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Divine Reversals

The Urban Alternative / Tony Evans, PhD
The Truth Network Radio
October 14, 2021 8:00 am

Divine Reversals

The Urban Alternative / Tony Evans, PhD

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October 14, 2021 8:00 am

We're all comfortable with the idea of the Lord getting us out of trouble. But in this lesson, Dr. Tony Evans will talk about what may be happening when God intentionally lets us get into it.

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God may put you in a bad situation so that he gives you a supernatural deliverance. Dr. Tony Evans says the Lord is always ready to lead as long as you're willing to follow.

But if your antenna is not up, if human wisdom guides your decision-making, you won't pick up the signals and you will miss the movement. Celebrating 40 years of faithfulness, this is the alternative with Dr. Tony Evans, author, speaker, senior pastor of Oak Cliff Bible Fellowship in Dallas, Texas, and president of the Urban Alternative. We're all comfortable with the idea of the Lord getting us out of trouble. Well, today Dr. Evans talks to us about what may be happening when God intentionally lets us get into it.

Let's join him as he explains. Luck is a doctrine because a lot of folk live by it. Chance, faith, happenstance. We've got some folk, maybe there's some here, who ride in a car with a rabbit's foot hanging from their rearview mirror. Now, how lucky was that rabbit that couldn't even keep his foot? We are looking at the book of Esther, the only book in the Bible that never mentions God by name.

And yet, his fingerprints are all over it as we've already seen. Esther has discovered that she's been placed in her position for a spiritual reason, not merely for personal benefit. Mordecai, her cousin, has said, you've been called to the kingdom for such a time as this, that God's whole plan in making you pretty, God's whole plan in you being chosen out of all the possible females in the kingdom, God's whole plan was that you would be here at this time for this moment for his kingdom purpose. And she, after thinking about it for a moment, said, okay, I'm going to go to the king and tell him about Haman's plan to destroy all the Jews and if I perish, I perish.

She now prepares dinner for the king and invites Haman, the architect of genocide, because she's ready to tell the king and spill the beans on him at the dinner banquet. The king says to her, as we saw last time, Esther chapter five, verse six, what did you have to tell me? Esther says, my petition and my request is, and she stops. She doesn't get it out. She can't say it. She backs off.

She says, my request is for you to have dinner again with me tomorrow. Something happened that caused her to pause in her request for deliverance. God not only wants you to do the right thing, he wants you to do the right thing at the right time. Timing matters to God. He does things with precision, not only related to events, but related to time. The job of the Holy Spirit in the New Testament is to release you or restrict you from movement. God has a beeper system inside every believer who is in contact with him, fellowship with him, the Holy Spirit, and the Holy Spirit's job is to let you know not only what to do, but when to do it.

But if your antenna is not up, if you walk in secular, think in secular, if human wisdom guides your decision-making, you won't pick up the signals and you will miss the movement, because that is the Holy Spirit's job. But he does it in weird ways. Well, he goes home at the end of chapter six, after leading Mordecai through the street, and he's depressed. This is a Prozac moment. This is, this is, he's depressed.

He's depressed, because he's leading the future king, and he was supposed to be the future king. And so he goes home, and he just cries out, mourning with his head covered, verse 12. His wife says to him in verse 13, boy, you in trouble now? No, you lead Mordecai through here, and he's the Jew.

Don't look good for you. Ah, verse 14, while. While they were still talking with him, the king's eunuchs arrived and hastily brought Haman to the banquet which Esther had prepared. Now this is the second banquet. Esther prepared a second banquet because God blocked her from doing the first banquet. While his wife was telling him it doesn't look good, and he's mourning, the eunuch comes in and says, come on, you gotta hurry up, it's time for the banquet. Why is that important that that happened while? Because that didn't give him time to come up with a plan, it didn't give him time to run and flee, it didn't give him time to escape. God had that thing clicking so that one thing happens right after another so that there could be no interjection to change the program of God. He tells the eunuch, go get him now, because God's got a plan to keep and a program to execute. So he goes to the dinner. So the king says, okay, Esther, you've been saying for the last 24 hours, you gotta tell me something.

