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Christianity Enters Ephesus, Part 2

Summit Life / J.D. Greear
The Truth Network Radio
June 28, 2021 9:00 am

Christianity Enters Ephesus, Part 2

Summit Life / J.D. Greear

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June 28, 2021 9:00 am

Through the story of the ancient city of Ephesus, we’re discovering the amazing things we can accomplish when we follow God’s leading.


Today on Summit life was JD Greer the Bible we study is not a set of obscure religious discussions or clips about how to live.

We are talking about Jesus. The master creator in war. The universe was so majestic, but will simply must know about that your life is hopelessly incomplete until you do. It was so powerful that our rebellion against the worst possible thing we could've done offer of salvation is the greatest Bible teaching ministry pastor, author and religion JD Greer. As always, I'm your host Molly events the program and new study of the book of Ephesians called mystery and clarity.

In this introductory sermon pastor Judy has given some important historical context on the city of Ephesus and through the story of this ancient city we are discovering the amazing things we can accomplish when we follow God's leading were actually returning to acts chapters 18 to 20 beginning of this message you can catch up online. JD Let's join Pastor Jenny for part two of a message titled, Christianity enters when we challenge the God that people worship here. When we threaten to undo the whole way of living.

You can expect the same kind of reaction that Paul got when you tell somebody their god is not real. Things get ugly right give you a few examples. A lot of people in this area. Worship knowledge and science are your scientists making pronouncements about the world and science is great. What I hear is the extreme confidence that scientists have in themselves and their intelligence and their morality and their ability to figure it all out. Listen. Science is a different God and we need to use it to the fullest extent.

But the Bible would say that science is not something to trust your whole soul to because scientists are fallible human beings and can be wrong. Cutting-edge technology, perfect health, things are great but begin to answer our deepest questions like who we are. Were going to the point of all of it all is what we can find happiness now when I say stuff like that people in this area often say back to me is just anti-intellectual.

No I'm just saying that Jesus is a more sure basis of knowledge about God in eternity and that he is able save us in ways that science cannot there's one. Many people trust money when I tell people they should trust money and that they should trust God instead that one of the ways that God tells us to show that we trust them is to tie and to give some of our money away. People rolled her eyes and is talking about money again as if my main concern was the also looking of this church. You say I like it when he talks about money know you don't like it because I'm attaching your eye. That's what you like. I am concerned about your soul not your wallet. Some of you live for money. Get your security and your joy and that's why you're so stingy with you get my drift.

Preach against idols and Jesus is the only Savior and people get pilots they always have my always will. But that is our sacred mission. Number two, God demonstrates his power over false gods. By doing extraordinary things through us see in verse 11. I would describe Paul's ministry is doing extraordinary things. Specifically there, it's talking about Paul's powers to heal and cast out demons, wiping their hanky. People were wiping our hankies Ottoman regular headaches go away not exaggeration a look at a verse 11 but there are three things throughout the book of acts that are presented about the first Christians that were extraordinary all three real quick. As you see all of them in the book of Ephesians the first one is that when either extraordinary miracles. There were to be evidences of the supernatural in our lives that were just not explainable in any other way. When Paul summarizes his message to the Ephesians in chapter 20. He says to them, I proclaim to you the kingdom of God. One of the central features of Paul's message was that one day God would bring a kingdom where there was perfect peace and healing and a lot of times what God does in acts if he demonstrates that kingdom that we are preaching by healing someone supernaturally acts calls those signs and wonders, a sign that points to or demonstrates the message. I think that sometimes we at this church have gotten so into preaching the message of forgiveness that we have neglected preaching about the kingdom of God is not just for giving us. He wants to restore us. Now we ourselves can build that kingdom here. Only Jesus can do that.

He comes back, but part of our ministry like poles can be to give signs of the kingdom extraordinary miracles or supernatural healings through our prayers is a sign of the power of Jesus and the kingdom that he is able to bring extraordinary miracles were also to be people of extraordinary generosity.

The early church gave generously shared with each other.

Administer the poor and they did it to such an extent that it was amazing. Then there was thirdly extraordinary joy will repossess the joy that baffles the world and this is seen most clearly catch this and suffering everywhere he goes. Paul says sufferings await me like he experienced here in Ephesus to hear the Ephesians asking why, if this is God's message.

