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June 9, 2021 8:00 am
Understand that when you are down to nothing.
It's only because God is up to something Jonathan Evans is God is ready to transform our tough situations into a good bit into he comes into the problem and he changes your testimony from a problem with friends celebrating faithfulness. This is the alternative Dr. Tony Evans, author, speaker, senior pastor of Oakland Bible Fellowship in Dallas Texas and president of the alternative, not one of us is immune wondering why we face certain struggles in our lives. But today, Jonathan Evans explains the guy can turn any negative situation into something good for us and for those around us. Let's join him as he helps us get a look at the big picture.
Each person in this world can look back and tell a story of how they got to where they currently are to talk to you about one verse one verse that really caught my attention as I was talking and thinking through what I would talk about this morning and it's what I call a testimony for the ages because this verse spells out how that thing works. It spells out how testimony works. How this church is gotten to where it is how you gotten to where you are, how I'm even able to stand on the stage right now and beware God is called me to be at this very moment. If the testimony is found in Genesis 50 verse 20 mil you will know it will after I read this verse and say it out loud. You may make the church space because you notices your verse by Genesis 5020 simply says this Joseph was looking at his brother and he said you meant it for evil but God meant it for good. In order to bring about this present result to preserve many lives. That right there is a testimony. He's looking back on his life and he's recounting his story to get him to the place where he currently is. Now what about 100 years old he died of 110 and is looking back and letting the people in his presence know his brothers that there was something bad that happened. But God was able to turn around and make it good it was to bring me to the place where I'm currently standing in the goal is always to preserve somebody's life that this church is testimony.
Everything was always good at the beginning there were some hard things that we had to work through in order to get to the present place where we currently stand, but even though we had some hard things God took those hard things and made them good things so that we can get to a pinnacle or present result, or he has to, and the goal is always to preserve somebody's life. That's how the testimony works.
That's how your testimony works.
That's how Joseph's testimony worked in he's letting us know he's giving us some of his 2020 vision and some of his hindsight so that some of us that may be in the hard part or the pit part or the dark part. The empty part, the part that's hard to give you a little bit of some of his vision so that you don't give up because there's going to be somebody in the future that's going to be counting on your testimony.
The reason why you're sitting in this room is because early on when things are tough. The church didn't give up and now there are many people who are benefiting on the church's testimony.
The fact that we can stand here for 42 years, but Joseph let you know that this testimony is an investment that God makes in your life.
In other words, it starts in the red and moves its way to the black most people be God, and they wanted to start in the black.
Knowing God makes an investment in your life, because he has a place where he's trying to take you.
He's going to make that investment and you will find yourself starting in the red but it's for the goal of that investment to take root so that you can move to the black. That's why you can't make the mistake and look at where somebody is currently in think that you know their story.
You can't come to this church and sit down and and see how big it is in all the land and all the buildings and think that you know how we got here. A lot of people make assumptions when they look at other people and what they have or what the where they live and what they drive and they start assuming things about them, but really there. Reality is you don't know them. You don't know what God took them through to get them to the place where they currently are because there were things that each person in this room has gone through to make it where you are or are going through in order to get to the place where God wants you to be.
It's called the testimony of Joseph spells out how this thing works.
He said you meant it for evil. It started back but God meant that things are good in order to bring about this present result in order to preserve somebody's life. He starts out by telling his brothers. You minute for evil, you know what he was talking about, you know the story.
I just want to survey it for second he's talking about Genesis 37. You see, Joseph was the man who had favor from his father. His father loved him and gave him a robe or tunic a very colored tunic that represented dominion and authority that represented his calling that represented the fact that he had been handed rights, firstborn rights, even though he wasn't the firstborn, so he had that external evidence of the father's favor that he was wearing, but not only did he have that Joseph had a dream.
He was a visionary. He had a dream of things that he was thinking about how high up. He would go and that his brothers would actually be bowing down to him and so somebody didn't give his brothers the memo that favor a fair somebody didn't let his brothers know that it is everybody doesn't get portion out the same. It doesn't work like that.
