God | Episode 1 | TBN

God | Episode 1

Watch God | Episode 1
January 2, 2018
28:31

Max Lucado: Unshakeable Hope

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God | Episode 1

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  • (Max Lucado) They don't build things like they used to.
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  • Cathedrals, castles, and monuments
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  • still standing centuries after they were constructed,
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  • or buildings like this one.
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  • Cracks and creaks reveal the years,
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  • yet it still remains.
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  • From the cathedrals of Rome to the Alamo near my own home,
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  • there's something special about a building
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  • that stands the test of time.
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  • Wars could not destroy them, storms could not devastate them.
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  • You might even say they're unshakable.
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  • Hi, I'm Max Lucado, and I wonder,
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  • what kind of life are you building?
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  • We live in a shaky world.
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  • Promises break, stock markets crash,
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  • relationships crumble.
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  • These pillars of our faith will be tested.
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  • Want to be unshakable in a shaky world?
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  • You can build your life on the enduring promises of God.
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  • You have a problem, God has a promise,
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  • and these promises stand the test of time,
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  • and they weather life's biggest storms.
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  • Today we're going to explore some of these great and precious
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  • promises found in God's Word.
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  • And when the world rages around you,
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  • you can stand with unshakable hope.
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  • (female announcer) We are building our lives on the promises of God.
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  • Because his word is unbreakable, our hope is unshakable.
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  • We do not stand on the problems of life or the pain in life.
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  • We stand on the great and precious promises of God.
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  • This is "Unshakable Hope."
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  • I promise, such a simple, powerful sentence.
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  • No frills, no colorful adjectives,
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  • yet it locks the sentences that come before it
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  • and after it into an unbreakable commitment.
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  • But for many of us, the idea of a promise hasn't meant much.
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  • We've seen promises just as easily broken as made,
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  • and just as easily forgotten as remembered.
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  • But not with God.
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  • When he makes a promise, he doesn't pick the lock,
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  • cut it, swap it out with a magician's fake.
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  • He throws away the key.
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  • His promises cannot be undone
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  • and will not be broken.
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  • Listen to this beautiful promise from God
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  • found in Hebrews 8 and verse 11.
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  • "They will all know me."
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  • One of my favorite childhood memories is greeting my father
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  • as he came home from work.
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  • My mother, who worked an evening shift at the hospital,
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  • would leave the house around 3 in the afternoon,
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  • and dad would arrive home at 3:30.
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  • My brother and I were left alone for that half hour
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  • with strict instructions not to leave the house
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  • until dad arrived.
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  • Even if he were a little late, our confidence was unshaken
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  • that he would be coming through that door
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  • in a matter of time.
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  • And we would take our positions on the couch and watch cartoons,
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  • always keeping one ear alert to the driveway.
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  • I can remember running out to meet him,
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  • getting swept up in his big and often sweaty arms.
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  • As he carried me toward the house,
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  • he'd put his big brim straw hat on my head.
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  • And for a moment, I'd be a cowboy.
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  • We'd sit on the porch as he removed his oily work boots,
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  • never allowed in the house.
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  • As he took them off, I'd pull them on,
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  • and for a moment I'd be a wrangler.
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  • And then we'd go indoors and open the lunch pail.
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  • Any leftover snacks, which he always seemed to have,
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  • were for my brothers and me to split.
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  • It was great.
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  • Boots and hats and snacks, what more could a 5 year old want?
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  • But suppose that's all I got.
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  • Suppose my dad, rather than coming home,
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  • just sent me some things, boots for me to play in,
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  • a hat for me to wear, and snacks for me to eat?
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  • Would that be enough?
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  • Well, maybe so, but not for long.
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  • Soon, the gifts would lose their charm.
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  • Soon, if not immediately, I'd ask, "Where's dad?"
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  • Well, consider something worse.
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  • Suppose he called me up and said,
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  • "Max, I won't be coming home anymore,
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  • "but I'll send my boots and hat over,
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  • and every afternoon, you can play in them."
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  • Well, no deal, that wouldn't work.
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  • Even a 5 year old knows it's the person,
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  • not the presents that makes a reunion special.
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  • It's not the frills, it's the father.
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  • Now, perhaps you had a father like that, a father who,
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  • for whatever reason, by circumstance or decision,
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  • wasn't present for birthdays or holidays or graduations.
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  • Perhaps a gift or a card on those special days
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  • was the only connection you had with him.
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  • Or maybe not even that, no cards, no contact.
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  • Your father was completely absent.
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  • Now, imagine God making us this offer,
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  • "I'll give you anything you desire, anything.
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  • "Perfect love, eternal peace.
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  • "You'll never be afraid, never be alone.
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  • "No confusion will ever enter your mind.
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  • "No anxiety or boredom will ever come into your heart.
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  • "You'll never lack for anything.
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  • "There will be no sin, no guilt, no rules,
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  • "no expectations, no failure.
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  • "You'll never be lonely, never hurt, you'll never die,
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  • only you will never see my face."
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  • Would you want it?
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  • Neither would I, and neither does God.
