Sunday, July 29, 2007

Dream Big

This sermon will inspire the listener individually and the church as a whole to dream big dreams in their attempts to reach, teach and keep the souls God has entrusted to their future. Built around the need to retire the current debt of the church so resources will be freed to save souls instead of service debt, this message encourages each person to consider becoming a part of the solution in making the vision of the church come to pass. The teaching closes with a promise of future teachings on how to participate in the church's plan to pay off the mortgage and reach the lost with the resources God provides through His people.


First Service

Only fools and free men dream big dreams.

It takes a decision to be free from the fears and feelings that limit others who live in a world that everyone can see and believe in.

Boldness and courage belong to those who are willing to attempt the impossible and achieve the heretofore unattainable.

Before 1954 it was thought by many that it was impossible for a human to run the mile in under 4 minutes. On May 6th of that year an Englishman named Roger Bannister broke that impossible barrier. Six weeks later the second person followed suit and within a decade high school runners were turning in times under 4 minutes. Today it is the standard by which all middle distance runners are judged.

One man dreamed the impossible dream and achieved the unattainable goal and now it’s no big deal, everyone expects it.

Only fools and free men dream impossible dreams.

Key Scripture Passage: Psalms 126 NKJV

1 ¶ When the LORD brought back the captivity of Zion, We were like those who dream.

2 Then our mouth was filled with laughter, And our tongue with singing. Then they said among the nations, "The LORD has done great things for them."

3 The LORD has done great things for us, And we are glad.

Do you have a dream? I’m talking about a life dream … something bigger than you … I do … several actually.

Among them I dream to one day enter Heaven’s gates and hear, “Well done good and faithful servant …” (Matthew 25:21)

But, that’s not the end of that dream. My dream also includes me standing close enough to the gates to see some of you when you enter Heaven. It is my hope to hear God say, “Well done …” to you as well.

I guess this comes with the heart and grace of being a pastor. Like a father who cares for his children and raises them to be happy and successful in life, I care about your future, both here on earth and your eternal future as well.

Hebrews 13:17 … those (pastoral leaders) … watch out for your souls, as those who must give account (unto God for you) …

You are God’s children and I am His servant, His steward, caring for you as one who must give an account for your soul to Him when it comes my day to stand before Him.

This is why each service is designed to affect your life in a positive way both spiritually and practically. This is why our staff members pray and work very diligently for you, hoping that God might bless you with resources and that you would invest them in eternity.

This is why we dare to give you bold dreams to pursue believing that your greatest day is yet ahead, encouraging you to see yourself as a winner, an overcomer in this life. This is why we create opportunities for you to participate in reaching the world for Jesus. This is why we have two men leaving this morning to share the Gospel in Greenland. I want you to reach for the stars and have a vision for the whole world on your shoulders.

This is why we teach you how to walk in the blessings of God and boldly challenge you to attempt what few others will attempt because they fear failure, hardships or costs. The greatest failure of all is to fail to try. Honestly, I had rather we reach for the stars and fail by only reaching the moon, than to reach for nothing and succeed.

Thirty eight years and nine days ago a historic event occurred … perhaps the greatest accomplishment of mankind since time began.

It was not without great risks, great efforts, and great costs and on top of that, it seemed impossible. It would never have happened if someone had not been daring enough to dream and dream big.

Sometimes it’s hard for a runner to muster the energy, amass the courage and embrace the dream of winning a race when they find themselves, late in the race, so many laps behind the leader.

That’s where America was in the late 1950’s and early 60’s.

Russia was our arch enemy during these days of the cold war when superpowers were busy positioning themselves for world domination through intimidation of weapons which could cross continents and deliver mass destruction. This superpower was poised to take over the whole world and control its destiny under their communist philosophies.

On January 2, 1959, Russia launched Lunar 1, the first unmanned space explorer to achieve the velocity necessary to break earth’s orbital gravity and venture out into the frontiers of space coming within 6000km of the Moon’s surface. That’s only about 3700 miles, almost the exact distance as it is straight from Washington DC to Moscow. Russia’s aim was to put a man on the moon.

On July 20, 1969, two men did land on the surface of the moon. However they were not Russian, but were on a US mission named Apollo 11. Neil Armstrong, an American, uttered those famous words, “One small step for man, one giant leap for mankind.”

