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January 6, 2021 12:24 pm
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This podcast is made available by this increasing media as to the generosity of our support is your donation today means great podcast ideas remain available to help people look to God daily presentation at our nation today send out all day with the remote, you verbalize that there's a question that's been on your heart for your entire life that only grown in onset why am I Turning Point. Dr. Jeremiah look to the lives of people in both the old and New Testament defined life purpose from God blesses his message living your life purpose. After the thank you so much for joining us here on Turning Point. We are getting started in this new year with a series of messages entitled the life God blesses and today were going to talk about living your life on purpose.
When you know why you're doing what you're doing. It's a lot easier to do it when you know there's a purpose behind it all, that there's a goal that God has something that he intends to happen because you're doing what you're doing and working to look at the lives of Daniel Ezra, Paul and the Lord Jesus Christ and examine how they live their lives on purpose and hopefully God will enable us to do the same. Let's find out how to live our lives purpose. I read recently about a pilot who was practicing high-speed maneuvers interject. She turned the controls for what she thought was a steep ascent and flew straight into the ground. She was unaware that she had been flying upside down.
This is a parable of human experience and not exactly that everyone is crashing, but there is enough of that in most of us as individuals and the world as a society as a whole live in such a high speed, often with no clue as to whether were flying upside down her right side up haunted by the suspicion that there may be no difference. Or at least there is a difference we don't know what it is or it's irrelevant to our lives. I am convinced that far too many of us are pushed along by the days and the months and years.
And when we do not put up any resistance. The force of the years just takes over.
I want us to think about allowing God to grab hold of our lives and change us from a passive lethargic existence to a powerful and purposeful life.
In a recent national survey. A question was asked if you could ask God anyone question, what would it be that's a good thought is if you could ask God anyone question and get an immediate answer. What would it be and when they tallied all the results of the survey. The question most often asked was not how can I get rich or why do bad things happen to good people, or any of the other things you and I might think would be asked. The number one question people said they would ask God if they could ask him anything was why am I here, why am I here what is my purpose for life. What am I supposed to be doing with the days and the hours in the months and the years that have been given to me to wonder about that you ever asked the question Lord God, why am I here when I was ordained many years ago my father, who was then living and was the pastor who was in charge of the ordination preached a message at my ordination service from acts chapter 13 verse 36 and this is what that verse says David served his own generation by the will of God and my father gave that verse to me as sort of a challenge for my life and ministry that I would take that as from the Lord and that I would serve my generation by the will of God, and remember my father saying you can't serve the generation before you because you worked there. You'll never be able to serve the generation it's after you because you won't be there. You have to serve the generation in which you live and you must do it by the will of God and I've never forgotten those words then my father reminded me that there's only one thing God could ever ask of us and that is that we do what he tells us to do and we live our lives on purpose for him. George Bernard Shaw, not writing certainly from an evangelical perspective, but nevertheless with great wisdom, wrote these words he said this is true joy in life are being used for a purpose recognized by yourself as a mighty one being thoroughly worn out before you were thrown on the scrapheap and being a force of nature instead of a feverish, selfish little clod of ailments and grievances complaining that the world will not devote itself to making you happy.
Did you hear what he said the true joy of life is being used for a purpose and for those of us who are Christians, that purpose is the purpose we gain from knowing God, William Paul cell observed, it is unlikely that we will deepen our relationship with God in a casual or haphazard manner.
There will be a need for some intentional commitment and some reorganization in our own lives, but there is nothing that will enrich our lives more than a deeper and clearer perception of God's presence in the routine of daily living for a few moments. I want to lead us on a quest to get purposeful about life. I hope you'll join me in this process as we explore just a few thoughts from the Scripture and then try to make it apply to our own lives. Now there are a number of people in the Bible who live such a life.
I want to introduce you to four of them from the Old Testament and two from the new. These people are known to you. Some of them more than others, but in each of their lives. They lived on purpose and because of that God use them to make an incredible impact on the people around them, and on the generations that follow we read about them.
We learn about them and study about them because their lives were so purposeful we can't get away from them. The first one is the man. Daniel and in the life of Daniel we discover the power of purpose. I need to tell you the stories very quickly and I'm going to assume some knowledge on your part of the stories because they're not unfamiliar most of us the story of Daniel actually is a story of three of his friends and himself, who were taken captive by King Nebuchadnezzar, who was the king of Babylon. They were singled out by this wicked Babylonian king to represent him to his Jewish captives.
