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August 15, 2020 1:00 am
How do we spiritually prepare the next generation? What kinds of questions and distractions are they dealing with and how can we help? RZIM's Founder, the late Ravi Zacharias, looks at these questions this week on Let My People Think.
You see, this is one usually sees one with the alabaster appointment and tells her that her sins are forgiven and the old fluency come and see. Come and see him. They knew that personal relationship with him and your life is going to have to show what does it take to convince the next generation that the gospel method three will take more than just an argument. I will welcome to let my people think it's because the iambs found that the late Ravi Zacharias brings us the second half of his message on the importance of empowering the next generation with the treatment of Jesus Christ but a part of that challenge is being able to give in on that we all say must be able to live on that we know what the radical. It sounds like what does it look like is part two of this message titled releasing the next generation. You see, the Lord will always give you the sovereignty of your imagination do visuals circumscribe your imagination.
Basically close up on it to get you to see the way the person wants you to see soundbites are not. It is not at all accidental, that since the invention of the television world harnessed by people mainly who use it to seduce other young minds that now receive that plague of pornography that is destroying millions of young men and ultimately destroying homes. The visual will never fully satisfy it will only leave you for more and more kinds of hungers. It was William Blake who said this decades ago about the eye dislikes and windows of the soul distorts the heavens from pole to pole and goads you to believe a lie when you see with the not true. The eye dislikes doing windows of the soul distorts the heavens from pole to pole and goads you to believe a lie when you see with a note for the Blake handwashing warning was this, we are intended to see through the eye with the conscience. When we start seeing with the idea of what conscience we reconstruct and reconfigure reality to our own desires. This is a dangerous phenomenon in our times. The visual is hijacked and we now think we know the truth when we see something.
The visual has the capacity to make a person think of themselves more than what they actually are.
Look at the 1980s and the devastation of the television evangelists in their own personal life people sitting in the front row actually saw them as icons in the back private rooms. They were completely messed up financially and morally.
But on the stage.
They looked very, very well made up.
I'm not demeaning. It I'm just telling you be careful of it. The visual has extraordinary capacities. I love to think of the fact that I can sit in my living room and watch the landing on the moon's marvelous love to think of the fact that I consider my living room and see the three tenors performing in somewhere in Greece and Italy and enjoying it left the thing that I consider my living room and watch the royal wedding and see all of the pomposity and all of it and see how Dragon these things are about to be able to get onto the Internet and look at the works of Michelangelo and so on and enjoy it right at my desk. Yes, it's good, but it is fraught with danger because the I can seduce you. All you need to do is take a look at the lives of the rich and famous on television and you'll find out how messed up. Most of them really are.
I remember one young man whose father I shall not name a very famous actor's young man is come to know Christ and he sat across the table from me and talked about his father and he said my dad was in this television series glorifying country living and glorifying the farm in the family in prayer around dinner and the breaking of bread and communion in the graves near the home going and thinking in all of this. He said his television series was one of the all-time most winning ones.
He said, but my father lived exactly the opposite. In his private life and I'll never forget coming home from school as a teenager one day and my uncle waiting at the door and setting me down and telling me your dad's gone is left your mom and you and your 11-year-old sister now about to take care of her go upstairs your mom's lying in bed. She is so intensely depressed. She cannot believe what is just happen and this young man sitting across the table with tears running down his face said to me I never ever believed that would happen to my dad and he said you know what Ravi in my dad. I had both my dad and my mom because he's the one who took me to school. He's the one who made my lunch as he is the one that took care of me and all of a sudden I found out that his life was so duplicitous and suddenly fell apart on the whole family television spa to make you into thinking you're a petty potentate just an ordinary human being. It seduces both the one on the platform and the one on the view in the viewing and so be very careful of how we handle this because young people if you do not monitor your viewing it will monitor you and you in this generation will never be able to harness your imagination for the good see in reality nothing so beautiful as the good. Nothing is so monotonous and boring as evil, but in the world of entertainment is the other way around fictional evil is intriguing, attractive fictional good is boring and flat stress-induced so he got the popularization of death of God or stridency of willing to deliver this ramifications. The gathering storm of the pantheistic worldview department form to the visual and lastly I would say the complete shift to a younger world that's your work. You are the ones who are making advertising what it is. The other one was for getting the moviemakers to make what they do because there were the word in Hollywood. Is this if you can win the attraction of an 18-year-old young man you got a big blockbuster in the making is influence, an 18-year-old young man has these are the changes what do we do.
I give you three very simple responses.
Number one what is the word, apologetics mean I'm a Christian apologist what apologetics actually comes from the Greek apology here, which means to give an answer to Peterson's always be prepared to give an apology here announces to them that ask them to do that with gentleness and kindness to do that when Peter stands about the Pentecost and they're all confused. He says let me explain.
Let me give an apologetic for this so apologetics does two things. It clarifies truth claims and it gives nonsense.
It clarifies truth claims under gives nonsense in the light of what's happening in our world. We are going to need one and apologetic. That is not merely heard but is also seen, you can't just give answers that are theoretical.
