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Treasure and Trust

Summit Life / J.D. Greear
The Truth Network Radio
November 29, 2021 9:00 am

Treasure and Trust

Summit Life / J.D. Greear

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November 29, 2021 9:00 am

Everyone wants to experience God’s blessing, but how do we really grab ahold of that? What does it take to get the abundant life it talks about in Scripture?


Today on Summit Life with J.D.

Greer. The call to ministry and the call to be Jesus' follower are always one and the same because God only blesses you to make you a blessing. There is no such thing as a follower of Jesus who is not actively engaged as a channel of blessing to other people. God is like a spiritual tornado.

He never pulls you in without also hurling you out. Happy Monday and welcome to Summit Life. I'm your host Molly Vidovitch. We hope you had a great holiday weekend and are ready to jump back into God's Word with us. Today pastor, author, and theologian J.D. Greer answers the question, how do we receive the blessings of God? Everyone wants to experience God's blessing, but how do we really grab a hold of that abundant life like the scriptures talk about? What is it that we're supposed to do? Be sure to stick around to the end of the show today for a special message from Pastor J.D., but for now let's get into our teaching. Pastor J.D.

titled it Treasure and Trust. Genesis chapter 12 verse 1. Now the Lord said to Abraham, go from your country and your kindred and your father's house to the land so that I will show you and I will make of you a great nation and I will bless you and I will make your name great so that you will be a blessing and I will bless those who bless you and him who dishonors you I will curse and in you all the families of the earth will be blessed. Now if you study this passage one things you'll see is that this story begins in a remarkably similar way to the way that the Noah story begins and that is intentional. If you remember by the time that Noah lived the world had become so wicked that God chose one man and his family and started over through them and destroyed the rest of humanity with a flood. So he repopulates the earth through Noah and his descendants.

Well Genesis 10 and 11 are the story of those descendants and what you find is that by the end of chapter 11 there is one kind of godly line of the sons of Shem and they are all now living in the place of idolatry which makes you assume that they've become idolaters too. And there's one final guy in this line a guy named Terah and he's got one son named Abram and Abram is childless. Terah's name literally means the moon which is a Hebrew metaphor for the end.

It'd be like you or me saying the caboose. So what he's indicating is that it's over. The godly line has succumbed to idolatry and Abram is childless. So Noah's descendants have left the world of the exact same condition that it was then when God chose to save Noah out of it. So it looks like it is about time for God to destroy the world again.

Project humanity has been a complete and utter failure. But instead of destroying the earth, God does something different this time. He calls out Abraham and he gives him this promise. He promises him that he will bless him and more than that he will make their name great by making them a blessing to the whole earth.

Like Noah, Abraham found grace in the eyes of God and through him all of us would find grace. Rather than God destroying the world again the way he did in the flood, this time he chose a family. And instead of choosing a family and destroying everybody else, he chose a family and said I'm going to bless you and I'm going to make your name great because through you I'm going to bless everybody. And the blessing that he was talking about was an explicit promise of the Messiah. Through Abraham's descendants, God was going to send a Messiah that would bless all the families of the earth. Like Noah's ark, this Messiah would shield his people from the wrath of God and he would commence a new creation, a new race.

One that no longer was inclined toward evil but one that loved God and followed God and did what God had intended them to do. The blessing that God is talking about here is the blessing of salvation. It would start in Abraham's house but it would extend to the whole world. And every single one of us in this room that knows Jesus Christ as their Savior was included in the promise that God made to Abraham that he didn't destroy our wickedness through a flood. He destroyed our wickedness by sending a Savior who would be destroyed in our place so that we could have the blessing that God promised to Abraham. Now what was required of Abraham to receive this promise? And what was required of Abraham to become this blessing? He had to leave all that he knew to obtain it. He had to take his hands off of everything that he owned and everything he loved in order to become God's child and then to become God's vessel of blessing. And he had to believe God for the impossible. Abraham and Sarah are childless which is of course a challenge for any couple especially in days before there are modern medicine. But there's a little detail in verse 4 that shows you why this is especially challenging and that is that Abraham is 75 and his wife is 60. And by that point in your life that you know if it ain't happened it ain't gonna happen. Right? Can I get an amen?

