people across the country deeper into the transformative power of the gospel. I'd like to personally invite you to take your partnership to the next level by becoming a gospel partner gospel partner is someone who commits to supporting Senate life with an ongoing monthly donation. Think of these partnerships were able to expand into new cities and communities and reach more people with the gospel every day to thank you for your investment and commitment to the ministry of Senate life, we'd like to send you a new evangelistic but from pastor JD for so many people this Christmas will bring uncertainty. For this reason we would like to give you not just one but two copies of this new back titled searching for Christmas one to keep anyone to give away during this holiday season there yours when you make a one-time donation of $25 if you're looking for that perfect gift to share with neighbors, friends or family. We'd like to offer you five copies for $50 and copies forget hundred dollars that a Christmas gift of hope, right now 86 thank I 868-335-5220 year fettuccine clear.com here you can mail your donation. Our address is JD clear ministry, PO Box 290, Durham, NC 27709 Molly benefits I needed to talking about multiplying trust will see Thursday on Senate life


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