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Renewing Your Mind for the New Year #1

The Truth Pulpit / Don Green
The Truth Network Radio
December 29, 2021 7:00 am

Renewing Your Mind for the New Year #1

The Truth Pulpit / Don Green

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December 29, 2021 7:00 am

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What if we looked at the calendar and set another year has gone by. Another time is rolling along.

What should I be thinking in those terms.

What if we took the opportunity to think like that. Where would it take us well.

Psalm 90 gives us direction with the new year just to have.

We often like to anticipate what's to come.

These days it could be tempting to be pessimistic, given serious global and national events. But as pastor Don Greene reminds us today on the truth, pulpit, Christian should embrace the future with hope and thanksgiving. Hello again, I'm Bill Wright and were continuing our series as the calendar turned with part one of a message titled renewing your mind for the new year and on. How do we renew our minds anyway. Well my friend, we certainly cannot renew our minds, simply on our own.

We need help from outside in the good news is this is that God has given us in his inspired Word the Bible to bring truth to our minds that will change the way that we think when we change the way that we think it changes the way that we feel in the things we do in life.

So my friend let me encourage you as we approach the new year, read and study your Bible and you'll find that your thinking and your life are being transformed. Thank you, Don and Fran turn in your Bible to Psalm 90 as we join our teacher now in the truth.

Pulpit and Psalm 90, Moses meditates on the character of God, and then he contrasted with the mortality of man and having reflected on God's eternal nature vis--vis the mortality of man. He then turns to prayer and make certain requests that God would bless the labor of his hands. It starts out vertical it goes horizontal and then he turns to prayer. He thinks about God.

Then he thinks about life and then that brings him to pray what Moses does in this song is he helps us put life itself into perspective. He helps us think about the realities that shape all of life, and here's what I would say to you, beloved, is that what you see in Psalm 90 is definitive for the way the to think rightly about all of life and without these things. You cannot possibly have a correct view of life a correct worldview at all and yet with these things. All of a sudden you are said in a place where you are able to have a perspective to think rightly about everything that would happen in the coming year, or anything that is happened to you in the past and so this is a wonderful Solomon were going to bring four points out here. How is it that you should think about life will first of all in the first principle that we would say here is this is that you must embrace eternity, you must embrace eternity. Moses draws on the E turn now a T of God is he begins this meditation has he begins this prayer that is Psalm 90 look at verse one with me.

He says Lord so he addresses God, as Adam and I he says that you have been our dwelling place in all generations before the mountains were born or you gave birth to the earth and the world, even from everlasting to everlasting you are God.

Notice the right from the start he goes to a lofty realm of thought, he goes and he he thinks about any addresses God from the perspective of God's eternal character speaking is the leader of the people of Israel at that time. He says Lord you've been our dwelling place through all generations. God called Abraham out in rough terms about 2000 2100 years before the time of Christ.

Moses is writing about 1400 years before the time of Christ. And so in very general rough terms for six or 700 years God had been the God of the people of Israel given the God of Abraham and his descendents, and so Moses is writing here from a perspective of God's long centuries-old dealings with his people and he brings that out in verse 20 says Lord you've been our dwelling place in all generations and yet he goes even further back than that. He says you've been our God for centuries and yet in verse two he stretches back before time began, and he says before the mountains were born or you gave birth to the earth and the world, even from everlasting to everlasting you are God. He thinks about God from the sense that God is timeless. God never began because he had always been is absolutely eternal in his character, and so he goes back to the earliest point in earthly time, the creation of the world in the mountains on it. He says God you existed even before then if were going to set the cornerstone and square everything up with what reality truly is. We have to go back and see who it is that is the source of all existence is the eternal God and that God is not bound by time like we are is not affected by the motions of what happens in the world like we are is not affected by the ups and downs of life as we are.

He dwells outside of that, he dwells outside of history. God established his eternal purposes before time began, and we must understand that we must have that at the cornerstone of the way that we think about life, the life originated with an eternal God, who in his great infinite omniscience determined where the course of history would go before the world began, and now in time. He is working out those purposes.

God is above the vicissitudes of time he is above the rolling waves of time in life and death and birth in the cycle of life is way above that is infinitely above that and that is where you must start your thinking if you're going to think rightly about life going into the new year, you must embrace eternity. What I mean by that is that you must calculate God's eternal reality in the way that you think about life and what happens to you after time and we will find that God has accomplished his purposes to perfection. So think about this for some reason I mention this in the past when I'm thinking about free eternal you know eternity before time began.

It's always to my left and eternity future is always to my right. I don't know why that is but it helps me think spatially about it. I guess, but here's a way that you should think about life. Here's a way that you should think about existence. God existed before time began, God determined the way that he wanted the course of events to go before the mountains ever existed. Now, as you step in the time from that here the meaning of time is that God is working out those purposes.

