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Trueish - week 1

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Well welcome today to all of our campuses, around the world, on the internet and those of you at our network churches. We are in the first week of the series called True-ish. Let's start with a little game of True or False. I'll make a statement and all of our campuses, you guys vote. If you don't vote, you're a big wuss. So, you vote true or false. The first statement, the Bible is the most shoplifted book in the world. True or false? Those of you who say true raise your hands. Those of you who say false, false? The answer is true. The Bible is the most shoplifted book in the world. Second statement, a kiss lasting one minute can burn 100 calories. Those of you who say glory to God that is true, true? Those who say false, false? The answer is false. It is actually what happens after the kiss that burns the calories. Third statement, a cat has 32 muscles in each ear. Those of you who say true? Those of you who say false? The answer is who gives a rip how many muscles a cat has in its ear. The title of today's message is a statement and question actually taken from a conversation that Jesus had with Pontius Pilate when Pilate was trying to determine what to do with Jesus. It's found in John 18 verse 37, the title is What Is Truth. Here is the conversation. "You're a king then," said Pilate. Jesus answered, "you're right in saying I'm a king. In fact for this reason I was born and for this reason I came into the world." Why did Jesus come? If you could, all of our campuses help me out. He said, "I came to testify to the truth." Everyone on the side of what...everyone on the side of truth listens to me and then Pilate asked the question that has been discussed for centuries. Was he sincere? Was he sarcastic? We don't know, but his question was what? His question was what is truth. The title of this message What Is Truth and the answer to that very important question is so important because it determines so much about our lives. In fact, at the baseline level, if you're taking notes, here's why it's important because what you believe determines how you behave. What you believe to be true determines how you behave relationally. It determines how you behave materially or financially. It determines how you behave morally. And ultimately it determines how you live spiritually, which will determine what happens to you after this life. What you believe determines how you behave and not just consciously but often times subconsciously your beliefs will have an impact on your behavior. For example, one time when my oldest son, Sam, came running in throwing up into his hands with his eyes, blah, blah, he said, Daddy, Bookie is eating his poop. So I ran past Sam who was throwing up in his hands and I ran into the room where there was little Bookie, my second son, with dark stuff all over him and I threw up not in my hands, it was like violent vomiting. It went well beyond my hands, it went everywhere. So Sam's in throw up, I'm in throw up and we did the only thing we could do which was call for mom. Amy! So she came busting in by all the throw up and there was Bookie with the dark stuff and she just went up to him and wiped off this smudged Oreo cookie, which was on his face. It wasn't poop. It was Oreo cookie. But, we believed it was poop and so it affected us as if it were poop. You see, kinda gross, but it makes a point. What you believe determines how you behave. Why did Jesus come? He came to testify to the truth. But there is one who exists totally to oppose the truth. Scripture calls him Satan or Lucifer or the Angel of Light or the Great Deceiver, or the Father of Lies. Jesus came to represent truth. He is an enemy who is called the Father of Lies. John 8:44, the Devil was a murderer from the beginning, not holding to the what, not holding to the truth because there's no what in him? There's no truth in him. When he lies he speaks his native language for he is a liar and he's called the what, he's called the Father of Lies. Jesus came to testify to truth. Satan came as the Father of Lies. Now, Satan is very cunning. He's he's sly. He's not going to tell you a lie that is so outlandish that you're going to look at it and go, that's just stupid. There's no way that's true. He is the counterfeiter. He's going to give you something that looks true, feels true, something that I would call true-ish. Because if he gave you some outlandish lie you're going to be smart enough to go well that's just totally stupid, that's obviously not true. He's going to give you something that looks true, feels true, sounds true because he knows that if he can take you just even the slightest bit off of truth over a lifetime as you're traveling through life, one day you're going to wake up very very far from truth. Which is, I believe, what he's doing today. He wants you to exchange the truth of God for a lie and you can see the result of this in Romans chapter 1. We'll look at a few different verses, verses 18, 22, and 25. The wrath of God is being revealed from heaven against all the godlessness and wickedness of men who do what, of men who suppress the truth by their wickedness. Although they claim to be wise, which is what's happening today isn't it? You know, we're enlightened. We know more than our parents. You know, life is different today. Although they claim to be wise, scripture says they became what, say it aloud, they became fools. What did they do? They exchanged the truth of God for a