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November 13, 2018 10:40 am
Best-selling author, speaker and advocate for Christian apologetics Dr. Alex McFarland, best-selling author and apologist Dylan burrow together bringing you the truth for a new generation.
This is TMG radio. Have you met somebody that was really gifted in a certain area, whether it's music course works or just a number of things, the arts and everybody says you know so-and-so that is your gift walking program Alex before you will embrace this is TMG radio and went About gifts because there are natural gifts and there are spiritual gifts that we both are imparted by God and I believe everybody has some gifts. It is you. I think perhaps go through life and they never really find their gift or they believe things that have been sent to them and they think they don't have any special gifts or talents. I think by God's grace. They probably do but start doing finding your gift and then realizing is from God and using your gifts as a blessing to others in worship to the Lord. That's really a very significant part of everyone's life as it certainly is in it and when we do know our spiritual gifts are even our natural gives it's empowering. We want to use the more we have people like Beethoven who understood his gifts at a very early age for someone like Lebron James he was observed as a basketball phenom in a very young age and he was able to focus on that become the best in his field while in every area of life we have opportunities to focus on what we are best added to use them for God's glory you might be out there thinking I don't know I I'm don't know if I have a gift or ability that can be used by God but we are confident that you do and we want to talk about that here today entry for new generation radio. You know I traveling the country been very blessed to have a lot of encouragement. Sometimes people have said you know Alex you are gifted speaker, preacher, and if that be the case. To God alone be the glory we give God the glory and people sometimes Dylan will say in.
I'm just a nobody or I don't have any gifts, but for one thing, if you're Christian you are a somebody you are a sinner, for whom Christ died. You were a person that he loved so much that he would go to the cross to give his life for you.
If you're Christian, you're a person in whom the Spirit of God dwells and your name is written in heavenly places. We need to understand our true identity in Christ that we are everybody has worth and value in dignity and that is all wrapped up in Jesus Christ. But everybody also has some gifts and you know Proverbs 1 verse seven says the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom Dylan. I think people's giftedness and their usefulness to God certainly comes out when we realize that step one in wisdom in success.
Certainly in developing talents and abilities and really personal fulfillment. Step one is to acknowledge the Lord in all areas of our life is yes it is. And even those who are unbelievers if they are listening to this I want you to know that you were created in God's image and therefore you have special abilities that God has given you so it's not something that would become a Christian and suddenly we have this magical ability. Though God does give us spiritual gifts.
We are born with special abilities. Each of us and as we follow Jesus, we are able to use those abilities for his glory and special ways in service to others will only say that even if you have an innate talent or ability, and something that comes easily to you. That doesn't mean that you don't have to work at it and how to knit and let me to find a gift. In this way, this is just, definition, and subject to tweaking your revision. But basically, your gift is that thing which you can do almost effortlessly with excellence on a consistent basis, not Dylan. I work at administration or accounting and and I might by some miracle become barely adequate but I would never be excellent. That's just not my strength, but on the other hand, when you've got something that is kind of your niche, you know, understand that it's a gift from God, pray about using it selflessly and Dylan speak to this. If you would how a person when they begin to find her giftedness can move from adequate to excellent, from nominal to anointed certainly and it's funny as were younger we don't notice that the things that we do or special or stand out or come more naturally but as we grow older. Sometimes we see that the things that we do the come easily to us don't come easily to others. For example, when I was growing up.
Science was always a struggle for me.
I had to work twice as hard to get even a halfway decent grade but in English or writing or literature. Those areas came natural for me.
But even still, it wasn't until my college years and beyond that, I realize that I was able to write things quickly and smoothly in ways that other people naturally could not and that became an ability that God used in my life to serve in ministry now for those who are listening, you have all kinds of abilities it's finding out what are those that I'm best at what comes most naturally and how can I use those make a difference in this world and the lives of others might enjoy traveling and speaking out of the country to meet people in churches is great, beautiful tapestry of God's family and how people use their gifts and abilities and you know sure oftentimes it's the preachers of the teachers that are a little bit in the limelight but you know the Bible talks about spiritual gifts and abilities in terms of like the organs of the body I and you might see somebody's face or hands, but without in the kidneys and liver in the colon and the spleen and the internal organs that maybe aren't thought about or seen, but without there is a person couldn't live and in a similar way the body of Christ. It is, thank the Lord for the preachers and I thank God for David Jeremiah and Charles Stanley. The late Dr. Billy Graham and the people that are out front, but Dylan, I really do believe up in heaven. One day as the crowns are handed out some of the people that have never been acknowledged in this world are going to be recognized for having been vital and very key to God's work behind-the-scenes. Just like some of the most life critical organs of the body of the ones that we never think about too much, but they are very key part of health and strength they really are and so many times as people become overlooked in this life that we know that God sees everything he watches all and he will reward accordingly.