If your life is not going to back it up. Your generation is very skeptical because they have seen through the hypocrisy of words that have not been lived up almost everywhere I go. The young people say they've had it with church they're tired of words they don't see enough change in a person's life when I wrote the book has Christianity failed deal we did in open form of the Fox theater in Atlanta. I was asked to do that subject by the young people in our stuff, and I said are you sure anybody is going to come for this. It seats about three or 5000 in that auditorium, forget what all of the tickets were sold out and the scalpers at the gate selling for more money if you wanted to go and subject has Christianity failed to mention that and we surveyed people on the street across the country and asked them why they walked away from the church and one after another, one after another, one after another one said is hollow doesn't work as recently a very best-selling author America wrote a book questioned the reality of hell. He made a comment he said you know there's no such term in the Bible as having a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. That one statement told me more about that author than anything else noticing in the Bible is a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. Dinner there is no such word in the New Testament is Trinity either.
But the Scriptures fraught with that, he that has the son has life come unto me all ye that labor and are heavy laden, I'm the light except a man be born again. The light has come into the world and the rented office cannot comprehend.
You see how God so loved that he gave you see him walking and talking with people you see him with the woman of the well you see him and says I will give you drink water/analogous again sees a woman with the alabaster appointment and tells her that her sins are forgiven and they all go and say come and see him come and see him. They knew that personal relationship with him and your life is going to have to show. I did three open forms of the University of Iowa some years ago in the last night I was going to present a defense of why Jesus Christ is the only way to the biggest audience are packed out over 1500 standing lining the walls will amen Craig and I did that open a woman would come there by the chief organizer. He brought her she was his neighbor. She was a medical doctor. She never goes to church, she said but he probably because this was a university open forum.
He brought her. She listened and sat and the next day the man who brought her was driving back to the airport and halfway through the after the airport he said to me, and I told him was bring my neighbor last night as Cynthia said, you know what she said after it was over. I some afraid to say yes I said I need to hear this. He said you he said this before she got off. I said you not said anything. What you think of tonight. She said just one question in my mind. I wonder what he's like in his private life annuities like in his private life. I have to say to stunned me was like being caught in the headlights like a deer. What I'm asking you is this. Do men and women see Christ in you, in your private life that your light so shine before men, that they see your good works and glorify your father who is in heaven. Are you reflecting that beauty of Jesus, and you know what one of the ways you reflect that is in a life that is consistent with your teaching young people. The next point I'm going to give to you is very critical for you because it is a bridge from what I just sent you need to have an apologetic first one, not merely heard but seen second one, not merely argued but felt you must have that sense of truth within you and what you proclaim, not just parenting stuff but that feeling of God's presence in the knowledge of God's presence in your life if you don't have that it will all become nothing more than an intellectual activity.
You know the day the longest distance in life is between the head and the heart. And once you've connected the two you traverse the longest distance. Those are not my words actually Archbishop William Cogan said that a long time ago. The longest journey in life is between the head and the heart to connect the two that I sent you and you traverse the distance and connected the two then you have not just the knowledge of God, but you have the sense of God's presence and I I I want you to know that one of the things about the gospel that is brilliant and absolutely unique is a story of the cross. When you understand that you understand why feeling is so critical in the Christian faith viewing what happened on the cross was a grim and painful reminder of the horrific nature of sin. Sin destroys sin last.
The race sin will break you and when you look at the cross, and take a good look at it you understand both the horror of sin and the magnificence of the grace of God I had the privilege once of addressing the United Nations for breakfast and they asked me to speak on the search for absolutes in a relativistic world that's a tough subject, especially early in the morning and so what you do, you can't say too much about religious ideas. The are a political body. So I said I would, did allow me to deal with it philosophically, but the last five minutes that I'd be able to present viably. What I do is, then the gospel 20.
I don't thoughtful things evil, justice, love and forgiveness. I said you look for an absolute of evil. You will refer to some nations as even empires.
When you get the definition from then you talk about just societies, but you get your definition from some of you have left your families and you miss your loved ones will you get your definition and one of you are two of you is going to blow it big time and they will come to you for forgiveness. Are you going to determine whether to do it or not, evil, justice, love and forgiveness are all listening. I said I have five minutes left. I said where is the one place in the world that these four converge evil, justice, love and forgiveness. I set on a hill called Calvary the end of the talk when I stood down, there was a lineup of these ambassadors and one of them walked up to me and he said I come from an atheistic country and I do like my job is that I'm here because my government to send me and every day I wake up and say why my here today for the first time I have the answer. I came here so I could find God had the privilege of praying with him and pointed him to the cross of Jesus Christ.
About two years ago I was in Damascus, Syria, and that speaks more than three times that day. I don't know why my wife does this to me. She takes all my bookings. I think she feels if I wear him out when he is on the rodeo come back any to talk to complain about anything that morning. I spoke evening I was going to do, and (3 PM I will 3 PM. I was going to have a one-on-one discussion with the leading Shiite Larry Schaefer saying in Syria. We will have a two to 3R discussion with an audience in front of us said what to me.