what? They exchanged the truth of God for a lie. True-ish. Sounds true, looks true, feels true but it is actually a lie. Let me just tell you this. What we're going to talk about in the next few weeks, I believe is truly one of the greatest problems that our generation faces and the message that I speak I believe will be some of the most prophetic into one of the most dangerous and false belief systems of this generation. Our spiritual enemy, Satan, is the Father of Lies. He's got two great weapons that he's using today. If you're taking notes, the first if the weapon of relativism. Relativism. And the second is the weapon of subjectivism. Relativism and subjectivism. If you're taking notes what is relativism? Relativism is the assumption that there is no such thing as absolute truth, all right? No such thing as absolute truth. Truth is evolving. Truth is not constant. What used to be true is now no longer true today. For example, I was having a conversation with a very bright Christian kid from our church and we were just talking and he said I've got this friend who is a lesbian and then he stopped and he said now, I know that when you were a kid homosexuality was wrong, but we all know that today homosexuality is not wrong. Okay. Now, the point of this illustration is not to make a case for or against homosexuality as much as it is to show that here is the belief of a very strong Christian kid that what used to be wrong years ago is no longer wrong today because in this generation's mindset truth is not constant, it evolves. My parents would say there is absolute truth. Most of the kids, my kid's age would say there is no such thing because this is the mindset by which they've been raised. Now, we studied this in cemetery. Excuse me, when I was in seminary we studied kind of the one who coined this in the best way. He was a 19th century German philosopher by the name of Hegel and he is now known for what is called the Hegelian dialectic and what it is is this, he taught that there's whenever there's a thesis that meets an antithesis, whenever truth collides with an opposing truth there is a synthesis. The result is truth meets the oppositional though equals a new truth or an evolving truth because truth is not constant. There is the thesis, collides with the antithesis, equals the synthesis, there's a new truth. For example, how many of you were alive in the 50s? 1950s? Raise your hands high. In the 50s would you agree that marriage was kind of a sacred institution? 50s, you'd say so. If you got divorced in the 50s it's kind of like, oh, you just didn't do that because marriage was holy. Now, how many of you were around the 60s? The 60s? You don't remember the 60s because in the 60s almost everybody was stoned, right? And in the 60s it was free sex and you have to get married and so the 50s you got marriage is important, you got the 60s, sex was important it doesn't matter about marriage and those collide and evolve into the new truth today which is hey, marriage doesn't really matter. I mean, you can get married but you're not happy, you don't stay married and why bother getting married anyway? You might as well just live together because truth is not constant. It evolves. It's relativism. Are we tracking? If you're tracking raise you're hand. I've got to see if you're with me. Okay? Let's talk about the next one, subjectivism. What is subjectivism? It's the believe that I the subject have the right to determine what is right and wrong without submitting my judgement to any authority outside myself. Subjectivism. Since there is no absolute truth you can't impose you're beliefs on me. I am the source of truth. I'll determine if my actions are right or wrong based on how I feel. Subjectivism leads me to these beliefs. Well if it feels good it must be true. As long as it makes me happy that's all that matters. As long as I'm sincere it doesn't matter what I believe. As long as it doesn't hurt anyone it doesn't matter what I do. Those statements and those beliefs are absolutely and completely true-ish. They feel right. Sound right. It, it, it, it, it, it, its, it, it seems so appealing but when I believe those false beliefs, those false beliefs determine how I behave and if I can take just a minor step away from truth, I can wake up years later very very far from truth. Great weapons of our spiritual enemy today. There is no truth and since there is no truth I'm going to determine what is right for me. True-ish. Now, let's do this. This is where it gets challenging, because if start saying okay, here's truth, if you've been raised in the mindset where there's no such thing as absolute truth, whenever someone says here's truth what it does is it makes that person one of two things. At the very least they are arrogant. At the worst they are dangerous. So, that puts me in a real awkward situation as one who tries to proclaim truth. So what I'm going to ask you to do if you will is let's just go on a journey together and I'll ask you to do kind of some imagining so that we can track together and let's just start with the intellectual assumption that there really is such a thing as absolute truth because when you're a thinking person, you have to agree there is absolute truth because to make the statement that there is no absolute truth means you have to make an absolute statement to say there is no truth and so just you're very statement begins to break down your assumption and so really logically most of the time when we work through the way we've been raised most people say there is absolute