It ain't gonna happen at that point. So he's told to forsake all that he was clinging to and he was told to venture out into the unknown trusting in nothing but the promise of God for something that was absolutely unbelievable. Now there are five crucial things about the mission of God and understanding how you what it looks like for you to follow God that I want to observe for you out of these four verses before we before we go on. So here they are.

Number one. Following God always means venturing out into the unknown. Following God always means venturing out into the unknown. You know God says to Abraham, Abraham I want you to go to a new land I have for you. And Abraham says well where is that?

And God says I'll tell you later. And Abraham's like well can I at least get you know some GPS coordinates I'm gonna punch it into my camel and you know that way the camel knows where to go and my wife wants to you know she likes to know how long it's gonna get there and God says I'll tell you as you go. God says to Abraham I'm gonna give you a son and Abraham says how God I'm 75 and Sarah is 60 and God says I'll explain that later just just just come on. And God says to Abraham you know later you'll find out God says to Abraham I want you to climb up this mountain I want you to sacrifice your son and Abraham says why and God says I'm not going to explain that to you I just want you to do it. All of Abraham's interactions with God involve him venturing into the unknown. I love how John Calvin summarized God and Abraham's discussion here.

John Calvin said basically God says to Abraham close your eyes and take my hand. Close your eyes Abram and take my hand. I'm not going to tell you where we're going. I'm not going to tell you how we're going to get there.

I'm not going to answer all the questions. You're going to do this one step at a time. You're going to know that this is me talking to you. You're going to close your eyes and you are going to take my hand. Let me tell you why I love that because I see as a pastor so many people who are unwilling to do this which is why they never know God and why they never experience what God has for them.

They're like well God if I surrender to you then what are you going to do about this right here? Are you going to make me be a missionary? And do I have to you know or am I going to be poor?

Do I have to break up with my boyfriend? Or God I understand this how is this going to work out? How is this question going to do this? Am I going to become one of those annoying like Jesus freak kind of people because they people just get on my nerves. Am I going to become that? And God says for now I'm not going to tell you. Close your eyes and take my hand because this is going to go one step at a time and if you know this is me talking to you then you're going to have to trust that I'm going to do what I said I'm going to do and I'm not going to show you what the end of the of the road looks like. I'm just going to show you that you're going to take my hand and walk with me.

That's how God always calls people and that's the one hurdle some of you cannot get over is because you have to see where you're going before you go. You're like God is it A? Is it B?

Is it C? And God says I'm not telling you which one it is. I'm just telling you to take my hand.

I am not telling you to turn your brain off. You got to decide if this is really God speaking to you. You got to decide if God is the one who wrote the Bible but once you conclude that it is him that is speak it is he that is speaking to you then at that point you have to say God wherever you want to go wherever you want to go I'll go anywhere holding your hand. Number two God's calling to salvation and his commission in the ministry or mission are one and the same. God's calling to salvation his commission in the ministry are one of the same. Did you notice that God's first call to Abraham is also his commission in the mission?

The reason I say that is because there's this misconception among Christians I find that you get called to be God's child at one point and then later on you get called to be his disciple and to go into into his mission as if there was like a there's like a 2.0 or a graduate level or a 401 you know kind of kind of kind of place in Christianity that doesn't exist. In the Bible the two calls the call to be his child and the call to be his in his mission are always one and the same. Abraham I am blessing you to make you a blessing.

Same sentence. Think about other people in the Bible. Moses. God called Moses at the burning bush. What did he say to him at the burning bush? He's like hey man I want you to veg out for about 10 years while I just kind of school you and then 10 years I'll come back to the burning bush and then I'll send you to no the first conversation they had at the burning bush I'm about to send you to Pharaoh. I'm calling you to be my servant and to be my emissary all at once. Peter when God called when Jesus called Peter to follow him.