What got the United States into the game? What caught us up and got us ahead? What made us eventually win that race? An inspired dream that united the hearts and minds and resources of people.

May 25, 1961 President John F. Kennedy made his historic speech which committed the United States to a mission impossible, putting a man on the moon.

“Now is the time to take longer strides - time for a great new American enterprise - time for this nation to take a clearly leading role in space achievement, which in many ways may hold the key to our future on earth.

I believe we possess all the resources and talents necessary. But the facts of the matter are that we have never made the national decision or marshaled the national resources required for such leadership. We have never specified long-range goals on an urgent time schedule, or managed our resources and our time so as to insure their fulfillment.

Recognizing the head start obtained by the Soviets with their large rocket engines... and recognizing the likelihood that they will exploit this lead for some time to come in still more impressive successes, we nevertheless are required to make new efforts on our own. For while we cannot guarantee that we shall one day be first, we can guarantee that any failure to make this effort will make us last. We take an additional risk by making it in full view of the world, but … this very risk enhances our stature when we are successful. ...

I believe this nation should commit itself to achieving the goal, before this decade is out, of landing a man on the moon and returning him safely to the earth. No single space project in this period will be more impressive to mankind, or more important for the long-range exploration of space; and none will be so difficult or expensive to accomplish.”

Old Glory, the broad bannered flag of the United States of America, still flies over the moon today and will stand there for thousands and thousands and thousands of years to come as a testimony to what a people can do when they embrace a dream, pool their resources and work together till the job is done.

It is written in the annuls of history that: “Never before had the nation been so united toward a single goal.”

The Kennedy Space Center in Florida was literally mobbed with almost 700,000 people who came to see the launch for themselves.

Among the honored guests: Vice President and Mrs. Spiro Agnew, former President and Mrs. Lyndon Johnson, Army Chief of Staff General William Westmoreland, four cabinet members, 33 senators, 200 congressmen, 14 governors, and 56 ambassadors. Almost 3,500 accredited members of the news media were occupying the press site with representation of 55 other countries, including the Russians.

On July 20, 1969 Neil Armstrong stepped off that ladder and took our one small step for man, but one giant leap for mankind. The impossible dream had become reality.

President John Kennedy was a big dreamer but so also was Neil Armstrong and the other 11 Americans who hold the honor of being the only 12 men who have ever set foot on the surface of the moon.

Somewhere these men were trained well. Proverbs speaks to that:

Proverbs 22 KJV

6 ¶ Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.

Often we disconnect right here with this scripture standing alone. However, let me connect the next verse as a part of the training up we should be teaching our children. If we don’t who else will?

7 ¶ The rich ruleth over the poor, and the borrower is servant to the lender.

Evidently these Astronauts were trained, well trained, trained to be givers not takers, lenders not borrowers, participators not just spectators. These men looked beyond themselves to greater things.

Just like Joseph in Genesis 37, these men were all big dreamers. They dreamed of giving more, not just getting more. They dreamed of caring for others and not just caring for themselves.

I told you that I have several dreams. My biggest dream right now is the dream to build a bigger sanctuary to accommodate the growth of our church and community. I was recently informed of a new study just completed in the Golden Triangle showing that Southeast Texas is slated to grow by no less than 100,000 new people moving into this area within the next 3 to 5 years.

Even if this was not true, the fact that there are so many people already living in our several communities and in communities like ours all over this nation and around the world which we minister to and who do not yet know Christ as the Risen Messiah, pushes me, convinces me to grow our church and grow our resources beyond where we are to reach, teach and serve these individuals and families while we have the chance.

As I said, I have a dream to grow but I cannot right now in good faith feel the leadership of God to take this church into greater debt, the size debt it would take to build a sanctuary and the education, recreation and fellowship space we need to double the efforts and the outreach of our church. First I must keep what we have secure and the vision we hold safe and protected from the enemies which would love to burden us down, hold us captive and enslave us to paying for debt service instead of paying for souls.

So, in order to accomplish the impossible, we must first take a bold step of faith and attempt with our best efforts to retire our existing debt. With God’s help together we can do this.