Weiss's main messenger suffering. Why are we being persecuted and fed to the lions. Are we supposed to be victorious. Are we supposed to show prosperity of the kingdom are we supposed to have our lives demonstrate how peaceful and wonderful the kingdom of God is listen.

Did you know that there is not a single single place in acts where God heals the sickness of a believer raises a few from the dead, which is critical, but he'd never heals a believer of sickness.

It's always people on the outside who get healed. I'm not saying that we shouldn't ask for healing for ourselves because the book of James of the Bible clearly tells us that we should understand that acts doesn't record any feelings of believers in the church. Why, why doesn't God automatically heal all the church of their diseases. Here's why.

Because having joy and suffering is how God puts his glory on display you see anybody can be happy when things are going well.

That's ordinary joy. It's when you are joyful when everything is not going well, that your joy becomes extraordinary. Sometimes a flip of the channels late night of my life and are prepared to go to bed come across mothers TV preachers and my wife will be like, don't do it to get yourself fired up sleep but I can. It's like a train wreck.

You got to watch it, and she's exactly rusty because come on to be like God wants to make you rich.

He does and wants to prosper you and I will bring him glory. God does prosper us sometimes when he does, we give him glory for what that really damages. Some people who love God, like Paul, but still suffer. Paul described himself as a walk around the earth the sentence of death and myself and Mrs. one of the main points of the book of acts trying to teach is a God's glory is often demonstrated in us when in the midst of suffering, we have a deep abiding joy that the pain cannot take away when were so wrapped up in the glory of God that even pain can't rob us of our inexpressible joy that is a joy that the world does not understand that is a joy that is extra for the Neri see that when life squeezes you. It is then that you have a chance to show that you have a joy that is greater than anything else like to give and that death cannot take away extraordinary miracles, extraordinary generosity, extraordinary joy.

These are the three ways that God validates the gospel in acts and cannot say to you candidly, but that's what the problem is with some of us it's not that your bad Christians just so ordinary it's not ordinary, in terms of talent. I mean these terms your good Christian, but you don't see exciting answers to prayer your decently cheerful person when things are going well. Things are going well. You complain and whine like everybody else. Paul got flogged and left, thanking God for the chance to know and serve him.

That's extraordinary. You give a little, but your generosity is not extraordinary. It doesn't inspire me. What inspires me is when you start living with a passion that consumed you when you joyfully share your stuff and give your money away to the work of God in power. Generosity enjoyed many of us are just ordinary sure, tell me about your Christian life. I want to go to sleep that's not God's intention for you we were to be extraordinary in power, generosity, and joy. Three. Wherever the people of God go they change the entire climb to the city there in Ephesus, the move of God was so significant that even the business community noticed elsewhere begin to really dream was it look like for an awakening to happen here that gets the attention of the business community. The universities city Council. We have so much more to do. There are five groups God is placed on my heart here in our cities, Raleigh, Durham, Chapel Hill, the homeless prisoners high school dropouts orphans and foster kids and unwed mothers. I don't know exactly what were to subdue them yet but I want to do something so extraordinary that the city says that some a church.

They are everywhere in Raleigh-Durham.

Every time we find in the we find them meeting that needed ministry to them putting the gospel on display what you notice also broke with your kids.

Come on this before move off of this point what you notice that Paul disrupted the economic order that was not his intent is preaching the gospel need understand the names on the gospel is preached, it does disrupt a lot of the political and economic orders and if we preach the gospel rightly, that is what will happen here, but I want you to hear that is not our intent to try to show people that Jesus is the Savior that he is the Lord I and when the stuff happens it will happen to us they could have an appalling, we just say hey were not not appoint points, not economic or political point is Jesus. The point is, Jesus accepted 20 go there at 720 verse 22 Paul is speaking to the Ephesian elders and saying goodbye to them for good. This is last kind of farewell speech to the Ephesian elders later he'll write back. The book of Ephesians to them because last I talked to 11 verse 22 now behold I'm going to Jerusalem constrained by the Spirit, not knowing what will happen to me. There is of the Holy Spirit testifies to be in every city that imprisonment and afflictions await me was a great little little vignette there because the next chapter. This profit, the early church and Agnes comes to Paul and this is big elaborate ceremony with a cut sheet and a rope and tied himself up right and he says this is what the Holy Spirit says will happen to you if you go to Jerusalem and Paul's like this exactly development. Paul does it anyway right so he Paul knows.