truth. Now, let's just assume for a minute that a seeker of truth could actually find truth and when you find truth that truth benefits you or that truth hurts you, one or the other, but because you've benefitted or because you've experienced pain, you're not arrogant because you have the truth, you're not dangerous because you have the truth but because you experience the consequences of truth you want to be a good steward of truth and you want to help expose others to truth for their own benefit. Does that make sense? Can you see how that would be possible? If you're looking at me blank I'll explain it this way. My kids prayed for a dog and a dog showed up. Free dog. Unfortunately, this free dog was very expensive because I had to buy the $110.00 dog igloo and then I had to buy a pen and then the dog dug out from the pen and so I had to buy an electric thing to shock the fire out of the free dog to keep the dog from digging out of the pen and so I had a good friend from my LifeGroup come help me to put in an electric deal because I didn't know how to do it and so together we put in the electric little wire at the bottom of the fence to shock the dog and when we were through we turned it on and it made this very electric sounding noise. Buzzzzzzz. And so I'm sitting there going it sounds like it's working. Well my friend wasn't so sure and so he's like do you want to touch it? Like dude I've got to preach this weekend and he's like well since you've got to preach and so he went down and .... It was working, okay? We did a good job so he left, I turned it off and I turned it back on there was no electric noise. No buzzzz, it was just ... you can see where this is going and so I'm wondering is it working or not. Guys, what do you do? Idiot. Argh...and it was working. As a steward of truth if it's making a noise, it's working. If it's not making a noise, it's working. I called my kids out. Kids, don't ever touch this thing. I don't care if it's making a noise or if it's not, don't touch it. Boys, you're friends are going to come over and they're going to tell you to pee on it. Don't pee on the line, okay? As a steward of truth you need to understand this is. Now the reason that I'm teaching them this is because I experienced the consequences of truth and as a good steward of truth, I want to help others experience the same truth that is will impact their lives. So, what I want to do is I want to make a statement of truth. Now, when I do, if you've been raised with the mindset there's no such thing as truth, immediately your walls go up and you're like I'm not going to listen so what I want to do is just ask you to take a journey with me and pretend like this could be true and see what happens and then what I want to do is I want to explain to you specifically why you're going to reject this statement that I'm going to make and you might just acknowledge that's probably true why you are rejecting the statement. What is truth, okay? What is truth? If you're taking notes, truth is not just a what but a who. It's not just a what, it's not just a philosophy, it's not just a mindset, it's not just an idea, it's not just a statement, it's not just something that you learn from a book, it's not just a philosophy that someone teaches you in school, it's not just a what but it's a who. Truth is a person. Imagine if Jesus' claim was actually true when he said in John 14:6 I am the way and I am the what. Say it aloud. I am the the truth and the life and no one comes to the father except through me. Jesus said I am truth. I am God in the flesh, I represent truth. John 1:1 and 2 and verse 14, in the beginning was the word and the word was with God and the word was God and he was with God in the beginning. The word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. God was truth, truth became flesh in the person of Jesus, Jesus dwelt among us. We have seen the glory of the one and only who came from the Father full of two things. Jesus came full of what. All of our campuses, He came full of grace and...one more time, He came full of grace and one more time He came full of grace and truth. Why is it that so many people today would reject the statement that Jesus is truth? It's not because of the life that Jesus lived. If you read about the life that Jesus lived, if you just look at who He was as a person, even someone who hates Christianity, if they've got any sense of right or wrong, they are going to look at his life and say it was a beautiful life. I mean, He was full of love and He was generous, and He was compassionate and He cared for the poor and He embraced those that others rejected and He was brilliant, wise. I mean even if you hate Christianity, you have to look at Jesus and go He was cool. I mean He was special. If there is any such thing as a truthful life His life before the cross was indeed truly special so when you reject the statement that Jesus is not truth what you're not rejecting so much is the life of Jesus as you are rejecting how Christian's have represented Jesus and I've got no defense there because truthfully when you look at the lives that we as Christians have lived and compare it against the life of Jesus, I mean there's no comparison. We as Christians are embarrassingly hypocritical. We are horribly judgemental. I mean if you look at the way we live versus the way He lived, we just don't seem to get it very often and so what happens is people just instinctively reject Jesus because Christians have been about all truth and very little or no grace. Well if you don't believe the way