So Nebuchadnezzar brought them to Babylon. And he did everything he could do to brainwash them into looking Babylonian on the inside even though they were Jewish on the outside. This method was if I can get these young Jewish boys to represent me to their people and I can change them on the inside so that there really Babylonian in their thinking. They will be a useful tool to keeping peace among the people that we have in captivity. So he brought Daniel and his three friends into his palace and he began to train them. He talked them. The Babylonian culture. He changed all of their names Jewish names to Babylonian name Daniels name. For instance, which was God is judge and Yale. God is my judge's is what that word means they change Daniels name to Shatzer which was in honor of the God bail and Daniel who was a wonderful godly Jewish young man was thrust into the midst of this pressure cooker where they were trying to squeeze all of his godliness out of him and turning them to simply an outward Jew with an inward Babylonian heart and Daniel's first test came when he was brought into the king's own palace and offered food from the king's table remembering the story and the phone from the king's table was a major problem for Daniel who was a wonderful godly Jew because certainly it would not be kosher and to eat, it would've involved Daniel in the violation of the law the drink that he was offered according to the text was wine from the king's table and Daniel knew that before any Babylonian king drink any wine. It was first of all offered to the pagan gods that they serve.
So for Daniel to eat the food from the king's table would violate his covenant and for him to drink the wine from the king's kitchen would violate the covenant, and so the Bible says Daniel had to make a decision and that we come now to Daniel chapter 1 and verse eight, but Daniel purposed in his heart that he would not defile himself with the portion of the king's delicacies, nor with the wine which he drank. Therefore he requested of the chief of the UNIX that he might not defile himself, and I want you to go back to the beginning of the verse where it says Daniel purpose in his heart he made a decision. He decided that he would not eat the king's meat or drink the teams line. He made up his mind. He related his heart is what the text means he refused and all the might of Babylon and all the policy of Nebuchadnezzar and all the worldly wisdom said he should comply with this powerful king, but Daniel purposed in his heart he began to live his life. From that moment on, at least on purpose.
He was young, but he purposed in his heart, so don't let anyone tell you young people, but you're too young for this message.
He was in the minority. All the rest. Apparently complied, but he purposed in his heart he was away from home, away from all of the underpinnings of his culture, yet purposed in his heart if he disobeyed. He knew he could be killed, but he purposed in his heart, the eating and drinking of the Kings wine and food would have been a capitulation on the part of Daniel to the lifestyle of the world and it would have been in direct disobedience to God and his word, so Daniel purposed in his heart that he would not and he did not and I need to tell you because you don't have time to go with me for the rest of the book of Daniel that that moment in that young man's life who perhaps was somewhere between 14 and 18 years of age. That moment in his life. Set him up for all the rest of his life. Read the book of Daniel, and you will see that because of his commitment to God and putting God first in everything he rose to the top of at least three different administration and he was a man who came to be known as Daniel the dearly beloved, he played a huge role in God's plan for his people, and it all began in his heart when he decided to live on purpose. He made up his mind what to do and he sets himself apart from so many others I was reading in the Old Testament, and I read about a king by the name of Rehoboam in a kind of struck me because it says in second Chronicles 1214 that he did evil. Now watch this because he did not prepare his heart to seek the Lord, there is a point in time in all of our lives as Christians where we have to step back and decide the Christian life isn't going to just come to me. It's not just going to float over me like the atmosphere. If I am going to be honoring to God and make a difference in my world and my family and my church in my culture I have got to make purpose the center of my thinking, what have I decided to do one purposes in my heart. Daniel shows us the power of purpose. I wish I could tell you the rest of the story because it is a glorious story but I need to hasten onto the next person and this person from the Old Testament is a man by the name of Ezra sometimes referred to as Ezra the scribe. Now Ezra is usually given credit for writing the book which bears his name. The book of Ezra for giving details concerning the book of Nehemiah and perhaps even the Chronicles of the Old Testament. Some of them are attributed to him. Whatever we know about Ezra. He was a great man, a man greatly used of God and he illustrates the preparation of purpose. You see, God had used Ezra the scribe to bring reform to his people, who had returned from captivity to rebuild the temple and the walls of Jerusalem using the written word of God. Ezra led the people in revival. What happened was while they have been away for 70 years they have forgotten many of the traditions and many other commitments.