What is it? So she tells him, oh king, this is chapter seven now, oh king, at the end of verse three, if it pleases the king, let my life be given to me and my petition and my people as my request, save my life king, save the life of my people. For we have been sold, I and my people, to be destroyed, killed, and annihilated. If they were going to sell me as slaves, I would have lived with that. But no, they want to kill me. So the king asked the queen, who is he?

They want to kill my wife and kill my wife's people. Who are you talking about? And not only who is he, verse five, but where is he? Well, who is he? And where is he? Guess who's coming to dinner? Who is he?

Where is he? Who would presume to do this? Who are you talking about? Oh, here it is, verse six, chapter seven, Esther said, a foe and an enemy is this wicked Haman. Then Haman became terrified before the king and queen.

That'll shake you up. She says, this man who I invited to dinner wants to kill me, your wife, kill my people, rewind. If she would have told him the first time, when he wasn't mad at Mordecai, when he had built the gallows for Mordecai, when Mordecai had not been elevated to be the second in command in the future, the king would have had a totally different mood about the situation. Because now Mordecai's relationship to the king has changed. Mordecai's relationship to Esther and the king has changed.

Everything has been reconvened and redone to fulfill the timing purposes of God, and he's not finished yet. Oh, the king is hot, verse seven. He's ticked off in anger. He went into the palace garden. He goes into the palace, he can't even talk now, he's so hot. Says with anger, he went into the palace garden.

Now watch this. Verse eight says Haman was falling on the couch where Esther was. He's falling on the couch, verse seven says, begging for his life. So the king is hot.

The king walks out. The king doesn't know what to say. Now he's so mad that Haman planned to do this.

Esther is laying on the couch, reclining on the couch. Ain't too proud to beg, you remember that? He's pleading for his life. He goes over Esther and falls on there and says, please Esther, please don't let him kill me, don't let him kill me.

It says, now when the king returned from the garden, oh you get the picture, into the place where they were drinking wine, Haman was falling on the couch where Esther was. Then the king said, now he already hot. Then the king said, will you even assault the queen with me in the house? Oh, you got to be kidding me. Wait a minute, you already told me you want to kill my wife. Now you all up on her. No, oh, oh no, no, you, no, you didn't.

You want to assault my wife with me in the house? Now that's not what he was doing. He was begging for his life, the scripture says. God is so particular, he will create impressions. God is so nuanced that he will make something look like it's not really that in order to accomplish his purpose because the king comes in just in time. Oh, but he's not finished yet because after the king comes in and sees what he's doing, then verse nine, then is a time word.

You got while, you got now, you got then. Then Hernanah, one of the eunuchs who was before the king said, behold indeed the gallows standing at Haman's house, 50 cubits high, which Haman made for Mordecai who spoke good on behalf of the king. And the king said, hang him on it.

All right, so guess what? God delayed Esther from telling the king to give Haman time to get mad so that he would build a gallow for Mordecai in order that he might dig his own grave. God will let unbelievers express their anger against believers and use that very thing to destroy the unbeliever from destroying the believer. And it's all got to do with time. It's all got to do with God nuancing time.

So they hang them on the gallows that was prepared for Mordecai and the king's anger subsided. Dr. Evans will tell us more about that when he returns in a moment to continue this message from his special CD compilation, Tony Evans Top 40, a collection of the most hard-hitting, life-changing sermons in his 40-year ministry history. It includes messages on demonstrating extraordinary purpose even in the midst of the ordinary, turning chaos into calm, fully experiencing and expressing God's love, and much more.

These messages can literally change your life or the life of someone you love. And right now we're offering volumes three and four of this powerful compilation as our thank you gift when you make a contribution to help us keep Tony's teaching on this station. Please visit tonyevans.org today, make your donation, and you'll receive all 20 full-length messages in volumes three and four of Tony Evans Top 40. Again, that's tonyevans.org.

