We Have Overcome

Uploaded by RealAnswersRealLife on 11.11.2012


Lord, thank You for
bringing us here, thank You for everything You are.
And we thank You for our brother, Ed.
We're so glad that he's
not suffering anymore. These last few weeks have really
really, really, been tough on he and Bobbie, and the family and his friends.
So, he's home now, and we rejoice with that.
We ask that You make Yourself especially known to Bobbie,
and family, and give us the right words to set
say, or write if we're so moved. For those
of us who can visit, we know that quite often, just a hug
is what matters.
So, we give You the rest of the day, like we've
So, we give You the rest of the day, like we've already
given it to You. We can't wait for what You have in store
for us. In Jesus name, amen.
Okay, turn in your Bibles to 2 Kings, chapter 6.
if you would. 2 Kings?
Where's that? It's right after 1st Kings,
which is right after 2 Samuel.
Yeah, it's in that part of the Bible you never look at.
(chuckles) The Old Testament.
I want to read you a story, at least part of a story.
this is chapter 6 of 2 Kings,
and it starts in verse 8.
Everybody there? 2 Kings 6, verse 8.
I will read along. "Now the king of Aram
"was at war with Israel. After
conferring with his officers, he said, 'I will set up
my camp in such and such a place.' The man of God
sent word to the King of Israel:
"Beware of passing that place, because the Aramaens are going down there."
"So the king of Israel checked on the place indicated
"by the man of God. Time and time again Elisha
"warned the king, so that he was on his guard in such places.
"This enraged the king of Aram.
"He summoned his officers and demanded of them, 'Will you not
"tell me which is of us is on the side of the king of Israel?"
"None of us, my lord the king," said one of the officers,
"But Elisha, the prophet who is in Israel, tells the king of Israel,
"the very words you speak in your bedroom."
"Go, find out where he is," the king ordered. "So I can send
"men and capture him." The report came back: "He is in Dothan."
"Then he sent horses and chariots and a strong force there.
"They went by night and surrounded the city."
Map time.
There's Israel.
And, if you look way up there at the top,
see Damascus? That's the capital of Aram.
We know it today as Syria.
And Dothan
is right there. So, they found out
that Elisha was in Dothan and
they sent a force to surround that small city.
So who are the players here? Well, clearly Elisha the prophet.
The King of Aram, or
Syria, his name was Ben-Hadad,
the King of Israel at the time was a guy named Joram.
Who was Joram? He was the younger
son of king Ahab. You remember king Ahab.
Ahab and Jezebel? Well, when Ahab died,
his older son, Ahaziah
became king. Ahaziah reigned for two years,
and the reason he only reigned for two years is because he
fell through the lattice work on his roof, and injured himself.
The Bible doesn't say what he was doing, but since he was a lot like his
dad, it was probably party-hardy up there. And, he fell through the roof
and hurt himself. He wanted to know if he was going to live. He didn't
have time for Elisha to get there. So he went
to the priests of Beelzebub and said, "how's it going?"
Beelzebub means "Lord of the Flies". That's how evil
these people were. Elisha heard about it, came
in and said, "No, you're going to die. Sorry." and he did. Two years.
So his younger brother, Joram, becomes king and reined for eleven years.
So, this is only, this story is only taking place three or
four years probably after Ahab died, so not too long after
Ahab. If you turn back to 1 Kings 21,
there is a fascinating little statement
in here. I Kings 21
verses 25 and 26.
it's done in the NIV in parentheses. It says,
"There was never a man like Ahab
"who sold himself to do evil in the eyes of the Lord.
"urged on by Jezebel, his wife. He behaved in the vilest
"manner by going after idols, like the Amorites the Lord drove out
"before Israel" Okay? This family
was amazingly bad. They led Israel
to amazingly bad places.
Israel had several problems as a result of this.
First, they sold themselves to evil.
There was
very little that anyone could find in the whole country
of Israel, that had to do with the one true God.
Elisha, who had followed Elijah and several
other prophets, and a few people, but by and large, the country
had sold itself to evil. They were
in constant political upheaval. Right? The king that followed
Ahab only ruled for two years, and now we've got a new guy
and he's the younger one, and he's not quite sure what he's doing.