He knows what's about to happen. Verse 24 but I do not.

He says love this. Do not account my life of any value nor is precious to myself, if only I may finish my course in the ministry that I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify to the gospel. The grace of God. And now, behold, I know that none of you, among whom are going about proclaiming the kingdom will see my face again. Therefore, I testify to you this day that I'm innocent of the blood.

All of you because I did not shrink from declaring to you the whole counsel of God.

Verse 28 pay careful attention to yourselves, and all the flock, over which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to care for the church of God which he obtained with his own blood, because I know that after my departure fierce wolves will come in among you, not sparing the flock and from among your own selves will rise men speaking twisted things, to draw away the disciples after them therefore be alerts real quick look.

Also where the demons he encountered in throughout a chapter 19 to try to reenter the church and if Satan can't terrorize the church with demon possession is gonna mess them up with twisted doctrine. You see, when Satan fails on one front. He tries another if he can't make a pastor.

Paul, the temptation will show ill, so disunity and the church can't destroys you high school student with temptation will do it with discouragement.

If he can't do it with discouragement help pump you up with pride.

Listen Paul was aware of the spiritual forces at work all around the Ephesian so he tells him be alerts you had an enemy that's always scheming to destroy you. Paul was aware of the powers of the spiritual world at work in the city of Ephesus. I'm afraid that many of us are not aware of the spiritual forces at work around the summer. Church the campus of Duke and Chapel Hill motor on a simple wall around the city.

Verse 31 therefore, be alert remembering that for three years. I did not cease night and day to admonish everyone with tears and now I commend you to God and to the word of his grace, which is able to build you up and give you the inheritance among all those who are sanctified before Paul look at his mission to the city as a matter of intensely personal obligation, so must we see that phrase in verse 26, free from the blood. Paul looks at his delivering the word of God to the Ephesians. As a matter of blood if he did not do it. He would be guilty of their blood. Now I can tell you without hesitation that this is how I feel about you in the city of Raleigh-Durham see there's always a temptation for me to water down the message to stay away from controversial things to tell you what you want to hear, but I must deliver the word of God to you, regardless of whether or not I want to preach it or you want to hear it and what I need you to do is pray for me that I will preach the word of God fearlessly to you. Yes I read the letters and emails and the comments on my blog but I'm telling you by God's grace to change a thing because at the end of the day I'm just a deliverer of the message and not its writer, and I answer only to God and not anybody else.

Plus I want to tell you everything that God says in love because I know your life depends on. I look at my obligation to you, as a matter of blood and for you. One of the most important things that you can do in your life is figure out whose blood God has made you responsible for the major suite mates its office where you work.

Maybe it's the people of a certain profession. Maybe it's your own children, whoever that is for you figure it out.

To make it a matter of your blood. Pray over them plan ways to show Christ love them reach out to them. So who is it true is it that you since Jesus is hard for over him specifically do you hurt over there lostness whose name has God put on your heart was beat everybody will be a specific group had a friend in college. He thought he was called to the world the whole world, to serve after you graduate the world what part of it all.

I'm like okay Jesus you know it can't be anything unreached people group. Maybe it's a person that God is placed in your heart.

Recently I read the biography of John Patton missionary probably hundreds of years ago, so I gotta put a set of islands in the Pacific on his heart. That's a pretty good gig. The problem is that at this point in history a nobody spoke the language ever do for them and be there EVERY foreigner who would go to them before been turned in the beef jerky.

But God told him to go and so we went to think about what you would do if you seriously were given the assignment of having to reach out to people you didn't speak the language in their FIRST you get there to put aside your Sunday school this week. Not quite boyfriend know I mean you can't cook that way to minister there for 35 years and he lost so much his biography said that all he really loved the world was his wife and she died in childbirth with his child.

He had to sleep on their graves for four nights to make sure the Islanders did not dig them up and eat them later after a chief had come to Christ, but she fastens it when you first got here, we plan to kill you. Many nights who was that the Army who guarded your house each night.

Evidently a team of angels has surrounded them and protected them. When he left that island 35 years later, John Patton said he didn't know a single native who had not professed faith in Jesus before he went.

