Life Discovery Series

Defeating The Enemy Within

Three Angels Broadcasting Network

Program transcript

Participants: Jim Reinking


Series Code: LDS

Program Code: LDS000017

00:33 I think we're going to go straight
00:36 to a very vital text, it's in Ephesians 6:12,
00:41 where Paul says, "For our struggle
00:43 is not against flesh and blood,
00:45 but against the rulers, against the powers,
00:49 against the world forces of this darkness,
00:51 against the spiritual forces of wickedness."
00:55 And we certainly
00:56 have been studying this during the course
00:57 of our series of meetings together,
00:59 haven't we?
01:00 We are, certainly we discovered
01:02 in our study of God's word
01:03 that we are involved in a conflict
01:06 between the forces of good and evil,
01:08 as real as any conflict
01:11 that has ever been fought on a field of battle.
01:14 This earth has become the battlefield
01:17 between the forces of good and evil.
01:19 That has become clear, hasn't it in our study?
01:23 And the issues however,
01:25 the issues are spiritual in nature
01:29 and the struggle is actually over control of the human heart.
01:33 Now I'm here to tell you
01:34 that God has not left us
01:35 as helpless victims in the hands of the enemy.
01:38 He has provided the means by which we can be victorious.
01:43 Yes, victorious.
01:44 The victory that Jesus gained at the cross of Calvary
01:49 is ours true faith in Him.
01:52 It's His victory, not our victory,
01:54 it's His victory, isn't it?
01:56 It's always His victory.
01:58 But it's essential, absolutely essential
02:00 if we have to be overcomers
02:02 in the conflict that we understand something
02:05 about the nature of sin.
02:07 For you see it's through sin
02:08 that sin seeks to control and to dominate our lives.
02:13 So we must begin by understanding
02:14 something of how again sin operates within our lives,
02:17 so that we can better understand
02:19 how to successfully deal with it,
02:22 and understand how deeply sin
02:25 has affected the lives of each one of us.
02:29 And to begin with,
02:31 we understand that sin in a general sense is whenever
02:35 we stray from the expressed will of God,
02:38 particularly as expressed in His word.
02:41 But there is a more definite definition
02:44 that many of us will be acquainted with
02:46 of sin in 1 John 3:4,
02:49 where it say "Whosoever committeth sin
02:51 transgresseth also the law:
02:53 for sin is the transgression of the law."
02:56 And so we understand the law is the righteous standard
03:01 by which we will be in the end judged.
03:04 But again, you know, there's a lot things
03:06 that draw into that, we draw into that
03:08 the grace of Jesus, the wonderful plan of salvation,
03:11 the fact is we have studied in our revival series
03:14 that it is Jesus who provides us with that righteousness
03:18 by which we meet the righteous demands of the law,
03:21 I mean all of that need to be considered
03:23 as we talk about these issues,
03:24 but again let's look at
03:26 how sin operates within our lives
03:30 as we turn to Romans 7,
03:32 is the New Testament page 126,
03:36 Romans 7 and we're gonna be looking
03:37 at verses 14 through 18.
03:40 This study this morning is gonna be very practical.
03:44 All right, I think,
03:45 you know, the spiritual life ought to be practical.
03:47 The world of the theology ought to be practical.
03:51 You know it just can't be the world of ideas
03:54 as important as ideas really are,
03:56 I mean it is true that we're interested
03:59 and that is intellectual, but it's also experiential.
04:03 Romans 7 and beginning with verse 14,
04:06 where it says.
04:07 "For we know, that the law is spiritual."
04:11 And my friend it is deeply spiritual.
04:14 Romans 13:10 tells us
04:16 "love is the fulfilling of the law".
04:18 And if love is not spiritual,
04:21 then I guess I don't understand spirituality.
04:25 But it is spiritual, the law is spiritual,
04:27 but Paul says "I am a flesh sold in the bondage to sin."
04:34 And my friend that is why
04:35 we often find in light a conflict,
04:39 a conflict between that which is very spiritual,
04:41 and that which is unspiritual, and that is we by nature,
04:46 in our falling condition are not spiritual.
04:49 We actually are in a state of bondage.
04:53 We are in a state of slavery.
04:55 And a slave, state of slavery to what?
04:58 To what? To sin.
05:00 That's what the knowledge of evil has done.
05:03 And you don't have to be a drunkard,
05:05 you don't have to be particularly immoral person
05:08 to really understand that there are certain aspects of life
05:13 that we are out our control of.
05:16 It could be appetite, it could be whole host of things
05:20 that bear witness to what the Bible talks about here.
05:22 So we have this conflict, and verse 15,
05:25 Paul says, "For what I am doing, I do not understand."
05:30 And I think all of us
05:31 on some level can relate to that.
05:33 There are just some things that sometimes happen in our lives
05:35 even in our thinking, in our imagination
05:38 that we just shake our heads, how in the world
05:40 you know what in the world is going on?
05:44 For what I am doing I do not understand
05:46 for I am not practicing what I would like to do.
05:51 But I am doing the very thing I hate.
05:56 And now that is frustration, isn't it?
05:59 Absolute frustration, but let me assure you
06:01 there's a way out of all of this,
06:03 and of course you know,
06:04 it's all centered in Jesus Christ
06:06 and experiencing His salvation,
06:08 but also experiencing the power of Jesus in our lives.
06:13 Verse 16,"But if do the very thing
06:15 I do not want to do, I agree with the law
06:18 professing that the law is good.
06:20 So now, now notice.
06:21 So now no longer am I the one doing it."
06:26 I'm out of control, I'm not really the one
06:29 that's doing it Paul says, but what's doing it?
06:32 But sin.
06:34 Which what? Indwells me.
06:39 See we are under the control,
06:43 under the mastery of sin.
06:45 Now I'm talking about
06:47 in our on regenerated pre-conversion experience.
06:53 And yet there is this aspect of our lives
06:56 that is still present, is still present.
07:03 And then it goes on in verse 18 to say,
07:04 "For I know that nothing good dwells in me,
07:06 that is, in my flesh for the willingness is present
07:11 in me but the doing of the good is not."
07:16 I may have the desire
07:20 but the ability to fulfill
07:23 what I would like to do or what I would like to be.