I am you're going to hell. If you don't look the way I do you're going to hell. Hey, if you don't, if you're not living this life you know, you're not one of us, you're going to hell and what it is is it's the idea of truth without any grace and truth without grace leads to legalism. It leads to judgementalism. But then there's the flip side and that's the mindset of the world today and that's relativism and subjectivism and that is all grace and no truth. Hey, what's cool with you is cool with me, I mean, whatever you want to do that's fine. I mean as long as you're not hurting any other, that's okay. Dude, I mean, as long as you're sincere you know, whatever. Then the God becomes tolerant because it's all grace and no truth but check this out. When Jesus came, he came full of grace and truth. Truth and grace. And when you seek Jesus and you experience grace and truth. He is life changing. He is absolutely life changing. Absolutely life changing and, the challenge is, I can't convince you of that. I can't teach you what he's done in my life. I can try but I can't so what I would do is say this, what is truth, you better seek it because what you believe determines how you behave and how you behave has ramifications not just in this life but in whatever happens after this life you better be seeking truth. So, here's what I'd say. If you're a skeptic, open up this book. Open up your mind and read about Jesus. Just read about Him. Just Matthew, Mark, Luke or John. New Testament, pick one. I suggest John and just read. Look at His life and ask yourself, could He really be truth and as you do I believe the second thing will happen, if you're taking notes, and that is this. Jesus, the truth, He can absolutely and completely set you free. John 8:32, and you will know the truth, Jesus, and the truth will set you free. What will it set you free from? Any true-ish belief. Any false belief that takes you away from the truth of honoring God with your life. I'll give you an example. Pastor Kevin has been on staff with me for about 10 years. I'll show you a picture. Do we have a picture of Kevin? There's Kevin and his wife. We used to play a game called capture the flag because as pastors we only work on Sunday's and so during the week we play this game to get the difference campuses competing against each other and we tried to steal this flag. Well it got so violent that we had to have game rules and you couldn't start before 8:00 a.m. Well one time I came into my office and Kevin had been hiding in a closet since 6:00 a.m. cause I usually get in around 7 and so I just walked in and I just had this supernatural sense that something wasn't right. I don't know how. I'm just like, like a word of knowledge from God and so I went in and I opened up the closet, just opened the door, and there was Kevin looking at me right there and so I slammed the door and put my foot on there and just waited until someone else showed up. He tried to get out and I wouldn't let him out. I had my foot blocking the door and so when he came in I said hey go get a chair we're locking Kevin in. he's going to spend a day in this closet because he's trying to capture our flag and so they got a chair and we tried to jam it in but we couldn't get it to, it wasn't the right height and so we just said pretend just fake it and so we took the chair away and said okay Kevin you're locked in. You're never going to get out. That'll teach you to try to steal our flag. Here's the crazy thing. God is my witness. The door is totally unlocked. Kevin never tried to open it. He just sat in there and cried like a 3-year-old girl, let me out, let me out, guys this isn't fair. We're laughing until we're peeing in our pants. I mean, he never tried. 8:00, he never tried. We're just out there going this is the craziest thing I've ever seen. I had an 8:00 a.m. pre-marital counseling appointment. We left Kevin. Closet is unlocked. Never tried. I'm in there in this appointment. About 8:15, I hear something in the ceiling. Kevin had climbed the supply closet shelves, got up in the ceiling. As God is my witness I'm not lying. I'm in there with this couple trying to decide they're going to get married and the ceiling tile opens up and there's Kevin looking down at me. What was the truth. The door was unlocked. What was the lie? You're locked in. Truth will set you free and let me just say this, truth is Christ and I can't convince you that but you pursue Him and He'll set you free. I mean He'll set you free from living for the things of this world. He'll set you free from the pain that you feel trying to find meaning in a world that you just can't seem to find meaning. He'll set you free from the aching that you have. He'll set you free from the consequences from the horror that you're sin will bring before God. He'll set you free and bring you into a relationship with God. Jesus, the truth, will set you free. You seek Him. If you seek Him you will find Him and I can't convince you, but all I can do is tell you when I saw Him I met Him and I am different because of Him. There is a truth. His name is Jesus and He will set you free. All of our campuses, praying together. God we just ask that especially for those who will sincerely try to find the answer to the question what is truth that they would find you, God, and that truth would be life changing. As you're praying today at all of our campuses, here's what I want to do. I want to ask a couple of questions. The first one is this. How many of you know somebody living under relativistic viewpoints they see no