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Dr. Brown Tackles Your Internet Questions

The Line of Fire / Dr. Michael Brown
The Truth Network Radio
September 1, 2023 4:30 pm

Dr. Brown Tackles Your Internet Questions

The Line of Fire / Dr. Michael Brown

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September 1, 2023 4:30 pm

The Line of Fire Radio Broadcast for 09/01/23.

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The following is a prerecorded program. It's one thing to say, yeah, I'm a Christian, but on the line of fire broadcast, we are going to strengthen you and challenge you today in keeping with our commitment to infuse you every day with faith and truth and courage so you can stand strong for the Lord.

I will not be taking any calls today. We're going to plunge into the word. We are going to give a realistic assessment of where we are today and we're going to lay out a very strong biblical calling.

Now, this is not for the faint hearted. This is for those who are serious, but here's what I believe. I believe that throughout America and around the world, God's people are calling out for something serious.

I believe that while there is an ear tickling message that continues to seduce many and deceive many, and it's a fundamental defect in the American gospel that we've exported around the world, I also believe that many are hungry and thirsty and serious and they do not want to play games. You know what brought this to my attention recently? We are active with our team on social media. I'll post some things directly, but then we have a team that posts regularly. We'll take some of my quotes or clips from videos and post them or quotes that I really like from others and post them. And then I'll just look periodically and see, oh, this got a lot of response.

Oh, that's interesting. Instagram. And Instagram is maybe the one that's growing the fastest, but it's the smallest of our different platforms, maybe 44,000 followers on Instagram. And you realize there are people who have millions of followers and celebrities with tens of millions of followers.

And numbers doesn't mean anything in terms of effectiveness or impact. I'm just saying this relative to what I'm about to explain to you. So I'm on Instagram. We have a little fun.

Also, I may post a little fitness video, you know, exhorting you as I'm doing jumping jacks or something like that, or just we have a little more fun as well as post lots of good edifying, challenging content. So our media team took one of my quotes probably from Twitter and just put it up so it's just just the text and there's a little musical background, but that's it. There's nothing fancy. Just the text. You're just looking at the text. And it says this, the last time I checked the Bible, these words from Jesus were still there. How odd that we don't hear them preach that much. He said, quoting from Luke 962, no one who puts a hand to the plow and looks back is fit for service in the kingdom of God. Let me read that again. The words of Yeshua.

No one who puts a hand to the plow and looks back is fit for service in the kingdom of God. And that, to my knowledge, is the most viral post that we had on Instagram. One hundred thirty seven thousand views for that. Now, maybe there are others that went beyond that. But, you know, we normally get five, ten, fifteen, twenty thousand views.

Maybe one is really popular gets thirty thousand views again. It doesn't mean anything in the largest scheme of things. It just means that got people's attention or people were resonating with it. Isn't it interesting that a strong word like that, where we take a teaching of Jesus, a statement of Jesus about the requirements of following him, that that gets so many people saying, yeah, we don't hear it preach. We want to hear it preach. And I'm finding that consistently. That when I'll say something strong, when I'll really lay it out, when I'll be as direct and blunt as I know how to be and say, look, this is what Jesus said. Look at where we are.

And there's a massive contrast. Instead of people running away from me, people saying, yes, we feel the same way. We believe the same way.

May I say this to every pastor and leader? I'm not talking about being harsh. I'm not talking about being judgmental. I'm not talking about being self-righteous or holier than now. Look at me. I'm following Jesus. What are you doing?

No, not at all. And by all means, as a shepherd, have compassion on those that are weak and hurting and those that are new and growing by all means. At the same time, we are called to make disciples. And a disciple is not just a student, but a follower. A disciple is someone who emulates the master. As Jesus said in Matthew 10, that it's enough for the disciple to be like the master, enough for the student to be like the teacher. If the master of the house has been called Beelzebub, Satan himself, how much more the members of his household? As the master, so it will be with the disciple.

As the teacher, so it will be with the student. That's why Jesus said in John 15, if the world hates you, remember that it hated me first. That's why Paul wrote in 2 Timothy 3 that everyone who lives a godly life in Messiah Jesus will suffer persecution.

These are realities. And when you go around the world, if you go to Pakistan right now where the church is suffering, or India where the church is suffering, or Iran where the church is suffering, or Nigeria where the church is suffering, or North Korea or China where the church is suffering. If you go to these other countries or Afghanistan where the church is suffering, you don't need to wonder and speculate about what did he mean by persecution? What did he mean by the world hating us?