Or call our resource center at 1-800-800-3222. I'll repeat our contact information after part two of today's lesson, coming up right after this. Well, the first time I went to the Holy Land, it made the reality of the Bible jump off the page and become an experiential event. Dr. Tony Evans says that same experience can be yours thanks to a big screen event coming to theaters near you, Journey with Jesus. You'll see the actual places where Bible history happened, but it's far more than just a travel film. We've taken the site, we've surrounded with Scripture, we've surrounded with practical applications for your life because we wanted this not just to be a sightseeing event, but to be a spiritual experience. Watch the Bible come alive in ways you've never felt before. Join Tony on a Journey with Jesus, coming to a theater near you November 15th, 16th, and 17th. It is our prayer and our hope and our expectation that having seen the movie, you will be reignited, your fire for the Lord will be relit. Visit tonyevans.org today for theaters, showtimes, and more info.

That's tonyevans.org. Okay, but we got a problem. The problem is there's a law out there that says all the Jews are to be exterminated, and you have to understand the laws of the Medes and the Persians meant it was a law you could not change. It was a fixed law in the society of the Medo-Persian Empire. God is a God of reversals. He can reverse things on a dime that appear to be irreversible. Let me show you some of the reversals in chapter 8. On that day, verse 1, King Ahasuerus gave the house of Haman, the enemy of the Jews, to Queen Esther. Okay, that's—I'll call that economic reversal.

All that Haman owned now belonged to Esther. Verse 2, the king took off his signet ring, which he had taken away from Haman, and gave it to Mordecai. We'll call that political reversal. You see, the signet ring was the ring of authority, so God can change things on a dime. You think your boss has the final say. You think the powers that be have the final say. You think those unscrupulous co-workers who are plotting against you have the final say.

You think because they have the name, have the money, have the position, they have the final say. They don't have a thing unless God gives it to them. And the God who gives it can take it away. And if you don't believe me, ask the Lord. And if you don't believe me, ask Nebuchadnezzar. Nebuchadnezzar stood there over Babylon.

He said, look at this great Babylon that I have built. I am the man. I am the boss. It all revolves around me. God said, oh, you think. Well, let me show you how much power you have. For seven years, God reduced the powerful man to be an animal out in the field.

When he came to his senses at the end of seven years, he cut his hair, cut his fingernails, and said, let it be known throughout Babylon. There's only one God, and that is the God of Meshach, Shadrach, and Abednego. That's the only God out there.

See, I keep telling y'all, you only have one source. If you ever get that in your head, if it ever burns into your skull, that nobody, I don't care who they are, has the final say so over a Christian living by the Spirit in the will of God. Nobody.

Nobody. Which means you never live a threatened life. So there was a political shift. She said, if it pleads the king, if I found favor in your sight, verse seven, if it seems proper, let it be written to revoke the letters devised by Haman. Haman had a letter, kill all the Jews. He says, well, I have given the authority to Mordecai. So here's what I want you to do, verse eight. I want you to write to the Jews as you see fit in the king's name and seal it with the king's signet.

Verse 11, in them the king granted the Jews who were in each and every city the right to assemble and to defend their lives, to destroy, to kill, to annihilate, to an entire army of any people or province which might attack them, including children and women, and to plunder their spoil. See, God has an override button that can take what Satan has planned against you. People, he's raised up against you. When the enemy comes in like a flood, the scripture says he will raise up a standard against them.

He will push an override button. When the second law was passed and the carriers send the message out that the Jews could take care of themselves, it says in verse 16, for the Jews there was life and gladness and joy and honor. Oh, wait a minute. You're crying one day and you're laughing the next. Oh, the Bible says sorrow may endure for the night, but joy cometh in the morning. You may be crying today, but don't think that's how it's going to be when you wake up tomorrow, not when God has jumped into the situation. God can wipe tears away. He can turn pain into pleasure. He can turn sadness into joy when we are operating with his reversal principles, operating with his timing, operating, submitting to his will, and listening to his voice.