Remember how he did it? He had him cast his nets on the other side of the boat immediately they were filled with fish about made the boat sink and Jesus says follow me because that's what I'm gonna do with your life that's how you're gonna catch men. The apostle Paul when God called the apostle Paul appeared him on the road to Damascus and Jesus said rise up act 26 16 rise up and stand on your feet for I've appeared to you for this purpose to make you a minister and a witness of the things that you have seen and the things which I will yet show you. The call to ministry and the call to be Jesus follower are always one and the same because God only blesses you to make you a blessing there is no such thing as a follower of Jesus who is not actively engaged as a channel of blessing to other people. God is like a spiritual tornado he never pulls you in without also hurling you out. Jesus said to his disciples John 15 16 you didn't choose me I chose you and I chose you that you would go and bring forth fruit and that your fruit would remain and it is my father's glory that you bear much fruit which is really good news for some of you because you got to understand that when God chose you he didn't choose you just to save you he chose you to make you an instrument of salvation for some of you your lives have been characterized by selfishness and mistakes you have caused pain and you might think that Jesus only has enough grace allotted for you to just save you it's like that's pretty much all he can do with you you were so bad so damaged he just saved you it's like that's it I got nothing left when Jesus shows you grace it is for the purpose of making you an instrument of grace and in fact what I have seen over my life is the more grace Jesus had to use in saving you the more grace he uses you through you to to bless and to save others Jesus calls you he blesses you to make you a blessing that's number three you are only blessed you are blessed to be a blessing you're blessed to be a blessing question is that how you see the blessings in your life do you see the blessings that God has given to you as something that God gave you to pass through you to others or let me rephrase it like this do you see yourself more as a reservoir of God's blessings or a channel of God's blessings are you a reservoir of God's blessings or are you a channel I have a friend of mine who's a pastor and he said that there was a guy in his church who was a multi-millionaire he said he's one of the most remarkable guys that I've ever known because he said this man gives away money faster than anybody I have ever he says he just is writing checks all the time to try to get new ministry started my friend said I asked this guy what is like what's your goal in all this how do you know that you've succeeded he says my goal get this he says my goal is to bounce my last check before I die I want to take every bit of what God's given me and I want to turn it back into his kingdom because God did not give me this just for me God gave me this to be an instrument in his kingdom is that how you see the blessings in your life if so then because you understand you've been loved by God you know how you'll show that you'll love people extravagantly the way that you've been loved it means you'll give generously to people as you've been given generously to it means that if you've been given wisdom you will share your wisdom with others it means that you've been given a talent you are asking how does this talent go to bless the kingdom of God not how is it that I build my own kingdom that's what it means here's number four to receive the blessing and become the blessing we have to take our hands off everything and make God our trust and his kingdom our delight to receive this blessing and to become this blessing we got to take our hands off everything and make God our trust in his kingdom our delight do you realize that when God called Abraham listen he didn't make he didn't tell Abraham he wanted Abraham to add a little God to his life add a few tweaks to his morality he called Abraham to a whole new basis for living he said Abraham everything that you've looked to for security I want you to walk away from everything that you have spent spent your life building I want you to walk away from that because I want to become your security and I want my kingdom to become your delights what kingdom are you living for right does that characterize you you see following God is not just adding a little God to our lives it means making God our trust for the future and his kingdom our delight let's calibrate for a minute all of us in this room have something probably a set of things that we look most to for security and we look to as our treasure what we what we love for example for many of you minutes succeeding in your career that's what you got to have because succeeding in your career helps you have identity as a man it helps you you make sure that you're going to provide everything that you need right you're having enough money in the bank is is security some of you men live for your hobbies right that's why you spend so much money on them that's why you devote so much time to them we have some students that you know security for them is getting into the right school making sure they make the right grades that's what they look to is kind of their security for the future for some of you it's just getting married having a great family having a comfortable