Should we make treaties with Judah
in the South, so we can fight against the King of Aram, or should we
make a treaty with the king of Aram,
so that we can get along together, and who's going
to be what role and all of that? Constant political upheaval.
Their foreign policy was a mess.
They didn't know whether to trust any of their
surrounding countries, or to attack them.
They didn't know whether to defend themselves,
or to make treaties. Everything
was in an upheaval. Locally,
domestically, and in their foreign policy. Their borders
were unguarded. I mean, remember the map...
Dothan's way down in the country, you know, not
way up North by the borders of Aram.
The king of Aram just sent a bunch of soldiers right
there, surrounded the place at night, and they're getting ready to do damage.
Nobody challenged them, nobody...I mean it was a mess.
there economy was in trouble.
When you're in constant war, your economy suffers.
Wars seem to cause famine.
Because, you know, armies strip the land. Especially
in those days. Right? Armies marched across the land, eating as they went.
So, constantly, the
peasants, the regular folks, were short on food.
Short on money, constantly in trouble.
Does any of this sound familiar?

Um, there is a good chance that what follows
is going to anger probably everyone here.
I don't apologize for that. This is a message
that must be heard. We just finished an election.
Let me tell you how this election went.
We'll use Lois and my family.
We have sisters that are
first cousins of Lois. One sister unfriended
her other sister on FaceBook, because she didn't vote
the way the first sister wanted her to vote.
We have other family members
who posted some of the
worst stuff I've ever read
about one particular party. It doesn't matter who it was--
and did it proudly! Another cousin
would try to post equally vile stuff about her favorite
party, and the two went at it for a year and a half
on Facebook. This is our family--good Christians all!
How did it go in your family?

Some of you are probably elated at
the results of the election. Some of you are in
abject depression over the outcome of the election.
Both of you are wrong.
If you related, you've probably got some misplaced
dependencies; some out of whack expectations
and if they're not met, life is going to be hard. Those of you who are
depressed, who do you serve? Jesus Christ
or some political party? Get over yourselves.
All of us have to think about this.
Is it worth the angst
to be going through some of what we're going through? Granted, we've
got all of these things here; right here in our country.
Right here in the United States! It's falling apart under
our very noses. The Republicans
have contributed every bit as much as the Democrats.
Who started
this recent round of profligate spending?
George Bush. He was the Republican
good guy. Man of God!
President Obama has continued it. So why do we yell at
President Obama, and never said anything to President Bush?
Well, because he's one of us! How does that work?
See? When you start selling yourself into
a political process, and you get your eyes off of Jesus,
then Satan has us right where he wants us.
This is a message to the Church.
Lost people, you can't expect anything else of.
But us, we should be able to
participate in the political process, understanding what it can do
and what it can't do, and be just fine with the results.
Because we are not dependent on some
man for who we are in our value as human
beings. So what are
some of our problems? When I say "our",
I mean, "Christians". First, we fail
to understand that nations rise and fall. It's just
the nature of things. Now,
no one in the history of the world has ever been a citizen of
a particular nation, or empire, or small town, or whatever,
and thought that, "you know? One
maybe two generations from now, this is all gone." No one has ever thought
that. Because that's not the way we think.
We like to take advantage of what we've got right now. But, when you come into
our century, and our political process,
everybody lives in the future, and the future
is so bleak.
Well, it may happen, it may not. We don't know.
All we've got is this moment here. What does the Bible say about this?
This is a hard verse. It's been hard for me for a long, long time. "Everyone
"must submit himself to the governing authorities, for there is no authority
"except that which God has established. The Authorities that exist have been
"established by God" (gruffly) Well, do you mean
God put Hitler in charge?? (normal) No. Think about
who God is. Think about
us, first. Are we limited? We're limited
to this moment, and this moment, and this moment, and this moment.
Our lives look pretty linear, in terms of
time. God knows all
possible futures.
That should give you a headache, just trying to think
Everyone of us makes choices.
Every choice impacts the future. We don't know how. We'll find out.
Imagine billions and billions of people making choices
over the last history of the world, and God
knowing in advanced, what every potential
outcome of every choice was going to lead to in the future.
And, being completely prepared
to deal with it.
How did He deal with it? With Jesus.
That's the way that God establishes authority.
He knows who's going to be there!
This afternoon, when you have some spare time, if you're not trying to cry
at what the Cowboys are doing, read the book of Daniel.