No, it is the ongoing reality. So, I want to open up some notes to you from a message that I preached during the Brownsville Revival at a pastors conference December 2, 1998. So, this is almost 25 years ago, but I have run into people over the years that point back to that message and it changed their lives. And I remember preaching it, not getting all emotional, not in kind of a Pentecostal shouting way, but just with this painful call to take up our cross and follow Jesus. And I ask you a question.

I ask you a simple question. Did Jesus ever lower the standard? We're saved by grace.

It's a gift. All of our works cannot pay for our salvation. All of our best efforts cannot pay for our salvation. Our good works, our best efforts cannot undo the weight and the cost of our sins. We are saved by grace and forgiveness and mercy.

Dead stop. Jesus now requires us as his followers to do certain things. This is a requirement for those who will follow him. And what does he say? If anyone wants to come after me, let him deny himself, take up his cross and follow me.

Did that ever change? Did Jesus ever revise that? And what does it mean to take up your cross and follow him? It means you're going to the place of death.

It means you're saying goodbye to this world and goodbye to ownership of your life. And the only way you live is on the other side of this cross, a new life in obedience to God. This is not radical. I've said for decades that what the world calls fanaticism and much of the church calls extremism, God calls normal. To remind you again of what Watchman Nees said, by the time the average Christian gets his temperature up to normal, everybody thinks he's got a fever. Or as Leonard Ravenhill used to say, the church has been subnormal for so long that when it finally becomes normal, everyone thinks it is abnormal. Here's what I wrote.

December 2nd, 1998. The need is great. The hour is late and the laborers are still few. Something has to change if we are really to see a worldwide visitation of the Spirit in our lifetimes. How many of you are like me, that something's not succeeding, but you keep doing it every day the same way, thinking tomorrow it will change? Now it's one thing, chopping down a tree, you're making progress, progress, progress, progress, at a certain point the tree will fall over.

Alright, so you're working on a project, little by little by little by little by little by little by little by little, you'll get to your goal. It's another thing where you're doing the same thing to say lose weight and you're doing it for ten straight years and your weight stays the same or goes higher. Well obviously, your plan's not working.

And trust me, I've been there, I've had that plan and it didn't work. It's still Albert Einstein quote that insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. Well often the church is like that. Well tomorrow will be different. Well no, tomorrow won't be different unless today is different.

Tomorrow won't be different unless today is different. I started my message and I referenced Matthew 5 verses 10-12, Matthew 10 verses 16-37, Matthew 16 verses 24-25, John 12, 24-25, John 15, 18-21, John 16, 1-2, John 21, 18-19. Acts 5-41, Romans 8-17, 2 Timothy 2-3 and 3-12, Philippians 1-20-21 and 29 and 3-10, Revelation 2-10. All of these speak about our calling to suffering as followers of Jesus, our calling to potential death as followers of Jesus.

An old friend sent me a note on Facebook Messenger and it's a picture of me from a long time ago, 25 years back, probably longer. And there I am on a platform with other students, believers behind me and what I'm saying is that the basic commitment of a New Testament disciple is this, I will follow you by life or by death. Again, that sounds radical and extreme but that's normal discipleship. I have colleagues when they baptize former Muslims, they will not baptize them without asking them, are you willing to suffer for Jesus, are you willing to die for Jesus? Water baptism, it's the same with a dear colleague of mine in India, when he baptizes people he asks them after their profession of faith, are you willing to follow Jesus to your last breath, to your last drop of blood?

Again, this is normal discipleship. Here, all of you who served in the military and to whom we are indebted, when you served in the military, when you enlisted, you're going to go out, it's during a time of war and you enlist in the military, what's the first thing you know? You might die.

That's the reality. In other words, it's not a desk job that's going to be safe and out of danger, it's not just going through war gains because it's not a time of war. If it's a time of war and you enlist, you volunteer for the armed forces, in any branch of the armed forces, what do you know?

You might die. Have you ever seen people, they're mixed martial arts, they're going to get into a cage and battle and they hug each of their team members and then they go out there. They know they could get seriously injured. They know that they could get hurt in a way that would mess them up for life or at least put them in a very painful situation for weeks or months to come.

They understand the danger involved. Well, we often want to make people feel so at home in our church. We got the best coffee in the lobby there. Oh yeah, and talk about state of the art stuff for the kids, it's amazing. The parking, the ushers, the way they get people in and out is extraordinary.

The service runs so tight, you can time it to be in and out at a certain point with your busy schedule and the pastor's message is so enjoyable. Hey, that's fine, as long as you're telling people the truth, as long as you're producing disciples, not consumers, that's fine to do everything in the best possible way. Yeah, better to do things well than not. Well, if you're going to serve coffee, might as well taste good, not good.