07:29 And I would, you know, to bear my own testimony
07:32 I want to be more and more like Jesus,
07:34 I pray for that everyday
07:36 as so many of you do.
07:38 I want more of His tenderness,
07:40 I want more of His gentleness, His patience,
07:42 and His kindness and it's a process.
07:44 I know that, I know that from my own experience,
07:47 you know from your experience, don't you?
07:49 We don't just arrive there suddenly like a bolt
07:53 out of the blue, it's as we're living life
07:56 as we live it out there beyond these walls
07:58 in the nitty-gritty of life
08:01 that in faith as we meet these challenges
08:04 without and within us that by the grace of Jesus
08:08 over the process of time
08:10 we are becoming more and more like Him.
08:14 To me, you know, it ought to be just,
08:16 okay, Lord, two or three years,
08:18 you know, let's get this done with.
08:20 But it actually extends
08:21 over the totality of the period of--
08:24 how long we live.
08:27 It does, ever growing
08:29 and yet knowing that there is security
08:32 at every point in our experience
08:34 with the very beginning of the one
08:35 when we come to Christ
08:37 and we're just babies to each step of the way
08:41 we have great assurance in Jesus.
08:44 And His acceptance of us,
08:46 so I want to get this straight out
08:48 at the very beginning, His acceptance of us
08:50 is not predicated upon our,
08:53 you know, just measuring up
08:55 our performance being a 100 percent.
08:57 We have this great assurance in God
08:59 even in times of failure,
09:02 unless confess it and acknowledge it here and now.
09:05 We all have failures.
09:10 We in ministry have failures.
09:12 And usually we kind of like to keep that on,
09:14 you know, on the background but we have our failures.
09:18 But there's such great assurance
09:20 in God's love in Jesus Christ,
09:23 and I hope and pray by the grace of Jesus
09:25 you are experiencing that,
09:29 that kind of assurance in your life.
09:31 So I may know Paul says here, what is right?
09:35 But out of myself, I can do nothing.
09:39 You see this conflict between good and evil
09:41 that we're talking about this morning
09:43 is not simply an intangible theological concept.
09:47 It is a reality of life.
09:50 We see it all around us
09:52 and most off all we see it within us.
09:54 Good struggling with evil.
09:56 Our consciences convicting us of what is right
09:59 that longing within our heart
10:00 to be something better than we are,
10:03 and on the other hand, those unholy desires
10:07 represented by sin within us demanding expression.
10:12 And my friend it is here in the human heart
10:15 that the conflict is going to be settled.
10:19 And it's a process,
10:21 I keep wanting to come back to the process.
10:23 Look at James 1, the New Testament, page 177.
10:28 James 1 and verses 14 and 15
10:31 talking about the operation of sin within our lives.
10:35 And here it says, "But each one is tempted."
10:39 It's talking about the individuality
10:41 of our own temptations.
10:43 And you know what maybe a temptation
10:45 do you may not be a temptation to me.
10:48 You know I will never,
10:49 I don't think I'll ever be tempted
10:50 with cigarettes or alcohol
10:53 or some of those other kinds of things
10:55 but believe me I have my own set of temptations
10:58 that are uniquely mine,
11:00 because my experience in sin is unique.
11:05 I mean, you know, there's commonalities
11:07 between us and your experience in sin is unique.
11:12 So it says but each one is tempted
11:15 when he is carried away.
11:17 By the way is it a sin to be tempted?
11:21 Is it a sin to be tempted? No.
11:24 Because Jesus was tempted, we are reminded,
11:26 is what we do with the temptation,
11:29 and temptation always brings a decision.
11:32 It's another one of those tree,
11:34 trees of the knowledge of good and evil
11:36 kind of experiences every time we are tempted,
11:39 his way or my way.
11:41 And I know what my ways about
11:43 because I know something about what sin's done in my life,
11:46 but each one is tempted when he is carried away
11:50 and this word really says it.
11:52 And is enticed by his own lust.
11:56 Now I know when typically we think of lust
11:58 we're thinking of sexual--
12:00 impure thoughts or sexual immorality.
12:04 It is inclusive, the word Lust here is inclusive of that
12:08 but is not limited to that.
12:11 It is lust in the broader sense,
12:13 it is any unholy desire,
12:16 and when we give into that unholy desire
12:19 there is all the sin.
12:20 So think of it broader, it could be a lust for appetite,
12:24 you know, it could be a lust for my neighbor's Cadillac,
12:28 it could be a whole host of things
12:31 that we could, you know,
12:33 be lusting after in the world.
12:35 But enticement, you know, there are those sets of sins,
12:40 you know, I think we all have them
12:42 that we just absolutely hate.
12:44 Can't you take up things in your own life,
12:46 you just wish, maybe you inherited,
12:48 may be you inherited
12:49 or you developed an awful temper.
12:53 Anger is an awful thing.
12:55 You know, my father had this explosive, volcanic temper.
13:00 And I found out, I didn't realize
13:03 it until I became a young adult
13:04 and I'm in the ministry
13:05 I discovered that, you know I had on occasion
13:09 it didn't happen often but if I got really upset
13:12 I was volcanic, then it was over.
13:17 And then I know some people have a different kind of temper,
13:21 it's kind of brooding underneath
13:24 and I've seen people with that kind of temper,
13:27 it's not volcanic, it's not explosive
13:29 but on the other hand it is something
13:31 I see some people they've carried anger underneath
13:34 the surface for years.
13:37 They are living in the past
13:39 with things have happened in the past and they're angry.
13:42 They're very unhappy people.
13:45 So you know can be a whole host of things,
13:47 you know, we can plug in here,
13:49 and it's not my purpose here,
13:51 to be talking about, you know make it a list here.
13:54 So there are those, those sins,
13:56 those temptations that we hate.
13:59 When I get impatient, and by God's grace
14:02 I have made the Lord has helped me
14:03 a lot in this area,
14:05 I can't say I cannot however say
14:07 that it just will never happen again.
14:11 I can't presume that.
14:13 But I do pray about it everyday.
14:15 So we have this the sins we hate.
14:17 On the other hand we have those sins
14:19 that we just absolutely love,
14:23 that we're enticed with.