life after you're married I mean that's what the good life is that's security that's treasure five years following god means letting go of all of that as your primary treasure and your security and it means making god the source of both of those things and if that doesn't sound really difficult to you then I can assure you've never thought through it that's why so many people miss this that's why so many people stay religious but never actually become followers of jesus because they don't know what it's like to take their hands off everything and say jesus it's all yours you show me where you want me to go what you want me to do you're my treasure you're my security I've heard it referred to as a Copernican revolution of the soul you remember science guy remember Copernicus I'm doing this because that's the world remember what Copernicus discovered he discovered that unlike what astronomers thought the earth was not at the center of everything and the whole universe you know revolved around it Copernicus discovered that the earth actually was in orbit around the sun and there was nothing really you know except for a little tiny you know hunk of rock called the moon that was orbiting the earth and it was a Copernican revolution because we weren't at the center having everything orbit around us we were actually orbiting things that were much larger than us Copernican revolution of the soul many of you have come to church you've come to God to try to figure out how to get God back in orbit in your life and you're like God how do I get you as a part of my family how does it get you a part of my career how do I get you as a part of my eternity and God says wrong question because you don't come to me to add a little bit of me to your life you got to discover that this is this is not even this is not even your universe you're not even the center of anything you are going to orbit me and you're going to have to start answering what purpose I have for you in my kingdom which means I've got to become your delight my kingdom has to become your kingdom I have to become your treasure you orbit me not me orbiting you does that make sense number five number five to become the blessing we have to believe the impossible to become the blessing we have to leave believe the impossible Abraham had to believe what he couldn't understand what seemed impossible and then act on it he had to believe God would keep his word he had to close his eyes and take God's hand and somewhere along the way he splashed cologne on his hundred-year-old body and put on some Marvin Gaye and he started a family that is in the bible maybe not those words but that concept for you to follow God means that you believe some equally impossible things one that he can save you two that he can use your life for blessing just like he promised three that he will answer the questions that you don't know the answers to four he will provide for you the resources for what he tells you to do following God at every step always means believing God that God will do the impossible even when you don't know how it works out what the answer is or where it's coming from now before I apply this to you I want to take you to one other place where Abraham was tested on this you ever seen how God sometimes will teach you a lesson then he'll come back a few chapters later in your life and test you on it to see whether or not you actually learned it and if you're like me you usually fail miserably and you have to go back and relearn the lesson well that's what God's about to do to Abraham and so chapter 22 is that story so flip over 10 chapters if you got your bible to chapter 22 genesis 22 but genesis 22 Abraham is Abraham and Sarah have had their miracle baby the name of the uh baby was Isaac which means son of laughter because I mean you just know how humorous it shows you the bible writers understand that this is ridiculous I mean humorous right Isaac born when Sarah is 90 which means that when they both had a birthday that year they both got diapers um two two totally different kinds and different types right this is funny it's funny there's a 90 year old woman wearing her own diapers is now putting diapers on her kids after these things God tested Abraham there were tested and he said to him Abraham and Abraham said here I am and he said take your son your only son Isaac whom you love and go to the land of Moriah and offer him there as a burnt offering on one of the mountains of which I shall tell you now I know and for some of you that raises some questions why would God ever say that to somebody there are answers to those questions I don't have time to answer those questions for you today but what I want you to consider is what this meant for Abraham God knows what it means for Abraham because yes we all love our children but for Abraham that was something more than just a beloved child that was everything he hoped for the future that was what he left that land for this was the fulfillment of the promise all of his hopes all of his dreams all of his security all of his affections are centered upon the head of this child and God looks him dead in the face and says take your son but you see the phrase your only son I mean he's only got one son why does that need to be clarified right take your son oh your only son I only got one son so my one son is my only son whom you love because he's spelling out for him exactly what it's costing Abraham take your only