At the end I've seen so many people over the years in ministry who have served selflessly impacting the lives of others and don't want recognition. They don't want others to see what they're doing, whether it's giving or whether serving a wethers feeding people are helping and practical ways. But God sees and he will reward accordingly. I love Ephesians 210 that tells us that we are God's handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do. We are created to do good works. We are not just made with a gift that we are created to express that gift, in ways that impact the lives around us. So here are the questions that I want you to ponder as we talk a little bit about gifts never once have I given God, my best to have. I presented my life to him for his plans and use thoroughly is my view of myself inflated and sinful, or do I live knowing that, apart from Christ I can do nothing.
John 15 five come back and talk more about our gifts. First Peter 315 tells us to be ready always to give an answer for the hope we have were instructed to be prepared to defend our faith. This is Alex McFarlane for the life answers teams students we train at North Greenville University, a leading Christian college in South Carolina. The life answers.
Teams are made up of students who will inspire and equip your congregation.
These apologetics teams. We train speaking in churches to youth groups and train Christians of all ages to address key issues of our times.
From a biblical perspective like is there a God is the Bible true.
What about gender and moral issues.
Call me at 864977 2008 and we will arrange for the life answers team to come to your church and give a presentation that will benefit your people for years to come. 864-977-2000 eight and always be ready for centuries the Bible has inspired humanity and shape the very world we live but how do we know this book is the word of God, not merely the words of man, what we believe about the Bible is based on what we believe about source. The God who speaks explores the evidence of the Bible's inspiration and authority to some of the world's most respected biblical scholars have essentially a geolocation, so it's true to say that Paul wrote Romans is equally true to say that God's decision. We saw this and that sets the Bible apart from everything else in the ancient world and its religious pantheon of gods and goddesses. The God who speaks is a feature-length documentary from the American family Association available now with the God who speaks.all is the Dylan Burroughs back without parliamentary for new generation radio and I'm excited about what God is doing through our ministry we just finished the third of three national conference. We've had this year.
God is working in powerful ways.
Alex tells a little bit about the ways God is working across the country while you know Dylan, I have to smile with you and I and some of our staff and her board set down a year ago.
I think you will recall the meeting that we had last longer.
Talk about plans for 2018 and I was that the Lord has realized those plans and much much more.
We just got back from Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Folks, we had a marvelous conference and there the third. I cannot believe three truths for new generation conferences one year. March we were in North Carolina. September we were in middle Tennessee and then in October we were in Baton Rouge and I will say this unit was kind of a that the crowd heard from speakers like Juan Valdes.
You gotta say folks Dylan Burroughs did a masterful job emceeing the conference and helping things roll along what were talking about using one's gifts and abilities and how the body complements the body knows. We went into the team she conference. I had a pretty pretty wicked sinus infection was not feeling good. That first day, I could barely talk and you did such a great job standing in an emceeing and carrying things along.
But we gave the altar, and we had 40 of our new believers book Knesset. If you've made a decision for Christ for their salvation or recommitment get one of these books and all 40 were gone. That very first night between some teams that came up to me Saturday. In this that I prayed to receive Christ.
What I do have accepted Jesus so here's the thing folks between events, broadcasting and publishing events, broadcasting and publishing the Lord is allowing us to do a lot of things that were going into 2019 boldly committed one of the people that we've been working with is the Christian hip-hop artist Tadashi kids love this guy. He's amazing his crew people is just so good and we got big vision. There are inner-city parts of America.
The never never had a gospel per se and out parts of New England. The they call it the burned over ground of New England that need revival.
We have indications to go all of this country, but to do that we need your help and the year-end is coming up and I would ask you please to prayerfully consider investing in the souls of people and thereby the salvation of America your gift in any amount will help us preach the gospel when people of all ages to Christ defend the faith and equip the church. So here's the address you here to get the show was out the truth for a new generation or you can just write T and G PO Box 10231, Greensboro, NC 27404 PO Box 10231, Greensboro, NC 27404. We appreciate your gifts and your support, without which this ministry couldn't exist. Gifts and some people have the gift of giving, because they got the gift of prosperity. I mean, I honestly believe in you and I met with a lot of people that are in business that love the Lord and there are some people that can just think up ideas for business or marketing your products and it succeeds that often said that some people can make more money by accident than the rest of us could do on purpose doing that you think some people have the gift of business and success in the gift of wealth so that they can support Christ's great commission. Yes and everybody plays a part.
Sometimes I talk to people who have been blessed financially and they feel bad because they are missionaries to another country. They don't pastor a church they don't leave a ministry but I'll say to those people. Your part in the ministry is just as important as every other role do not feel bad that your main part is giving because without it. None of the other parts of it or share their so we all have a role to play as we continue our discussion, I want us to focus on this idea of six thoughts about gifts and abilities.