Somebody asked him why he was doing and since he probably beaten by cannibals in a statement was great. He said the my camel that makes a difference to me. Eventually all of us will die and be by worms in my worms eat my cannibals makes a difference will end up the same place.

He said I however and driven by the thought that the people on those islands are perishing without even a chance of knowing God's love and mercy, and he knew that God had made him responsible for it.

So who is it for you. Who are the Ephesians for you. If you don't know you not understand the book of Ephesians is not going apply to you like it should because this is written, the people on mission. Number five doctrine matters doctrine matters. Paul tells them that there will be people who always try to dilute and twist the doctrine to verse 29 fierce wolves will come speaking twisted things and that they gotta pay attention to the truth. Paul is teaching them. There was a matter Paul said of life and death your life.

He said depends on believing the right stuff about God that will quit this pretty different from our people in our culture.

Look at truth and doctrine are our culture supports doctrine to summarize for Thomas Jefferson to hundreds of years ago, in a letter he wrote some woman he said, what you believe about God does not matter at all because it is deeds not creeds that count what Paul is saying is exactly the opposite of Thomas Jefferson. He says that the most important thing about you is what you believe about God that ultimately doctrine determines everything in your life to the book of Ephesians is a deep doctrinal book because knowing the truth about Christianity matters about the way the book of Ephesians a set up is pretty interesting. The first three chapters of Ephesians are pretty deep doctrine running lights up deep stuff like predestination. The nature of sin and judgment.

All that kind of stuff. Salvation regenerates all kinds of stuff big words for three chapters. The last three chapters 4 through six are some of the most intensely practical chapters in all the Bible ready to start to say this. What this means remarriage.

What makes relationships etc. etc. and in between chapters 3 and four is one word that opens up before therefore, in other words, how you live 46 to be determined by your understanding the doctrine of these first three chapters to learn doctrine study now before I close on what you have missed the biggest point of all here. Watch this whole story that's 18 and 19 automate you ask one huge question, what is this mission poles on who is this Jesus who can heal who moves his people to extraordinary acts of kindness, who gives them up baffling joy in the midst of pain.

Who is this Jesus, who is master of the spirit realm that the demons fear just the mention of his name. Who is this Jesus who is so much greater than all the gods worshiped in the world so that Paul has to tell people about him even if it means he'll lose his life doing it.

What is this message that is so important to Paul considers giving it a matter of life and death to the Bible we study is not a set of obscure religious discussions or tips about how to live. We are talking about Jesus. The master creator in Lord of the universe who is so majestic of the world simply must know about him and that your life is hopelessly incomplete until you do. It was so powerful that our rebellion against him of the worst possible thing we could have done but whose offer of salvation is the greatest news we could hope for.

The mission is that we stand in rebellion to God but God in his mercy. I sent Jesus to die for our sins to give us forgiveness and healing and restoration, and he is the only way what you want to see from all this is that the sacrifices of Paul the miracles about the message of Ephesians all point us to the greatness and the glory of Jesus.

Do you know your this question is at the core we do here at you question let me encourage you to visit us online and learn about what it means to be a follower of Christ, go to JD Pastor Katie when our listeners just heard the gospel for the very first time, or if they been walking with the Lord for years.

I'm sure all of us would say that we want to know more about God.

In light of that, what is this new series, mystery and clarity all about Molly.

Ephesians is one of the most powerful to the New Testament we hold the mystery and the majesty of the gospel to show that no matter how long we go in Christ, how far we we travel that road that are still mystery of how great his love is how incredible his plan is and how for all eternity.

We will like the Angels, stand in wonder and the grace and mercy and the glory of God is also clarity. There's clarity about who God is what he wants from us in the gospel is simple enough that a child can understand in the Gospels, also majestic enough that the greatest theologian is never going to close.

If there's any book of the Bible that you profit from a chance to ponder and go deeper.

It's going to be the book of Ephesians.

Thank you, JD, and to help you get a better understanding of God's love for you and you are we'd like to send you a copy of our exclusive summit light history.

My first day they were offering. Thanks when you donate to support this ministry level and $25 or more for your copy of our new nine session study history and clarity. How I 26, six 521 request to study when you give online I Molly innovates join us Tuesday as we discover the link to you tomorrow.

Right here on Senate life Jenny by JD Greer ministry

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