If you're going to have parking, better to have adequate parking than not, fine. But are we producing disciples or consumers? Are we just making people feel good or are we calling them to leave everything, take up their cross and follow Jesus? And now live that out wherever they are in society here, wherever God's calling them, are we producing consumers or disciples? What about you?

What about me? Are we consumers or are we disciples? We're going to open this up. I believe so many of you saying, Dr. Brown, thank you for speaking about this. It's what's in my heart too. I truly and honestly believe that.

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Get on the line of fire by calling 866-34-TRUTH. Here again is Dr. Michael Brown. Just a reminder, make an investment in your body. Be a good steward over your body so you can run your race and honor the Lord. Remember, you have been bought with a price.

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Use the code BROWN25. All right, I'm going to read the words of Jesus from the Gospel of Luke and go back to some of my notes from this message 25 years ago called to die. As they were going along the road, someone said to Jesus, I will follow you wherever you go. Jesus said to him, foxes have holes and birds of the air have nests, but the Son of Man has nowhere to lay his head.

In other words, it's not so easy to follow me. Look, he was unique. He was the Son of God. He was God incarnate. Miracles happened through him. People's lives were transformed.

No one ever spoke and taught as he did. Sure, I want to follow you. Oh, yeah, really?

Really? Do you want the fishes and the loaves? Do you want the stuff that feeds your stomach? Do you want the excitement? The miracles?

Or do you really want me? There's a difference. There's a difference.

And let me say this. If Jesus was more exalted in our meetings and if Jesus was more exalted through us and if people could see Jesus more through us, they would be more ready to leave everything and follow him. To another, he said, follow me. But he said, Lord, let me first go and bury my father. Well, that sounds like a perfectly reasonable request and Judaism emphasized the importance of honoring father and mother and Yeshua himself emphasized the importance of that in Matthew 15 and Mark 7. Even rebuking the religious leaders who developed traditions that would give a loophole for honoring father and mother.

It seems totally reasonable. Jesus said to them, leave the dead to bury their own dead, but as for you, go and proclaim the kingdom of God. Now, there are various answers that commentators give here to maybe soften the blow and to say, look, he was just waiting. His father wasn't about to die. He's like an old man. Let me wait until he dies.

Then I'll follow you. Or some have even argued it was a second burial where after the first burial, the bones would be relocated sometime later. And that's what he was referring to. Either way, we know that Yeshua saw through what the man was saying and saw it as an excuse.

But what he said to him was quite radical. The kingdom of God comes before everything. Now, again, the New Testament is clear. Paul writes in 1 Corinthians 5 that if you don't care for your own, then you're worse than an infidel. So we are called to care for our own. We are called to honor our father and mother. We are called to care for those in our own family and meet those needs.

So dads, don't tell me, well, the Lord just called me to pray all day so there's no money to pay the rent and we're going to be out on the street. Well, the Lord also said in his word, if you don't work, you don't eat. So it's not talking about negligence, but it's a radical call that the kingdom comes first. The kingdom comes first.

I wonder if we just kind of analyze the time that we waste on secondary things or trivial things, whatever it is, surfing the web or watching sports or pursuing some hobby. All the time we spend doing that and then at the end of the week, while I really have enough time to spend quality time with God and prayer, really dig into the word or really serve others, I wonder how that works out in terms of, quote, being a disciple. And then words we started to broadcast with, another said, I'll follow you, Lord, but let me first say farewell to those at my home. And Jesus said to him, no one who puts his hand to the plow and looks back is fit for the kingdom of God. Jesus saw through that and saw double mindedness. All right. Let me read some quotes for you.

A.W. Tozer said this, that this world is a playground instead of a battleground has now been accepted by the vast majority of fundamentalist Christians. Ask yourself about so much preaching and teaching throughout America today or maybe even in the country where you are. Is it preparing you for a battle or is it playground Christianity? Have fun, enjoy Jesus, enjoy life and heaven, too, whereas there's a recognition we're in a battle, not with people, but with demonic forces. This world, as much as we can be blessed in it and enjoy it and have vacations and family time and all of that, ultimately we are in a battle.

Is that our mentality? Paul wrote to Timothy in 2 Timothy 2, endure hardship as a good soldier of Messiah Jesus. Endure hardship as a good soldier of Messiah Jesus. Well, that's why the soldier analogy.

Yeah. Georgie Failing said this, we Christians, this was decades ago as communists was spreading around the world, even sacrificially. We Christians have given Calvary to the communists. They accept deprivation and death to spread their gospel. Well, we Christians reject any gospel that does not major on healing and happiness. Can I read that again?

Is it redundant or worth hearing? We Christians have given Calvary to the communists. They accept deprivation and death to spread their gospel while we Christians reject any gospel that does not major on healing and happiness. And W.R. Inge said this, we are losing our Christianity because Christianity is a creed for heroes.