They are so important for us to understand and to live out based on how God is created and why do you Alex start us off on the six thoughts about gifts and abilities today will fax number one there are natural gifts and spiritual gifts, natural gifts, things that you're just from childhood up your good at it and you know and it just comes easily. Again, let's define a gift is adapting that you can do with excellence nearly effortlessly and on a consistent basis instead of natural gas, but there also spiritual gifts, and so think about this? What is it that you do well and you do it with excellence and you can do it consistently.
That is your gift.
So secondly, every person has some area of giftedness, dear friend, listening. This broadcast. You have gifts and abilities you mentioned. Ephesians 210. I love that for we are God's handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God is repaired in advance for us to do.
You've probably heard preachers preach upward handiwork, which is the word Pro-Am or poem you know when it's that lens itself to some good sermon illustrations very in artful how God is writing a poem but look at the words that God prepared in advance for us to do. Interesting that word is apparent to Teo peripatetic is the idea of walking around unity. Great teachers would walk around in their students would follow them and so good works are something that we don't just do intermittently, but there they are lifestyle. God created us, gifted us for God's glory in Christ Jesus to do good works, but it's not just the idea of actions, but it's really lifestyle and character of the world. There repaired in advance for us to do, which is again that works peripatetic cement is to walk in a complete circuit. In other words, your life they use every sin posed salvation is letting God work in you and through you and the good works, and the glory to God and the blessing to others are just an outflow of the reality of Jesus that permeate your life. Not so well said. And as we continue this third idea limits to get it in here before the break. This idea every born-again person has one or more spiritual gifts.
The Bible talks about this in both Romans 12 and in first Corinthians 12 I love the ideas that are shared thereabouts. Everyone has a role to play, everybody is a part of one body, one body of Christ, we come back in just a moment will continue talking about this idea, spiritual gifts and how can impact those around us to stick with this would be right back. You know Alex is been writing for many years. One of his classic books is still great. Today is a basic introduction to the Christian faith. It's called stand for truth. You must know for unshakable faith. This book will help you help your teens get off the roller coaster of doubt onto solid ground. You'll read about the six pillars of biblical Christianity. They are one inspiration of the Bible to the virgin birth. Three. The deity of Christ for atonement. Five. Christ's resurrection and six. Christ's return, Alex mixes it up with humor and fleeing from decades of working with youth and encourages team to build a foundation of faith that will stabilize their lives and help them take a stand for Christ. Simple and straightforward stand for truth. You must know for unshakable faith available wherever Christian books are so if you're a Christian. You of course want to instill a biblical view of life in the hearts of your children, your pastor, you want to offer ministry that draws young families to your church. This is Alex my file and encouraging you to check out my new book and video curriculum. The 21 toughest questions your kids will ask about Christianity.
I interviewed hundreds of children ages 5 to 12 and we address actual questions from actual children.
The spiritual issues that are on the minds of your kids the book and video lessons are great for groups of any size and was produced with the goal of equipping kids to stand strong for Christ in any situation. The 21 toughest questions your kids will ask the book study guide and video series.
You'll find email@example.com that AFA store.net wear back the cylinder is a treat for new generation radio with Alex McFarlane we been talking about gifts that every person has a special ability in the body of Christ to serve others, and I love first Corinthians 12 verse 18.
The tell this in fact God is placed the parts in the body. Every one of them just as he wanted them to be. It is no accident that gifts that God has given you been talking about six areas to discuss more talk about this topic of spiritual gifts. We talked about the first three want to dive into these last three in the segment.
So Alex get started with this fourth Wednesday. Will God blesses individuals with theories of giftedness to be a blessing was love Matthew 516 that was one of the first verses I learned as a new believer, but Jesus said, let your light so shine before men that they may see your good works and glorify your Father which is in heaven is easy. God blesses us with gifts that we can be a blessing and we let our light shine and we are to humbly say really discreetly exercise her gifts and abilities. Not trying to draw attention to ourselves are trying to lift up or aggrandize ourselves but for God's glory and to be a blessing to others and then let me say this, God views every person as a steward of their gifts and assets. We are accountable. You might be listening, and you've got great administrative ability, and God expects you to use that in the church and work out.
Here's how I see life in terms my understanding of Scripture. Your first responsibility is to your heart into your home and your church, your heart, your to maintain your walk with Jesus in your home and your family. You are to love and serve them in accord with God's word, but in your church and it's really in the home and in the church that the expression of your gifts and your spiritual strength really does come out doesn't it really does and it reminds me of the song. You learn as a little kid in church if you grew up learning at this little light of mine I'm going to let it shine and it says hide it under a bushel.