Matthew 25 wasn't written then so they didn't know about the talents in the five and the two when the one they didn't understand all of that, so they didn't get the memo that favorite and fair. So when they saw that tunic and when they heard those dreams. They were jealous and they did not want Joseph to experience the calling on his life. So it says in Genesis 3723 and 24 that his brothers stripped him of his tunic is very colored tunic and then they threw him into the pit and the pit was empty without any water in it. So here Joseph is gone from having the father's favor to being stripped of the external evidence of the father's favor. Then being thrown into a pit and then being in a pit or he's not even getting the simplest of provisions. Water and feeling that it's empty. Here he is in the pit of his testimony he's thinking and recounting Genesis 37 while he's at Genesis 50 3200 years old and he's letting you know that this thing started bad, you know what my brothers tried to do.
They tried to strip me of the father's favor that there are people with you know it's bad when the people that you think you can tell your dream to our jealous of the very dream that you have and people that you think will push you towards your dreams are the ones who want to strip you from your dreams. It's a sad reality when the people closest to you don't want to see your well-being because they didn't get the memo that favors just not fair.
And so they stripped him of the external evidence of the father's favor on his life.
But why do they do that because they couldn't strip him of his dream. That's internal so because they couldn't reach into his brain and stripped him of his dream. That's what they wanted.
They decided to strip him of the evidence of his dream so that his external body would never make it to his drink. See, this is a tactic of the enemy. John 1010 the enemy comes to steal, kill and destroy. Trying to take your testimony from you in the way that he does that is to strip you of the external evidence of the father's favor in your life so that you will feel like you have lost the father's favor in your life and if I can make you feel like you have lost the father's favor. Then I can make you operate as if you do not have the father's favor.
So what the brothers were doing as they were stripping him externally, but it was so that they can get an internal result get them into a pit where he can't move. If I can make you depressed if I can make you think that your life is worthless if I can make you think that God is not doing anything with you that that's where you're going to stay that you're going to be that the identity that you're going to have. Then I can kill you, even when keeping you alive because you won't have a testimony you won't have a Genesis 50 experience because means stripping you externally have stripped you internally.
That's what the enemy did with Joe you read the story. He took his house. He took his family. He put Boyles on his skin.
He did all of these external methods, but it was for an internal result, you need to deny God, my purpose is to try to get you to denounce God is not about all of these external things. I'm just using that as a vehicle.
He did what Adam and Eve.
You see this fruit you see that tree got him to think about the external, but the purpose was for internal sin to mess up the world.
They did it with Jesus in Matthew chapter 4, he showed him the rock turned in the Brady show them the kingdoms of this earth given to you but I need you to bow down and worship me. He's always trying to do something in our external world to strip us of what God is trying to do in the spiritual providential world. That's what Joseph is talking about when he recounts the story and that happened to us as a church. Most people don't know that there was a time when we had nowhere to go. As a church we read a Dale Turner which is my elementary school right around the corner here on Polk Street and we had nowhere to go. Because this school had decided even though we were meeting there in God's favor was there and we were closed with a place to meet in the church house they decided they cannot hostess anymore. They decided that we have to move you along and so my parents and the elders and deacons at the time were in a rock and a hard place because I thought we had the father's favor, but not restrict of the external evidence that we use the head. And so, this church has experienced what it is to feel and see the father working in your life with them to also see the enemy try to strip it from. But just because the enemy strips. It doesn't mean that God but still have just because you lose because the enemy does the just because you lose the external evidence of the father's favor, doesn't mean you don't still have the internal providence of what God is doing. We have to have clarity of vision in Genesis 50 gives us clarity of vision based on this testimony that God has a testimony for your life. You have safe purpose for your life. It is not random. You are not here just to sit soaked in sour and a random mundane way of living. He can't create the universe and create a self-sustaining world based on the water from an article when it melts and goes down so that we can have vegetation so that we can still grieve and have all of these things that are working in unison like your body but then create you for random purpose. It doesn't work like that God has a purpose for your life if you didn't, you wouldn't be sitting in here but what the enemy wants you to do is think otherwise. When he put you in that pit alike I come knocking to make it. I'm not really sure that I'm not can I get there. I don't really know if God has my back. I feel forgotten. This is for me. I see what everybody else is doing.