Daniel is one of those books that shows you that
God knows all possible futures.
He said what nation was going to follow what nation, and how they were going to do
it, and who was going to be in charge, and don't worry, Daniel, I've got this!
So, we
submit ourselves to governing authorities, in honor
of God, not in honor of governing authorities.
I could go on,
but I won't. There's too much to cover. Another problem.
We think we are God's people, and our job is to take over the government.
I can't tell you how many times I heard this
during the campaign. (mockingly) "Well, you know, we Christians..."
well... Mitt Romney was a Mormon.
Then we'd get calls.
Well, how am I supposed to vote?!? Tell me! I don't want to use my own head
I want Bob Christopher to tell me who to vote for
and, bless his heart, Bob never
said. I'm serious.
Such wisdom and discernment. Every time we talk about
going to the Lord, walking by faith, figuring out what each party
stands for, and then voting your conscience.
Some people look at both parties, and vote their conscience,
by not voting.
You realize one of the main reasons the Republicans lost
is because 3 and a half billion Republicans stayed home?
If they had voted,
Romney would have won. So, don't
don't go out blaming people, and blaming the media and
all of this stuff. People made choices. Choices have
ramifications. Here's the
solution to this: "For as I
"have often told you before, and now say again, even with tears, many
"live as enemies of the cross of Christ. Their destiny is destruction.
"Their god is their stomach; their glory is in their shame. Their mind
"is on earthly things. But our citizenship
"is in heaven. We eagerly await a Savior
"from there. The Lord Jesus Christ, who by the power that enables Him to
"bring everything under his control, will transform our lowly bodies
"so that they will be like His glorious body."
It is not our job as Christians to take over the United States
for Jesus. It is our job as Christians
to go one by one to our family and friends and neighbors
and offer them Jesus.
What would happen--I was
joking with Jeannie about this--what would happen if on
election day, I had written in my own name for president?
"Richard" And there was a tie
and congress had to do their thing and they'd look at it and say
"well, here's a guy, we'll take him. Richard? You're now the president,"
What would happen? Well,
some people would be thrilled. "Well, we've got a Christian pastor in the Whitehouse!"
He'll show them! Right?
We'll declare all the evil things evil, we'll declare all the good things good
and we'll have our country back!
I mean, echoes of that great song: (singsong voice) "If My People,
who are called by my name, will humble themselves, will humble themselves
and pray" You know, we take a verse intended for
the children of Israel and we try to apply it to the United States,
so that if we'll all get together and pray, God will heal our land.
God has already
provided the healing for our land! His name is Jesus!
His name is not politics,
Politics can only divide people.
We've come so far in our line of politics
that our country is almost evenly divided
between people who call themselves conservatives, and people who call themselves
liberals, and neither of them want to hear about morality.
They sure don't want to hear about Jesus.
Beware of this! There are
some very, very good writers out there that I read and
various blogs, and they have some wonderful things to say, but almost every
time they go into a, "You know this has got to
"to be a Christian nation!" as if
somebody who doesn't agree with them can't possibly be a Christian.
Gotta check our attitudes, folks.
This is what we've got. We may not
like it, but it's what we have.
Let's take a look at another one. Okay?
We think that social justice is the most important issue of our times.
This is a big thing in
a lot of churches today. Social justice.
You know, if we'd only start taking care of the poor,
then God would take care of us. Well, not really.
What we want to do is have the government take care of the poor, so we don't
have to think about it. That's how most people look at it.
And so, you get these big battles going on in various
churches today. In particular, one of the things
that characterizes what's called the "emergent church" is this idea
of social justice. People everywhere just got
to be free. And so
they're willing to do anything to bring about what they
define as social justice. They're willing
give up the gospel for social justice, because Jesus
is too challenging to some of these folks.
Well, what did Jesus say about this?

This statement is taken out of context, so I gotta give you the context.
This is when Jesus was at that feast, reclining at that table,
and this woman comes in and breaks the jar of perfume on his feet,
and wipes his feet with her hair. It's terribly expensive stuff, a year's worth of wages,
and the leaders
pharisees, scribes, were complainingly mightily.
Well this could have been sold and given to the poor!
While they're sitting there, stuffing their faces. Okay? Think about that.