14:25 And when I think of the word enticement, for me
14:29 this is what I think of, if you can see it,
14:32 it is a German chocolate cake.
14:35 When I think of enticement this is what I think of,
14:38 if the, and please I must ask,
14:41 my last series somebody just had to bring me
14:44 a two or three times German chocolate cake.
14:47 Fortunately it wasn't the whole cake
14:49 but you know if it's around,
14:51 you now, it is not enough
14:53 you know to take just one slice of temptation is,
14:57 it is so good to take another slice
15:00 and if it is in the cupboard in the house
15:02 it's like it's whispering it's playing on my subconscious
15:05 and all my conscious level,
15:07 you know, just calling out to me.
15:09 Come, you know the rich, chocolate frosting,
15:13 and it is moist and I shared this,
15:17 this illustration when I was in Russia,
15:19 one time in Magadan
15:21 and I should have made this disclaimer
15:24 as I did now please don't bring it.
15:26 It is a temptation to me
15:28 and I ended up with seven Russian chocolate cakes,
15:33 and there were 90 Americans
15:35 who were building a church at Magadan
15:37 and I invited them all in
15:40 because even though it wasn't as good as German,
15:42 I don't know, how German it really is
15:45 but we call it German chocolate cake.
15:47 I wanted it out of my room
15:50 and so I invited everybody in,
15:52 because I knew this was temptation
15:54 and I knew, I knew I had to do with it,
15:56 else I would be through the whole three weeks,
15:58 I would be eating through that chocolate.
16:01 That's what I think of enticement, enticement.
16:07 So how do we deal with these things
16:08 when we are facing enticement?
16:11 Well, the promise of Matthew 1:21 is this
16:14 "And she will bear a Son,
16:16 and you shall call his name Jesus,
16:18 for it is He who will save His people from their sins."
16:22 Is that not a wonderful precious promise?
16:27 Where would we be without Jesus?
16:29 We'll be hopelessly lost.
16:31 We would be in the grasp of sin
16:34 and my friend the tendency of sin
16:36 is to take us down deeper and deeper overtime.
16:41 That's what sin does.
16:43 Unless somebody steps in and one has stepped in
16:46 but we have to respond to it, right?
16:48 And that someone is Jesus who has stepped in
16:50 to, to, you know stop that downward fall that sin,
16:56 that sin brings about in our lives.
16:59 And so he, you know,
17:01 you could, shall call His name Jesus
17:02 for He will save His people from their sins.
17:05 First of all that brings with it
17:07 the wonderful promise that forgiveness
17:11 is freely offered to every one of us
17:14 and isn't forgiveness a wonderful thing?
17:17 My friend, we don't have to live
17:18 with the sins and failures of the past,
17:22 I mean he says, you know,
17:23 I will separate them from you
17:24 as far as the east is from the west.
17:27 And the Bible says they are gonna be cast
17:29 into depths of the sea which in some places
17:31 it's several miles down there, they're out of sight.
17:33 And my friend by the grace of Jesus we can move on.
17:37 We don't have to live with the past,
17:40 we can move on in Jesus.
17:42 But we do have to deal
17:43 with the past at some point, right?
17:45 We do have to deal with it, and that's why forgiveness
17:48 is so vitally important,
17:49 but furthermore it also carries
17:51 with it this promise
17:53 to break the power of sin in our lives.
17:57 And again I point out, this is a process,
18:00 it is not overnight.
18:01 I wish it was like that.
18:04 And done and we were free.
18:07 But no, that's not the way
18:08 the love and grace of Jesus works,
18:10 it works overtime,
18:12 it's that process by which we are becoming,
18:14 we are saved by grace
18:16 but we are becoming like Him
18:20 is what it truly is all about.
18:22 A few texts about how,
18:24 how sin operates within our lives.
18:26 So let me take you through the seven practical
18:29 and powerful principles in God's word
18:33 that will help us to overcome Satan's mastery
18:37 over us through the operation of sin in our lives.
18:42 And my friend he knows us
18:44 and he's been tracking us from the moment
18:45 we entered in the life.
18:46 He knows our weaknesses
18:49 he knows our evil tendencies, doesn't he?
18:51 He knows the buttons to push.
18:55 But you know we really ought to spend our time
18:58 knowing something about the evil one
18:59 spending our time focusing on the one that loves us,
19:03 and who is all powerful.
19:07 Whenever we talk about the power of the evil one
19:11 we must always, we never should talk,
19:13 I don't believe talk about the power of the evil one,
19:16 without in the same breadth
19:18 but saying there is one that is far more powerful
19:22 and is victorious and has guaranteed our victory as well.
19:27 So let me take you to the seven practical principles,
19:30 John 15 the New Testament, page 85,
19:34 John 15 and we'll be looking at verse 5,
19:41 John 15:5 where Jesus said "I am the vine."
19:46 You want to know the secret of spiritual growth?
19:48 Here it is," I am the vine, you are the branches."
19:51 it's all about the connections,
19:53 I think there is a class here called the connections.
19:56 Okay, I think that's part of what they're talking about.
20:00 "I am the vine, you are the branches,
20:01 he who abides in Me and I in him,"
20:06 he bears what? Much fruit.
20:10 Our lives become fruitful in Jesus.
20:13 It's like the sap that is flowing
20:15 through the trunk of a tree
20:17 and stretches out to the branches and fruit.
20:21 And we're coming up here on spring
20:23 and we're gonna see that process, won't we?
20:25 You do have fruit around you, don't you?
20:27 And fruit begins to grow,
20:30 it isn't whole it's not complete
20:33 but through the growing season,
20:35 it's growing, getting larger
20:38 and in process ripening until it's whole
20:41 and is ready to be harvested
20:43 and so it is in the spiritual life, isn't it?
20:47 That's how we become fruitful
20:49 and then it says, but apart from me,
20:51 you can do how much? Nothing.
20:55 My friend we're seeking
20:56 to do the impossibility apart from Jesus.
20:58 We can have the desire,
21:00 but my friend we really will not deal,
21:03 be able to effectively deal
21:04 with the fundamental issue within our lives.
21:07 And so my first principle
21:08 that I want to share with you
21:10 is that number one we must understand,
21:13 we must sense our helplessness of ourselves.