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  • The truth is he wants us to know him.
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  • Some years ago my wife Deanalyn and I
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  • went on a tour of the Eiffel Tower in Paris.
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  • It is a fascinating, iconic structure.
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  • Some tourists wore headphones that provided a self-paced tour.
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  • Others followed guides
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  • and listened at different junctures.
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  • Others did not have headphones and did not have a tour guide.
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  • They mistakenly assumed they could answer
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  • all their questions on their own.
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  • That was me.
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  • I soon regretted not having the assistance of a headset
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  • or a tour guide.
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  • I had more questions than I had answers.
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  • How long did it take to build?
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  • Who had the idea to build it?
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  • Why this location?
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  • Has the building ever been struck by lightning?
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  • Well, Deanalyn didn't know, and I didn't know,
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  • but the guides knew, so I'll confess I eavesdropped.
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  • I heard a lot, but what I did not hear was this invitation,
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  • "Would any of you like to get to know the designer?
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  • Or could I interest anyone in a relationship
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  • with the architect?"
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  • Such offers were never made, why?
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  • Well, for one thing, the designer's dead.
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  • He no longer inhabits the earth.
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  • But even if Gustave Eiffel were still alive,
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  • what are the odds that he would make himself available
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  • to be known, to receive inquiries,
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  • to personally entertain questions?
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  • No, we cannot know the designer of the Eiffel Tower,
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  • but we can know the designer of the Grand Canyon,
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  • the human eye, and the Milky Way galaxy.
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  • The architect of the Eiffel Tower is dead,
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  • buried, and unavailable,
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  • but the one who furrowed the Malvern Canyon
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  • and the seabed of the Atlantic Ocean is not.
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  • The creator of the Eiffel Tower can no longer speak,
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  • but the creator of Mount Everest is alive and well.
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  • And he invites us to know him.
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  • As it says in Hebrews 8 and verse 11,
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  • "They will all know me."
  • 00:07:33.190 --> 00:07:38.100
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  • Like a resplendent gem turning to reveal new beauty
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  • at every angle, there are so many things
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  • to learn about God.
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  • Throughout history, he has continued
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  • to reveal different facets of who he is to his people,
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  • and for all eternity will continue to discover more.
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  • But there are some things that we know to be true now.
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  • People of the promise make it their highest aim to know God.
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  • And they believe that the day is coming
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  • when they will see him face to face,
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  • and the mysteries will be solved,
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  • the majesty will be witnessed.
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  • Even now, God is pulling back the curtain,
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  • inviting us to take a glimpse.
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  • And he begins with this foundational truth: God is.
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  • God is the alpha and the omega, the beginning and the end.
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  • He was before all things, and all things come from him.
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  • Everything that exists gives evidence of God's existence.
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  • The intricacy of the snowflake, the roar of a thunderstorm,
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  • the precision of the honeybee,
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  • the bubbling of a cool mountain stream,
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  • these miracles and a million more
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  • give testimony to the existence
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  • of a brilliant, wise, and tireless God.
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  • To deny the existence of God after all he has done
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  • and all we can see is an atrocious,
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  • disastrous choice.
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  • God gives no quarter to those who,
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  • upon seeing what God has done,
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  • dare to announce that he does not exist.
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  • And David pens the first line of Psalm 14 with this warning,
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  • "The fool says in his heart, 'There is no God.'"
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  • The second truth is this.
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  • God is knowable.
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  • He has not hidden himself.
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  • He does not close the door to his children.
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  • He does not resist our questions or refuse our inquiries.
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  • Just the opposite, he promises success
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  • to all who search for him.
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  • There are many things in life you may never understand:
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  • the periodic table of elements, the way of a woman with a man,
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  • the reason God made mosquitos.
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  • Our maker never guarantees that we will comprehend the cosmos
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  • or plumb the ocean depths.
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  • But when it comes to knowing God,
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  • God wants you to know that you can know him.
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  • This is the highest of God's promises.
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  • We shall know God.
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  • Scripture curates many pledges, but all fall beneath this one.
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  • Of the Bible's armada of covenants,
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  • this is the flagship.
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  • And isn't knowing him knowing all?
  • 00:10:11.140 --> 00:10:14.260
  • The Apostle Paul was quick to abandon all accomplishment
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  • if it meant he could, in his words,
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  • "Know him, and the power of his resurrection,
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  • and the fellowship of his sufferings."
  • 00:10:23.170 --> 00:10:26.070
  • The goal of life from God's perspective is to know God.
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  • The reason each day dawns is to grant more time to know him.
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  • The universe exists to declare his glory.
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  • The church exists to promote his beauty.
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  • The Scripture exists to reveal his heart.
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  • Even marriage is designed to teach us
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  • about a relationship with God.
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  • To know God is our highest pursuit.
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  • You were made to know God.
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  • You were made to feel his grace pulse through your heart.
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  • You were made to stand on the edge of his wisdom
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  • and gaze with a gasp over the side.
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  • You were made to know God.
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  • You were made for more than paychecks
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  • and weekends and a nice retirement.
