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Is Jesus Enough?

Truth Talk / Stu Epperson
The Truth Network Radio
June 16, 2021 1:00 am

Is Jesus Enough?

Truth Talk / Stu Epperson

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June 16, 2021 1:00 am

Stu is joined by Pastor Andy Davis of First Baptist Church in Durham, NC, to discuss his book, "The Power of Christian Contentment" and what it means to experience Christ-centered joy.

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This is the Truth Network. I'm sitting next to a pastor who has the book of Isaiah memorized. Pastor Andy Davis in Durham, North Carolina, First Baptist Church, and that's not something he's never wanted to brag about or anything, but I'm just so encouraged.

And then I look over there, you have a commentary on it. I say, God's used you to write a bunch of books, Pastor Andy, but this book, The Power of Christian Contentment, we just want to visit about that a little bit. Tell us a little bit about yourself and how the Lord led you to write this book. So I was raised in Eastern Massachusetts, born in Boston, raised in a Roman Catholic family, good experience growing up, but I didn't know Christ as my Lord and Savior. Came to faith in Christ my junior year through the Ministry of Campus Crusade for Christ, and then was discipled by a man who poured into me the Word of God, got me connected with John MacArthur's Grace to You, which is tremendous.

And then just God worked over the years eventually in 1998, brought me here as senior pastor, and I've been here ever since. And so for me, my greatest joy is memorizing and teaching God's Word week after week. The power of just expositional teaching and preaching, we talked about that a little bit before even doing this interview, Pastor Davis, why is that so important? Just teaching the Bible as it was written may not be as flashy as Madison Avenue, but talk about just the importance of that, especially to our many friends and pastors who are listening. Sure, one of the key texts on that would be Matthew 4, which he has said, man does not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God. And so we just need to treat every scripture, all scripture as God breathed, useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting, training, and righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work. And so I trust that.

I believe in sequential exposition. I don't think it's the only way to preach, but it is the way I preach. And I just go through books of the Bible and God in His kindness has let me be here for, I'm in my 23rd year now, I'm going verse by verse through the book of Job. And so it's just, it's been amazing to see the steady, consistent, powerful work of the Word of God in a local church like ours.

Yeah, that's really neat. In this book, The Power of Christian Contemplate, Finding Deeper, Richer, Christ-Centered Joy. Now Dr. Mohler, Dr. Albert Mohler says about this book, he says, this book will guide you to a deeper faith in the gospel and a richer experience of contentment.

Where do you want to take people? Someone reads this book, The Power of Christian Contemplate, Pastor Davis, where do you want them to end up fundamentally? Sure, well, more than anything, there's nothing more important than having your sins forgiven through faith in Christ and knowing that you're going to heaven when you die. That's the basis of all genuine contentment in this world. If you're going to ask on the topic of Christian contentment, I would want to go to Philippians chapter 4, where Paul says that he's learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well-fed or hungry, living in plenty and want, I can do everything through him who strengthens me. And so the concept there is that Christ crucified and resurrected is enough for us to be joyful at any moment in our lives. You deal with some pretty rough stuff in your book, people suffering, persecuted Christians around the world are suffering for their faith.

You have families that you know that have had dealt with special needs, kids that had sudden onset injuries from traffic accidents, other things that are now they find themselves full-time caretakers. Life is rough. It seems like a day doesn't go by, Pastor Andy, where someone says, life is hard, life is tough, people are struggling, people are hurting. Can you bring the topic of contentment to us now and maybe how does the light of Christ and his contentment, his joy, come into the people listening who are about to turn the radio dial because they're struggling and they don't need another kind of pie-in-the-sky little sermonette for Christian heads? Yeah, fundamentally, since you mentioned about Christ, when we are Christians we have the presence of Christ through the Holy Spirit with us continually through all of our trials. You know, he says in the book of Isaiah when he passed through the waters, I will be with you when you walk through the fire, I will be with you. Christ is Immanuel, God with us, and the Holy Spirit's joy and privilege is to bring Christ to us in any and every situation.