Jesus said, "Leave her alone! Why are you bothering
"her? She has done a beautiful thing to me. The poor, you will always
"have with you and you can help them anytime you want. But you will not
"not always have me." What was he telling them? Don't
give me your noise about 'this could have been sold and given to the poor',
the poor have been here for centuries, they're going to be here for centuries, and you
ignore them. Stop it!
You can give to them any time.
She anointed me once, and it was led of God.
How is it, that
especially in the United States, we've bought into this idea
that there has to be a set of classes
that define who we are?
Are you middle class? Are you lower class?
Are you one of the 1%?
You know, are you on welfare? Most churches don't want to hear
about Welfare. (gruffly) Not our people!
Well why not your people? I know many people
who are on Welfare. Fine, upstanding Christians.
Welfare had nothing to do with their relationship with Jesus.
A relationship with Jesus had a lot to do with how they responded to Welfare.
and how that worked out in their lives.
I praise God that people can get food stamps!
Because God knows the church pretty much has stopped feeding them.
I mean we do a food drive
here once or twice a year, and we feel good, and that's okay.
But my goodness! Is that all we can do? Twice
a year, send a bunch of canned food to Metro Press Services? Well the problem is
too big, and so we need larger organizations to take care of it. No we don't.
If you're
concerned about social justice, and I think we all should be,
can't make it an end all and be all, but why doesn't
your Christianity inform your beliefs and your actions?
How does the Spirit motivate each
one of us? This isn't something I can't say about the church
in general, because I'm sure there are some of you who are very involved in this kind of stuff.
It's a question I have to ask me, and you have to ask you.
What are we going to do with people
who don't have money, and don't have food, and have trouble with housing?
Have trouble with on going illnesses, chronic things...
that the 'system' will treat for a couple of days, then turn
'em back on the streets...then treat for a couple of days, then turn them back on the streets.
See, we've bought into the lie that
somehow, it's the government's job.
It can't be the government's job.
No government in the history of the world has
successfully mobilized to do what needs to be
done, because government, by definition, is run by people
like you and me. We make mistakes, and so do they.
It's just the nature of the beast. Okay?
So what's the real problem? I could go into economics,
and you know, gun control, and all kinds of things,
there's no end of issues out there. But what's the real
problem for us as a church? Not just us as Metro,
but the Children of God in the United States. What's
the real problem? We fail
to live New Covenant lives.
Listen to the rhetoric this past week. Actually
the past three years.
What a lot of Christians have been begging for,
in their churches, in their local governments,
and everything else, is more Law.
We need a law. We oughta pass a law.
Did you know we've got so many laws on the books now, that we can't
keep any of them, in terms of our society.
Larry was talking to me in Bible Study on Wednesday. Larry is a
retired police officer. He's got a friend who was in the traffic division.
His friend told him once, "You know, if I followed anyone in town,
for ten or 15 minutes, I could probably write them
three or four citations in 15 minutes, if I
enforced every law."
That's all of us..and I'm a good driver! I'm tellin' ya!
I'm about the best driver out there, except...when I'm not! (chuckles from audience)
So, this kind of thing
is for Children of God; again
the world can't understand this. Spiritual things are Spiritually discerned.
So, we've got to figure out
what it means to live New Covenant lives, and I said it this way on purpose
because that's what Bob talked about last week, summarizing
Hebrews. Remember? We've been
saying all along that Hebrews wasn't just written to Jews,
because each of us does exactly the same thing. We're now
natural born legalists. But when Jesus
becomes overwhelming to us, it literally
LITERALLY changes us from the inside out, and we stop being
legalists, and we start seeing God's love overflow to others.
That's what we're really talking about here.
So, let's look at a solution for this
and couch it in terms of
our political situation in the United States.
"Our struggle is not with flesh and blood,
"but against the rules, against the authorities,
"against the powers of this dark world, and against the Spiritual forces
"of evil in the heavenly realms." For those of you
who did not vote for President Obama, President Obama
is not your enemy.
For those of you who didn't vote for Mitt Romney, Mitt Romney
was not your enemy. The problem is not
Democrats and Republicans, the problem is this!
It's a Spiritual problem! We as
Christians, as New Covenant believers, should be able to discern this.
and rather than making us fear for the future,
even granting all of the possible outcomes that are
out there--I mean, 16 trillion dollars in debt is, you know, not
chump change. Even with all of that,
we know that this is primarily a Spiritual issue.
