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Your God is Too Small, Part 2

Summit Life / J.D. Greear
The Truth Network Radio
November 4, 2020 9:00 am

Your God is Too Small, Part 2

Summit Life / J.D. Greear

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November 4, 2020 9:00 am

Conflict isn’t anything new. It’s as much a part of life as breathing. And while most of us run from conflict, what if conflict is the very thing God wants to use to shape our lives?

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Jeannie Greer, every single time Satan unleashes his power against the church doesn't lead to the church's disruption that leads to the church's expansion. The best illustration about horses across God takes even the worst activity of Satan, and he turns it for his good believer. God is doing the same thing with your struggles. Sadly as much a part of life reading can I get an amen.

And while most of us run from conflict currently is one of the things that God actually uses to shape our lives that are subject today on Summit life as pastor Jeannie Greer continues our brand-new series title not got enough if you've missed the first part of this message you can listen free of charge online or download unedited message transcripts Jeannie Jeannie is teaching from the book of Job. The message he's titled your God is too small. I want to unpack the experience of the man in the Bible who probably have more questions for God than anybody else I know of this man's name has become synonymous with doubt and confusion and despair.

That man's name is Joe ready to be in chapter 38 so maybe just a quick overview of chapters 1 to 37. The cliff notes version of it.

You hang on their job. 38 not catch up to you. I'm Job. What one says pretty much everything we know about Joe.

We don't know much about Joe all were told in Job 11 is that Job is a blameless and upright man, which is a Hebrew way of saying he was a really swell guy will then wrap this brief two verse introduction we could suddenly whisked off to heaven where God is apparently having a staff meeting and among God. Staff is a particularly feisty fella called the set time in the set time raises a credible challenge decisional God. The only reason that people serve you is that it's in their own self-interest and so God says okay okay alright so Tom let's take Job you take everything in his life. From him that he loves and you'll see that he values me just for me and so the next two chapters.

That's exactly what happens.

Satan takes every single thing from Joe Betty loves at this point in the narrative as you're reading this you should be asking you; wait, what, why in the world would God allow this. And then we would expect the rest of the book of Job to provide an answer to that question, but that is not what we get the point at 37 chapters as this, the wisdom all the wisdom of the ancients has been spent yet. The mystery of suffering remains man.

Finally, finally, chapter 38. God shows up in Job says at last. I'm finally going to get some answers. But no. Instead, God shows up and does not give an answer at all. He simply starts to ask Job a bunch of his own questions 64 different questions spread across three chapters to be exact. The Astros things like chapter 38 Job. Are you around when I shake the earth.

Joe where were you when I spread out the constellations and where were you when I met the stars together Joe while were at it, what you think. Storms come from you even predict when the next storm is going to come even really odd random questions in there like Job, how much do you know about the copulation patterns of goats or about this in chapter 30 verse 13 Job do you know why ostriches are so ugly. God is saying to Job Joe if you can't even really fathom the mystery behind natural things. Are you really in a place to understand and evaluate eternal things. You see the assumption that Job and all of his friends are working off of is that they know enough about the world to analyze and understand God's ways.

But God says to them. Actually your perspective on the world is quite puny. Mine is huge. You don't even understand simple things like constellation creation or ostrich ugliness.

Then finally, chapter 40 God says while red Job. Do you really want to run the world for a day you really want to punish every little act of injustice in every single instance Job, you know how many different things are happening in the world at one time and you know how many different things are interconnected and then the bookends and God sends out. By the way the last few verses restoring everything to Joe back sevenfold did even after the restoration.

We never really get satisfying answers to the question of why all this happened in the first place. Neither to Job, the book ends with mystery for him. All we get from God is more questions, but these questions make five crucial points about the size of God 1 God says to Job through these questions my power Job is sovereign in this book we see God's absolute power over creation over the Angels even over Satan himself always see that Satan does nothing except by permission. And so what you're saying about Job's suffering. This is kind of the theme of it is the ultimate purpose in Job suffering is to bring glory to God. God was demonstrating his glory to Satan and all the angels through Job suffering, and I know that when you hear that some of you have a hard time with that you set up a hard thing to live with that God is using my suffering for his glory. But I'm telling you listen that that is the secret to a happy and fulfilled life is for you to understand that you and all the world exist first and foremost for God's glory because when you embrace that you're going to find the joy and satisfaction that you never know Teresa's number one my power sovereign number two tells Job. My perspective is infinite. My perspective is infinite. The climax of God's argument comes in Job 42 verse three God says to Joe, who is it that dares question my judgment without the knowledge to be able to do so. In other words, Job.