As he said in the Great Commission, he said, surely I will be with you always even to the end of the age. And so Paul and Silas singing in the Philippian jail, they're doing so because the Spirit of Christ is upon them, and they're filled with joy because Christ has not abandoned them, he's not left them alone. And so people who are walking through severe trials as Christians are doing so mindful of the presence of Christ with them through the Holy Spirit. And in this way, they are very different than their non-Christian friends and neighbors who are going through similar trials, every bit as horrifying, but they don't have Christ. And they look to their Christian friends who are going through these trials and say, you have something I don't have, I want that. The Philippian jailer was like that, he said, what do you have that I don't have?

He brought them out about to commit suicide, he brought them out and said, sirs, what must I do to be saved? And it was because of their display of Christ and of contentment in him. So this book of Philippians, which you allude to a lot in your book, the power of Christian contentment, I'm Stu Epperson interviewing pastor Andrew Davis with his new book, The Power of Christian Contentment, Finding Deeper, Richer, Christ Sinner Joy. Philippians 4-13, this is one of the most quoted, the most referenced book.

I love to quote, I love to write it down when I sign something to a friend or a little card, a lot of athletes use it. But often times we think about it in the context of hitting the game winning three or getting a slam dunk on someone or a Super Bowl win. But there's some real rough stuff when you start to contextualize, can you tell us take our listeners into the real story behind the Philippians 4-13 story when it comes to true deep soul contentment? Yeah, Paul wants to teach the Philippians Christ centered contentment and he uses the money that they sent him to support him, a gift that was brought by a man named Epaphroditus.

He wants them to know he's thankful for the money but he was fine before it came and he'll be fine after it's spent. He wants them to know he's thankful but he said what I want you to know is I've actually learned the secret of being content in any and every situation and effectively he's saying I want you Philippians to know the same. And so the I can do everything through him who strengthens me is not so much about being successful on the on the gridiron or on the basketball court or in business. God enables us to do successful things there but it's far greater to be content in any and every situation and be a witness for Christ when for example your child gets hit by a car or when you have terminal cancer, when you've got a brain injury or when you've got a brain tumor, a glioblastoma, a good friend of mine died from that and walked in Christian contentment every day for 18 months and put Christ on display. That's a great testimony to Christ and when somebody says I can do everything through him who strengthens me it takes immense strength in the inner man through the spirit to do that.

That's the strength that I think the context is talking about. When I read your book I mean it gets into the weeds, it gets into the real life struggles of families whose whole life was turned upside down. I think of Johnny Erickson Tada who's been in this wheelchair who she went to every faith healer she could go to and she's still quadriplegic.

You know it's been like 50 years since that accident. There's not many people on the planet that are closer to Jesus celebrating his joy and proclaiming the gospel and leading people to Christ from her wheelchair pulpit. Pastor Andy, someone like her, I mean where does this come from? Well it comes from the basic concept of Christ dying for our sins to benefit us. He said unless a kernel of wheat falls to the ground and dies it remains by itself a single seed but if it dies it brings forth much fruit and he then extends it in John 12 there to the rest of us.

If you want to serve me you'll be where I am and my father will honor the one who serves me. So for her, Joni, she was willing to die to all of her hopes and dreams and be able to be a cheerful witness to Christ in the midst of a very difficult situation. Prosperity gospel says you have to have health and wealth in order to be happy. A Christian says I don't need those things, Christ is enough and you can put Christ on display in the midst of suffering much better than in the midst of prosperity, although Paul did say I can be content in any and every situation.