Over the course of generations in order to bring it to the result that he intends to culminate in eternity future is very transcendent, lofty thought that that Moses is laying out here for us. And so for you to understand life at all is to realize that you are in a God of time in a much larger perspective that is governed by the eternal God, who is dwelling outside of time that God's eternal character that God's eternal purpose that God's insurer outworking of that eternal purpose is the ultimate context of your life you live life. Watch this. This is foundational and and no one can understand life until this is anchored in their thinking. You live the life in a context in a realm you live a life in the realm of God achieving his eternal purposes and that is what is always going on in time God inexorably working out the eternal purposes which he established before time began book. I mean that's the reality of history and those who would define God out of existence. Those who would ignore him. They can't possibly understand what life is about. Because this is what reality is. Now what is the implication of that for your earthly life today and as you look forward into 2016. What does that mean, how should you think about what happens to you, good things by earthly standards.

Blessings come to you or tragedy strikes or it's just a matter of routine, and this year seems like last year. What should you think about that well look over to Ecclesiastes chapter 7 verse 14 just to the right in your Bible. Beyond the book of Proverbs. If you get the Isaiah you've gone too far. Ecclesiastes chapter 7 verse 14 will start in verse 13 Ecclesiastes chapter 7 verse 13 Scripture calls you to think in these terms, Scripture calls you to meditate on the transcendent reality of God and his purposes, and to realize what that means for your life.

Ecclesiastes 7 verse 13 says, consider the work of God. For who is able to straighten what he has bent who can change the purpose of God when he sets his hand to do it. Then in verse 14 it says in the day of prosperity be happy, but in the day of adversity, consider that God has made the wine as well as the other so that man will not discover anything that will be after him. You must understand the whatever comes into your life is going to be something that God has appointed for you in that and that if if everybody likes the prosperous times. Everybody loves the good health and that the blessings and everybody can rejoice and be happy and that Scripture says, good for you if you realize it that's coming from the hand of God, be happy and take joy in it.

But in. Here's where Christian worldview, a biblical worldview starts to shape the way that you think and respond alive when adversity hits, you must remember that God has appointed that for you as well. Job said in Job chapter 2.

The Lord gave, and the Lord is taken away. Blessed be the name of the Lord.

So another words you have to look past the outworking of your circumstances and embrace the eternal nature of God and the fact that he is working out eternal purposes.

Sometimes that will be to the liking of your earthly desires. Sometimes it will be directly contrary to them.

You must think about it from the perspective whatever comes blessing or adversity. This is what God has given me this is what I must respond to. I must bow low in worship because I remember who he is. He is the eternal God outside of time to existed before the mountains were for mouthful and it is a lot to take in it you know it's not until you really start thinking along those terms which are really really starting to think rightly about life. We all tend to be too superficial. We tend to be too carnal in our thinking. We tend to be too earthbound. That's why we need Scripture to help us and let me just bring this out and kind of work out a little bit of pastoral implication to you here. I speak gently to discourage charts, speak gently and kindly to those of you who are way down. Are you entering into this new year with discouragement. Maybe over chronic long-term trials that seem to have no end. No resolution in sight. Does the new year bring trials to you, beloved, let me encourage you to return to this perspective that were talking about the hand of God is in everything that happens there is nothing that is happened in your life that God hasn't hasn't directed you to this very point of your existence and that's can be pretty hard to swallow. Sometimes if you bought into a sugary view of God, the God just exist to manipulate circumstances to your liking, but those of you that have those of you that are going through a really hard trials that view of God doesn't do much for you in the end does it what you need is something more substantial. What you need is to understand that that the trials and the adversity that God has appointed for you has come from a wise eternal plan that is outside of time and that God is wisely directing your life in order to accomplish his purposes, and when you think about it from that perspective. Then all of a sudden you have a real foundation that you can stand on. You have a real anchor that can settle life for you say. Even though this is difficult. I realize that there is an eternal context of what's happening here, far beyond my realm to be able to comprehend and see but I can rest in this because I know who God is.

I know that he is eternal and his eternal purposes. Watch this, his eternal purposes are sure they are certain they are wise they are good and here's the part that you need to get across the bridge to and it is more important that his eternal purposes be accomplished than it is for me to be have happy circumstances in my life. If God has appointed adverse circumstances to me for a time. I accept that.

Say to yourself I embrace that because I realize that his eternal purposes at work and that is what I want to see advanced so in the day of adversity, consider that God has made that day for you. Just as he did the longer ago times the days of your prosperity and you can you can rest in that you can anchor and that and you know and I realize that you know what were saying here is just so contrary to what real people that make you want to think the guy just want you to be healthy and happy. God wants everything to go well for you just like you wanted to go God just had it will no you know some of the greatest things that have happened in the course of church history and of the people of God have come from from people suffering and people being alone and and and people being isolated in the course of a difficult life. You know what what what what what what would we think about Christ on the cross, crying out in it and dereliction saying God, why have you forsaken me Paul saying at the end of his ministry only Luke is with me and speaking in in the Corinthian epistles about what he knows about as he describes the adversity in the beatings and the shipwrecks in the sleeplessness in the hunger and thirst that he went through.