If you don't even understand the mystery behind natural phenomenon like storms and stars. Are you really a place to understand the purposes of the eternal God above them, if God's wisdom is as high above our wisdom as his power must be above our power. It should be a rational conclusion that there are certain things about God and his purposes that are going to escape our immediate ability to comprehend them at least easily doable experiment with.

If there is a God that you came in today and you're done with your person you came with a friend and you even believe there is a God still gritted his thoughts. Remember, if there is a God, how much power must he have in order to create the universe that we live in now what you think about the fact that there are at least 3000 billion trillion stars, each one putting out roughly the same amount of energy every second as a trillion megaton atom bombs be stars, they say exist in an expansive, we simply cannot comprehend the Hubble telescope is now sending back faint infrared images of galaxies even know about estimated some of them at 12 billion ly away, which means if you were to get in a spaceship and travel hundred and 86,282 miles every second in 12 billion years would arrive at the edge of that galaxy and they say there are likely many many more.

Beyond that all of these, 3000 billion trillion stars in all this expansive is created in a single moment with a single word from God that is God's power.

Now compare that to my power.

I can't lift my mattress over my head since my wife and I tried the other day and it did not turn out well okay will try to flip to get several friends involved that you know I want to do this before. It's like my rowing machine I have a rowing machine and one of the settings on it. You can track the number of watts that your produce will even understand like I get like meters road that make sense. I get on towers were not make sense to watch. Why is that sitting on their it's there just to humiliate me.

That's why it's there chocolate to do it the other day and how many watts cannot produce.

I get the 61 cuts like I'm like the lightbulb you know 60 140 know how long can I sustain this I get the two minutes and the next thing I remember my wife is reviving me was smelling salts. Several minutes later, it would doing all my energy. I can like a lightbulb for two solid minutes God can speak 3000 billion trillion stars in the existence I can keep a lightbulb with more than two minutes without passing out. Don't you think if that's the extent of how high, much higher God's power is above mine. If there is any analogy at all to how much higher. His wisdom is above mine then doesn't it make sense that there are going to be a lot of things that may escape my immediate ability to grasp them and to understand them. It's just irrational to conclude such a thing. It is entirely possible that God has some amazingly beautiful purposes that he is working out that we just cannot see yet Bart Ehrman won the most famous of skeptics over here, UNC Chapel Hill says that he lost his faith because of the presence of purposeless evil in the world.

There is a huge assumption behind that statement purposeless evil and that assumption is that if there is a purpose, and he would be wise enough to detect and I would just say to you, it is rather arrogant to assume with our very limited P brain knowledge that we would be able to automatically perceive every purpose of an infinitely wise God.

God is not just a slightly smarter version of you is not just a slightly bigger version of you.

It's like we imagine God is this be with these huge earth shaping*creating muscles and many teeny tiny head with a little brain not that much bigger than ours know God is something altogether different and his wisdom defies my ability to understand it when Joe gets a glimpse of that. Just a glimpse.

Here's what he says at the end of verse three. Surely I spoke of things I did not understand things that are too wonderful things on a different plane for me to know. In other words, I didn't realize how dumb and how limited my perspective was, but God now that I see how big you are.

I realize that I have the wrong posture in my questions. Know your questions are great. There's nothing wrong with your questions. God invite you to ask the questions, but when you asked them you ought to at least approach God with a sense of how big he is, and let that shape the posture that you have been asking God to understand number four God says to Job number three. My purpose is guaranteed.

My purpose is guaranteed. One of the most encouraging things in this book, as we see that because God's power is sovereign and because his perspective is infinite, we see that even Satan's attempts to attack God's people only end up furthering God's purposes, we all think about it, all of Satan's best attacks on Job yielded for us a book that has provided encouragement to countless believers down to the centuries you really feel like that was Satan's in game when he started this whole thing this book is a big old gotcha shoved right in Satan's face, don't we see this all throughout Scripture Satan strategy to defeat the sons of God only serves to provide salvation for the sons of men we see in the book of acts only every single time Satan unleashes his power against the church doesn't lead to the church's destruction.

It leads to the churches expansion. Maybe the best illustration of that of course is the cross that was when Satan showed up and killed the son of God.

If there was ever a time when it look like God was out of control. It was at the cross. Yet we see in the worst moment of human history that was when God was actually doing his best work, which is why we never know whether to call it bad Friday or Good Friday.

It's bad Friday in one sense, is the son of God got killed Good Friday and another set because I got saved because Jesus paid my sin debt God takes even the worst activity of Satan, and he turns it for is good and believer. God is doing the same thing with your struggles.