Kim is a wonderful man, very cardio and I have the right to ask him one question he would uncertain he had the right trust me one question that I would answer solid ask him on his faith. He would ask me and my faith, Jordan's listing in rapt attention. At the end of that 2 to 3 hours.
He said something and I have the privilege of quoting him. He looked at me and he said Prof. I have come to one conclusion this afternoon.
It's time for us in the Islamic faith. To stop asking if Jesus died on the cross and to start asking why I said Schaefer, saying, can I quote you on that. He said yes you can. We have to start asking why the biggest problem of our time, corruption which is depravity. The best answer ever is the cross. That's why the cross because of the corrupt human heart that offers love and forgiveness do you feel that in your heart when you feel that the message you will not fear the opposition.
So it has to be seen not merely heard it has to be felt not merely argued, and it brings me to the last.
The approach that rescues this generation cannot only rescue the ends.
It also has to rescue the means you know folks want to win people with is what you want to win them to what you and people with as much of an oven them to remain a person with courtesy and then you become very discourteous afterwards as they have nonsense when a person with a lot of razzmatazz in the gospel. That's what they'll come to if you win them with the heart of what the gospel message is all about. That's what will stay with them what you win them with is what you win them to and so I say to you.
As wonderful as our methods are and we have them. We have trauma we have music we have proclamation we have the written word.
We have e-books we have all of these, but always remember this. Ultimately you have to point them to the final authority. The very word of God.
The very word of God and so I say to you, if you ask me today. Ravi, can you tell me something about my spiritual life I would have one question for you, and then I cannot see you. I will say to you, do you have a regular study of the word in your private life that will help me on so what your question is asking me you're still the word I can tell you right now you're wondering if you're staying with the word even if you're struggling you know where the answers are and you will keep coming back to it that I word have I hid in my heart that I might not sin against the I want to close with simple little illustration and diversify him. It was a long time ago that if you read the book a man for all seasons. Sir Thomas more, actually written by distant relative of mine, Robert boat Robert boat's brother said the boat that Cambridge is married to honor my dad's cousins. And so we are no mineral nomadic, but I met Sidney Bolton talk to him about this book is a great book.
Sir Thomas more man for all seasons member Thomas Moore was imprisoned for not supporting the king in an immoral act and the king said, give me a blessing and you be free from prison he would say he was incarcerated. One day his daughter Meg comes to the presidency. He says father we can have you back home. If you will just make one statement and say to the king, it's okay. It's all right. We want you back. I want you back home.
Tell him it's all right, please. We want you back home and he looked at his daughter, and he says Meg you don't understand something, the word is a very sacred thing. Meg and when you give a person your word if you should open up your hands and drop your word like that you shall look down and not find yourself again if you give a person your word is like cupping something in your hand and if you open up those fingers and let that word drop by Meg shall look down and you shall not find yourself again.
He had given God's word and guarded given him his word he was not going to make words cheek and affirm something that was wrong just to get out of prison. The word is something very sacred and that supplied the Bible says the Scriptures cannot be broken and that the word of God abides forever. So I say to you in the proclamation. Whatever means we use. Let us make sure this is the ends and in the means we cannot use non-Christian ways for Christian endless or you end up with a messed up gospel. It was Charles Wesley who wrote the hymn in which she has these words without who came us from above the pure celestial fire to impart Kim Laflamme of sacred love in the main altar of my heart, then let it for thy glory burn within extinguishable glaze and trembling to its source return in humble prayer and fervent prayers Jesus confirm my hearts desire to work and speak and think for the still let me guard the holy fire and still stir up thy gifts and me ready for all thy perfect will my acts of faith and love. Repeat till death. I endless mercy seal and make my sacrifice. Complete is a changing world, dramatically changing world. God needs you. As young men and women who will understand the times and know what to do. He needs you know it will need to be heard at your gospel to be seen. He needs you, not only to argue for the message with the field. That message he needs you, and only to have the right ends in sight but also to find the right means so that you do not violate the very sanctity of the ends ultimately if this world is going to change. It is gonna need you to do it and I'm convinced that the reason you are even here in an afternoon like this is because you believe in the value of what it is you're committed to and let me tell you something, whether it's an Jim why University in Beijing where I have spoken or whether it's at the Yale way we did an open forum over this Diwali would actors and actresses. We are all looking for answers and the word of God is the surest thing because it upholds the centrality of Jesus Christ. This world needs its young people in sync with the truth. I hope you will be that kind of person and may God use you and bless you trust to call you and empowering and you will be a world changer God richly bless you, thank you very much and I think the IM found that in late Ravi Zacharias methods titled releasing the next generation to patent the copy coulis at one 800-4486 76 think we can order email@example.com allies that I am.ca for days listening in Canada. One goal we have here are the IM is to reach students. We debase three conferences such as rebates refreshed and remind these conflict is the key towards high school and college students. Many of these are being held digitally right now is flat and the purpose is to help train young believers to best understand that faith say that they are acquits to defendants to find out more about these events alive days.
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