Today our assets total more than 4 million dollars on this property alone. We owe approximately 2.1 million dollars on the mortgage and we have no other debt. It would amaze many of you to realize that the electricity bill for our church is between 1000 and 1200 dollars per week, this coupled with the building and liability insurance, the mortgage of $17,000 plus per month, the maintenance and upkeep, the CPA, the equipment, supplies and repairs all come out before we begin our ministry to the community, our nation and the world … then there are the missionaries and the salaries of our weekly workers from our nursery and janitors to our administrative and pastoral staff. Believe me it is amazing what it takes just to get this 12 acres mowed when it needs to be so it can look good and presentable as a representation of God’s House, our Church.

We are good and faithful stewards of every thing you give to God and God gives to us and we have a twenty year history of not asking for more. We take what comes in, we bless it and we do our best for God with it.

During the past building programs, from the sanctuary you are sitting in to the educational and administrative wing next door, from the worldwide broadcast of our services to the mission’s efforts around the globe, we have not asked you for more. The exceptions to these have been very few and very far between.

However, today we start a new campaign and we cannot accomplish this dream without your serious and continual support. Before we attempt to build I have a dream to pay off our existing debt. I want to attempt to retire the 2.1 million dollars just as fast as we can.

It will take givers not just getters, doers not just hearers, participators and not just spectators … dreamers – big dreamers.

People who dream of giving more and not just getting more.

People just like you.

Without apology I am asking each one of you sitting here and those of you listening to our broadcasts to consider helping us completely erase the debt of our church so that we can put the money you give to greater use reaching more souls for the kingdom.

I challenge you to not endanger the church’s ability to pay our current ministry costs by designating your normal tithes and offerings to this special fund … I am asking that you to give more, above your normal giving, give thoughtfully, prayerfully and sanely, do not give what you do not have, but give what you can from the bottom of your heart and mark it to be used as debt retirement. One hundred percent of everything you designate will go directly to pay off that debt.

Soon I will be sharing some specific goals with you which we can all work toward together. Make this a matter of prayer and stir your faith to believe God for our success. I believe that as the church comes out of debt, miraculously so will you and I am going to teach you how to do it by the faith and practice of God’s Word.

The Lord Himself will turn our captivity and we shall be more able ministers of the Gospel of Christ as we are set free from the bondage of our current debt and boldly stand free to dream and dream big.

You know, several years ago we took a family vacation and drove West. We went through Texas, New Mexico, Arizona, Nevada and California, stopping at tourist sites along the way. One leg of our vacation found us in the city of Las Vegas. Wow! The Lights, the hotels, the casinos … it’s one impressive place.

I cannot imagine how much money it takes just to pay the electricity bill for one night on the strip or in one casino for that matter. Ready to leave that place I wanted to impress upon my children the hazards and temptations of being lured into the trap of thinking that gambling is an easy road to getting rich quick.

In an effort to teach them life principles I asked them to look at all the glitter and all the gold and all the people gambling and all the money on the tables, some players winning, others losing. When their eyes were about to pop out of their heads with the prospect of winning millions of dollars for only a quarter, I reminded them that:

Las Vegas, the hotels, the casinos, and all the glory was not built on winners, but on losers.

The opposite is true with in the Kingdom of God.

The Kingdom is built on winners. It’s a win, win situation with God. You invest your finances in God’s Kingdom and He invests His Kingdom in your finances. And He pays 100% of the time.

Paying off the 2 million dollar debt may seem like only one small step for man but it will be one giant leap for mankind as we cover the whole world with the Word of Almighty God.

Lets do it for Jesus and His Bride, our Church, and for those who still need saved.

Dream and dream big. Together we can do it!

What can you do?

Will you ask God right now to show you what He wants you to do … then commit to do it.

Set yourself a giving goal and ask God to help you achieve it.

Dream of being a paymaster in His Kingdom. Dream and Dream Big!

You are the only thing limiting God from blessing you.

Lets pray now and soon I’ll be sharing some more specific steps we can take to make this dream become a reality.

Sunday, July 22, 2007

Dealing With The Enemies Of Life - Part 4: The Enemies of Our Future Life

Synopsis: This message is designed to challenge each Believer to establish God's priorities in life and to adequately prepare themselves to defeat the enemies of their future life by dressing for success! The last in this 4 part series on Dealing With The Enemies of Life, the listener will find that success is often wrapped up in doing what God says, when He says it, just because He said it. You too can defeat sin, satan and your own selfish appetites by using the tools and strategies God has made available to the Believer.