Well, we are mainly harmless, good natured people who want everybody to have a good time. And some of these quotes are decades old. In fact, some of these I put in my book Revolution. And when you become a torchbird, it's one of the free books you get. When that book came out, it's a whole supernatural story behind it. But we gave away, the day it came out, over 70,000 copies. The day it came out, we gave away over 70,000 copies.

I think it was over one million dollars retail value. We were able to give away a whole supernatural story at a massive event, the largest gathering of Christian young people in American history at that time, September 2nd of the year 2000. The Call D.C. And that remains one of the three R's of our ministry. Revival in the church, gospel based moral and cultural revolution, and redemption in Israel among the Jewish people. We are losing our Christianity because Christianity is a creed for heroes.

Well, we are mainly harmless, good natured people who want everybody to have a good time. Remember when Jesus rebukes the church in Sardis in Revelation 3? You have a reputation for being alive, yet you're dead. He rebukes Laodicea also in Revelation 3 and says, you say I'm rich, increased in wealth, have need of nothing, but don't realize you're rich, pitiful, poor, blind, and naked. What does he say to the church in Smyrna? I know your poverty and your afflictions, yet you're rich. And God can bless us materially. I've been blessed materially over the decades, honoring the Lord, often gone without, but been blessed materially over the years and seen churches and ministries blessed materially. I've even seen people in the poorest parts of the world honoring the Lord and God meeting their needs and enabling them to feed orphans and care for the hurting and the sick. But it's interesting that those that seem to have the most outwardly were the poorest inwardly. And those who seem to have the least outwardly. Philadelphia, I know your strength is little, but you haven't denied my name.

So Smyrna Revelation 2, Philadelphia Revelation 3. It's interesting to see that those that seem to be rich outwardly and prosperous outwardly were dying inwardly. And those who seem to have so little outwardly were thriving spiritually. And that's one of the great challenges.

Not to fall asleep in the midst of this world and to be disciplined in the midst of plenty and to be diligent and to have the mentality of soldiers, even though relatively speaking, compared to people around the world and compared to people through world history, we have it in many ways, most of us, so much easier today. Do you want to be a disciple? Are you in? Again, you're not saved by your righteousness or your works. This is what Jesus calls us to do in obedience to him. Are you all in?

Hey, friends, Dr. Michael Brown here. Do you remember when people thought I was crazy when I said it's not too late for America, that God can still do something in our country, that there is going to be a pushback, a gospel-based moral and cultural revolution? And do you remember when people thought that you were crazy because you felt the same way because you believe what I was saying and already felt it in your heart? Well, friends, that pushback is here. The gospel-based moral and cultural revolution we've been talking about for 25 years is unfolding, and we are right in the thick of it.

And the line of fire broadcast is divinely positioned for such a time as this. Friends, you would be so gratified and blessed as I hear, if you could hear what I hear, testimony after testimony as leaders, young people, old people, moms, dads, students, people from all backgrounds come up to me and say, Dr. Brown, you're providing a template for us. You're providing a blueprint for us. You're showing us how to do this, how to have hearts of compassion, backbones of steel. But friends, it's a joint effort.

We do this together. And with your support, we can amplify this broadcast around the nation and amplify this voice to shake the nation. Join our support team today.

Become a Torchbearer with a dollar or more per day. Here's the number to call to sign up. 800-538-5275. That's 800-538-5275. Or go to AskDrBrown.org, A-S-K-D-R Brown.org, and become a monthly supporter. Click on Donate Monthly Support.

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AskDrBrown.org. This is how we rise up. It's the Line of Fire with your host, Dr. Michael Brown. Get on the Line of Fire by calling 866-34-TRUTH.

Here again is Dr. Michael Brown. Welcome back to the Line of Fire. Not taking your calls today. May I encourage you, if you don't get my emails, we would love to get you on our welcome tour. Share with you what we're doing and how we can be a blessing to you.

I just mentioned our three R's in the last segment. If you're just tuning in, three R's of our ministry, Revival in the Church, Gospel-Based Moral and Cultural Revolution in Society and Redemption in Israel. When you sign up for our emails, we'll first share more of my own story from LSD to PhD, but then take you into the three R's and let you know the thousands of hours of free resources we have and then the classes you can take and the resources you can purchase and how you can join our team and be part of this worldwide Jesus revolution. So askdrbrown.org, A-S-K-D-R brown dot org, right on the home page.

Immediately you have the option to sign up for the emails. If you have our app already, Ask Dr. Brown Ministries, just scroll down on that, click on subscribe. We would love to connect with you. We would love to spend more time with you. We'd love to pour into you.