They came back to rebuild the walls and rebuild the temple, and while there was some excitement at the beginning it wasn't long before the Jewish people began to descend into the depths of living, much of which they have learned in the Babylonian culture, but much of which was just their own decadent lives. And while God sent Nehemiah back to build up the walls of the city. He primarily sent Ezra back to teach the people from the word of God so that they could be renewed and they could begin again to worship Jehovah God as they had been called upon to worship him in the beginning, and Ezra came back and the Bible tells us that he instituted reforms and he began to lead revivals and after the completion of the wall. Ezra and Nehemiah. Gather the people together if you want to read a great chapter in the Bible sometimes we Nehemiah for there you will see what happens when God's word is given freedom to have an impact on the life of a culture for seven days. Now watch this from early in the morning until noon. Everybody came together and they listen to the word of God. As Ezra stood on a platform and he read the word of God, and he told them what the word of God meant that this wasn't your normal morning service. It started at daybreak, probably around six and it lasted until noon, and they stood up the whole service and the only attraction for that gathering was God's holy Word and a man by the name of Ezra who knew the word of God and could interpret it and explain it to the people and you say how in the world did he get into such a position of leadership in strength and influence so that he literally turned the course of a nation through the teaching and preaching of the word of God won't give you the key. It's in Ezra chapter 7 and verse 10 and this is what it says for Ezra had prepared his heart to seek the law of the Lord and to do it, and to teach statutes and ordinances in Israel.
Look at the front of the verse once again be prepared.
His heart say it out loud. He prepared his heart. You don't really do anything. God that's going to make a difference unless there is an on time. Intentional, purposeful decision, but this is going to happen. I don't know anybody that just floats into greatness. You I don't know anybody that just sort of goes with the flow and makes a difference in their culture.
Somewhere along the line you have to drive a stake in the ground and say this is what I'm committed to and for Ezra it was the commitment to prepare his heart to seek the law, it would be like a young man today coming forward in the service and saying I believe that God is calling me to the ministry and I am going to go to seminary and learn to teach the word of God so that I can make a difference in the generation to come. That's what Ezra did. He began to live his life on purpose so that everything about him had to do with his focus on the word of God and what a dramatic change took place because of his influence so we have Ezra in the Old Testament and we have the opportunity to see what God did in his life, and we have Daniel in the Old Testament just to illustrations of people who lived their lives on purpose. Ballots come to the New Testament because some of you say will give me something more recent that I want to share with you first of all, the life of all who under any gaze has been listed as perhaps the most influential man who lived upon the face of this earth apart from Jesus Christ. To him, we all 13 of the epistles of the New Testament. According to most people. If you include Hebrews to him. We all the foundation principles of the church to him. We all, the missionary strategy of outreach to him. We all the power of a testimony from a transformed life and you can go on and on. Paul was, and is even to this day considered one of the greatest man who ever lived. But as we turn our Bibles to Philippians chapter 3, we learn his secret. According to verse 11 of the third chapter Paul's passion and his goal in life was to know Christ and the power of his resurrection and in order to do that Paul made a decision in his life.
He decided to live on purpose and listen to the statement, which is one of my favorite passages in the New Testament brother and I do not count myself to have apprehended, but one thing I do say that out loud. One thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead, I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. Paul had as his all-consuming goal to know Jesus Christ in the power of his resurrection and the fellowship of his suffering but he didn't just have a high moment in his thought process. The Bible says he made a decision he made a decision to make that the very core of his existence even say these many things I dabble in. He said this one thing I do anything focused himself on that decision and determined to live his life on purpose and you know what the result of it was at the end of his life, and we have the record of this in second Timothy which was his swan song.
The last letter that he wrote in the swansong that Paul wrote in second Timothy. He writes these words, for I am already being poured out as a drink offering in the time of my departure or my death is at hand. I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Finally, there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge will give to me on that day and not to me only, but also to all love his appearing.
Paul got to the end of his life because of the purpose he had made at the beginning of his life and he said, looking back on my life. I can say I finished my course, I did what I was supposed to do. I thought the fight and I'm excited about the future because there's a crown waiting for me. You say, can anybody live like that. I mean, maybe if you thought about that in your life right now and you thought boy this is my day of departure, what would your thoughts be for many of us I'm sure would be all the things that we wish we had done that we didn't get done all the things we wanted to do for God and we were going to do for God someday but we never quite got to it will.
You don't have to live your life that way you can live your life on purpose you can understand what God wants you to do and set out to do it with purpose in mind will have a lot more about this tomorrow on the Friday edition of Turning Point and I hope you be with us, then David Jeremiah my joy and privilege to be with you every day right here on this good radio station so have a good day will see you next time you message today originated from Shadow Mountain Community Church and Dr. David Jeremiah senior Boston. Would you like to tell us have turning toward ministers to you is right to left Turning Point PO Box 3838, San Diego, CA 92163 or visit our website at David Jeremiah talking/writing is clear copy of Jack country. God's blessings just for you to just 100 inspirational readings and reflections is yours for a gift of any amount still have Chris today with you study devotional for 2021 strength day.
There are still copies of. It's a great way to get a dose of biblical truth is your coffee when you visit David Jeremiah thought 04/I'm very conflict. Join us tomorrow as we continue the series the life God blesses a tear on Turning Point with Dr. David Jeremiah for taking time to listen to on tonight's trim piece in question