21:21 Let's talk about the strong willed
21:22 individual right now.
21:26 How many of us are strong willed by nature?
21:28 Let's be honest, okay?
21:31 I'm strong willed.
21:33 Those of us are strong willed
21:35 have a disadvantage at all of this
21:36 because on some level we believe
21:38 that we can somehow do it,
21:40 but somehow we are in control.
21:43 And sometimes that--
21:44 you know, I think the Pharisees tend
21:45 to be strong willed people, don't you think?
21:48 The Pharisees strong willed people.
21:51 You know, and they were depending
21:52 and we can depend upon what we can do.
21:55 I won't ask those, well,
21:56 of course who are the weak willed individuals
21:58 the ones you didn't lift their hands,
22:00 I'm not gonna go.
22:02 Okay, so we won't go to the process.
22:04 But those of you who are weak willed
22:07 you have an advantage over a strong willed people
22:11 because you already are so close,
22:13 you know you know that you can't do it.
22:16 So you have a leg up in all of this actually.
22:19 And think of it is a blessing
22:22 because you're not caught up with a strong willed people
22:25 trying to do it and thinking we can do it is self-deception.
22:30 You already know that you can't.
22:32 So you're already there.
22:35 So look at it as I said as a blessing,
22:39 a blessing in disguise, I do understand that.
22:42 But nevertheless it is a blessing.
22:44 So we know it's impossible for ourselves to overcome,
22:47 the desire may be present within us
22:50 as Paul said but the doing is non present within us.
22:54 But the second step is we must realize
22:56 where the source of the power comes from.
22:59 And my friend, the source of the power comes from whom?
23:02 Yes, it's Jesus.
23:04 Because Jesus declared all power has been given
23:09 to Me in heaven and on earth.
23:12 We ought not to forget
23:13 what that's really talk about,
23:15 it's not just heaven,
23:16 all powers has been given been to Him on earth.
23:21 So it kills, all powers has been given to Him,
23:26 we have an advantage.
23:29 John 1:12 says, "But as many as received Him,
23:33 to them gave He power to become the sons of God,
23:37 even to them that believe on His name."
23:40 And my friend, if you have entered
23:41 into a committed relationship by faith,
23:44 if you're in a faith relationship
23:45 with Jesus Christ you have received
23:47 Him as your Lord and Savior.
23:49 In receiving Him you have received power.
23:55 Power to become the sons and daughters of God.
23:59 It is a wonderful thing, isn't it?
24:01 And it's so deeply spiritual,
24:03 I like spiritual things
24:05 and this is spiritual, talking about the power.
24:09 You see the tendency
24:10 for us as human beings is to focus in on ourselves,
24:14 our feelings and how impossible this is
24:17 and it's absolutely true.
24:19 If we really know our hearts,
24:21 it is absolutely impossible to change what we are.
24:24 Some people never get beyond themselves.
24:28 Now that's where receiving Jesus gets us beyond
24:33 the reality of who we are.
24:35 As we discovered the reality of who Jesus is
24:39 and what means to us as by faith we're connected to Him.
24:43 And a part of that reality that is ours and Jesus
24:47 is that we have this power
24:51 that is ours in Jesus.
24:55 Not apart, okay?
24:58 And so, since he's got the power
25:01 the second step is we must make a decision for Jesus Christ.
25:06 We must be in as I said a committed relationship,
25:09 a decidedly committed relationship,
25:12 not a vacillating relationship.
25:15 And some people are in a vacillating relationship.
25:18 You know, they're drawn on one hand
25:20 and yet they're whirled in their simple tendencies
25:24 draw them into another,
25:25 they're just kind of waffling in their walk.
25:29 My friend, we must settle it,
25:31 we must settle our commitment
25:33 in our relationship with Jesus Christ
25:35 and He's the one that will reassure us in all of this.
25:42 So we must make a decided commitment.
25:44 It was the Civil War.
25:47 As you'll remember at one point the Civil War,
25:49 the union forces were outside
25:52 of the southern city of Atlanta, Georgia
25:54 threatening this beautiful city of the south.
25:58 And every able body person
26:01 was without the city seeking to defend it.
26:05 A young woman in the interior of the city
26:07 could hear those guns booming
26:09 and you know, it wasn't that far away as I already noted.
26:13 She had been hearing this going on for some time
26:15 and finally couldn't stand it any longer.
26:17 She went over to the stove
26:19 and she grabbed a stove poker and went out of the house
26:22 and head it down the street, she was headed to the front.
26:25 Somebody was coming back into the city
26:26 and saw the look of determination,
26:28 saw that poker and how she was holding it.
26:31 And stopped her and asked her,
26:34 "Where are you going, young lady?"
26:36 And she said with that glint in her eye
26:39 that she was headed to the front.
26:41 And he said to her, "What in the world
26:43 do you expect to do at the front with a stove poker?"
26:47 And she said, "May be not much
26:48 but at least they are gonna know on who side I'm on."
26:52 See, I like that.
26:54 because we often are in a state of indecisions.
26:56 Sometimes we can desolating.
26:59 We have to, some people,
27:01 you know, some people go through a lifetime like this indecisive.
27:05 But at some point we have to come to a decision in Jesus.
27:11 And that's often where the enemy has an advantage over us,
27:15 when we are indecisive, in a state of indecision.
27:19 And my friend, this is something,
27:20 you know, we make a decision in Christ
27:22 but we're giving ourselves to Jesus day by day,
27:26 moment by moment on some level consciously or unconsciously.
27:31 That's what it means to be a Christian, it is opening up.
27:35 It is giving, yielding ourselves to Him.
27:41 And receiving impart His life,
27:44 His love, His grace, His power.
27:48 It's a beautiful thing.
27:51 The spiritual life is a beautiful thing.
27:54 Let's move on to Matthew 8, the New Testament, page 6.
27:58 Page 6, Matthew 8.
28:00 And we're gonna be looking at verse 13
28:02 as we come to our next principle.
28:07 Matthew 8 is the story of the centurion.
28:10 Remember he had this valued servant
28:13 who was deathly ill.
28:15 I mean he was gonna die,
28:16 obviously unless something miraculously happened.