But I'm my vision is fuzzy because I don't see what God is doing in my life that is a tactic of the enemy to ruin your Genesis 50 experience. Jonathan Evans will come back with more of our message after these thoughts from Dr. Tony Evans on 40 years of faithfulness as we come into the celebration, about 40 years since the beginning of the urban alternative.
Words cannot express my gratitude to God for his faithfulness to the development of this ministry. Little did I know when we began with cassette tapes and we were begging them up because people were requesting the sermons that he would take humble beginnings and turn it into an international ministry now 1400 stations daily in 30 countries around the world reaching hundreds and hundreds of thousands of people with the truth of God.
I am humbled by his faithfulness to me and to the orbital and I'm certainly grateful for all the frenzies given us been faithful to praise God for 40 years of his fame as part of our 40 year celebration of God's faithfulness are taking this opportunity to share a series of encouraging messages from Tony's son Jonathan and author, speaker and chaplain serves with his father in the local church and national ministry. Tony will be returning to the broadcast on June 22. You know, is not driven shared none of what we do here would be possible without the faithful contributions of people like you and that's why we put together a special package. His way of saying thank you. You make a donation to keep this ministry going. It starts with the current nine message audio collection called forever starts now also includes a copy of Jonathan's brand-new life-changing book.
Your time is now. Get what God has given you together this powerful package expands what we been learning today about discovering and fulfilling your God-given purpose God has something special. He intends for you to do these resources will help you find what it is and take action toward doing it and doing it now. We like you to have a copy of forever starts now and your time is now is our gift when you make a donation to help support the work of the alternative. But don't wait. This offer will only be around for a short while details are waiting for email@example.com you can also sign up for Tony's free weekly email devotional again as Tony Evans.org or call our 24 hour resource request line at 1-800-800-3222 let one of our friendly team members help you again 1-800-800-3222 will have more of today's message right after this God has plans to make a venue for Amanda for influence strength and grace purpose. Are you ready to live up to your highest potential Tony Evans brand-new and long-awaited kingdom and rice will follow up with that selecting the man which has sold over 400,000 copies challenges meant to sharpen their spiritual and relational skills to intentionally live within influence of mindset in all areas of life filled with authentic stories of struggle and heartfelt personal loss fully takes after God's word to show men how to clear all optical journey that leads to living a life of influence and impact as you read each page you will find your soul scared to reach more of what God says is possible longer settling for pre-just go motion replace helplessness for them and reconnect power significant tenant get kingdom in writing for yourself or for someone you love. Grab your effectively Evans.org that you never store online time is together. My mom worked in the sweat factory for years at the beginning we call it that because it was our garage and in the garage is not no air conditioner veneer is hot but she was trying to help. Tony ever get to where he was trying to go and so she would call my sisters into the sweat factory so that they could put takes in the envelope to mail all over just because this house looks like this now, but it didn't start with some pit experiences.
This palace is just a result of the pit experiences. This palace is just a result of the testimony of going through Genesis 37 to get to Genesis 50. Let me show you how he did that for Joseph. Joseph was stripped in chapter 37, but in chapter 41 UC 41 versus 42 starting there you see that Pharaoh takes off his signet ring and gives it to Joseph puts it on his hand.
Then Pharaoh clothes.
Joseph with the royal road. Then Pharaoh puts a necklace around his neck.