absolutes and the consequences of their beliefs is actually hurting them right now, how many of you know someone like that and you'd like to pray for them, would you lift up your hands right now, lift them high. Okay. Most hands going up. All of our campuses now I want to ask you another question, please everybody participate. How many of you see this relativism and subjectivism in your own life? Would you lift up your hands right now? Lift up your hands. Okay, now here's what just happened. Without looking around the second hands were much fewer than the first because we're blind. We're blinded to what our spiritual enemy, the true-ish. We can't see the lies that we're often believing because they are true-ish. They feel right and let me just say I believe that virtually every single one of us are living and following true-ish beliefs just off of the truth of God and leading us into a very dangerous area and the next few weeks we are going to expose three of those common and dangerous true-ish beliefs. And now, God, we pray for those that we know and love that are hurting and making bad decisions and believing with all their heart. We pray God that by your grace You would draw them back. And God, to all who are believers and who have and who are believing the lies, it's so easy and so common. We ask that the power of your Holy Spirit would convict us of true-ish beliefs and that time in Your word and time in Your presence would show us truth, God. And I just confess in my own life my need to be cleansed from those lies, from the true-ish beliefs that just as a society feels so right, God, we know that there is a way that seems right to a person according to your word but in the end it leads to death. We don't want to go that road. We want to travel the road of truth. As you're still praying today, let me just tell you in the next few weeks there will be those of you who will seek truth and you will meet him. Some of you though you are ready today. You don't need to do any more exploring. You are ready to take a step of faith. To believe that when God said that he loved you, you believed it and when God said that He sent His son to die for you, you believe it. By faith, you believe that Jesus is enough to forgive your sins and He is the truth to change your life. Now some of you, intellectually, you may just take a look at it and what I do is say you know, if there was any other way for us to be right with God, any other way, then Jesus' life, death, and resurrection would have been unnecessary. There is no question He lived. No thinking person, no scholar debates Jesus lived. He died. Now, the question is, did God raise Him from the dead. We weren't there, we can't prove it but here's what we know. We know that other historians verify the fact that all but one of his disciples was willing to die for their belief that Jesus rose again. They died the death of a martyr because they saw Him. Who would die for a lie? They saw truth. So you know what, it demands my whole life. I look at it by faith. I look at it intellectually and I say you know what, He is truth. The things of the world they pass away, they're not real, they don't last. Jesus is what lasts. Therefore Jesus, I give my life to You. I no longer want it to be about me. I recognize I can feel in the conscious that you gave me that my sin is bad and it separates me from God. Jesus cleanse me from my sin. When you pray that, He will. You will be relieved from the burden of your guilt and God will look at you as if you never sinned. Your sin will be cast into a sea of forgetfulness and you'll become a new person. He will fill you with the Holy Spirit of God and you're not longer just a natural person but you've got supernatural access to God. By faith you believe it to be true. You say Jesus, today I'm no longer mine. I trust You. Be the savior of my life. Be first. I surrender my life to You. I want to live according to Your truth. I'm now one of Your disciples. If that's your prayer today at all of our campuses would you just lift your hands high right now? Just lift them up and say yes, that's me. Leave them up if you will. I just want to acknowledge you eye-to-eye. Right here in this middle section, God bless you. Others of you who'd say, that's my prayer as well. Right back over there ma'am. Others of you say yes, Jesus. By faith I believe you are the Son of God. Right back over here in this section. Right back here toward the back. God bless you as well. others of you? I just want to see you and I just want to acknowledge you personally. Others of you? You're leaning into it. One of these days you're going to have to make a decision. Today's a pretty good day. today's the day of your salvation. Jesus, yes. You're wrestling with it, take that step. Right over here, awesome. Praise God for you. Others of you? Jesus, I surrender fully to you. Savior and Lord. Pray with those around you. Everybody aloud. Heavenly Father. Everybody aloud. Heavenly Father, save me from my sins. I put You first. By faith I believe that You are enough. Jesus fill me with the Holy Spirit so I can serve God. Thank you for new life and now you have all of mine. In Jesus' name I pray. And everybody said, Amen. Would you guys worship God? Would you just praise Him. Give Him honor.

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Duration: 31 minutes and 26 seconds
Country: United States
Language: English
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Posted by: lifechurchopen on Jul 7, 2010

Trueish

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