We are fighting Spiritual battle.
It is not political, social, or economic battle.
Even though, those are fought.
The real issue is a Spiritual one. How do we know this?

You got your Bibles, turn to Revelation 18.
I'm going to read some highlights, but
you'll want to, maybe spend some time in that chapter.
This is the chapter where
Babylon falls.
Babylon is a word for
Spiritual evil power
derived outside of humans.
It's not just a city, it's not
just Rome; it's not just the Catholic church, it's the
entire world system.
Babylon falls. This is the end of time. Babylon falls.
Notice who we start with here, "When the kings of the earth
Here's the political class.
All of those who are large and in charge.
Okay? When the kings of the earth, who what? Committed adultery
with her and shared her luxury see
the smoke of her burning, they will weep and mourn
"over her. Terrified at her torment, they will stand far off and cry;
'Woe! Woe Oh Great city of
'power. In one hour your doom has come!'"
Political power in our world
is derived from Babylon.
Always has been, always will be, until Jesus
ends it. That's not to say that
we haven't had 'good' politics, and that good things
haven't come from politics, but it's not because of Babylon,
it's because of Jesus being sovereign, okay?
So, when we get to the end, the whole political mess that we've
got is going to look at this heap of world systems
and weep and moan.
In one hour (snaps) that fast,
your doom has come. okay?
Anybody else? Oh, the Merchants of the earth!
will weep and mourn over her because no one, and this is
going to be really important, so hang in there. No one buys their
cargoes anymore. Here's a description of their cargoes:
cargoes of gold, silver, precious stones and pearls; fine linen,
purple, silk and scarlet cloth; every sort of citron wood and
articles of every kind made of ivory, costly wood, bronze, iron and marble;
cargoes of cinnamon and spice, of incense, myrrh, and frankincense,
of wine and olive oil, of fine flower and wheat; cattle and sheep;
horses and carriages; and the bodies and souls of men!
The bodies
and souls of men are controlled
by these merchants. In our day and age,
I substitute the word, "bankers".
Follow the money.
Always follow the money.

That's a very cruel thing to say, some of you are probably bankers.
But follow the money.
Money has a way of buying and selling lots
of things, including the souls of men, and the bodies
of men. How is it, that an enlightened
times such as ours, sexual
slavery is at an all time high?
If you have a daughter, watch over her.
Watch over her. There are
people out there prowling the streets, looking to grab these girls
off the streets and sell them into slavery.
In a country like United states of all places!
Why? Because this is controlled by Babylon!
By the world system, by satan himself! He's not called
Prince of this World for nothing!
What do they say? Woe
Woe, oh great city! Dressed in fine linen, purple and scarlet,
in one hour, such great
wealth has been brought to ruin.
Such great wealth.

Got one more group. Every
sea captain, and all who travel by ship, the sailors,
and all who earn their living from the sea,
will stand far off. When they see the smoke of her burning, they will exclaim,
'Was there ever a city like this great city?'
"They will throw dust on their heads, and with weeping and mourning cry out: "Woe, woe
'oh great city, for all who had ships on the seas came--became
'rich through her wealth, in one hour she has been brought to ruin.
I see this
group of people as anyone else who has taken advantage
of the world system. In John's day, this looked an awful
lot like sea captains, because they were the ones who were doing all the
transport of the goods, you know, making money, they were the captains
of industry and all of that stuff. A lot of people worked for them.
Got their living from them, but all of it was tainted by
Babylon, just like it is today. Why
is it, that no one is ever satisfied to be a mom and pop shop,
and run for your business for 30 years, and then retire? Because everybody
has bought into the lie, that the only thing that is successful
is the big box store. If you're not the next Wal-Mart, you're a failure.
That is a lie from the pit of hell.
It's one of the things that informs our political mess.
Because we think we've got to be the biggest, and the best, and the
lowest prices every time, or nothing. This has
infected the church, big time.
Big time.
Take a look at some of the edifices here
in Dallas. Then realize that some of them are small.
by comparisons with edifices in other churches in other
cities. We've bought into the lie that the only successful
church is a church of 10,000.
that if you're not a church of 10,000, you can't possibly
share the gospel with anybody.