You see, if you think about it, you can probably can't you can't you already see some of the good things that God has brought the times of suffering and trial in your life. I thought hear the words of the British journalist Malcolm Muggeridge for past waves when his mid-70s he made the statement is totally resonated with you probable to contrary to what I would've expected.

He said I look back now and experiences that at the time seemed especially devastating and painful, with particular satisfaction. Indeed, I can say with complete truthfulness that everything of value that I've learned in my 75 years in this world everything that is truly enhanced in light my existence has come through affliction not through comfort and ease.

Can't you say the same thing. Can't you look back at different chapters in your life or you look at the heavens and said God where are you, but now just 10 years later, 20 years later 50 years later you like I see what God was doing God was was actually working in me. He was taken out something to my life that was hurting the year. He was replacing something and it was painful but it was absolutely necessary. Here's the perspective of Job, the perspective of Job is, if already we can look back already. We can look back and see a good purpose for some of the suffering in our lives don't we think given infinite time and infinite perspective were going to see a reason for all of it. She sometimes what God is doing. Sometimes the purpose behind what he is doing is something is working in you, you have to get your mind around the different kinds of suffering we see in the Bible you just use the Old Testament there are at least three different kinds of suffering in the Old Testament. Sometimes God lets us suffer in order to chastise us or bring us back to the right way what was happening with Jonah on the wrong direction. God sends up efficient EEs makes him suffer the beginning back in and in the right place. The second kind of suffering is when God lets us suffer so that he can work.

Salvation somebody else that's what we see with Joseph. Joseph sold into slavery goes to prison so he could bring salvation of the sons of Israel. 1/3 kind of suffering is what God lets a believer suffer in order to purify his or her heart and help them love God more. Sincerely, that's what we see happening here with Job suffering is often how God shakes you for himself.

Martin Luther said he sees that the believers he said assumed the moment the God chooses you. The moment he God chooses you. He lets the devil afflict you, in order to turn you into a real doctor of the word Luther said and I quote. I credit the devil. The Pope and all my other persecutors with my deep knowledge of the word of God to the devil's raging. They've actually turned me into a fairly good preacher driving me into the gospel to doubts. I never would have reached without their afflictions yelled. This is what the gospel is all about Satan strategy to defeat the son of God only turned out to bring salvation to the sons of men. Satan's continued strategy to bring suffering to the sons and daughters of God only serve to bring salvation to the sons and daughters of man is what God has been doing what he did with Joe.

What is doing at the cross. What you doing in acts and believer. It is what he is doing in your suffering. Number four number four.

These questions God choose Joe, my promise is everlasting. My promise is everlasting. My favorite verse in the book, hands down.

Job 1925. Joe says I know, I know that my Redeemer lives, and I know that in the end he will stand on the earth to think about that verse, I will phrase there in the end Indian means in eternity blasting the book of Job I mentioned was God restored to Job all that he lost sevenfold seven is the Hebrew number for perfection or completion or eternity. So what you're seeing. This is a glimpse of what God will do for the believer in eternity. He does not result not only restores what has been lost. He restores it in a way that is perfect in a way that is overwhelming know, like many believers I have clung to Psalm 1611.

Throughout my life, some 6 to 11 in your presence is the fullness of joy at your right hand are pleasures for evermore fullness of joy means joy that could not get any stronger pleasures for evermore means pleasures that could not last any longer. It means that where I'm headed in eternity is going to make everything I experienced here on earth seem like absolutely nothing. How long is eternity the whole life that you live so far is going to be to you.

Like the first few seconds of a never ending date, your life is just a brief Compared to the expansive eternity. Kai has not seen, nor his ear heard, nor is he entered into the heart of man, what God has prepared for those who love him all the music compared to eternity anything the worst things we experience here compared to eternity are really just nothing Mother Teresa famously compared it to.

She said compared to eternity, but were suffering on earth. Here is like nothing like it.

It's like one bad night she said in a cheap hotel.

You had a bad night a cheap hotel I told you about some of my bad nights and cheap hotels and a lot of when I lived overseas, try to cut corners and save a cheap motel member state and one in South America where I am scorpion walked across the floor and upon motion pay the extra $10 for the deluxe room be my wife and I my fingers on the cut corners on vacation and so we posted the cheapest hotel we could find a city, we were driving through and that was a terrible mistake because we got in there and you know it was dirty and I'm every time the people above us flush the toilet water would seek to our ceiling. Our son was in a crib and was dripping on his face and it was an awful experience with hardly no sleep now. Now it's just a joke.