Now the necklace the royal rope in the ring mean that you share the authority of Pharaoh. It says that when you come through everybody's going bow their knee because Joseph had dreams that got him stripped, but he also had dreams that got them equipped, don't you know that God will allow you to endure stripping, but it's only because he's trying to position you in the 40 future equipment understand that when you are down to nothing.
It's only because God is up to something without understand that what you're going through is for testimony somebody's life is going to be preserved by your story so you can't give up because were being preserved by this testimony of my parents were to stop because they were stripped of AL Turner. We wouldn't be in here right now.
Preserving people's lives. And I remember him telling me that he went in to talk to a former linebacker. The Dallas Cowboys named Bob Wernick, Bob Wernick was in there and I don't know what my dad was doing but I can probably guess maybe it was to get a check to talk about some given them make sure we got lights and so he was in there talking to Barbara, their great friends are probably just explaining to him that I had God's favor and now were stripped of a place to go and so would the church was homeless for little while, and so he was explaining that to Bob Wernick in his office, but then some random guy walked past the room when he walked past the room and then he backed up and stood in the doorway. My dad is talking to Bob, but he's looking back over her shoulder like who is this cat okay so try to figure out who this dude is being nosy about our conversation, so he started to feel somebody's and your stuff.
You start to kind of feel some kind of way about why you standing there, keep on moving and then the guy who stand in their get comfortable on the doorway and crosses his leg so now he's given him a hint that I ain't going nowhere to stay here and watch and listen to what's going on then that do comes and sits down next to my bed so now Tony ever got smoke coming out of his ears and fire coming out of his nose because he's trying to explain to Bob Wernick what's going on with the church then to do start asking questions and so now my dad is given them short answers yes no why are you here in his mind yes no okay were trying to do this, so the guy is is is probing him for answers, and giving him questions and he tells them what you know there's this this little chapel that we have right down the street that were looking at it we been talking to the people about a book we just don't have the money for summer trying to figure out what we're going to do when asked when the guy asked the question, is that will how much does it cost my dad said he and his brain was it to you. Why are you here. My dad told him he said well you know is this just $200,000, then that man pulls out his checkbook and he opens it up now to countenance on my father's face just changed all of a sudden now he answering questions will you know my overall vision is to have all of the land then he started doing his sermon kicked you know Kevin around because he try to figure out what's about to happen here, but that man he wrote a check for $200,000 and handed it to my father then got up out of Dead Sea that used to be a nuisance and went back to that hallway and just walk right off this church has a testimony God will allow you to be stripped only so that he can show up and do some equipping up in here so that you can talk about the goodness of God so that you can see how you got from point A to point B. Don't forget you can get here because of your 2 feet, you got here because of his mercy and his grace.
You got here because of where he's taking you that he has a testimony he's telling his brothers human or for evil. Don't worry it's okay because God met this thing for good in the last time I checked, when he cast that check went through because when God comes through this stuff. Don't bounce encouragement to remain steadfast in what God is calling you to do. As I mentioned earlier, Dr. Evans is taking time off from the broadcast until June 22 to allow us the opportunity to present a series of encouraging messages from his son and co-laborer in ministry, Jonathan Evans, forever starts now is a nine lesson collection that will help you find and fulfill God's unique plan for your life will be happy to send you this complete audio series on CD and digital download along with Jonathan's powerful new book that goes hand-in-hand with the material we been hearing today. The book is called your time is now.
Yet what God has given you where offering both of these resources for a limited time is our thank you you request them and make a contribution to help support the ministry of Dr. Evans in the alternative, so be sure to visit Tony Evans.org right away. That's Tony Evans.org or call her 24 hour resource request line at 1-800-800-3222 let one of our team members help with your request. That's 1-800-800-3222 during times of trouble, we may find ourselves wondering where God could be tomorrow.
Jonathan Evans will point out God isn't hiding we just may need to look a little harder to understand what he's up to sure to join the alternative with Dr. Tony have brought to you by the celebrating 40 years of faithful thanks to the generous contributions of listeners like you