son the fulfillment of this promise the one that you love and I want you to walk up that mountain and I want you to sacrifice him to me Abraham begins this journey as he's walking up this mountain there's this touching scene where Isaac looks at his dad it's his dad I see the wood I see the fire I see the knife I don't see a sacrifice and all Abraham says to God is something that's become very famous if you've been in church he says son God will provide the lamb for the sacrifice Jehovah Jireh is what he said that God will provide the lamb maybe they'll make their way on up the mountain and Abraham builds the altar puts the wood on the altar takes Isaac and puts him on the altar and raises his knife to slaughter his son and right before he plunges the knife into his chest an angel of God appears in front of Abraham and says stop don't do this God was testing you to see if he was still your security and he was still your treasure or if somehow the blessings of God had replaced God and he wanted to know if the time came if this was still all about him and then the angel went on to say now that you have gone through with this now God knows that you love him because you were willing to sacrifice your son your only son whom you loved and God sees the love that you have for him what is being tested of Abraham it's a question that I think you really ought to ask yourself is God your primary treasure and trust is God your primary treasure you want to know how you can know here's how you know does he have full authority to tell you what to do with everything in your life have you come to a point where you've told God he can have it all all of it is your life a blank check to God everything you own everything you are everything you have everything you ever hope to be is it in his hands to do with what he wills if you've never come to that position in that place then you're not really a disciple of Jesus which is why Jesus talks about so many religious people who never enter the kingdom of God because they're religious means they'd like to come to church they like to hear tips for living they like to hear what the Bible has to say about this and that they'd never come to a place where they say Jesus you are my treasure you are my security and so my hands are open and they are off of everything because you are what I am seeking is he your primary treasure and is he your trust pastor jd greer has given us challenging questions to consider today you're listening to summit life and a message titled treasure and trust so tomorrow is an international holiday known as giving tuesday we have a really cool opportunity here at summit life to make an impact on church planning and ministry opportunities among afghan people in an undisclosed location so if you've been with us for very long you know the value we place on growing the church around the world yeah marley i'm very excited about this and to be able to focus on this on on this giving tuesday it's a very unique opportunity we're able to support a family and a ministry that i know and love personally unfortunately we're not able to share their names or location as you can imagine when it's you're dealing with a predominantly muslim country there's some pretty extreme security concerns i will tell you though that this family has been living among and serving afghan people for many years and they are frequently telling me stories of afghan people who are coming men and women coming to faith in christ that are sharing the gospel with their neighbors often at in great personal risk of themselves folks it's it's serious and you watch the news and you see all the chaos that's going on i want you to know that god is doing something amazing in the afghan people and he's using people like my my friends this family who is they're living in an organized ministry it's an official ministry that we're just not able to disclose the names and we want to do our part to be able to support and bless and multiply their ministry and molly what's special about this giving tuesday is that every gift that we receive tomorrow is going to be matched up to thirty thousand dollars your gifts are going to enable the funding of a training facility and housing for local ministry leaders language education support and other other transportation needs and some visa needs also you'll also be funding the startup cost on manufacturing businesses that'll give leaders an avenue to build bridges and relationships in the afghan community and also based on what comes in we we would love to assist in funding a medical project that that would give medical care for pregnant afghan women it's a way to really step into a gap to meet a need in a way that points to the love and the generosity of jesus so if you would like to invest in bringing the gospel the real good news to afghan people go to anytime tomorrow and like i said we will match your gift up to thirty thousand dollars this is pretty exciting that's every gift given tomorrow at or call us at 866-335-5220 that's 866-335-5220 i'm molly vidovich and i hope you're ready for a challenging week of teaching here on the program be sure to join us tuesday when we continue the teaching series called all in here on summit life with jd greer today's program was produced and sponsored by jd greer ministries
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-07-16 10:31:07 / 2023-07-16 10:41:49 / 11

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