28:19 And this centurion had heard about Jesus
28:21 and he came seeking for Jesus.
28:24 And there's always some encouragement in these stories
28:28 and the gospels particularly, aren't they for us?
28:30 We can relate to this.
28:32 And so he came to Jesus asking for Jesus to step in,
28:37 to intervene in the life of his servant.
28:41 And again there's such deep spiritual lessons in this
28:43 because in fact that's what we've done
28:45 when we come to Jesus Christ.
28:46 We have in our desperation knowing
28:48 that we are dying in our sins.
28:50 We are asking Jesus to step in and to intervene.
28:55 And my friend, we don't have to beg Him.
28:57 He's right there, the moment that we respond
28:59 to His love and grace, He will step in
29:03 and He will put everything right.
29:05 And here it is verse 13,
29:07 "And Jesus said to the centurion.
29:08 'Go, it shall be done for you as you have believed.'
29:13 ' And the servant was healed that very moment
29:15 because you see he did believe in Jesus.
29:19 And when Jesus said "He is healed."
29:21 He took Jesus at his word.
29:24 The next principle is we must have faith,
29:29 we must believe that we will overcome,
29:34 not ourselves, we've already settled that,
29:36 we can do nothing but through His power.
29:39 If we do not believe that by His grace
29:42 and through His power
29:43 and through the power of His indwelling life in us
29:46 that we can overcome.
29:48 If we don't believe we will not overcome.
29:52 And I've seen this over and over again as I worked,
29:55 you know, the years-- through the years
29:57 helping people in stop smoking clinics.
29:59 This is the crucial issue I found, find most often,
30:03 most smokers feel defeated.
30:06 They've tried, they fell.
30:07 The average smoker try six times,
30:09 we know statically before they succeed
30:12 in breaking the habit.
30:13 But I find in most smokers
30:15 there's a sense of defeat up to that point in their lives.
30:19 I remember woman that was attending a series of meeting
30:21 I had in Sioux Falls, South Dakota.
30:23 It's the only place where we had back to back series
30:26 separated by three weeks.
30:27 We just had so much interest
30:29 that it was decided we're going to continue on
30:32 and so I did another six weeks.
30:34 This is when I was doing five nights a week so.
30:38 Also it was much-- it's a little bit easer program
30:41 today on people.
30:42 But she had not made a decision the first time
30:46 and I could never put it,
30:47 put my hands on what was holding her back.
30:50 But she did come to the second series
30:53 to hear it all over again,
30:54 which is something to think about.
30:56 And finally it came out,
30:57 I mean she was a Christian.
31:00 And it was this thing, it was cigarettes.
31:03 She finally told me, she said, "You know,
31:05 I had bowed down to the altar over this matter."
31:08 And she felt so defeated, so defeated by this thing.
31:14 She felt shame because she believed that
31:18 as a Christian that she ought, you know,
31:20 she ought to be able to break-free from this habit.
31:22 And she hadn't been able to do it.
31:24 And I tell you this was the central issue
31:26 in helping her.
31:27 And I'm sure it's a practical things with her,
31:29 you know, takes three to five days
31:31 to break the physical addiction once you stop.
31:34 You know, nicotine is very addictive
31:36 but it doesn't take long to get it depleted
31:39 out of your body tissues, three to five days typically.
31:43 But there is of course
31:44 that psychological dependency beyond that,
31:46 so I was sharing all of this practical things with her
31:50 and--but I stopped every day,
31:54 I stopped at her house, I didn't go in.
31:57 I stopped for just a moment, I never asked her,
31:59 "How's it going today?
32:02 What victories have you gained today?
32:03 And did you any defeats today?"
32:07 And so, you know,
32:08 we have developed this open relationship.
32:10 She knew that I wasn't going to give her a bad time
32:13 and she failed, I was there to support her.
32:14 And then I would share a promise.
32:17 And then I would tell her, "I know,
32:20 I know that with God's help, you can overcome this."
32:25 And over the next few days
32:27 I began to see faith taking hold in her.
32:31 I began to see that she was coming to believe
32:34 that with God's help she could overcome.
32:38 And you know what, she did.
32:42 And it was all by God's grace.
32:44 Amen.
32:45 So we must believe if we don't believe it,
32:49 it's just not going to happen, right?
32:53 So it's always a thing, Mark 11,
32:55 the New Testament page 37
32:57 as we go through the next principle of faith.
32:59 Mark 11 and looking at verse 24.
33:05 Where Jesus said, "Therefore I say to you,
33:07 all things for which you pray and ask,
33:10 believe that you have received--"
33:12 and there's that faith factor again.
33:14 "And they would be granted to you."
33:16 And of course, prayer will be an essential part
33:20 of the seven steps of overcoming.
33:24 We must pray, so we must ask in prayer.
33:29 And by the way we must always ask in accordance
33:32 with God's will, right?
33:35 If it is your will, however,
33:37 we must ask the question
33:39 is it God's will that we overcome?
33:43 Is it? Is it His will?
33:46 So we need not attach to that prayer, God help me.
33:51 Help me in this desperate situation
33:53 whatever might be in this wicked temper mind.
33:55 My appetite that's out of control.
33:57 My wicked tongue I just, I just, you know,
34:00 it's out of my mouth before I know it.
34:02 Whatever it may be, we know that it's God will.
34:07 So we ought to be praying about it.
34:09 The Bible says, "You have not, because you ask not."
34:12 2 Peter 1,
34:14 in the New Testament, page 183, 183.
34:17 2 Peter 1:4.
34:20 There is something that we can bring to God in prayer.
34:26 2 Peter and it's Chapter 1
34:34 and find verse 4 there.
34:36 Well, another page here.
34:39 Where it said, "By these He has granted to us,
34:41 His precious and magnificent promises,
34:44 so that by then you may become
34:47 partakers of the divine nature,"
34:49 just think of what this is saying.
34:52 By these precious and magnificent promises
34:54 we become partakers of the divine nature."
34:56 That is not saying that we become God.
35:00 But it's talking about the character of God,
35:01 the divine nature.
35:03 "Having escaped the corruption
35:06 that is in the world by lust."
35:09 There is a way out.
35:10 I'm sharing with you the seven principles
35:12 by which we can break that vicious cycle
35:14 that many of us have been on and for decades even.
