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The Danger of Worldliness and the Duty of Prayer

Summit Life / J.D. Greear
The Truth Network Radio
August 12, 2022 9:00 am

The Danger of Worldliness and the Duty of Prayer

Summit Life / J.D. Greear

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August 12, 2022 9:00 am

Jesus said we should pray like children. Children don’t think about how they approach, whether they are using the right words, or whether their parents are pleased with them. They just ask. Astoundingly, that’s the beginning of learning to pray.

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Today on Senate life with Jenny Greer question is what you love. Where are you pitching your tents metaphorically speaking, what is that say about what your heart really desires.

Are you trying to get as close to the world as you can without becoming just like with like. There is a progression of sin in your life that starts with love in the world. It ends up with total disruption pastor and author Judy Greer. I'm your host Molly made a batch today. The special day as we are beginning a brand-new teaching series never before aired on the program you know Jesus said that we should pray like children the truth is, children will think about how they asked whether they're using the right words when they ask or whether their parents are pleased with them or not.

They just asked and believe it or not that's really the beginning of learning to pray today pastor JD a very short new study on prayer called the role challenge talking to God.

It's time to get started with a message pastor JD title the danger of worldliness, prayer this weekend with a little with great little quiz how to make more sense.

A little later to get you to vote. The question is which avenger series is the best.

Okay, you have the options A1 division you be falcon and Winter soldier or you have see Loki you can vote by love uplifted hand and if you're very passionate about your answer that you can do spirit fingers and I will let me know okay you think that one division is the best of the avenger series. Would you raise your hand write that say you think it is the bulk of the winter soldier, you can raise your hand anybody brave enough that when or if you think it is Loki you can raise your hand. Okay, try to correct answer was a one division which team here's number two has brought the most honor to the Triangle. Is it a Duke is the UNC or is it three N. onto State University. I would say would you raise your hand right now. Try not to yell if it is being UNC raise your hand. All right, if it is see all UNC students never follow instructions right there.

It is like a sorry if it see your thoughts. A university you would raise your hand and I know you can't help doing this right there so that's okay. My question number three.

You are on a road trip. You have to stop for a meal you choose a Wendy's B Hardee's RC NARA okay if your boat is Wendy's. Raise your hand.

Okay if your boat is B Hardee's raise your hand. I get to choose one could see Primera you can raise your hand correct answer was the waffle house go. I will say judges will give half credit for B Hardee's. The first number is a vastly underrated sandwich. The Nicolas Cage burgers. I call it. Okay, here's an excellent who is the real Spider-Man.

Is it a Toby McGuire, is it be Andrew Garfield or is it see Tom Holick if you think it's a Toby McGuire put your hand up right if you think it is be Andrew Garfield.

You put your hand up if you think it is. See Tom Holland. Now put your hand up the correct answer is a he is the only real actor out of all of them. I now some of your like our right and wrong answers to these questions there always is. In my book to see you know, like I cannot believe that there wasn't a Nicolas Cage question out of the that's a great point here.

It is was the greatest actor of all time right is it a Nicolas Cage is B Nick Cage or is it see page Nicholas okay right so well we know all of the above, the right height with five questions and I open my message at student With this year and I shared them because I'm going to preach a version of that same message to us as a church today because I think it is a word for us also. So Genesis 19. If you have your Bibles Genesis 19, shall take them and open them they IV of the students did about as well as you did, you've raised your your sons and daughters wisely and how they vote because it was pretty similar. Okay. At any rate, this passage Genesis 19 touches on our responsibility as a church to pray for students for each other for our community, and I believe it is what the Holy Spirit is saying to our church right now. Genesis 19 this is the story of Abraham and his young nephew Lot, Abraham's nephew Lot, let me just catch you up on the story as we get into Genesis 19 okay Abraham and his nephew lots are having a problem and that problem is they they're trying to coexist in an area that's just too small and their shepherds were fighting there was just not enough space for them to all live comfortably together. They were fighting over the best watering holes and then the best pasture lands, like you, you and your sibling tried to share a room when you were growing out how many of you I mean you did that growing up or are doing that now. Write your little brother was always leaving the stuff on the underside of the roof. He was always in the bathroom when you needed it. He never flushed. He left his dirty socks on your side of the of the closet. It was like that and it was clear that Abraham a lot needed some space to Abraham takes lot up high on this mountain overlooking says lot God's promise to give our family.

All of this land so you go one direction.

I'll go the other you let lot choose first.

Now all the land was was good but the land to the east of where they were standing was incredible. Genesis 1310 says it back made it look like the garden to be in itself.