So fundamentally I think it comes down to this, God is willing to pour his servants out even like a drink offering like he did with Paul and to cause us to suffer if it leads to the salvation of others and Paul was willing to have that happen just as Jesus himself was willing. The book is The Power of Christian Contemplate, subtitled Finding Deeper Richer Christ-Centered Joy. You even step on some toes in here including mine when you talk about complaining some of the opposites of contentment. How do we tend to go there? I mean this you know this pandemic I you know I had had coffee with a pastor the other day who said hey this pandemic this all this COVID stuff it's it's not just taught us a lot of things but it's revealed a lot of our true nature and some of our true discontentments and how we are finding our hope in so many things and all of a sudden when those things are taken away sports and in meetings and groups and gatherings and work-related accolades suddenly pastor Andy well there's me and there's God there's some unsettledness there can you speak to these opposites of contentment and how to get through that and repent. Yeah fundamentally I've found that contentment is based on the doctrine of Christian providence which which is teaches that that God is sovereign over the smallest details of our lives all the days ordained for us were written in God's book before one of them came to be and also what those days contained and so God very wisely gives us blessings things that we enjoy but also things that are very difficult we're to count it pure joy whenever we face trials of various types because we know those tests are necessary to to strengthen our faith so Christian contentment is saying to our heavenly father I trust you father with what you're doing in my life con conversely discontent murmuring complaining railing against God all these things we do we're saying to God our father I don't trust you and that's great a great dishonor to him God is very patient but you see what he did with Israel he rebuked them remember when they complained about the manna and he sent them the poisonous snakes he doesn't take it kindly and so we need to learn to trust God our heavenly father in any and every situation the true source of contentment when we come back hang on don't touch that dial a little bit of a teaser here for those listening to this broadcast and podcast thank you all of our awesome affiliates we'll be right back with pastor Andy Davis and the only way to find contentment he'll tell you from this new book the power of Christian contentment hang on so how do you find contentment what is the path there maybe I should say who is the true source and he talks about this a lot in his book the power of Christian contentment I would say this is kind of a recurring theme and it's a good thing of who you bring us to pastor Andy Davis I'm here with you I'm actually in your study in your church in Durham North Carolina First Baptist Church you've written quite a few books you've memorized the book of Isaiah I told by the way I was at a Panera in Greensboro just a second ago with another pastor I said hey I'm guess what I'm gonna go interview a pastor who's memorized Isaiah he said no way he said I'm studying through Isaiah right now he said but I don't have it memorized I said that's okay I said but it's just kind of neat it's kind of a it's a novel thing and but but you're really your memorization in fact there's a book on yourself called an approach to extended memorization of scripture another one of your books I mean this this idea of memorizing scripture although maybe it's archaic to some people it's kind of important pastor speak to that real quick before we get into the to the the the clincher of this book the power of Christian contentment sure I I think that memorizing scripture is a tremendous tool toward biblical meditation and deeper understanding of scripture and ultimately a walk with Christ I've I've been led by God to memorize whole books of the Bible and it's helped me as a sequential expository preacher because I've already meditated on all the passages that I'm preaching on so it helps me at a deeper level but you know God leads people to different things I would just say if you're not memorizing scripture at all just begin by choosing some key verses but then eventually I would urge you to go to chapters and so you can get verses in context and what's what it's going to do it's going to feed Christ to you by the spirit I just actually finished about three weeks ago finished the gospel of Mark I started in October and I finished a few weeks ago and it's been a delight walking with Jesus every day reviewing the verses saturating my mind in the gospel of Mark it's been beautiful so you review and then you meditate and meditation is really my daughter and I have been kind of talking by the way one of the the young men is pastoring now a church in Winston Salem preached a whole sermon on psalm one and I thought about you because he talked about scripture memorization and meditation and he said you're always thinking about something pastor Kyle you're always thinking about something and every sin stems out of meditation I'm meditating on how much I want that guy's car as opposed to my car I'm I'm coveting you know and every other sin but can you just speak to the importance of that my mom loved scripture memory I can't wait to tell her about your book because I didn't realize you actually had a book about this stuff I knew you memorized chunks of the bible but that that's so encouraging but talk about the you know and I'm joking around with my daughter about how medication is actually meditation is actually medication for the soul yeah praise god that's such a good word god's word is just amazing it's deep and rich and full and my pattern has been to to review verses for 100 consecutive days and I