Our success is wrapped up in doing what God says, when He says it, just because He said it.

Whatever attacks any of these things is the enemy of our future life. Just like Eve in the Garden of Eden, her enemy succeeded in getting her to question God, His Word, His authority and His intent.

Dealing with and defeating the enemies of our future life demands we establish priorities and dress for success. Our enemies are watching us.

While you are turning to Matthew 22, let me recap a bit.

Key Scripture: Psalms 18 New Living Translation

17 God delivered me from my powerful enemies, from those who hated me and were too strong for me.

18 They attacked me at a moment when I was weakest, but the LORD upheld me.

Thus far this series has taught us that God made a way for us to deal with:

1. The Enemies of Our Past Life

This is the life we lived before we were born again, before we received salvation by grace through faith in Jesus.

In Part One of this series we learned that God gave us two essential elements to defeat the enemies of our past life.

1. The Blood of the Lamb - The Blood defeats the damning power of sin

2. Water Baptism - Water Baptism is deliverance for the Believer but becomes a grave to the enemies of our past life.

In Part Two we began surveying:

2. The Enemies of Our Present Life

We realized that once saved, the Believer continues to encounter new enemies with new challenges and new temptations. We learned the difference between God removing the yoke of sin from our shoulders and then, destroying that yoke so that it can never be placed on our neck again.

We found God made it easy for us to get right with him by simply and sincerely asking for His forgiveness. However, once forgiven it is necessary for the Believer to rebuild the walls of security and keep the door of sin closed against those enemies which are familiar with us and constantly seeking to re-capture us.

Then in Part Three we continued dealing with those enemies of our present life. We studied how to defeat the temptations of this present life by: filling ourselves with the Word of God; clothing ourselves with the armor of God; and by developing the fruit of the Spirit in our lives.

We also detailed steps which could be taken to regain control over sin and reclaim the ground lost when we fall into the devil’s trap.

It is certain that the devil acts like a roaring lion walking around looking for those whom he can devour but we have been given weapons and strategies to combat and defeat sin, satan and our own selfish appetites. Part three of this series taught us those strategies.

If you missed one or all of these previous messages, you can catch us by listening to them at or go to on the web and access this archived series by following the links.

Today we begin Part 4, Dealing With:

3. The Enemies of Our Future Life

What if, as some theologians say, we go to heaven and spend our eternity with our bucket filled only as full as we fill it while we are here on earth. Perhaps it’s true!

This would answer the question about eternal rewards and heavenly crowns. The Believer who does more for God on earth gets more in heaven and those who do less, get less. This is a very reasonable and just scenario.

Galatians 6:7 Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, that he will also reap. (NKJV)

It sounds like the simple and eternal message of sowing and reaping.

Turn with me to Matthew 22 NKJV

Matthew 22

1 ¶ And Jesus answered and spoke to them again by parables and said:

2 "The kingdom of heaven is like a certain king who arranged a marriage for his son,

3 "and sent out his servants to call those who were invited to the wedding; and they were not willing to come.

4 "Again, he sent out other servants, saying, ‘Tell those who are invited, "See, I have prepared my dinner; my oxen and fatted cattle are killed, and all things are ready. Come to the wedding."‘

5 "But they made light of it and went their ways, one to his own farm, another to his business.

6 "And the rest seized his servants, treated them spitefully, and killed them.

7 "But when the king heard about it, he was furious. And he sent out his armies, destroyed those murderers, and burned up their city.

8 "Then he said to his servants, ‘The wedding is ready, but those who were invited were not worthy.

9 ‘Therefore go into the highways, and as many as you find, invite to the wedding.’

10 "So those servants went out into the highways and gathered together all whom they found, both bad and good. And the wedding hall was filled with guests.

11 "But when the king came in to see the guests, he saw a man there who did not have on a wedding garment.

12 "So he said to him, ‘Friend, how did you come in here without a wedding garment?’ And he was speechless.

13 "Then the king said to the servants, ‘Bind him hand and foot, take him away, and cast him into outer darkness; there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’

14 "For many are called, but few are chosen."

One of the greatest enemies of our future life is:

Misplaced Priorities

Being too busy to respond to the call of God … whether it be:




A second enemy of our future life is being Improperly Dressed for heaven’s affairs.