Literally I work with joy, with great joy day and night to provide resources to help you be healthy and strong so you can thrive in God so that we can see the purposes of God fulfilled for our lifetime. We don't know exactly where we stand in history. We don't know exactly how much time we have left.

God knows. But as our missions director, Josh Peters, said years ago, this may not be the last generation, but it's our last generation. It says, Paul says this of David in Acts 13, that after he fulfilled the purpose of God for his generation, he fell asleep.

That's when he passed away. Let that be the case with you, with me, that when we stand before God, he can say, well done, good and faithful servant. And for me, the best way to ensure that happening is not to live with some frenzy, I can't sleep, I can't enjoy a moment with family, I can't, no, no. It's not getting in a frenzied Harry mentality.

That doesn't produce fruit at all. But to live in such a way that at the end of the day, I can hear God say, well done, good and faithful servant. Yeah, sometimes it's resting well. That can be part of it, Sabbath rest. Sometimes it's just getting alone and praying in quiet, reflective prayer, not writing, not producing. But let's live our lives in such a way that at the end of our lives, we can say with Paul, as he does in 2 Timothy 2, I've fought the good fight. I've finished the race. I've kept the faith. By God's grace, let that be said for each of us. Let me move on with a few more quotes here, taken from my 1998 message called To Die.

C.T. Studd was a prominent cricket player in England, came from a rich family, aristocratic family in England, and he basically had his future made. He was at Cambridge University, I believe, and famous sportsman. So he could have been one of the top cricket players in England and in the world and then lived an enjoyable life as a rich Christian in his country and had good influence and enjoyed the fruit of his labors. But God began to deal with him as a Christian, and he read a tract that was written by an atheist, and the atheist basically said, if what you're saying is true, if there really is a heaven and a hell, if what you believe is true, then you ought to spend the rest of your life giving yourself sacrificially to reach people. Even saying that if there really was a hell and I knew someone was going there, I would crawl across all of England on my hands and knees across broken pieces of glass to get that message to them.

And C.T. Studd thought, that atheist is more consistent in his thinking than I am in mine. And in his case, he ended up leaving his sports career, leaving his wealth, going to China and then Africa, where he spent the rest of his life as a missionary. And if you see what he left and what he got in this world, it was pretty radical.

If you see what he left, what he got in the world to come, it would be even more radical. Let me read to you a quote from, this is from the Muslim Ayatollah Faisal Allah Mahalati. Hamas terrorists and why they're so willing to die for their cause. He who takes up a gun, a dagger, a kitchen knife, or even a pebble with which to harm and kill the enemies of the faith has his place issued in heaven. An Islamic state is a state of war that the whole world sees and accepts the light, until the whole world sees and accepts the light of the true faith.

What's he saying? He's saying we do these things, we commit these terrorist acts because Islam now is in a state of war. This is a radical Muslim speaking.

Islam is in a state of war until the world completely comes to Islam. Now, that's the carnal, fleshly, demonic, destructive way of doing things. That's from below, that's not from above. That's the exact opposite of how we live. Not violence, not hatred, not rebellion, not intimidation, not physically attacking people. God forbid, that is totally contrary. And we're not talking about being in a war, someone bombs your country and you respond in military ways.

We're not talking about that at all. We're talking about the battle for our faith. That is the view of radical Islam. And your average Muslim doesn't think like that. That is the view of radical Islam. But it explains why they're so willing to die for their cause and if they do, men, they go to heaven with 70 virgins and on and on. The fact of the matter is, our commitment to bringing life should be as great as their commitment to bringing death. Our commitment to setting captives free should be as great as them fighting for the cause of Allah. They're doing it in a destructive, demonic way. Our ways are ways of life.

But the mindset, when I read the mindset of revolutionaries in different countries and revolutionaries in different religions and revolutionaries through history, I see that they have this common mentality. Life as it is is not worth living, but the cause is worth dying for. How much more we, who know the Lord, should understand that while we can enjoy this life, having a nice life is not why we're here.

Yes, we're blessed and I enjoy the blessing of God. And I would rather sleep with a roof over my head than in a forest with pouring rain on me. I'd rather sleep on a bed than on a floor. Yes, true, absolutely.

I'd rather have a car that works than have to walk 30 miles, obviously. But we are not here for cars, houses, nice things in this world. We're not here for those things, and yet some of us are so consumed. 1 John 2, 15-17, Don't love the world, neither the things that are in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in them. For everything that's in the world, the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, it's of the world. And the world in its lust will pass away, but whoever does the will of God will remain forever.

Our eyes are set on what matters in eternity. We bear reproach here. We suffer misunderstanding here.