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  • You were created for more than a simple,
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  • ordinary, mundane life.
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  • Do not settle for mastering a skill.
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  • Pursue the master of the skies.
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  • Do not settle for a life well-lived.
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  • Explore the maker of life himself.
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  • Do not settle for pleasures and possessions.
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  • Aim to know the person of heaven.
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  • You were made to know him.
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  • You were at your best when you pursue him.
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  • Are you shaken by the struggles of life?
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  • Then ponder the strength of God.
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  • Are you disappointed with the pleasure of this earth?
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  • Then enlarge your scope to include the vastness
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  • of the Godhead and the mystery of the trinity
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  • and the beauty of the cross.
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  • Would you like to lose your sorrow, dispel your stress?
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  • Then dive headfirst into the immensity of God,
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  • who has never not been and will never grow weary.
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  • Do you feel small and insignificant?
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  • Then lose yourself in the tender arms
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  • of your mighty heavenly Father and ponder his words of love.
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  • Make him the goal of your life.
  • 00:12:09.070 --> 00:12:12.270
  • The pursuit of money will make you greedy.
  • 00:12:12.280 --> 00:12:15.210
  • The pursuit of pleasure will leave you empty.
  • 00:12:15.220 --> 00:12:18.210
  • The pursuit of knowledge will puff you up.
  • 00:12:18.220 --> 00:12:21.030
  • The pursuit of popularity will shut you out.
  • 00:12:21.040 --> 00:12:24.250
  • But the pursuit of God will satisfy your soul, why?
  • 00:12:24.260 --> 00:12:29.080
  • This quest is your calling.
  • 00:12:29.090 --> 00:12:31.140
  • You were made to know him.
  • 00:12:31.150 --> 00:12:34.020
  • God guarantees that those who seek him will find him.
  • 00:12:34.030 --> 00:12:37.170
  • It's his promise.
  • 00:12:37.180 --> 00:12:39.280
  • And we can build our lives on this promise,
  • 00:12:39.290 --> 00:12:42.210
  • so make knowing God your highest pursuit.
  • 00:12:42.220 --> 00:12:47.210
  • Jeremiah 9:23 and 24 puts it this way,
  • 00:12:47.220 --> 00:12:51.090
  • "This is what the Lord says,
  • 00:12:51.100 --> 00:12:53.070
  • "'Let not the wise boast of their wisdom
  • 00:12:53.080 --> 00:12:55.100
  • "'or the strong boast of their strength
  • 00:12:55.110 --> 00:12:57.030
  • "'or the rich boast of their riches,
  • 00:12:57.040 --> 00:12:59.140
  • "'but let the one who boasts boast about this:
  • 00:12:59.150 --> 00:13:03.090
  • "'that they have the understanding
  • 00:13:03.100 --> 00:13:04.190
  • "'to know me,
  • 00:13:04.200 --> 00:13:06.120
  • "'that I am the Lord, who exercises kindness,
  • 00:13:06.130 --> 00:13:09.020
  • "'justice, and righteousness on the earth,
  • 00:13:09.030 --> 00:13:11.140
  • for in these I delight,' declares the Lord."
  • 00:13:11.150 --> 00:13:16.030
  • Put your hope firmly in God's promise to all of us.
  • 00:13:16.040 --> 00:13:20.000
  • They will know me.
  • 00:13:20.010 --> 00:13:23.050
  • He will make himself known to all who seek him.
  • 00:13:23.060 --> 00:13:26.170
  • Make sure that you're one of them by starting
  • 00:13:26.180 --> 00:13:29.040
  • with this promise of your own:
  • 00:13:29.050 --> 00:13:31.040
  • I will make the knowledge of God my highest pursuit.
  • 00:13:31.050 --> 00:13:34.050
  • (male announcer) We're living in volatile times.
  • 00:13:42.110 --> 00:13:44.170
  • It's almost as if the ground is shifting
  • 00:13:44.180 --> 00:13:46.170
  • and crumbling beneath our feet.
  • 00:13:46.180 --> 00:13:48.190
  • Many in the world have resigned themselves
  • 00:13:48.200 --> 00:13:50.250
  • to living with ever-rising levels of fear and uncertainty,
  • 00:13:50.260 --> 00:13:55.000
  • but this should not be so for God's people.
  • 00:13:55.010 --> 00:13:58.040
  • That's the reassuring message that comes through powerfully
  • 00:13:58.050 --> 00:14:01.260
  • in Mac Lucado's new series, "Unshakable Hope:
  • 00:14:01.270 --> 00:14:06.000
  • Building Our Lives on the Promises of God."
  • 00:14:06.010 --> 00:14:09.140
  • (Max Lucado) Every virtue we see in Christ, we see in our inheritance.
  • 00:14:09.150 --> 00:14:14.040
  • (announcer) In each of these 14 soul-strengthening episodes,
  • 00:14:14.050 --> 00:14:17.090
  • one of America's most trusted teachers takes you
  • 00:14:17.100 --> 00:14:19.210
  • to God's eternal word and leads you
  • 00:14:19.220 --> 00:14:22.000
  • to the most solid ground of all: his unfailing promises.