The pastors were green and fertile. There are lots of places of water and shade problem. The problem was that it stretched out toward two notorious cities. Cities notorious for their wickedness, autumn and more. Listen to how the writer of Genesis describes the cities, he says, and the people of this area were extremely wicked and constantly sinned against the Lord writes with DVDs or bad news but that that was not very concerning to lot lot just like the vibe in back of the cities that was so much money and culture. An activity that he wanted to be a part of the lot shows the land toward Sodom and verse 12 Abram lived in the land of Canaan. While lot lived among the cities of the plane and pitched his tent near Sodom turned out to be a bad choice for a lot of back shortly after he got there raters from Sodom came and stole all the stuff and took him and his family captive Abraham then mounts chapter 14 a Kevin Costner style vigilante posse to go rescue him and you might think that after that lot would ever have learned his lesson, but lot just love Sodom so he moved back there pitching his tense even closer this time. Sodom and back soon enough. Lot moved into the city itself so that when chapter 19 opens, we find that lot was chapter 19 verse one sitting in the Gateway of the city sitting in the Gateway is an Old Testament Way of saying that lot had become a leader, you become a leader because that's where the leaders of the city sat to his chapter 19 opens. Lot is not only living near Sodom is a leader inside these popular there were seven speaking to the men of Sodom. He says I beg you, my brothers, he calls the men of Sodom. His brothers, they are his people now Sodom is where he feels most at all. You have to wonder what compromises lot made in order to be accepted in Sodom right to be fair, it seems that lot never went along with the worst wickedness in Sodom impacted it seems like the Most of his major morals intact, but it's also clear that he made a bunch of small compromises to read chapter 19 in more detail, you'll see a lot of them most tragically, he left he kept his mouth, mouth completely shot about his identity as God's servant and his faith in God. Chapter 18 opens, telling us that Sodom and Gomorrah. Their wickedness had gotten so bad that God decided to destroy the cities with fire, but as a favor to Abraham. God sent a couple of angels down to warn Abraham before he did it as the Angels are telling Abraham about the coming judgment. Abraham immediately began to think about lot away guided taken on the human body was actually there with those Angels over three of them so a daughter telling Abraham what is about to do. Abraham that want to see the city destroying so the triggers this conversation.

Chapter 18 verse 23, Abraham stepped toward forward and said daughter you really got a sweet boy the righteous with the wicked. What if there are 50 righteous people in the city. You cannot possibly do such a thing till the righteous with the wicked will not the judge of all the earth do what is just.

God says yes Abraham if you could find 50 righteous, then I would spare the entire city. Abraham thinks about it for a second, he says, well, suppose a 50 righteous like 5/5 we destroy the whole city for like five now Abraham seems to be a pretty shrewd negotiator what it's worth.

God surely were not to kill this bill over five people right so that's is okay Abraham, if you can find 45 I will spare the city. Abraham says about 30 God says I'll spare for the sake of 30 verse 31 Abraham says how about 20 Abraham started selling an auctioneer -40 May 30 20 just moving through it.

Verse 32 about 10 how about 10 I got answered.

I would not destroy it on account of 10 but Abraham could not find even 10 righteous in the city you got Lot and his wife and his two daughters that would before, but they don't seem to have persuaded anybody else there and Sodom to turn away from their wickedness so the negotiation ends. Nevertheless, in response to Abraham's prayer for lot. God sends Angels to warn lot the whole negotiation had been about preserving lot so in 19 verse 15. The angel show up at lots house just two of now God's gone back to heaven assumedly gates open lots house and Sodom and they say lot hurry take your wife and your two daughters who were here or you will be swept away when the city is punished. Yet even then get even then it says after hearing about this coming judgment that is just moments away.

Verse 16 says that lot hesitated. Even when he's heard that everybody is about to be destroyed by fire from heaven.

He is so in love with the world that he can't leave. These are his people. These are his brothers. Finally, verse 16 says that one of the Angels seized his hand in the hands of his wife and his two daughters and rush them to safety outside the city, because the Lord was merciful lot literally for 16 lot literally had to be dragged from the city. That's how much he loves it. That's how much he has made it his home as they're leaving the Angels worn Lot and his family not to look back on the city as God rained down fire upon it, but lots wife. We don't know her name but lots wife was just so enraptured with the city so in love with the city, but she could not keep her eyes off of it and when she turned to look back. Verse 26 God turned her immediately into a pillar of salt. Salt here serves as a symbol salt dries things out right what happens when you eat too much salt makes you thirsty turning lots wife into a pillar of salt as a symbol what's happened to her and what their family spiritual. They may still technically be believers, but they're so dried out spiritually.