Know I'm going to let it shine. And of course were talking about the love of Christ but also are gifts that God is given us to live those out of tell you one quick story from years ago I was serving in a homeless outreach and there were some people in a forested area we were helping in the we wanted to sing some songs and have a church service out there together and I had a guitar in my car but I did not want to get out and play because I had not played for a long time. I felt like I wasn't going to be good enough to perform for even a small group of people. But as we stood around sharing some food. I felt convicted I needed to at least try. So I brought out the guitar. I played three of the only songs I knew from memory. I felt like it was terrible that I dented and terrible job and when I looked up their people with tears in their eyes. There is prayer that took place. It became a holy moment in which lies are transformed and I got to be part of it. Just by using my little bit is like the five loaves and two fish that Jesus talks about that he multiplies in the many so never underestimate what good you can do that little bit that God is giving you. God has given you your ability see can make a great impact in the lives of others, but it pulled you out of your comfort zone didn't know it certainly did far out of my comfort zone and I think that's one of the points that we need to make is that when you step out of your comfort zone and into your area of giftedness, God will take you to places you've never expected that you would go to make an impact. You never expected you would have and that is something that we need to be prepared for because some of the best ministry we will ever have her in those times we are unprepared we are underprepared and yet we go on to say God I went to give it my best shot for your glory and watch what he does.
Let me just say this sometimes try to make the point here that God views us as stewards of our gifts, you know, Rush Limbaugh, the radio host sheet. He often says this talent online from God, and I know some folks that know him and it's been my privilege to meet his brother at a few events, who is a devout Christian and out in Russia says that talent online from God kind of tongue-in-cheek, but he really does mean it.
And there's a truth there that gifts are entrusted to us from God and where to use them for his glory now. Sometimes we get our feelings hurt.
Get kind of burned out and lose it.
If you've got musical ability. You need to be in the choir doing something and maybe years ago.
Something went down.
That was, not pleasant. Let go is if you got administrative ability or maybe you got the gift of exhortation which is really like, encouragement, and you can brighten people stay and everybody needs you know the Lord listed little bit. You should gifts because were accountable to God for how we do that and what extent we do it. The final thing will say is this, and I believe this with all my heart and listen carefully. God gives everybody gifts you got natural gifts you got spiritual gifts to be a blessing to give glory to God, to further the gospel your your family, your church and your steward and here's the thing you will never be completely fulfilled really fulfilled, you discover your gifts and operate within them through the power of the Holy Spirit and not just you know strength in resolving you.
You know Sam to do this, but through the power the Holy Spirit unit was a British poet Ben Johnson who said spend, not his gifts in vain. Don't don't waste your life, not using the gifts God has given you and say were not operating within the power and leading of the Holy Spirit, sometimes within the church there can be static and frustration when people stubbornly insist on ministering in areas where they are not gifted and and maybe you've seen examples of that.
Yes, and they can go the other way as well as when encourages her listing may be used served in a role within the church within ministry and you are hurt.
Somewhere along the way and he said I'm never doing that again and you stopped and perhaps it's been years since you have attempted to use the gifts God has given you to serve others.
Let me encourage you to pray about. Given that another chance. There may be another opportunity out there for you where people need you and your abilities.
That God is given you to do something to touch their life that impacts eternity. Please reconsider this option that God is giving you. Maybe today to go back and give it another try now in her last minute we have Alex. I really want you to encourage those who are listening today regarding the spiritual gifts God has given them what final challenge. Would you share with our listeners as we close our time together will have the faith that the God who loved you enough to give his life on the cross loves you enough to work in you and you shoot have the faith to believe that the God who conquered the grave and raised Jesus from the dead, also has the strength and the ability to empower you and you shoot Dylan I sent this to my students at liberty and its schools were of the privilege of teaching exchange all your little options for the one big dream or the one big calling and to use your gifts and serve Jesus, you might have to reprioritize your mind and jettison some cargo.
That's just bleeding time and bandwidth away. Find your gift cultivate the gift given to Jesus pray over all that you do and let your gifts bring glory to God and be a blessing to others.
A man would love to hear your stories and prayer request to transfer new generation.com the Guinness truth for a new generation arrangement, this is Alex McFarland evangelistic ministries exists to equip Christians with local worldview through conferences and camps for information about upcoming events visit for a new generation.com or give us a call at 877 yes God one that's 877 yes and the number one TMG radio is made possible by the friends of Alex McFarland evangelistic ministries PO Box 10231, Pearl, NC 27404. That's PO Box 10231, North Carolina 27404. Give firstname.lastname@example.org or truth for a new generation.com.
Thanks for listening and join us again next time. As we bring you more true for a new generation on TMG radio