First lets talk about Misplaced Priorities

We read in Matthew 22 that God made a wedding feast for His Son, Jesus, and His Son’s Bride, the Church …

3 "and (He) sent out his servants to call those who were invited to the wedding; and they were not willing to come.

4 "Again, he sent out other servants, saying, ‘Tell those who are invited, "See, I have prepared my dinner; my oxen and fatted cattle are killed, and all things are ready. Come to the wedding."‘

5 "But they made light of it and went their ways, one to his own farm, another to his business.

It is evident that these people were in some way committed to God and therefore He had some justified claim on their time and their attention. After all, He called them servants.

Also notice that even though they were God’s servants, He nonetheless was courteous to them by inviting them instead of insisting or making a harsh initial demand.

This is often what we see in graceful, thoughtful, caring leadership. Godly leaders appreciate and respect their servants’ time and their many ordeals of life and the leader deeply hopes that they too are appreciated and respected in return and that their suggestions are followed without hesitation, complaint, resistance or resentment. However, this is not always the case.

Look at the three things noted in verses 3, 4, & 5 about the servants.

1. Unwilling to Participate

2. No appreciation of the critical timing

3. A different set of values than those of their King

Aren’t these the same things families still attempt to teach their children during the formative years.

1. Children should always be willing to obey their parents. This sets them up for success in future life dealings with employers and superiors in every arena.

2. Even when it comes to meal time, when it’s time to eat, it’s time to eat. Timing is critical and timing is often determined by other things and not by our own comfort or desire. Our future success often depends on nothing more than timing.

3. There are many things more important, more valuable than just what we may want to do in our moment. There will always be other things we want or need to do, but it may not be our call and it’s not always all about us and what we want to do.

In a parallel account, the Gospel of Luke records some of the reasons why these servants were too busy to invest in their future life.

Luke 14

16 Then He said to him, "A certain man gave a great supper and invited many,

17 "and sent his servant at supper time to say to those who were invited, ‘Come, for all things are now ready.’

18 "But they all with one accord began to make excuses. The first said to him, ‘I have bought a piece of ground, and I must go and see it. I ask you to have me excused.’

19 "And another said, ‘I have bought five yoke of oxen, and I am going to test them. I ask you to have me excused.’

20 "Still another said, ‘I have married a wife, and therefore I cannot come.’

21 "So that servant came and reported these things to his master. Then the master of the house, being angry, said to his servant, ‘Go out quickly into the streets and lanes of the city, and bring in here the poor and the maimed and the lame and the blind.’

22 "And the servant said, ‘Master, it is done as you commanded, and still there is room.’

23 "Then the master said to the servant, ‘Go out into the highways and hedges, and compel them to come in, that my house may be filled.

24 ‘For I say to you that none of those men who were invited shall taste my supper.’"

It seems a sad thing to me that God has gone to such great lengths to provide for us. He has given us tools and strategies to defeat the enemies of our past life, our present life and our future life.

He has given us:

1. The Blood of The Lamb

2. Water Baptism

3. The Word of God, The Armor of God & The Fruit of the Spirit to Defeat Temptation

4. Forgiveness of Sin by Confession and Repentance

5. A Hedge of Protection to Cover our Weaknesses

6. Continuing Encouragement to Stay Willing, to Discern the Times and to Understand the Importance of His Call on Our Life.

Yet there is one more thing God had provided for us.

Remember we read in Matthew 22 about the wedding garment.

11 "But when the king came in to see the guests, he saw a man there who did not have on a wedding garment.

12 "So he said to him, ‘Friend, how did you come in here without a wedding garment?’ And he was speechless.

13 "Then the king said to the servants, ‘Bind him hand and foot, take him away, and cast him into outer darkness; there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’

14 "For many are called, but few are chosen."

I told you that there were two main enemies of our future life.

The first was, Misplaced Priorities

The second was, Improper Dress

Dealing with and defeating the enemies of our future life demands we establish priorities and dress for success.

In Matthew’s parable of the Kingdom of Heaven, Jesus describes a future event in which a man was found at the wedding feast of the Lamb without having on A Wedding Garment. That and that alone is sufficient grounds to have this person ejected from the wedding feast and cast out into outer darkness to be tormented with the devil and his angels forever.