Why do we believe that?
Why do we,
how many people are here today? 60..70 people?
First of all, why do so few of us attend here,
when so many used to by comparison, secondly,
why is it so hard for us to
make any form of progress? Don't answer that now.
There are lots of things
that contribute to what makes a church successful.
Size is the least of them.
Jesus is the most important, then it goes from there.
The fact is, that Metro
has an opportunity to impact our areas
of Dallas, Fort Worth in ways that no other church could.
The question's always been, "will we?"
We have to--we're going to have to ask that.
Okay, so
this thing about size, is
a key aspect of what constitutes the world's system.
The world system works by aggregation.
If you're this big, you need to acquire
somebody else, so you can be this big;
and then acquire more to get this big, and then
acquire more to get this big, and this big.
That explains multi-national corporations;
that explains banks; the federal reserve;
the world monetary fund. Everything keeps getting bigger
and bigger and bigger, and because it's human made, and Babylon--
devil inspired, we get
confused because it begins to collapse of its own weight due to complexity.
Our answer is never to cut the complexity,
but it's always to build a bigger barn.
We add to complexity. Can you see why Babylon will fall in an hour?
At some point in our future, all
of the world's systems that are bits and pieces are finally going to come
together as one aggregated whole.
All Jesus has to do to collapse the whole
thing is go, "poof" because it's a house of cards.
And all these people who have bet
their souls on the truths
of money and power will
discover it's the lie of money of power.
Let's go back to our story.
Well, first of all, Jesus. "I've told
"you these things, so that in me, you may have peace.
"in this world you will have trouble, but take heart! I have overcome the world."
Right there, Jesus said, "I am victorious,"
Remember one of the things that Jesus said about the work of the Holy Spirit
is that He would convict us wrong regarding
sin and righteousness and judgment. Regarding judgment because
the prince of this world stands condemned.
Well, the prince of this world is condemned. Still the prince of this world, but he's
condemned. Jesus has overcome the world.
Spirit testifies
with our spirit that we are God's children. Now if we are children,
then we are heirs--heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if indeed we share
in his sufferings in order that we may also share in his glory.
Well if Jesus overcame, what does that mean?
We have overcome! Why are we afraid?

Now back to our story.
"Don't be afraid," the prophet answered.
His servant came to him and said,
(Whine) "They're all around us, they've surrounded us. We're dead!"
"Those who are with us
"are more than those who are with them."
"And Elisha prayed,
"Oh Lord, open his eyes so he may see." Then the Lord opened the
"servant's eyes and he looked and saw the hills full of horses
"and chariots and of fire all around Elisha."
All around him.
Back to our map.
What Elisha did, is he waited until
the Aramains came close, and then he prayed that God
would blind them, and God blinded them. So Elisha
goes trotting out the city gate; goes up to the commander and says,
"I know who you're looking for, he's not here, this is the wrong
"place. Let me take you where he is." So he takes them
12 miles south to Samaria.
They're all blind. So he's leading them. Can you imagine?
Some number of thousands of warriors holding hands, walking along in
into Samaria. He gets them into Samaria, they close
the gates. Elisha prays, "God open their eyes"
God opens their eyes, and they go, "ohhhh my!"
and the King of Israel says, "Shall I kill them? Shall I kill them?
He actually says it that way. Look at it, he says it twice. "Shall I kill them?"
"Shall I kill them, my father? Shall I kill them?" Elisha says, "Of course not!
"feed them! Send them away."
and so the king did.
And they went away, and they were at peace for years as a direct result of it.
and nobody died.

"I am not saying this because I am in need, for I have learned to
"to be content whatever the circumstances.
"I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty.
I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation,
"whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want.
"I can do everything through him who gives me strength."
This is one of my favorite verses taken in context,
instead of out of context. My favorite out of context example
over the last couple of months has been a high school south of here
who had, "I can do everything...who gives me strength..."
on the sheet of paper that the football team runs through.
As if having that on there was going to guarantee them victory.
What is he talking about? He's talking about contentment.
What is contentment? The Greeks have this word down long before
Paul came along. The cynics and the Stoics
used this word, and it literally means, LITERALLY means,
You think Paul meant self sufficient?
Who gives me strength.
Him, who gives me strength.