They have no life for joy left in them at all. So in the end lot is saved by the skin of his teeth, but he loses everything, including his wife.

What does this have to do with us before life-saving lessons that you can learn from life for life-saving lessons to learn from lot number 11. There is a progression of sin in your life. There is a progression of sin in your life. Most Christians do not intend to become Sodom and Gomorrah lot certainly didn't.

He never intended to make it his home in the certainly did not intend to be included in its judgment, but many Christians like lot are so attracted to the world that they make their home as close to it as possible and if there honestly end up identifying as much of the world as they do with the people of God to be honest you think of most instinctively as my brothers, who do you feel the closest kinship with Kevin easy question to answer. Who do you hang out with most easily. You spend most your time with the lesson from lots life is that you have to make up your mind from the beginning. Who do you really want to be where do you really want to belong. If it's with the world. Go there 100%.

If it's with God, doing him 100% with pastor Jeannie Greer will get right back to today's teaching in just a moment but first let me tell you about our latest featured resource our cities are full of people full of needs and bursting with an opportunity if we want to see God work in our communities and through our churches. We need to pray. That's where the book 5 things to pray for your city is designed to help one of three ducks that were sending out as our gift to those who support Senate line. It will enlarge your vision and equip you to pray passionately and powerfully for the salvation renewal of your city. Each of the 21 chapters takes the passage of Scripture that suggests find things to pray for an aspect of life in your community because when we pray, in line with God's priorities is found in his word.

Our prayers are powerful. That's a truly thrilling prospect.

We encourage you to reserve your copy of the bundle today by calling 866-335-5220 or visit us Thanks for being with us today. Now let's get back to the final limits of today's message ascertaining may have said this many times the most miserable person of the world is the house committed Christian who is just enough in the world to be miserable in God and just enough in the God that there miserable in the world. That's what you're seeing with lot.

Your heart is filled with salt, so to speak, and it's not in a good way you feel dry and life was everywhere. Charles Spurgeon used to say if you're going to say we saved 100% is the worst thing to do is to try to straddle two opinions. You can't keep trying to walk along with your feet in both worlds, like when you're standing on the dock you're sitting on top of 1 foot in a boat and the boat starts to drift away ever been in that moment. This is like split-second decision where you had a make up your mind mind about him on the dock because you got a similar boat and you gotta go one way or the other because if you try to stand there and straddle about giving the appearance of a barter quote the old Chinese proverb and who try to walk down both sides of road will split his pants. You gotta choose one of the other.

First John 215 makes it clear love not the world, the love the running of the things that are in the world. If any person loves the world, the love of the father is not in him. In other words, not just about your behavior.

It's about your heart.

Don't just evaluate your behavior, congratulating yourself that you're not doing all the bad things about the Sodom people do.

The question is what you love. Where are you pitching your tents metaphorically speaking, what does that say about what your heart really desires. The worst place to be is to try to be in both.

Are you trying to get as close to the world as you can without becoming just like with lot.

There is a progression of sin in your life that starts with love in the world. It ends up with total destruction. You likely never see a common be honest with yourself is this happen to you. High school middle school students and assume you were at camp, but Ms. ask you again at first you you were alarmed at the things that that unsaved friends around you said and it made you feel uncomfortable were made you feel dirty when you saw sin depicted in movies are you hurting them music but eventually you got okay with it when you started hanging out with people who were doing those things then you started to do those things for at first you were more concerned you were genuinely concerned with your friends. You did not know Jesus pray for them.

You pray for them and eventually just that we are trying to tell them that they needed to be saved and he says that when their high school senior stop branded up.

Now you don't even pray for instead of somebody who warns them about coming judgment on on Sodom or the world calls them to escape it. You made your home there with them.

Your life now is virtually indistinguishable from bears but never feel the slightest bit of discomfort around you because you never warn them about it.

One day you look up and you never really told him about Jesus are explained to them in any meaningful way that they need to be saved. Years ago I read the disturbing account of how they they kill wolves out on the tundras of Siberia on the people that live on there. There's a wolf that is harassing their settlement or or are killing all the seals of theirs.

One of the things that they come they raise and grow it will not take a nice drink to edge very sharp two-edged nice and they will dip it in seals blood and up because it's so cold it just immediately freezes so they do it again and again until it several layers thick so it's become something of a Leica like blood popsicle stick may bury that knife so that it's just the handle that's under the ground, just the two edged blade sticking out but coded out of all this blood so that the wolf comes along and he gets the scent of seals blood. We just love that smell and so he goes over to it against the litmus blade of a knife course, not realizing it's a blade of a knife. Just thinking that seals blood in his seat begins to lick this blood off of this knife blade. It numbs his tongue so that when it he beat the blade begins to be exposed is Tom now his tongue on numb from from all that cold is just cutting itself into ribbons and he doesn't realize that the blood now all over the ground is not sealed. What is his blood as we lacerate his tongue to the point that that he believes out the death and he goes away, and he dies.