What is that wedding garment? How can we make sure we leave this earth wearing one so we won’t be that one found to be improperly clothed on that great day and be casts into hell?

Look with me in the book of Isaiah.

Isaiah 61:10 I will greatly rejoice in the LORD, my soul shall be joyful in my God; for he hath clothed me with the garments of salvation, he hath covered me with the robe of righteousness, as a bridegroom decketh himself with ornaments, and as a bride adorneth herself with her jewels. (KJV)

The wedding garment is the garment of salvation which is given to all who are washed in the Blood of The Lamb.

Revelation 19

7 Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honour to him: for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and his wife hath made herself ready.

8 And to her was granted that she should be arrayed in fine linen, clean and white: for the fine linen is the righteousness of saints.

A Wedding Garment and a Willing Heart will defeat the enemies of our future life.

Having the right priorities and dressed for success.

We get this garment when we are born again and it’s better than a superman suit. It’s indestructible and everlasting. Our robe of righteousness might get dirty from sin, but forgiveness will cleanse it and it will be as white as snow once again.

So, in the end, we must all be saved by the Blood of the Lamb, become strong in the Word, obey Him and live right. Then we will defeat every enemy of sin, satan and self, both now and forever.

Have you accepted Jesus as your Lord, Messiah, Savior and Friend?

Have you asked God to forgive you of your sins?

Are you protected by the Word of God which you know to be true?

Do you have a willing heart to obey God?

Are His priorities your priorities?

Pray with me now!

Sunday, July 15, 2007

Dealing With The Enemies Of Life - Part Three: The Enemies of Our Present Life

Synopsis: This message is designed to help the Believer deal with the temptations of life before they fall into sin while also providing a simple roadmap to recovery after a fall. The third in a series entitled 'Dealing With The Enemies of Life', this teaching brings practical Word based guidelines to the every day life of each person who wants to close the door to temptation, reestablish boundaries, break sin's control and regain the ground that has been lost. For the best effect it is recommended that Parts 1&2 of this series be considered as a prerequisite to this message.

Key Scripture: Psalms 18 New Living Translation

17 God delivered me from my powerful enemies, from those who hated me and were too strong for me.

18 They attacked me at a moment when I was weakest, but the LORD upheld me.

God has made a way for us to be free from all of our enemies:

The Enemies of Our Past Life

The Enemies of Our Present Life

The Enemies of Our Future Life

Last Sunday we dealt with the enemies of our past life, the life we lived before we were ‘born again’. The ‘old man’s’ enemies who attempt to pursue Believers into their new day and re-enslave them.

We recognized that sin has two distinct powers:

Two Powers of Sin

1. The Damning Power of Sin. Sin has the power to damn a person’s soul to hell for eternity.

2. The Governing Power of Sin. Sin has the power and desire to govern and control a person in this life, born again or not.

We saw how God provided two things to free mankind from slavery and bondage to sin and the enemies of their past life.

Two Essentials For Defeating The Enemies of Our Past Life

1. The Blood of Jesus

2. The Waters of Baptism

The blood of the Lamb cancels the damning power of sin and saves the soul for eternity. Water baptism is a grave to our old nature and the enemies of our past life.

On Wednesday evening we continued in this series by taking a fresh look at the difference between ‘Breaking the Hold and Destroying the Handle’ which sin, satan and selfish appetites can have on the Believer’s life.

If I could recommend one message for any person who is struggling with sin, that would be it. Not only did God tell us through the prophet Isaiah that He would take the yoke of bondage off of our necks but He also said that He would destroy that yoke.

For more information on those subjects or to listen to the sermons in full you can log onto or go to on the web and access the archived sermons for last week by following the links.

On Wednesday evening I told you that today we would find out how to:

* Close the door to temptation

* Reestablish our boundaries in life

* Take back the keys to our right standing with God

* Break sin’s dominion

* Destroy the yoke once it has been removed, and

* Regain the ground that has been lost

To help answer these questions lets look at a bible character whose life can reveals the trap which sin, satan and our selfish appetites of life try to catch us in.

The bible character I am referring to is named Balaam. Balaam was a prophet during the time Moses was leading the children of Israel through the wilderness after they had been delivered from Pharaoh and crossed through the Red Sea.

Even though the Children of Israel were free from their old lives and free from the enemies of their old lives they were not without some new enemies. These new enemies brought new challenges and offered new temptations.