We suffer rejection here. We might lose everything here. We might go to jail here for the faith. We might be killed for the faith. It's happened to countless hundreds of thousands and millions of believers through the centuries. It's happening to this day. Every single week there are believers in different parts of the world who are killed because they are followers of Jesus.

It comes with the territory. You say, well, our lives are not being threatened here. Should we feel guilty? No, not at all. But we should ask ourselves, are we living as disciples?

We should ask ourselves, have I taken up the cross to follow Jesus? You know, I see people living this out that are in the business world, that are homeschooling their kids. They've made counterculture choices in this world. No, they're not being martyred. And some of them are doing very well financially.

They have beautiful homes. That's not the issue. The issue is they are making counterculture choices every day. The issue is they've counted the cost and saying this is the way we go. Well, what if in your business you are required to compromise in order to get your promotion? You already crossed that bridge a long time ago. No, we don't compromise.

We honor the Lord. If I lose their promotion, I lose their promotion. If I lose my status in the company, I lose my status in the company. But I can't compromise my faith for the sake of financial gain. What do you do if you're called in the political world and you have to make a choice?

Loyalty to the party and party backing, but you have to compromise your ethics or stand true and maybe get ousted out of the party. That's a no-brainer. We already crossed that line. Some years ago when we were going to do a series of lectures, it was 2007 in Charlotte, North Carolina, on homosexuality to the church and society, we were going to set a tone of gracious interaction. We made clear that there was going to be open mic discussion after every lecture, that there would be no hate speech or gay bashing or Christian bashing allowed. This is going to be a time of civil interaction. But a colleague of mine with a lot of experience on the front lines of the culture wars said, Mike, have you considered what might happen?

I said, what do you mean? He said, look, there are wackos everywhere. There are wackos in the church. There are wackos among atheists. There are wackos among gays. There are wackos among straights.

There are wackos everywhere, right? They're bad apples. They're violent people.

They're unstable people. They said to me, have you considered what might happen when you do these lectures because you got some bad apples everywhere? I said, what do you mean? He said, well, you might have someone try to hurt you or attack you. I said, I don't get it.

He said, well, you may need to consider police protection or, and in fact, the only way we were allowed to hold the lecture is if we had an armed policeman present every night. And it turned out to be absolutely not necessary. Everyone was civil on all sides.

The interaction was gracious on all sides, but that's what the venue required. But I said to him, I crossed that bridge when I got saved. We follow Jesus, whether by life or by death. That's where it starts. So just think of this, all right?

Think of this. So you're interviewing people that are going to become members of your church. Let's say you have a church that has formal membership. So you're interviewing people. We're going to welcome new members this week, and you're just going through things, and you got your checklist. You say, oh, this was, this was, okay, great. I see that you really, one of the things that draws you here is you love the children's program. Your kids find it really exciting.

That is so excellent. Okay, yeah, everybody loves our restaurant in the lobby with you, little snacks and things. Yeah, everybody loves that.

So boom, that's a given. That's why you're here. And you find the pastor really enjoyable and messaged only 20 minutes, and that's really good because your family's busy. Terrific. And you've read through our statement of faith. You agree with that. And you're willing to give and to contribute to the well-being of the flock here. Excellent. We just have two more questions for you. Are you willing to suffer for Jesus, and are you willing to die for Jesus? Because that's what we require for our members.

I wonder what our membership roles would look like. When I lived in Pensacola, Florida, there was a joke, because it's Bible Belt there, that there are more Baptists than people in the city. And someone said, oh, yeah, there's so many Baptist churches, and you could die three times and move two times, but you stay on the rolls. So the rolls of the church might be 1,000 people, but a building only seats 100, and there are 70 there on a Sunday.

It's just kind of a cute thing. Not an attack on Baptists, just a cute thing in the Bible Belt. Well, following Jesus, he never changed the standard.

We may have ordered it down here in America. We may have just made this thing, just ask him in and have a nice life and go to heaven. But he says, if you want to follow me, you must deny yourself, take up the cross, and follow me.

He also said, let you leave everything. You can't be my disciple. Luke 14, 33, by which he means, in your heart, you surrender everything in your life and say, Lord, I now live for you. Whatever you have for me, I'm your servant. Here I am.

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Not taking your calls today. May I encourage you, if you don't get my emails, we would love to get you on our welcome tour, share with you what we're doing and how we can be a blessing to you. I just mentioned our three R's in the last segment.