  • 00:14:22.010 --> 00:14:26.150
  • For a short time, receive your personal set
  • 00:14:26.160 --> 00:14:28.190
  • of all 14 episodes of "Unshakable Hope"
  • 00:14:28.200 --> 00:14:31.150
  • on DVD as our special thank you for your gift of $25 or more
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  • in support of the outreaches of TBN.
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  • And if you're able to share a gift of $50 or more,
  • 00:14:39.000 --> 00:14:42.050
  • we'll add a special bonus: "Hope,"
  • 00:14:42.060 --> 00:14:45.060
  • Max Lucado's beautiful hardcover gift-book
  • 00:14:45.070 --> 00:14:48.080
  • of inspirational thoughts and images.
  • 00:14:48.090 --> 00:14:51.000
  • Take a moment now to call 800-486-9101,
  • 00:14:51.010 --> 00:14:55.100
  • or go securely online to tbn.org/HOPE
  • 00:14:55.110 --> 00:14:59.290
  • to share a gift and request these resources today.
  • 00:15:00.020 --> 00:15:03.180
  • That's 800-486-9101.
  • 00:15:03.190 --> 00:15:06.280
  • Call or click now and start standing on unshakable ground.
  • 00:15:06.290 --> 00:15:11.120
  • Today we're looking at this powerful promise found
  • 00:15:19.070 --> 00:15:21.150
  • in Romans 16 and verse 20.
  • 00:15:21.160 --> 00:15:24.050
  • "The God who brings peace will soon defeat Satan
  • 00:15:24.060 --> 00:15:27.180
  • and give you power over him."
  • 00:15:27.190 --> 00:15:31.000
  • Well, the thought of the picnickers
  • 00:15:31.010 --> 00:15:32.220
  • doesn't surprise us.
  • 00:15:32.230 --> 00:15:34.150
  • The people weren't the first nor the last to pack a meal
  • 00:15:34.160 --> 00:15:37.140
  • and set out for a Sunday afternoon excursion.
  • 00:15:37.150 --> 00:15:40.090
  • After all, it was a sunny day in July.
  • 00:15:40.100 --> 00:15:43.240
  • And even in 1861, Washington DC was crowded and busy.
  • 00:15:43.250 --> 00:15:49.030
  • A trip to the countryside would be nice.
  • 00:15:49.040 --> 00:15:51.230
  • Now, it wasn't the picnic baskets
  • 00:15:51.240 --> 00:15:54.000
  • that made this entourage notable.
  • 00:15:54.010 --> 00:15:57.080
  • It is where they were going to unpack them.
  • 00:15:57.090 --> 00:16:01.160
  • They were going to a battlefield.
  • 00:16:01.170 --> 00:16:04.100
  • Washingtonians rode horses and buggies to Manassas
  • 00:16:04.110 --> 00:16:07.270
  • to witness Union soldiers bring an end to what they considered
  • 00:16:07.280 --> 00:16:11.280
  • to be a short rebellion.
  • 00:16:11.290 --> 00:16:14.100
  • Their intent was to sit on blankets and eat their chicken
  • 00:16:14.110 --> 00:16:17.230
  • and cheer from a distance.
  • 00:16:17.240 --> 00:16:19.210
  • One solider described them as a throng of sightseers.
  • 00:16:19.220 --> 00:16:24.050
  • But it wasn't long before reality rushed in.
  • 00:16:24.060 --> 00:16:27.230
  • The sound of gunfire, the sight of blood,
  • 00:16:27.240 --> 00:16:30.020
  • and the screams of wounded soldiers,
  • 00:16:30.030 --> 00:16:32.140
  • the people soon realized this was no picnic.
  • 00:16:32.150 --> 00:16:36.100
  • Fathers grabbed children, husbands called for their wives.
  • 00:16:36.110 --> 00:16:39.180
  • They jumped into the wagons, they jumped onto horses.
  • 00:16:39.190 --> 00:16:43.000
  • Some were caught in a stampede of retreating Union troops.
  • 00:16:43.010 --> 00:16:46.110
  • One spectator, a congressman from New York,
  • 00:16:46.120 --> 00:16:49.070
  • he strayed too close to the combat.
  • 00:16:49.080 --> 00:16:51.170
  • He was caught by Confederate soldiers
  • 00:16:51.180 --> 00:16:54.000
  • and spent 6 months in a Richmond prison.
  • 00:16:54.010 --> 00:16:57.060
  • That was the last time any onlookers
  • 00:16:57.070 --> 00:16:59.010
  • took a picnic basket to a battlefield, or was it?
  • 00:16:59.020 --> 00:17:05.040
  • Could it be that we make the same mistake?
  • 00:17:05.050 --> 00:17:08.180
  • Could it be that we are under the same false assumption?
  • 00:17:08.190 --> 00:17:12.060
  • Is it possible that we do today
  • 00:17:12.070 --> 00:17:15.150
  • what the Washingtonians did then?
  • 00:17:15.160 --> 00:17:18.090
  • You see, according to the Bible, there's a war a-raging.