35:18 This vicious cycle of sin and failure, you know,
35:21 we fall and then we were praying,
35:24 we ask for God's help,
35:25 we get up and we start again
35:26 and before we know it,
35:28 we're just in this cycle, down, up and up and down.
35:33 You know, I'm trying to share something practical
35:35 that will help us to break that cycle inner wise.
35:39 You, if you had that wicked temper,
35:41 as I had to deal within my life.
35:44 My friend, there is a way out.
35:48 You are not doomed.
35:50 To be in a state of frustration,
35:54 trying to deal with a temper
35:56 and dealing with the awful aftermath
35:58 when you blew it.
36:02 You can by God's grace overcome,
36:04 I'm not gonna say it's gonna happen overnight.
36:07 In my experience it was overtime.
36:10 Time's the factor,
36:11 you notice I keep coming back
36:12 to the process, have you picked that up?
36:15 Over time and the assurance,
36:18 remember, the assurance that we have
36:20 at every point as we are growing.
36:24 We hear this.
36:26 If we should die that moment,
36:27 our salvation is secure.
36:30 So we have deep, we have deep assurance.
36:33 Our assurance is not based upon,
36:35 well, if you overcome,
36:38 welcome. It's not that at all.
36:41 But you know when we come to Jesus
36:43 there is this deep heart desire
36:46 that develops to become like Jesus.
36:49 And sin comes to be seen as the hateful
36:52 and hurtful thing that it really is.
36:55 And we realize it was sin that nailed Him to the cross.
36:59 It was sin that brought
37:01 such grief to the heart of Jesus.
37:05 And so we have a longing to be free so that
37:08 we can become more and more like Him.
37:12 That's what we're really talking about.
37:14 So assurance at every step of the way.
37:17 Yes, be assured of that.
37:18 By the way the next point is we must claim the promises.
37:23 The ABC's remember the ABC's,
37:25 ask, believe and claim. Okay.
37:28 And the one that I for years, almost every day
37:32 I incorporate this in my prayer life,
37:34 where it says, "I can do all things--"
37:36 Philippians 4:13,
37:37 "I can do all things through Christ--"
37:40 Christ who what? What does He do?
37:42 "Who strengthens me."
37:43 I'm weak but He is strong.
37:47 I can do all things through Him
37:48 who strengthens me.
37:50 Yes, I know apart from Him I can't do nothing,
37:52 but I can do all things through Him
37:53 who strengthens me.
37:56 And so as I pray
38:00 daily, as I come to Jesus
38:02 and as I acknowledge my failures
38:04 and as I acknowledge my weaknesses
38:06 and I do.
38:08 There are several things that I'm very specific about
38:10 that I'm praying about in my own spiritual walk,
38:13 in my own spiritual life, weaknesses and failures
38:16 and sins in my own life, those simple tendencies,
38:18 I'm praying about.
38:19 And as I come this is one of the promises,
38:22 "Well, Jesus I know that without You,
38:24 I can do nothing.
38:26 But You have promised that I can do all things
38:29 through You who strengthens me."
38:31 And I claim that. That's how I pray.
38:34 I confess, I can't do it but I also confess that He can.
38:40 He can do for me what I cannot do for myself.
38:43 It is a relationship of total reliance.
38:48 It's a beautiful thing.
38:49 2 Corinthians 12:9, 10, it's another one
38:52 that I often reclaim,
38:53 where Jesus is speaking to Paul.
38:56 He says, "And He said to me,
38:58 'My grace is sufficient for you,"
39:01 you may think that,
39:02 you know, there's just no way out,
39:04 you know, nobody has ever been through
39:05 what I have been through, or had to dealt with,
39:07 what I've dealt with,
39:08 nobody had the background I did growing up.
39:11 But Jesus said no matter what our life situation or condition,
39:14 He says My grace is sufficient.
39:18 He says in Romans where sin abounds,
39:22 grace does much more abound.
39:25 Those were all promises we ought to know,
39:28 text we've to have in our mind.
39:29 "My grace is sufficient for you,
39:31 for power is perfected in weakness."
39:34 There is this aspect of grace
39:36 that we talked little of that is spoken of here.
39:39 Grace is not only God's unmerited favor,
39:44 unmerited, it is.
39:46 But grace in Jesus also carries with it the power of Jesus.
39:52 There is powering grace.
39:55 "For power is perfected in weakness."
39:58 Think about that.
40:00 It's something about it
40:01 when we come to Jesus in our weaknesses
40:03 and reliance that Jesus will reveal Himself in power.
40:10 So my friend we can put aside the mask,
40:14 we don't need to be pretentious.
40:16 We come to Him as we are.
40:19 In our weaknesses, we acknowledge it before Him
40:23 and by faith we reach out to Him and through faith
40:27 He will again rebuilt Himself in power.
40:32 He says, "Most gladly, therefore,
40:33 I will rather boast about my weaknesses,
40:35 that the power of Christ may dwell in me."
40:38 When we understand and appreciate our weaknesses,
40:41 it is then that the power of God will rest upon us.
40:44 But if we are this self willed,
40:46 strong willed individuals and we think,
40:48 I'm gonna make it, I'm gonna do it.
40:51 Not appreciate in our weaknesses
40:53 we will not experience His power,
40:56 until at some point we are on our knees
40:58 and confessing it, "I thought, Lord, I could do it
41:01 but now I realize I could not.
41:04 Unless You help me, there's no way our of this."
41:08 It's, when we acknowledge and understand our weaknesses
41:11 that His power is revealed to us.
41:15 And so all the glory belongs to Jesus.
41:21 The glory does not belong to us.
41:24 It never belongs to us, the glory is all His.
41:27 And he goes on to say,
41:28 "For when I am weak, then I am strong."
41:30 Then another promise, Ephesians 3:20,
41:33 where it says, "Now to Him,"
41:35 speaking of Jesus, "Who is able,"
41:38 and my friend be assured that He is able.
41:41 You know that song from long ago.
41:43 He's able He's able I know He's able
41:49 I know my Lord is able to carry me
41:53 through Anyway, He's able.
41:57 And take, takes hold of it.
41:59 His sufficiency that He is able.