If you're just tuning in, three R's of our ministry, Revival in the Church, Gospel-Based Moral and Cultural Revolution in Society, and redemption in Israel. When you sign up for our emails, we'll first share more of my own story from LSD to PhD, but then take you into the three R's and let you know the thousands of hours of free resources we have and then the classes you can take and the resources you can purchase and how you can join our team and be part of this worldwide Jesus revolution. So askdrbrown.org, A-S-K-D-R brown.org, right on the home page. We absolutely have the option to sign up for the emails. If you have our app already, ask Dr. Brown Ministries.

Just scroll down on that, click on subscribe. We would love to connect with you. We would love to spend more time with you. We'd love to pour into you.

Literally, I work with joy, with great joy, day and night, to provide resources to help you be healthy and strong so you can thrive in God so that we can see the purposes of God fulfilled for our lifetime. We don't know exactly where we stand in history. We don't know exactly how much time we have left.

God knows. But as our missions director, Josh Peters, said years ago, this may not be the last generation, but it's our last generation. It says, Paul says this of David in Acts 13, that after he fulfilled the purpose of God for his generation, he fell asleep.

That's when he passed away. Let that be the case with you, with me, that when we stand before God, he can say, Well done, good and faithful servant. And for me, the best way to ensure that happening is not to live with some frenzy. I can't sleep. I can't enjoy a moment with family. No, no, it's not getting in a frenzied Harry mentality.

That doesn't produce fruit at all. But it's to live in such a way that at the end of the day, I can hear God say, Well done, good and faithful servant. Yeah, sometimes it's resting well. That can be part of it, Sabbath rest. Sometimes it's just getting alone and praying in quiet, reflective prayer, not writing, not producing. But let's live our lives in such a way that at the end of our lives, we can say with Paul, as he does in 2 Timothy 2, I've fought the good fight. I've finished the race. I've kept the faith. By God's grace, let that be said for each of us. Let me move on with a few more quotes here, taken from my 1998 message called To Die.

C.T. Studd was a prominent cricket player in England, came from a rich family, aristocratic family in England, and he basically had his future made. He was at Cambridge University, I believe, and a famous sportsman, so he could have been one of the top cricket players in England and in the world, and then lived an enjoyable life as a rich Christian in his country and had good influence and enjoyed the fruit of his labors. But God began to deal with him as a Christian, and he read a tract that was written by an atheist, and the atheist basically said, if what you're saying is true, if there really is a heaven and a hell, if what you believe is true, then you ought to spend the rest of your life giving yourself sacrificially to reach people. You know, even saying that if there really was a hell, and I knew someone was going there, I would crawl across all of England on my hands and knees across broken pieces of glass to get that message to them.

And C.T. Studd thought, that atheist is more consistent in his thinking than I am in mine. And in his case, he ended up leaving his sports career, leaving his wealth, going to China and then Africa, where he spent the rest of his life as a missionary. And if you see what he left and what he got in this world, it was pretty radical.

If you see what he left, what he got in the world to come, it would be even more radical. Let me read to you a quote from, this is from the Muslim Ayatollah Faisal Allah Mahalati. Hamas terrorists and why they're so willing to die for their cause. He who takes up a gun, a dagger, a kitchen knife, or even a pebble with which to harm and kill the enemies of the faith has his place issued in heaven. An Islamic state is a state of war that the whole world sees and accepts the light, until the whole world sees and accepts the light of the true faith.

What's he saying? He's saying we do these things, we commit these terrorist acts because Islam now is in a state of war. This is a radical Muslim speaking.

Islam is in a state of war until the world completely comes to Islam. Now, that's the carnal, fleshly, demonic, destructive way of doing things. That's from below.

That's not from above. That's the exact opposite of how we live. Not violence, not hatred, not rebellion, not intimidation, not physically attacking people. God forbid, that is totally contrary. And we're not talking about being in a war, someone bombs your country and you respond in military ways.

We're not talking about that at all. We're talking about the battle for our faith. That is the view of radical Islam. And your average Muslim doesn't think like that. That is the view of radical Islam. But it explains why they're so willing to die for their cause and if they do, men, they go to heaven with 70 virgins and on and on. The fact of the matter is our commitment to bringing life should be as great as their commitment to bringing death. Our commitment to setting captives free should be as great as them fighting for the cause of Allah. They're doing it in a destructive, demonic way. Our ways are ways of life.

But the mindset, when I read the mindset of revolutionaries in different countries and revolutionaries in different religions and revolutionaries through history, I see that they had this common mentality. Life as it is is not worth living, but the cause is worth dying for. How much more we, who know the Lord, should understand, while we can enjoy this life, having a nice life is not why we're here. Yes, we're blessed and I enjoy the blessing of God and I would rather sleep with a roof over my head than in a forest with pouring rain on me. I'd rather sleep on a bed than on a floor. Yes, true, absolutely. I'd rather have a car that works than have to walk 30 miles.