  • 00:17:18.100 --> 00:17:22.240
  • Ephesians 6 puts it this way,
  • 00:17:22.250 --> 00:17:25.220
  • "Our fight is not against people on earth
  • 00:17:25.230 --> 00:17:29.020
  • "but against the rulers and authorities and the powers
  • 00:17:29.030 --> 00:17:31.290
  • "of this world's darkness, against the spiritual powers
  • 00:17:32.000 --> 00:17:35.040
  • "of evil in the heavenly world.
  • 00:17:35.050 --> 00:17:37.070
  • "That is why you need to put on God's full armor.
  • 00:17:37.080 --> 00:17:41.070
  • "Then on the day of evil you will be able to stand strong.
  • 00:17:41.080 --> 00:17:44.220
  • "And when you have finished the whole fight,
  • 00:17:44.230 --> 00:17:46.220
  • "you will still be standing.
  • 00:17:46.230 --> 00:17:48.130
  • "So stand strong, with the belt of truth tied around your waist
  • 00:17:48.140 --> 00:17:52.170
  • "and the protection of right living on your chest.
  • 00:17:52.180 --> 00:17:55.260
  • "On your feet wear the good news of peace
  • 00:17:55.270 --> 00:17:57.280
  • "to help you stand strong.
  • 00:17:57.290 --> 00:17:59.140
  • "And also use the shield of faith with which
  • 00:17:59.150 --> 00:18:01.240
  • you can stop all the burning arrows of the evil one."
  • 00:18:01.250 --> 00:18:06.030
  • We are in a battle, and we must take it seriously.
  • 00:18:06.040 --> 00:18:10.040
  • A battle not of flesh and blood, but of the Spirit,
  • 00:18:10.050 --> 00:18:14.000
  • more real than anything we see in the natural.
  • 00:18:14.010 --> 00:18:17.030
  • So, do not enter this battle with a picnic basket.
  • 00:18:17.040 --> 00:18:21.060
  • Do not think you can fight the enemy alone.
  • 00:18:21.070 --> 00:18:24.020
  • Heed the words of Scripture, and put on God's full armor
  • 00:18:24.030 --> 00:18:28.110
  • so that you are prepared for battle
  • 00:18:28.120 --> 00:18:30.140
  • and can stand strong on the battlefield.
  • 00:18:30.150 --> 00:18:33.170
  • The Apostle Paul envisions a Roman soldier
  • 00:18:33.180 --> 00:18:36.130
  • suiting up for battle.
  • 00:18:36.140 --> 00:18:38.090
  • The seasoned infantryman knows better
  • 00:18:38.100 --> 00:18:40.150
  • than to saunter onto the battlefield wearing nothing
  • 00:18:40.160 --> 00:18:43.120
  • but a robe and sandals.
  • 00:18:43.130 --> 00:18:45.120
  • He takes care to prepare: belt, armor, shield, sword.
  • 00:18:45.130 --> 00:18:50.220
  • He takes every weapon into the conflict,
  • 00:18:50.230 --> 00:18:53.230
  • for not one is unimportant.
  • 00:18:53.240 --> 00:18:55.260
  • Take the belt,
  • 00:18:55.270 --> 00:18:57.060
  • leave the helmet, lose your head.
  • 00:18:57.070 --> 00:18:58.290
  • Take the sword, forget the shield,
  • 00:18:59.000 --> 00:19:00.250
  • you're vulnerable to an arrow.
  • 00:19:00.260 --> 00:19:02.180
  • Take the shoes, forget your sword, and well,
  • 00:19:02.190 --> 00:19:05.120
  • you better just run.
  • 00:19:05.130 --> 00:19:07.100
  • A soldier must suit up and be prepared.
  • 00:19:07.110 --> 00:19:11.200
  • So must we.
  • 00:19:11.210 --> 00:19:13.270
  • Dare we saunter into the day with no protection?
  • 00:19:13.280 --> 00:19:17.020
  • Dare we wander into enemy territory with no weapon?
  • 00:19:17.030 --> 00:19:21.110
  • Not if we want to stand strong.
  • 00:19:21.120 --> 00:19:24.050
  • Every battle ultimately is a spiritual battle.
  • 00:19:24.060 --> 00:19:28.130
  • And our enemy is not passive, he is not fair.
  • 00:19:28.140 --> 00:19:31.170
  • He is active and deceptive.
  • 00:19:31.180 --> 00:19:33.180
  • He has designs and strategies.
  • 00:19:33.190 --> 00:19:36.060
  • Consequently, we need a strategy as well.
  • 00:19:36.070 --> 00:19:39.210
  • For that reason, "Though we walk in the flesh,
  • 00:19:39.220 --> 00:19:42.130
  • "we do not war according to the flesh.
  • 00:19:42.140 --> 00:19:44.260
  • "For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal,
  • 00:19:44.270 --> 00:19:47.250
  • but they're mighty in God for pulling down strongholds."
  • 00:19:47.260 --> 00:19:52.010
  • So, who is our enemy?