I tell it I laugh about it. It wouldn't fund name is funny now, right suffering now is yes.

I'm not trying to take away from.

I'm just telling you the compared to eternity. All of our suffering. She says is like one bad night a cheap hotel because it swallowed in the joys of eternity, which is why CS Lewis said well of this if you look at this world as a place to find happiness. If you look at this world as a place to become happy, you will always be miserable and confused. But if you look at this world as primarily training for the next world when you get a fine purpose and joy in your life is what God says to Joe, my promise is everlasting. Number five, my presence is pledged. My presence is pledged.

I know that my Redeemer lives. I know that in the end he will stand on the earth. I wonder what Job was thinking about when he wrote that verse because y'all listen we know even more. Don't we then Job did because we saw our Redeemer common stand on earth with us and why was our Redeemer here. Why did Jesus come. We know that he came to take our punishment in our place so that we would never have to be separated from God again forever worry that he was angry with us, or that he had abandoned us. Yes, there are some times that I am wounded but he was wounded for me so that I could be eternally healed. Yes, sometimes I feel abandoned, but he was abandoned for me so that I could be eternally embraced and that means that his mercy is ever present with me and that means that I never have to worry about what he is doing in my life. He stands by my side because he stood in my place. My Redeemer stood on earth in my place to death for me and now promises to stand by my side forever. I love the words of eight of your toes are here who said this is it with the goodness of God to desire our highest welfare believer.

That's what you have the goodness of God desire highest welfare, the wisdom of God the planet the power of God to achieve it. When we lack what possibly could we fear that means that I may not know exactly what God is doing in my pain. I may not know will gotta do it in my pain, but the cross shows me it shows me what my suffering cannot mean my suffering.

The cross shows me my suffering cannot mean that God has either forsaken me or that dollars loss control. Think about the cross was the cross show you the cross shows you how committed. God was to you how much he loved you. The cross shows you the extent he was willing to go to buy you back in Paul says in Romans eight, he said believer believer. If God did this for you when you were his enemy, how much more will he not do for you now that you are his son or daughter at the first in the cross shows.

The second thing it shows me as a God is not out of control as if there were ever a time or look like I was out of control was at the cross you when I see from this perspective, that it was at that very moment that God was doing the very best of his work in the and that is what he is doing right now in your pain. It means you may be in the 37 chapters with Joe. You may be saying to God why I don't understand why her to answering this prayer. It might feel to you like a dark night of the soul, but I can tell you because your Redeemer has lived and you stood on the earth, and he stand by your side today.

I can tell you for sure that his presence is with you and he is working resurrection through you, just like he did to Jesus and just like you promised to do for Job.

Your Redeemer came and stood by your side and stood in your place, and now stands with you eternally. So in your pain you have his presence. And you got his promise that was God's answer to Job my power stop. From my perspective is infinite purpose is guaranteed. My promise is everlasting in my presence is pledged no matter where you are in your story, we know the ending will not leave you and he will not forsake you. That's great news today on Senate life Bible teaching ministry of Pastor JD Greer Jenny think the reminder that our stories are far from over. You've just written a new back with that same reminder that our life stories are still being written and it's called what are you going to do with your life. This is the last week for our listeners to get a copy of it along with the bonus study guide right yeah we were to special edition workbook to go along with this new book and it's got some devotionals that are team and I wrote with some guided reading to many of the scriptures that are referenced in the book included in the will taking more deep into those I really wonder things behind what you do with your life. This book is that I really like it has a chance to be a defining moment, if it moment for people whether they are college students and young professionals looking at the front end of their career.

Whether it somebody at the halfway point can rethink with the second half looks like. Whether somebody is nearing retirement thinking about how to invest his next chapter. I think there's really something in it for everybody at every stage of how to ask the question where I'm at with what God's given me how to why how to use this for internal purposes on one not wasted if you go to JD there's information there about how you can reserve copy this book.

We would love to give you a copy becoming a gospel partner with us you to be a part of this gospel expansion here. This program, but we give you copy this book and the devotionals go along with it that they can also help you ask questions about your life may be given to somebody else so JD and there you can reserve that when you going to do with your life you with that special edition work that is when you donate today to support this ministry. The gift of $25 or more in your generosity helps us expand the ministry to the country that more people just like you dive deeper into the gospel every day, 335-2866 335-5224.

Give online request JD Greer.Molly minutes into anything tomorrow ever tried to bargain when you're working. If so, we don't want to miss Thursday night 19

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