just moved through the whole 16 chapters of mark that way and the meditation happens along the way it's not an extra additional thing I do it happens by the endless repetition and then new ideas come into my mind just the power of Jesus over demons or his effortless is absolutely effortless healing of any and every disease that came his way his tenderness and his compassion toward broken-hearted sinners and the way he dealt with people I was just walking with Jesus I could be easily moved to tears by the things that God showed me as I meditate so I would just commend it but it just helps with the the battle we have over sin the internal thing you talked about our thought life keeps our thought life pure it's it's beneficial everyone listening to my voice right now you're thinking about something you're thinking about where you're going next you're thinking about what maybe you shouldn't have said earlier today to one of your kids or you're thinking about a social media post that caught you off guard off guard so why not think about the word of God because what happens when you think about what happens when you have God's voice in your mind Pastor Andy yeah it's so much better and and I really think that's that's how God speaks to us um haven't you read what God said to you in the account of the burning bush you know he said to the Sadducees God speaks to us or again in Hebrews 3 where it says today if you hear his voice do not harden your hearts and he's quoting scripture so God speaks by the scripture and if we hide it in our hearts he can speak to us continually wow so open your bible and you will get a text from God is there not is there a better person is there a better text to get than from almighty God but it's sitting there and what like one quote I know you've heard this quote this may be from you actually where the quote is I used it in my bible study recently don't complain about God being silent when your bible stays shut and we have a chance to hide God's word in our heart like the psalmist talks about and you're doing that thank you for that example we might need to do a whole show about that but let's finish up yeah let's finish up the power of Christian contentment this book would you take us to the source the model the consummate picture incarnate personified of Christian contentment you do it a lot in your book take us there because people are hurting they're struggling and you are giving one big bold answer you know the Christ is the center of everything so Christ is the center of Christian contentment and Christ at every moment pleased the father and did the will of the father died on the cross and rose again and and you see him as the ultimate pinnacle display of contentment but I would say secondly no one has displayed it better than the apostle Paul and the apostle Paul wrote about it he said he learned the secret of it he didn't know it at first but God taught him how to be content in any and every situation by focusing his mind entirely on Christ crucified and resurrected so that's the center and I would commend that always to this is the question it's very convicting and I give it to you and it's something that I have uh in my mind has Christ crucified and resurrected done enough for you to be happy today or must he do a little more and that's very convicting question it's like no he doesn't need to do any more he gave his life blood that I might have eternal life he doesn't need to do any more that's enough for me wow what a quote I'm convicted of sitting here I'm trying to think what do I say next other than asking re re re mining others and restating that is Jesus enough is what he did for me enough we get so consumed about what we do for him and performance and all that but is his performance enough resting in him abiding in the vine I think about what you said tying in that with Christ with his word if you abide me in my words abiding you I believe John 15 7 so thank you pastor the power of Christian Contemplate is his book his name is Pastor Andy or Andrew Davis and he is Andrew was the bringer every time you see him in the Bible he's bringing people to Jesus and this Andrew is bringing people to Jesus and bringing people to his word and teaching his word faithfully in his pulpit here in Durham North Carolina First Baptist Church finding deeper richer Christ sinner joy in his book it's called the power of Christian Contemplate pastor how would you encourage folks to get the book uh what's the best way to do it maybe they want to give it as a gift to someone what's the best way uh for folks to find this book certainly it's it's available easily on Amazon and so many books are and you can order it and it'll come to you quickly okay folks are in the Durham North Carolina area for a blue devil's basketball game or for something trick and tracking through here listening to us on 105.5 FM the truth network station here a great affiliate of truth talk uh what what's the best way to attend the church or find out about the church sure we we have worship services at 10 30 every Sunday and you know god willing we'll see you if you have a looking for a church home we'd love to have you okay so learn more about pastor you can hear sermons you can learn more about the church at the there's a website i'm sure first baptist church durham somewhere dot org okay fbc durham dot org to learn more to meet him there and there's probably information about his book there too but you can find it wherever books are sold thank you pastor you have really encouraged today thanks for being a part of truth talk and thank you for spreading this message of Christian Contemplate something we really need every day yeah it's been a joy to be with you this is the truth network
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-11-03 23:17:27 / 2023-11-03 23:26:05 / 9

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