  • 00:19:52.020 --> 00:19:53.290
  • The one who turned on God, deceived Adam and Eve,
  • 00:19:54.000 --> 00:19:57.090
  • and threatens our hearts today.
  • 00:19:57.100 --> 00:19:59.090
  • The one who comes to steal and kill and destroy, Satan,
  • 00:19:59.100 --> 00:20:04.260
  • he is our enemy.
  • 00:20:04.270 --> 00:20:06.070
  • But take heart, we have a promise
  • 00:20:06.080 --> 00:20:08.210
  • that we can hold onto in the midst of the battle.
  • 00:20:08.220 --> 00:20:11.290
  • Romans 16 and verse 20, "The God who brings peace
  • 00:20:12.000 --> 00:20:16.130
  • will soon defeat Satan and give you power over him."
  • 00:20:16.140 --> 00:20:21.210
  • 00:20:24.080 --> 00:20:27.280
  • One of my high school summers was spent as a roustabout
  • 00:20:27.290 --> 00:20:30.290
  • in the west Texas oil field laying pipeline.
  • 00:20:31.000 --> 00:20:34.040
  • A large ditch digging machine would go in front,
  • 00:20:34.050 --> 00:20:37.010
  • trenching a trough 5 feet deep.
  • 00:20:37.020 --> 00:20:39.100
  • We would follow behind,
  • 00:20:39.110 --> 00:20:40.250
  • shoveling out the excess dirt and rocks.
  • 00:20:40.260 --> 00:20:43.200
  • At some point, the ditch digger did more than break ground,
  • 00:20:43.210 --> 00:20:47.000
  • it dislodged a rattlesnake's nest.
  • 00:20:47.010 --> 00:20:49.260
  • Someone saw it and shouted, and you've never seen guys
  • 00:20:49.270 --> 00:20:52.120
  • scramble out of a hole any faster.
  • 00:20:52.130 --> 00:20:55.000
  • One of the workers launched his shovel like a javelin
  • 00:20:55.010 --> 00:20:57.200
  • and beheaded the snake.
  • 00:20:57.210 --> 00:20:59.130
  • We stood on the higher ground
  • 00:20:59.140 --> 00:21:01.020
  • and watched as the snake, now headless,
  • 00:21:01.030 --> 00:21:03.180
  • writhed and twisted in the soft dirt below.
  • 00:21:03.190 --> 00:21:07.090
  • Now, I know what you're thinking,
  • 00:21:07.100 --> 00:21:08.250
  • "Thanks for the inspirational image, Max.
  • 00:21:08.260 --> 00:21:11.030
  • Just what I needed to put some hope in my day."
  • 00:21:11.040 --> 00:21:14.060
  • Granted, the picture is not inspirational,
  • 00:21:14.070 --> 00:21:17.240
  • but it is hopeful.
  • 00:21:17.250 --> 00:21:19.230
  • Those few moments in the west Texas summer
  • 00:21:19.240 --> 00:21:22.070
  • are a parable of where we are in life.
  • 00:21:22.080 --> 00:21:25.140
  • Allow the snake to represent the devil.
  • 00:21:25.150 --> 00:21:28.120
  • Not hard to do.
  • 00:21:28.130 --> 00:21:29.280
  • John calls Satan that old snake who is the devil,
  • 00:21:29.290 --> 00:21:33.170
  • Revelation 20 and verse 2.
  • 00:21:33.180 --> 00:21:35.270
  • Allow the spade or shovel to represent the cross
  • 00:21:35.280 --> 00:21:38.270
  • of Jesus Christ.
  • 00:21:38.280 --> 00:21:40.220
  • Paul gives us the good news, only he doesn't say the snake
  • 00:21:40.230 --> 00:21:43.160
  • is beheaded but that the snake is disarmed.
  • 00:21:43.170 --> 00:21:47.010
  • In Colossians he wrote,
  • 00:21:47.020 --> 00:21:49.130
  • "God disarmed the evil rulers and authorities.
  • 00:21:49.140 --> 00:21:53.070
  • "He shamed them publically by his victory over them
  • 00:21:53.080 --> 00:21:56.130
  • on the cross of Christ."
  • 00:21:56.140 --> 00:21:58.190
  • What the worker did to the snake,
  • 00:21:58.200 --> 00:22:00.170
  • our great God did to the devil.
  • 00:22:00.180 --> 00:22:03.040
  • There was no slipping away into the shadows for him.
  • 00:22:03.050 --> 00:22:05.290
  • There was no sending him away in the quiet.
  • 00:22:06.000 --> 00:22:08.090
  • No, Jesus shamed the tormenter of our hearts publically.
  • 00:22:08.100 --> 00:22:13.260
  • One version even says,
  • 00:22:13.270 --> 00:22:15.130
  • "He stripped all the spiritual tyrants
  • 00:22:15.140 --> 00:22:18.060
  • "in the universe of their sham authority at the cross,
  • 00:22:18.070 --> 00:22:21.150
  • marching them naked through the streets."
  • 00:22:21.160 --> 00:22:24.160
  • No matter how you translate the verse,
  • 00:22:24.170 --> 00:22:27.030
  • the message is the same.