Oh, but it's not over yet because there's one other thing. The last verse of chapter 8 says, at the end of the verse, and many among the peoples of the land became Jews. They said, we want some of that. So to become a Jew, man, you had to come under the Jewish covenant. To come under the Jewish covenant, you had to accept the Jewish God. So they said, we want some of that. God may put you in a bad situation so that he gives you a supernatural deliverance so that other folk want to attach to the God who delivered you because they want some of this.

They want to see God do for them what he's done for you. That was a spiritual reversal when people saw what God can do. It reminds me of the dog that got pushed in the well. The dog got pushed in the well, it was at the bottom of the well, and the farmer decided, I'm going to bury this dog. So the farmer began to dig and throw dirt in the well. He began to throw dirt in the well. But when the dirt hit the dog, the dog would shake and step on the dirt. He kept throwing dirt in the well. But when the dog felt the dirt, he'd shake the dirt and then he'd shake the dirt off. Then he'd step on the dirt. The farmer kept throwing dirt. The dog kept shaking the dirt, but he kept stepping on the dirt that the farmer was throwing in until the farmer had filled the well up with dirt, but he didn't know that the dog was shaking it off and climbing all the time until it finally got to the top.

The dog walked out, bit the farmer, and kept on going. God will allow dirt to come over you, but if you know him, shake it off and keep on walking. Shake it off and keep on walking.

Shake it off and keep on walking, because God is a God of reversal. Martin Luther King saw a reversal. He was in the Birmingham jail, but you go to Washington DC, you'll see a monument. Nelson Mandela had a reversal. He was put in jail, but then he became head of South Africa, because God is a God of reversal. Oh, but there's one reversal bigger than all of that, because Satan thought he had Jesus on the cross. When he hung him high and stretched him wide, it looked like Satan had won, but early Sunday morning, just a little while before day, God raised Jesus up and he said, all power is in my hands.

God is a God of reversal, so you hang on to him even though Satan is throwing dirt at you. If you're ready to experience the biggest reversal of all by having Jesus break down the barrier that separates you from God and by letting him make you a whole new person from the inside out, that can happen for you today. Just log on to TonyEvans.org and click on the link that says Jesus. There, Tony will tell you all about what it means to be a Christian and walk you through everything you need to know to start your brand new life. Well, as I mentioned earlier, today's lesson is part of Tony's special audio compilation called Tony Evans Top 40. There's a lot of bonus content in this collection, including entire messages we won't have time to present on the air, but right now we'll send you volumes three and four of this four-volume set as our gift if you can help us keep Tony's teaching on this station by making a contribution. Just make the arrangements today at TonyEvans.org or let one of our resource team members help you when you call 1-800-800-3222.

That's 1-800-800-3222. When Moses asked God what name he should use to describe who sent him, the answer was simply, I am. But tomorrow Dr. Evans will unpack the incredible significance contained within that simple answer. Right now we'll wrap up our time together with this shout-out from Dr. Ed Young in celebration of 40 years of God's faithfulness to the ministry of the Urban Alternative. It's my privilege to say a word of congratulations for 40 years of service to none other than my brother and my friend Dr. Tony Evans. He rightly divides the word of truth day by day and weekend by weekend, not only to his church, but really he's a spokesman for Christ around the world. Tony, what a ministry, what a blessing you've been to countless millions of people in these 40 years and I'll tell you a secret, the best is yet to be. Congratulations! I'm thrilled to be your brother and I'm thrilled to just follow in your wake as you make a wide swarf for the kingdom of God throughout this world. God bless you and your terrific family. The alternative with Dr. Tony Evans is brought to you by the Urban Alternative and is celebrating 40 years of faithfulness thanks to the generous contributions of listeners like you.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-08-11 07:48:13 / 2023-08-11 07:57:27 / 9

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