You cannot possibly reconcile the biblical reality of the of Christ and the greatest men of the faith. With this superficial sugary view of God that is being taught so broadly and roundly, it can't be right, and they can't be can see, can't be reconciled to what the biblical testimony is, once you recognize that and you say okay that's true for me to then then then then what happens is is that there's this there's this powerful understanding. There's this force almost the spiritual force it overtakes your thinking and you realize I don't have to be prosperous. I don't have to avoid adversity in my life because I'm just part of something bigger.

The eternal purposes of God and knowing that I belonging to that in recognizing and embracing it. That's what I want my life to be about anyone. So whether it's prosperity or adversity. Either one is simply an expression of the eternal purpose of God.

And that's what I'm after. That's a way that you think that kind of thinking set you well.

It sets you to be able to look to the future with serenity without fear of bad things happening all of a sudden you can look forward and say whatever happens is going to be of further outworking of the purposes of God. And if it's adversity I'm going to bless God just the same. If it's prosperity changes life sometimes I don't know if I should say this or not but I'm going to. There are times where I I say things and I preach things simply because this is going to sound too self-centered and it's not like this is always for your outbuilding to the best of my ability, but many times at the stage of my life. I am preaching things that I wish I had heard when I was a young man when I was 16 or 20 or 22 when I was going through some real adversity in my life and I didn't have this perspective, it would've it would've transformed everything if I if I had only known then what I know now from Scripture. I wouldn't of been so I wouldn't of been so anxious and worried that somebody was going to's break in and steal one of my kids you know when we were living in a crime infested area in Southern California, I would've been so worried about what was happening with my career when things turned against me in in the places that I was at, you know, I needed this. I didn't have it in my heart I just didn't know God, that will I didn't know Scripture in this in the way that you know being able to study over time is brought and so and so there's the sense that I know that you need this to because I needed and didn't have it. I want you to have it so that so that you can you can sync the roots of your life in the soil of the sovereign goodness of God and and stand like a man when adversity hits. That's what I want for you to stand like a woman of God that perspective comes when you know God deeply and you know God deeply when you see how Scripture describes him. That's what you're seeing here from Psalm Psalm 90 and so in the midst of your hardship. Beloved, I would say yes. It's hard.

I realize that it's very difficult for you and I sympathize with that.

But what I want you to see from Scripture is is that your God, your heavenly father, your Lord Jesus Christ, who laid his life down for you to secure your eternal redemption that God, that you belong to is certainly working out his purposes in your life without fail, and because that is true you can know that it will be good for you in the end, even if you can't see or understand how that would be true right now and so knowing that God is in control changes everything.

Knowing that he is eternal means that there can be no human opposition or circumstance that could raise up and counteract and stop his eternal purpose from being accomplished.

How can we think anything else you know God is God.

God is in control, not Satan, not adverse people in your life, not the hardship God's those of you that know Christ.

God is your heavenly father God is the father of your Lord Jesus Christ.

You know he's good. That's why he was on the cross loving your soul that the sake of his own life. He can't possibly have anything other than the highest, noblest, holiest purposes for what he's doing in your life. So rest in that and trust him and obey him. And yes, even let's say it this way even to even to humble yourself under the hardship and trust him to say Lord I accept this because I believe that you're working out your eternal purpose. First Peter 510 says that the chapter God says a God as opposed to the proud but gives grace to the humble and at the culmination of that Peter says after you suffered for a little while, the God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, will himself perfect, confirm and strengthen and establish you. You know what it means to be a Christian. It means that God has called you so that you would share in his eternal glory forever.

That is the purpose for which he saved you he saved you so that you would be fit for his presence in all of eternity. He saved you so that you could become conformed to the image of his son the Lord Jesus Christ you would we gather around giving glory to him and receiving eternal blessing from him in a perfect realm of glass that we can't begin to comprehend or speculate on how wonderful it's going to be. That's why God saved you and Peter says he called you to his eternal glory in Christ. Well, what if your adversity, your present adversity was simply the training ground.

The preparation that made you fit for that eternal glory.

What if it was what if life was like that.

But if that's what life was about, it is what if God is simply using your hardship to shape you and perfect you for the glory that is called you to receive an inheritance that belongs to you and is reserved in heaven for you, waiting for you to enter in just a little while from what if that were the reality of life would change everything would change everything just just reorient your whole perspective of everything that happens to you. If you embrace this eternal purpose of God.

If you embrace eternity in your thinking and you're going to completely see life differently than keeping it eternal perspective is an important first step in renewing your mind for the new year but pastor Don Greene will offer three more principles next time you're on the truth pulpit, so be sure to join us then.

Right now though, here's done with some exciting ministry news my friend. It's always meaningful for me to be able to preach God's word to God's people and to share with you here on the radio recently I completed a series that is one of my all-time favorites. It's called the Bible and Roman Catholicism was several messages designed to test Catholic teaching by what Scripture says we like to share a copy of that with you a full complete CD album of 10 messages just go to our website and requested or you'll find the downloads we just want you to have this material at no cost as our gift and ministry to you.

Thanks, Don, and friend.

As Don mentioned, visit us at the truth. for more. That's the truth. by Bill right and will see you next time on the truth pulpit

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