42:02 That's my word, listen, He is able to do.
42:05 Now this is active, not passive.
42:07 "He is able to do exceeding abundantly
42:12 beyond all that we ask or even can comprehend, think,
42:18 according to the power that works," where?
42:23 "The power that works within us."
42:25 And who is that power and the source of that power?
42:29 Jesus. It is Jesus, you got it.
42:31 He can do exceeding abundantly
42:33 beyond all that we ask or think.
42:35 My friend, our expectations always come at short
42:38 of what He actually can do for us.
42:41 He actually-- He can do far more for us
42:43 than we can comprehend,
42:45 but we just need to believe it.
42:47 And then the last promise I share with you
42:49 and again it's another one I claim every day.
42:52 Philippians 2:13,
42:53 "For it is God who is at work."
42:56 Who is behind the works?
42:58 Who is actually working? God.
43:01 Is God, now the connections by faith.
43:04 "It is God who is at work in you,
43:06 both to will and to work for His good pleasure."
43:13 And so as I'm praying every morning.
43:17 I say, "Lord Jesus, I give my life to you,
43:20 I commit myself to you.
43:22 And I believe that you are,
43:26 I'm not even asking Him to do
43:28 what He's already doing.
43:31 And I believe that You are at working me to will
43:35 and to do of your good pleasure."
43:39 Because I know, we're helpless.
43:41 My friend, we're helpless.
43:44 And we are in a dependant relationship.
43:47 We're in a dependant relationship,
43:48 you know that, don't you?
43:49 So it's Him that got the will.
43:51 I don't always had the desire
43:53 but you can pray,
43:54 "Lord, give me the desire even."
43:57 Be at work to and me to will
44:00 and to do of your good pleasure.
44:01 And so let's go to James 1,
44:03 the New Testament, page 177, 177.
44:07 James 1:2, 3.
44:11 Where it says, "Consider it all joy, my brethren,
44:14 when you encounter various trials."
44:17 Let me see how many of you
44:19 really are jumping up and down
44:20 when you are faced with trials.
44:24 You know just overjoyed, Thank You,
44:25 Lord for this trial in my life.
44:28 Just lost my job, thank You, Lord."
44:33 Now that's not us, is it?
44:35 Now we're in prayer,
44:37 we're in deep darkness and Lord,
44:39 save me, help me.
44:42 But He says, "Consider all joy, my brethren,
44:44 when you encounter various trials knowing
44:46 that the testing of your faith produces endurance."
44:50 And that's why we rejoiced at
44:52 because we know that as we are tested
44:56 and by faith we persevere the result is
45:00 we develop this wonderful quality,
45:03 spiritually quality of endurance.
45:07 And my, friend, we're never,
45:08 we're never going to get through to the other end
45:11 without developing this
45:12 wonderful spiritually quality of endurance.
45:15 And so next we must learn to endure through faith.
45:21 Endurance is something that He will develop within us
45:25 and comes through the experience of time,
45:30 through time.
45:32 I have this theory,
45:34 you know, weakness is often we are born with
45:36 but weaknesses come as we get into temptation.
45:40 And we're given the temptation here
45:42 and the temptation again here and there.
45:44 And in time we become addicted,
45:48 we're in the grasp of sin.
45:50 Correspondently by the grace of Jesus
45:52 putting into practice these steps
45:54 of these principles of faith.
45:58 We meet temptation, by His grace
46:01 we overcome that temptation once.
46:03 You know, what you do once by His grace
46:06 can be replicated a second time.
46:10 And thus a third time and may be we'll slip here
46:13 and may be on occasion we'll slip there.
46:15 But if we keep on this track
46:17 overtime each time by His grace
46:20 when we gain victory we are strengthened
46:24 just a little, a little.
46:27 Next time we meet it and by God's grace
46:30 we overcome it that temptation.
46:33 We're strengthened a little more.
46:35 Overtime that which was a weakness in us will in time
46:41 become a point of strength.
46:45 Okay. It will, I believe that's true.
46:49 Let me take you to Hebrews 12:1 and 2,
46:52 the last one I'm gonna share with you,
46:53 the New Testament, page 175.
46:56 So we must endure through faith.
46:59 But Hebrews 12
47:01 and I share this in every stop smoking clinic
47:03 that I ever conducted.
47:05 Hebrews 12, and beginning with verse 1,
47:07 "Therefore, since we have so great
47:10 a cloud of witnesses surrounding us,
47:13 let us also lay aside every encumbrance,
47:14 and the sin which so easily entangles us."
47:19 And oh, we have our own stories
47:21 that we can relate about.
47:23 How easily we get entangled in our sins.
47:25 "Let us run with--" there's the word again.
47:28 "Endurance the race that is set before us."
47:30 My, friend, this is no sprint,
47:31 this is no one hundred yard dash.
47:33 This is a long distance race that we're in.
47:37 It encompasses the totality of our lives.
47:43 We're in this race.
47:45 And everyone one of us can be victors in this race.
47:50 But you got to learn to run it well.
47:52 And by the way He's the one that ran it,
47:55 the first to run it well, to run it successfully.
48:00 And because He was victorious as I said earlier,
48:03 He too, He's gonna help us to learn.
48:04 He's gonna condition us, He is our trainer,
48:07 He is our divine counselor.
48:08 He is there every step of the way,
48:10 helping us, teaching us.
48:14 And we're learning to learn how to run well by faith.
48:19 Does that make any sense.
48:21 And those of us are running,
48:22 verse 2 says, we have our eyes fixed on Jesus,
48:26 fixing our eyes on Jesus.
48:29 So there's a focus in life.
48:33 You have your eyes fixed on the things of this world.
48:35 But you have your eyes fixed on Jesus.
48:38 It goes on to say, "The author and perfecter of faith,
48:40 who for the joy set before Him endured the cross."
48:45 There's that word endurance again.
48:47 Now think about what Jesus went through
48:49 when He hung there on the cross of Calvary,
48:50 the weight of our sins, of all of us pressing upon Him,
48:54 and that sense of being separated from God.
48:56 That sense of abandonment.
48:59 My, friend, that is what crushed the life out of Him.
49:02 Sin, it's our sins that crushed the life out of Jesus.