  • 00:22:27.040 --> 00:22:28.290
  • The devil is a defeated devil.
  • 00:22:29.000 --> 00:22:31.240
  • The Bible traces Satan's activities
  • 00:22:31.250 --> 00:22:34.030
  • to a moment of rebellion which occurred
  • 00:22:34.040 --> 00:22:36.060
  • sometime between the creation of the universe
  • 00:22:36.070 --> 00:22:39.160
  • and the appearance of the snake in the garden.
  • 00:22:39.170 --> 00:22:42.090
  • Genesis 1:31 says, "When God created the world,
  • 00:22:42.100 --> 00:22:46.050
  • God saw all that he had made, and it was very good."
  • 00:22:46.060 --> 00:22:50.070
  • In the beginning, everything was good.
  • 00:22:50.080 --> 00:22:52.230
  • Every drop of water, every tree, every animal,
  • 00:22:52.240 --> 00:22:55.080
  • and by extension, every angel.
  • 00:22:55.090 --> 00:22:58.210
  • Yet sometime between the events described in Genesis 1 and 3,
  • 00:22:58.220 --> 00:23:03.040
  • an angel led a coup against God and was cast from heaven.
  • 00:23:03.050 --> 00:23:07.130
  • The prophet Ezekiel describes the downfall.
  • 00:23:07.140 --> 00:23:10.070
  • He wrote, "This is what the sovereign Lord says,
  • 00:23:10.080 --> 00:23:13.160
  • "'You were the seal of perfection,
  • 00:23:13.170 --> 00:23:15.290
  • "'full of wisdom and perfect in beauty.
  • 00:23:16.000 --> 00:23:19.030
  • "'You were in Eden, the garden of God.
  • 00:23:19.040 --> 00:23:21.260
  • "'you were anointed as a guardian cherub,
  • 00:23:21.270 --> 00:23:25.040
  • "'for so I ordained you.
  • 00:23:25.050 --> 00:23:26.280
  • "'You were on the holy mount of God;
  • 00:23:26.290 --> 00:23:29.070
  • "'you walked among the fiery stones.
  • 00:23:29.080 --> 00:23:31.140
  • "'You were blameless in your ways
  • 00:23:31.150 --> 00:23:33.140
  • "'from the day you were created
  • 00:23:33.150 --> 00:23:35.100
  • till wickedness was found in you.'"
  • 00:23:35.110 --> 00:23:39.110
  • Of whom was God speaking?
  • 00:23:39.120 --> 00:23:41.140
  • This being was in Eden, was anointed as a guardian angel,
  • 00:23:41.150 --> 00:23:44.280
  • dwelt upon God's holy mountain, and was blameless
  • 00:23:44.290 --> 00:23:47.140
  • from the day he was made until the day wickedness appeared.
  • 00:23:47.150 --> 00:23:50.200
  • Who can this be but Satan?
  • 00:23:50.210 --> 00:23:52.140
  • This prophecy is nothing less than a description
  • 00:23:52.150 --> 00:23:54.280
  • of the fall of the devil.
  • 00:23:54.290 --> 00:23:57.000
  • Lucifer's heart became proud.
  • 00:23:57.010 --> 00:23:58.270
  • He was not content to worship.
  • 00:23:58.280 --> 00:24:00.280
  • He had to be worshiped.
  • 00:24:00.290 --> 00:24:02.100
  • He was not content to bow before God's throne,
  • 00:24:02.110 --> 00:24:04.180
  • he had to sit upon it.
  • 00:24:04.190 --> 00:24:06.180
  • No wonder the Bible says that pride is the sin
  • 00:24:06.190 --> 00:24:09.110
  • God hates the most.
  • 00:24:09.120 --> 00:24:11.040
  • No wonder Paul urged Timothy not to be too quick
  • 00:24:11.050 --> 00:24:14.110
  • to promote a new convert, for he may become conceited
  • 00:24:14.120 --> 00:24:18.000
  • and fall under the same judgment as the devil.
  • 00:24:18.010 --> 00:24:21.210
  • Satan succumbed to pride, and as a result,
  • 00:24:21.220 --> 00:24:24.280
  • he was cast out of heaven.
  • 00:24:24.290 --> 00:24:26.250
  • But though he is cast out of heaven,
  • 00:24:26.260 --> 00:24:28.240
  • he's not out of our lives.
  • 00:24:28.250 --> 00:24:30.190
  • He is very much alive today and on the prowl.
  • 00:24:30.200 --> 00:24:34.150
  • 1 Peter 5:8 says, "Be alert and of sober mind.
  • 00:24:34.160 --> 00:24:37.270
  • "Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion
  • 00:24:37.280 --> 00:24:41.230
  • looking for someone to devour."
  • 00:24:41.240 --> 00:24:44.080
  • He comes only to steal and kill and destroy.
  • 00:24:44.090 --> 00:24:46.200
  • You got happiness? Satan wants to steal it.
  • 00:24:46.210 --> 00:24:49.140
  • Discover joy? He'll try to kill it.