In the book of Numbers, Chapter 22, we see a King named Balak, King of the Moabites, who hated the children of God. Balak represents the enemies of our present life. King Balak hired the prophet Balaam to curse the Children of God. You can read the story in Chapters 22, 23 and 24 of Numbers.

God ordered Balaam not to curse His Children. So, when Balaam would not obey King Balak’s orders, Balak told him that he was a fool. “Don’t you know how rich I could have made you? I was really going to promote you,” King Balak said to the prophet Balaam.

Balaam, however, had a problem with greed. He liked money but was afraid to directly disobey God. Perhaps there was a way around this dilemma. Maybe there was a way to help King Balak and get paid without directly disobeying God.

In the end the scriptures say that even though Balaam did not actually curse the Israelites, he did show King Balak and the Moabites how to get the Children of God to curse themselves.

Look in Numbers 31

Numbers 31:16 Behold, these caused the children of Israel, through the counsel of Balaam, to commit trespass against the LORD in the matter of Peor, and there was a plague among the congregation of the LORD.

When it comes to the New Testament, Balaam is the one character, more than anyone else, who epitomizes the progression of sin.

You see, Sin will:

Take you farther than you wanted to go

Keep you longer than you expected to stay

Cost you more than you were willing to pay

Let’s look at the New Testament picture of Balaam and the truth about the enemies of our present life: Sin, satan and selfish appetites.

1. The Error of Balaam

Jude 1:11 Woe to them! For they have gone in the way of Cain, have run greedily in the error of Balaam for profit, and perished in the rebellion of Korah.

2. The Way of Balaam

2 Peter 2:15 They have forsaken the right way and gone astray, following the way of Balaam the son of Beor, who loved the wages of unrighteousness;

3. The Doctrine of Balaam

Revelation 2:14 "But I have a few things against you, because you have there those who hold the doctrine of Balaam, who taught Balak to put a stumbling block before the children of Israel, to eat things sacrificed to idols, and to commit sexual immorality.

Temptation is not sin. Jesus was tempted in all manner like as we are but without sin.

However when a Believer either falls into sin it is at first an error. Left un-dealt with the error becomes a way of life. If not checked, challenged and changed ultimately the way of life will become a doctrine and Believers will begin to justify their own sin and finally cause others to sin as well.

You see: If the devil cannot defeat you he will attempt to defeat someone whose defeat will defeat you.


When it comes to temptation what delivers and protects us?

The Word of God, the Armor of God and the Fruit of the Spirit helps us to defeat temptations in our present life.

However, when it comes to sin we must take more positive and forceful actions to redraw the boundaries, reestablish our righteousness and regain our ground.

There are Three Ways To Defeat The Enemy That’s Defeating You

1. Confess and forsake sin, satan and selfish appetites.

Proverbs 28:13 ¶ He who covers his sins will not prosper, But whoever confesses and forsakes them will have mercy.

2. Flee – Run Away!

1 Corinthians 6:18 Flee fornication …

3. Make No Provision

Romans 13:14 But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh, to fulfill its lusts.

The enemies of our present life offer new temptations and new challenges. Satan is a master tempter who delivers us temptations neither too hard nor too easy but fit to the age and stage of our life.

The love, mercy, grace and forgiveness of God has already made a way for us to regain control of our lives and defeat both the temptations before we fall and sin’s governing power should we fall.

Today, if you are being tempted to sin, don’t! Take the Word of God, the Armor of God and the Fruit of the Spirit and defeat that temptation.

If you have sinned … Confess it to God and forsake that pathway, flee every opportunity to sin and make no provision for sin to recapture you, control you and ruin your life and witness.

Lets pray.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Breaking the Hold - Destroying the Handle

Breaking the Hold - Destroying the Handle


Key Scripture: Isaiah 10:27 It shall come to pass in that day That his burden will be taken away from your shoulder, And his yoke from your neck, And the yoke will be destroyed because of the anointing oil.

In Isaiah 10 the Lord speaks about the plight of His people under the burdens of unjust captors. God is not at all pleased that His children are being unduly burdened, robbed from, ill treated or oppressed.

When God speaks judgment upon those who are continually afflicting His Children, He aims these judgments at the King of Assyria, who for our spiritual purposes represents Satan and this world’s system.