That's how we kill a wolf.

There is a picture there, how Satan destroys us this EE gives us a little taste of it and anything. This is not that bad and it gradually just numbs your soul gradually just numbs your soul until you get to a point where you cannot feel more since it any longer. You can filter since it any longer. So it's where you choose to make your home. It's where you choose to pitch your tents ride. That is what you become like they might ask you several pastor are you saying we should separate ourselves from the world of Money Missouri best possible my job or how it's possible my school I mean I'm surrounded by believers and God calls us to be in the world but not to make our home there is a difference in living in the world making a home there is a will. How can I be around Sodom but not commit the mistake a lot. It's got to do with whom you choose to make your close friends you choose to make your community. The ones that you make your inner circle are where you picture tents. You see, Scripture says that whom you hang around with is who you become like Proverbs 1320 he who walks with wise men will be wives but a companion of fools will be destroyed by a friend of mine says it this way. You show me your friends and also your future because if you hang out with wise people, you become wise.

But if you're companion of fools, then you become like them and you will be destroyed. IEEE he said he says you will become the average of your five closest friends. Figure 5 closest friends right now average them together. That's what you will be in the time and in the next few years. You show your friends and I'll show you your future use. Is it a pass or are you saying we shouldn't have any non-Christian friends know I'm not saying that there's a difference between core community and those that you're trying to reach it back afforded explained like this you think of your your friendship in three circles the first circle right around you is what we call your circle of intimacy that's going to be like people that speak in your life will be very close to a best friend. If you're dating it's the person you're dating is the person that your married to Mary and that's it.

Circle of intimacy did you get a layer of springs around that will covet your circle of influence. Those are people that you're doing life with family to be people in your small group people that you work with people you hang out with your influencing them and their influencing you and you get a circle around that we call the circle of concern. Those are people that you're trying to reach out to you try to share the gospel with a point of the circle of concern is reach out to them and to warn them you're actively you're reaching out to them that inner circle what it say that inner circle. That's where your Jesus loving friends are and I think they did.

They make up all the people in that middle so that's that simple circle and then the ones on the layer outside of those the majority of those end up being believers because that's who you become like that's you influences you reported that outer circle is that you are RRR building bridges with them and sharing Christ with them. The point of that circle of concern that's where those who were not believers. That's where you have them. You're trying to warn them you're trying to influence them at the summit. We encourage you to have a one say usual one, one person outside the faith that you're building a relationship with them.

Praying for that's that's that circle. You gotta decide the point is you get to decide who you want to be. You decide where you want to go and then you have to pitch your tents. There to surround yourself with that community right where you want to belong is your choice of community to lead you there. How long you go back and forth between two worlds. I'll say it again, the most miserable person in the world is to have committed Christian, just enough in the world that the miserable in God and just enough in the God that the miserable in the world are soul assaulting soul assaulting drive damage miserable you choose side of the road and Jesus, by the way does not look very kindly, on favorably on the have committed either. It says in Revelation. I wish you were cold or hot or lukewarm. It makes me want to spit you out of my mouth was that he loves you but he wants you to be one way the other night. There religion to decree or if you like this teaching and want to hear more like it. You can find us or in your favorite podcast at Sogeti were offering a bundle of three books right now called five things to pray that cover three very different topics. What's the best way to use this bundle of resources, MIBs or three books that I use and that I'm happy to come into our semi life listeners.

Each of these guides will give you instruction and biblical promises about how to pray for an aspect of your life, your kids, your parents or your community. Others also little space on each page for you to write in the names of specific situations. Every prayer suggestion. It's made what I appreciate most about the series. Every prayer suggestion. Every prompt is based on the passage of the Bible. The prayers that started in heaven. Of the ones that are heard by heaven and its way you praying God's words and his promises back to him to engage and enact his promises in your life. Take a look at this bundle of resources right now JD it's something I'm happily and enthusiastically committing to you is I think of this bundle of books comes with everything you donate to support this ministry suggested giving level is $35 or more. Every penny you donate to the gospel ministry today and ask for your set things to pray for thy 5220 easier to get on our website don't forget to check out the gospel partner pages well to learn more about family Molly bit of extra be sure to join us next week.


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