49:06 And He said, He set the joy, who for the joy set
49:09 before Him endured the cross.
49:11 What was that joy?
49:14 My, friend, it was the joy of our salvation
49:18 that He will save us
49:21 and that we would be with Him in this glorious future.
49:25 And in a similar way we must endure the things that we face,
49:29 setting the joy that is before us.
49:31 So the last one is we must focus on Him
49:34 and the joy, they'll lose the battle.
49:36 You're focusing on your sins,
49:38 you're focusing on your failures and your weaknesses.
49:41 My, friend, it will keep you down.
49:43 So we need to understand and confess,
49:46 acknowledge our weaknesses
49:47 but we must keep our focus on the joy.
49:49 The joy that would be ours when we gain the victory.
49:53 The joy that will be ours when we stand around
49:55 the throne of God with those crowns
49:58 and hats in hands and we're shouting hallelujah.
50:02 I tell you, that's what keeps me going.
50:05 I know there's a future and I want it.
50:09 I want to be part of it.
50:11 I want to experience what life was really meant to be,
50:14 not the life as it came to be.
50:16 1986, moved to Spokane Washington
50:20 to begin my ministry,
50:21 it's basically eastern Washington,
50:23 the northern panhandle of Idaho.
50:25 So I started there working January 1986.
50:29 And I had heard about Bloomsday,
50:31 ever heard of Bloomsday.
50:32 It is a 10k race approximately seven and half miles.
50:36 I have been running since I was 27,
50:38 but not competitively
50:40 but I determine, I'm gonna run this.
50:42 So I got my training so that several weeks in
50:45 I was at the seven and half mile mark.
50:48 So I was pretty fit and-- but I drove around the course,
50:54 I want to see it.
50:56 And I knew because I've heard about this,
50:58 everybody knows about this.
50:59 It's about 4, 5 miles in,
51:01 it's what they call Doomsday Hill.
51:05 And I knew this is where it was drawing you either,
51:08 we are going to be successful or not.
51:11 And I set this one goal,
51:12 I wanted to run the whole distance.
51:15 I wasn't concerned about time necessarily
51:17 but I wanted to run the whole distance.
51:20 And with excitement,
51:22 some 40,000 people this first Sunday in May.
51:26 That gun went off and the adrenaline was flowing
51:29 and I went out way too fast.
51:32 And part of this is you want to get away from the main crowd
51:34 so you're not getting tripped up.
51:36 So we work away through the crowd,
51:38 the walkers and those who didn't really train but are there.
51:41 But anyway, I went out too fast,
51:43 so by the time I got to Doomsday Hill,
51:46 I was so tired.
51:48 It's about an eighth of a mile steep hill.
51:51 And I felt like my legs were made out of concrete.
51:54 I can barely get one,
51:56 you know, they were begging me to rest,
51:58 they were hurting, they were aching.
52:00 I was so tired, I was so tempted, just to walk,
52:03 I wasn't running fast at all.
52:06 But I was still just barely running.
52:09 But I had this goal, I wanted to run
52:12 the whole thing and I got to the top.
52:15 And I got through the finish line and I've run it.
52:20 Now I ran it again the next year,
52:23 what do you think that did for me?
52:26 I want to tell you I didn't worry near
52:28 as much about that hill because I had overcome it once
52:32 and I knew that I could do it again.
52:36 And my friend that's the way the spiritual life can be
52:39 as we advance in our faith in Jesus.
52:43 I take you again to these seven powerful points
52:45 and I end with one text after this.
52:47 Again, number one, we must sense our helplessness.
52:50 Number two, we must make a decision for Jesus.
52:53 Number three, well, we must believe that we can overcome.
52:57 Number four, we need to be praying and ask Him in prayer,
53:01 claiming those beautiful promises that God has given us.
53:04 And number seven, we must learn to endure through faith
53:08 as we focus in on the joy that is ours in Jesus Christ.
53:12 Take a look at Romans 8 as we conclude.
53:15 Romans 8 is the New Testament, page 124.
53:22 Romans 8, I conclude with these words.
53:25 They just resound.
53:28 Romans 8:31,
53:31 "What then shall we say to these things?
53:33 If God is for us, who is against us?
53:36 He who did not spare His own Son,
53:38 but delivered Him over for us all,
53:40 how will He not also with Him freely give us all things?
53:44 Who will bring a charge against God's elect?
53:47 God is the one who justifies.
53:49 Who is the one who condemns?
53:51 Christ Jesus is He who died,
53:53 yes, rather who was raised, who is all,
53:56 who is at the right hand of God,
53:58 who also intercedes for us.
54:01 Who will separate us from the love of Christ?
54:03 Will tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine,
54:07 or nakedness, or peril, or sword?"
54:10 Verse 37, "But in all these things
54:13 we overwhelmingly conquer" How?
54:18 "Through Him who loved us.
54:21 For I am convinced that neither death nor life,
54:25 nor angels nor principalities nor things present
54:28 nor things to come, nor powers,
54:30 nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing."
54:34 And can you imagine anything beyond that?
54:37 "Will be able to separate us from the love of God
54:42 which is in Christ Jesus our Lord."
54:46 My friend, the deck has been stacked in our favor.
54:50 Go out there and fight the good fight of faith.
54:55 And by God's grace you will be an overcomer.
54:58 Let's pray.
55:00 Father in heaven, we just stirred
55:03 this morning to again to declare,
55:07 to express our gratitude for the debts of Your love.
55:12 And the power of that love as it is that work within us.
55:16 What we hear, we'll confess it.
55:18 We know that without You we can do nothing.
55:20 But Lord, we have made this decision,
55:23 we have entered into a faith relationship with You.
55:25 And we do believe that You have the power.
55:28 And we are in prayer in this moment and we are asking for
55:32 You to fulfill that which You have promised.
55:34 We can do nothing, we confess it.
55:37 But we claim the promise that we can do all things
55:40 through You who strengthens us,
55:41 strengthen us individually, Lord.
55:44 For that individual battles that we are fighting
55:48 and we claim that promise
55:49 that You will continue to be at work in us
55:52 to will and to do of Your good pleasure.
55:56 Keep us by Your grace is my prayer in Jesus name.
55:59 Amen.


Revised 2014-12-17