Follow along with me as we peruse Chapter 10 before centering in on our key scripture.

Isaiah 10 NKJV

1 ¶ "Woe to those who decree unrighteous decrees, Who write misfortune, Which they have prescribed

2 To rob the needy of justice, And to take what is right from the poor of My people, That widows may be their prey, And that they may rob the fatherless.

3 What will you do in the day of punishment …

5 ¶ "Woe to Assyria, the rod of My anger And the staff in whose hand is My indignation.

12 Therefore it shall come to pass, when the Lord has performed all His work on Mount Zion and on Jerusalem, that He will say, "I will punish the fruit of the arrogant heart of the king of Assyria, and the glory of his haughty looks."

13 For he says: "By the strength of my hand I have done it, And by my wisdom, for I am prudent; Also I have removed the boundaries of the people, And have robbed their treasuries; So I have put down the inhabitants like a valiant man.

14 My hand has found like a nest the riches of the people, And as one gathers eggs that are left, I have gathered all the earth; And there was no one who moved his wing, Nor opened his mouth with even a peep."

24 ¶ Therefore thus says the Lord GOD of hosts: "O My people, who dwell in Zion, do not be afraid of the Assyrian. …

27 It shall come to pass in that day That his burden will be taken away from your shoulder, And his yoke from your neck, And the yoke will be destroyed because of the anointing oil.

Two distinct things are prophesied here:

1. The yoke will be removed

2. The yoke will be destroyed


Breaking the Hold

Destroying the Handle

In Exodus it took only eight chapters for God to get His Children out of Egypt.

However, the rest of the whole bible is dedicated to God getting Egypt out of His Children.

Breaking the hold which sin, satan and self have over our lives takes only one moment, one prayer, one sincere “Forgive me God”, but it takes time, effort and a real commitment to keep ourselves free.

Egypt left its mark on God’s Children just like the world leaves its mark on Believers today. You may not always have your first grade teacher with you but you do continue to carry their teachings.

The Children of Israel learned to see themselves as slaves, unable to conquer their enemies. Egypt got into their head and shaped what they thought and felt about life.

They were in need of Deliverance, just like so many Believers are today. What kind of deliverance am I talking about?

1. Spiritual Deliverance

(Demonic Ties – Soul Ties – Spiritual Connections)

2. Soul Deliverance (Mind – Will – Emotions)

3. Physical Deliverance (Body Cravings – Fleshly Appetites)

Once a Believer crosses a line of sin …

Well, look with me in:

James 1 KJV

14 But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed.

15 Then when lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin: and sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death.

Temptation comes to every person. We are told to count it all joy when we fall into temptation, (James 1:2), but also we are told to watch and pray that we enter not into temptation. (Matthew 26:41)

Like I said, temptation comes to every person, Believer and non-believer alike.

When a person either falls into sin or walks off into it, a line is crossed, a door is opened and once opened, access is much more easily gained by the enemies of our soul than before.

Hebrews 11:25 reveals that sin offers pleasures for a season.

When a person gives into sin, satan or selfish appetites or activities, they find it pleasurable, just like Eve did --- it was a tree to be desired!

After falling into the trap of sin many people make a decision and promise themselves that they will never do that again. They sincerely ask for forgiveness and resolve to never fall into that trap again.

This is what Proverbs says when it speaks of alcoholism.

Proverbs 23 NLT

31 Don’t let the sparkle and smooth taste of wine deceive you.

32 For in the end it bites like a poisonous serpent; it stings like a viper.

33 You will see hallucinations, and you will say crazy things.

34 You will stagger like a sailor tossed at sea, clinging to a swaying mast.

35 And you will say, "They hit me, but I didn’t feel it. I didn’t even know it when they beat me up. When will I wake up so I can have another drink?"

This is the way of all man and few there be who can manage to straighten up by themselves.

For most of us, it takes help from God, His Word and His Spirit … and sometimes a good accountability partner.

This coming Sunday morning we will continue our series on Dealing With The Enemies Of Life as we search the scriptures together to see how to defeat the enemies of our present life.

Sunday we will find out how to:

* Close the door to temptation

* Reestablish our boundaries in life

* Take back the keys to our right standing with God

* Break sin’s dominion

* Destroy the yoke that has been removed, and

* Regain the ground that has been lost