  • 00:24:49.150 --> 00:24:51.240
  • Love your spouse?
  • 00:24:51.250 --> 00:24:53.090
  • Satan would love nothing more than to destroy your marriage.
  • 00:24:53.100 --> 00:24:56.170
  • He is the enemy of your destiny
  • 00:24:56.180 --> 00:24:59.130
  • and longs to be the destroyer of your soul.
  • 00:24:59.140 --> 00:25:02.110
  • So, put on God's full armor.
  • 00:25:02.120 --> 00:25:05.030
  • With the belt of truth tied around your waist
  • 00:25:05.040 --> 00:25:07.180
  • and the protection of right living on your chest,
  • 00:25:07.190 --> 00:25:10.070
  • on your feet wear the good news of peace
  • 00:25:10.080 --> 00:25:12.100
  • to help you stand strong.
  • 00:25:12.110 --> 00:25:14.110
  • And also use the shield of faith,
  • 00:25:14.120 --> 00:25:16.010
  • with which you can stop all the burning arrows
  • 00:25:16.020 --> 00:25:18.040
  • of the evil one.
  • 00:25:18.050 --> 00:25:19.180
  • Do not be caught off guard or asleep on watch.
  • 00:25:19.190 --> 00:25:22.000
  • Learn to recognize his stench.
  • 00:25:22.010 --> 00:25:24.280
  • Since he comes to steal, kill, and destroy,
  • 00:25:24.290 --> 00:25:28.030
  • wherever you see heists, death, and destruction,
  • 00:25:28.040 --> 00:25:31.200
  • turn to God in prayer.
  • 00:25:31.210 --> 00:25:33.180
  • His name means divider, so wherever you see divorce,
  • 00:25:33.190 --> 00:25:37.110
  • rejection, isolation, now you know the culprit.
  • 00:25:37.120 --> 00:25:41.020
  • Go immediately to Scripture.
  • 00:25:41.030 --> 00:25:43.090
  • Stand on the promises of God regarding Satan.
  • 00:25:43.100 --> 00:25:47.150
  • Paul tells us in Romans 16:20, "The God who brings peace
  • 00:25:47.160 --> 00:25:52.140
  • will soon defeat Satan and give you power over him."
  • 00:25:52.150 --> 00:25:56.190
  • Be alert to the devil, but don't be intimidated by him.
  • 00:25:56.200 --> 00:26:00.030
  • Do not be shaken.
  • 00:26:00.040 --> 00:26:01.220
  • Your hope is in the God who already defeated him.
  • 00:26:01.230 --> 00:26:05.030
  • You just have to stand your ground.
  • 00:26:05.040 --> 00:26:07.040
  • Have no fear, mighty warrior, the Lord is on your side.
  • 00:26:07.050 --> 00:26:11.000
  • Believe this powerful promise from God.
  • 00:26:11.010 --> 00:26:13.140
  • The God who brings peace will soon defeat Satan
  • 00:26:13.150 --> 00:26:16.210
  • and give you power over him.
  • 00:26:16.220 --> 00:26:19.040
  • And make this a promise of your own:
  • 00:26:19.050 --> 00:26:21.220
  • I will acknowledge Satan, but I will worship God.
  • 00:26:21.230 --> 00:26:27.150
  • What's shaking in your world?
  • 00:26:28.220 --> 00:26:31.140
  • Your finances, your family, your faith?
  • 00:26:31.150 --> 00:26:34.220
  • It's easy to lose hope when the storms of life come.
  • 00:26:34.230 --> 00:26:38.160
  • But there is one thing in life we can stand on
  • 00:26:38.170 --> 00:26:41.020
  • when everything else around us is shaken.
  • 00:26:41.030 --> 00:26:43.250
  • We can build our lives on the promises of God.
  • 00:26:43.260 --> 00:26:47.010
  • Why?
  • 00:26:47.020 --> 00:26:48.130
  • God's Word is sure.
  • 00:26:48.140 --> 00:26:49.290
  • And what he says happens.
  • 00:26:50.000 --> 00:26:51.230
  • God will not, indeed he cannot break his promises.
  • 00:26:51.240 --> 00:26:55.190
  • His covenants won't collapse.
  • 00:26:55.200 --> 00:26:57.150
  • His word is his bond, and his bond won't break.
  • 00:26:57.160 --> 00:27:00.090
  • What he says will happen.
  • 00:27:00.100 --> 00:27:02.200
  • Won't you say it with me?
  • 00:27:02.210 --> 00:27:04.160
  • We are building our lives on the promises of God.
  • 00:27:04.170 --> 00:27:08.040
  • Because his word is unbreakable, our hope is unshakable.
  • 00:27:08.050 --> 00:27:12.030
  • We do not stand on the problems or life,
  • 00:27:12.040 --> 00:27:14.130
  • or the pain in life.
  • 00:27:14.140 --> 00:27:15.280
  • We stand on the great and precious promises of God.
  • 00:27:15.290 --> 00:27:20.140
  • Unshakable
  • 00:27:20.150 --> 00:27:23.150