What Paul is saying is that 'I am God-sufficient'
Whatever comes, the
strength of the indwelling Christ, ministered to me and
through me by the Holy Spirit is what makes me content.
I don't care what's going--remember, Paul lived through some
of the very worst of Roman Caesars.
People like Caligula and Vespasian. I mean, you think
our politicians look bad... those guys...
they were truly awful! Yet, the gospel just kept
going. Last
Sunday night, there was a
segment on
60 minutes where they talked to the historian David McCullough.
Some of you may recognize the name from the books, "1776"
or, "Adams" the biography of John Adams. He also
wrote a biography of Truman, written many other things.
Amazing writer. They asked him about the political situation.
He basically laughed and said, "You ain't seen nothing!"
and then he re--she told some stories about the
political battles between John Adams and
..forget his name..? Thomas Jefferson, who ended up close friends
by the end. But the things they said about each other, back
there at the... you know... just in the early...late..1700's early 1800's.
You'd go to prison for saying today! They were after
each other, and it's been that way all along. He tells a story about his dad.
That when Truman was elected,
Truman finished out the term, and then was elected. His dad
life long republican, sat down in his chair and went, "aaahhh!
"the country's ruined! It's only a matter
"of time before it goes away! and you know Hitler will have won..
anyway" You know, that kind of stuff. 20 years later,
He was heard, the same guy, his dad,
was heard to remark, "Oh, if we had a president like Truman again!"
(chuckles) see?
See? Contentment.
Learning to look at the world around you, and the politics
around you, and the social issues around you.
and the economic issues around you through the eyes of the
indwelling Holy Spirit changes everything.
Remember, we have never been guaranteed that we won't
be poor. We have never guaranteed that the United States
will live forever. What we've been guaranteed
is that we are children of God if we will accept Jesus Christ.
and that we are fellow heirs with Him.
A little election can't
touch that. No one, not even
the President of the United States, whoever it is, can touch your
power of choice.
We either belong to Jesus or we don't. Choose Him now.
If you've chosen Him, let Him inform you and get rid of this
false fear about the future. If things
come down and some of them are bad, okay, be afraid. In the meantime
be wise. Get your bills paid off.
If you got too much house, sell the house, get something smaller you can afford. If you've got too many
car bills, sell the car, buy something used that you can afford.
Don't let the economy rule you; rule the economy.
If God puts it on your heart to participate in your
society, whether it's your local city, or your homeowners association
or whatever. Serve as unto the Lord.
Don't go in with the idea that says,
"Well, I'm here, therefore, God is in control."
No, He's not. They may not know Him at all. He's in control over all,
but you can't expect God to do what you want God to do.
It's our job to respond to what He wants us to do.
Doing so, takes the fear out of living.
When you're not living by fear, that means you're living by faith.
You know, because of your faith, that your future is guaranteed,
because Jesus has guaranteed it.
Live that way.
Put away the anger, and the bitterness, and the depression. All those
emotions that are driven by illogical
unholy thoughts. Instead, live by
faith. Remember, we have overcome.
Because Jesus has overcome.
Let's pray.
Lord God,
we do live in a mess of a world.
Sometimes we can't help being touched by the mess.
We know that. We apologize to
each other for it, and we apologize to You.
for our lack of faith. We know we're forgiven and we praise You for that.
But we know sometimes we get so far off in the weeds, that we wonder
if we can ever find the way back. Yet, when we
look up, You're not way back behind us, You're standing right
right there way us, offering us a way out.
So we ask for discernment, we ask for wisdom, things that only You
can give us. We ask for the peace that only You can give.
Only You can give us.
Help us realize just exactly what we have in Jesus Christ
so that we can share with others; so that we can make things
better for those small number of people that we interact with.
We don't have to global issue, that's Your
job. But we can be used by You
in our own situations. What a blessings!
Finally, we sincerely pray
for our country.

We look around, and we wonder where
the next abomination is going to come from.
Help us to not to look at the abomination, but to see people
people who need You
We pray for our president.
He needs You now
more than ever. He claims to be Yours
If he is, we praise You for that, if he's not,
bring something to him that will help him choose You once and for all.
By all means, Lord,
Help us to realize that when we're starting to run down
the path of bitterness and anger and hatred,
to stop, and let Your love
win the day. Jesus name, amen.