Obviously. But we are not here for cars, houses, nice things. We're not here for those things and yet some of us are so consumed. 1 John 2, 15-17, don't love the world and the things that are in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in them. For everything that's in the world, the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, it's of the world. And the world in its lust will pass away, but whoever does the will of God will remain forever.

Our eyes are set on what matters in eternity. We bear reproach here. We suffer misunderstanding here.

We suffer rejection here. We might lose everything here. We might go to jail here for the faith. We might be killed for the faith. It's happened to countless hundreds of thousands and millions of believers through the centuries. It's happening to this day. Every single week there are believers in different parts of the world who are killed because they are followers of Jesus.

It comes with the territory. You say, well, our lives are not being threatened here. Should we feel guilty?

No, not at all. But we should ask ourselves, are we living as disciples? We should ask ourselves, have I taken up the cross to follow Jesus? You know, I see people living this out that are in the business world, that are homeschooling their kids. They've made counterculture choices in this world. No, they're not being martyred, and some of them are doing very well financially, have beautiful homes.

That's not the issue. The issue is they are making counterculture choices every day. The issue is they've counted the cost of saying this is the way we go. Well, what if in your business you are required to compromise in order to get your promotion? You already crossed that bridge a long time ago. No, we don't compromise.

We honor the Lord. If I lose their promotion, I lose their promotion. If I lose my status in the company, I lose my status in the company, but I can't compromise my faith for the sake of financial gain. What do you do if you're called in the political world and you have to make a choice?

Loyalty to the party and party backing, but you have to compromise your ethics or stand true and maybe get ousted out of the party. That's a no-brainer. We already crossed that line. Some years ago when we were going to do a series of lectures, and it was 2007 in Charlotte, North Carolina, on homosexuality to the church and society, we were going to set a tone of gracious interaction. We made clear that there was going to be open mic discussion after every lecture, that there would be no hate speech or gay bashing or Christian bashing allowed. This is going to be a time of civil interaction. But a colleague of mine with a lot of experience on the front lines of the culture wars said, Mike, have you considered what might happen?

I said, what do you mean? He said, look, there are wackos everywhere. There are wackos in the church. There are wackos among atheists. There are wackos among gays. There are wackos among straights.

There are wackos everywhere, right? They're bad apples. They're violent people.

They're unstable people. They said to me, have you considered what might happen when you do these lectures because you got some bad apples everywhere? I said, what do you mean? He said, well, you might have someone try to hurt you or attack you. I said, I don't get it.

He said, well, you may need to consider police protection or, and in fact, the only way we were allowed to hold the lectures is if we had an armed policeman present every night. And it turned out to be absolutely not necessary. Everyone was civil on all sides.

The interaction was gracious on all sides, but that's what the venue required. But I said to him, I crossed that bridge when I got saved. We follow Jesus, whether by life or by death. That's where it starts.

So just think of this, all right, think of this. So you're interviewing people that are gonna become members of your church. Let's say you have a church that has formal membership. So you're interviewing people. We're gonna welcome new members this week and you're just going through things and you got your checklist. You say, oh, this was, this was okay, great. I see that you really, one of the things that draws you here is you love the children's program. Your kids find it really exciting. That is so excellent. Okay, yeah, everybody loves our restaurant in the lobby with your little snacks and things.

Yeah, everybody loves that. So boom, that's a given, that's why you're here. And you find the pastor really enjoyable and message is only 20 minutes and that's really good because your family's busy. Terrific, and you've read through our statement of faith. You agree with that and you're willing to give and to contribute to the well-being of the flock here. Excellent, we just have two more questions for you.

Are you willing to suffer for Jesus and are you willing to die for Jesus? Because that's what we require for our members. I wonder what our membership roles would look like when I lived in Pensacola, Florida. There was a joke because it's Bible Belt there that there are more Baptists than people in the city. And someone said, oh yeah, there's so many Baptist churches and you could die three times and move two times but you stay on the rolls so the rolls of the church might be 1,000 people but a building only seats 100 and there are 70 there on a Sunday. It's just kind of a cute thing, not an attack on Baptists, just a cute thing in the Bible Belt. Well, following Jesus, he never changed the standard.

We may have watered it down here in America. We may have just made this thing, just ask him in and have a nice life and go to heaven but he says if you want to follow me, you must deny yourself, take up the cross and follow me. He also said let you leave everything. You came from my disciple, Luke 14, 33, by which he means in your heart. You surrender everything in your life and say, Lord, I now live for you. Whatever you have for me, I'm your servant. Here I am, send me, I'm in. Are you? Is this dust?
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-09-01 18:50:16 / 2023-09-01 19:12:52 / 23

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