Summary: How do we live fearless lives as Christians? God’s heart is that we not just survive, but thrive (adapted from a series taught by Pastor Larry Osborne, North Coast Church).
Part 3- Fearless (adapted from a series by Pastor Larry Osborne/Chris Brown from North Coast Church).
First week-looked at Daniel/his captivity in Babylon-
Premise of what we discussed- based on this question-
How do we survive and even thrive in a culture that is accelerating towards darkness?
Last week, talked about Facing Our Fears.
Looked at Joshua and what he faced after Moses died.
He wrestled with feelings of inadequacy and fear.
We asked the question- What if BLANK happens?
What is your greatest fear?
We learned that-
Strength and courage come from the choices we make, more than the feelings we have.
If we chose to obey God’s Word, we will prosper.
What the Bible says about Death?
How do we beat death?
1 Cor 15:55
O DEATH, WHERE IS YOUR VICTORY? O DEATH, WHERE IS YOUR STING? NASU
Many today struggle with the fear of death.
The fear of death can be a bondage and the root of many other fears.
When a Christian looks at death-
many do not fear death,
others fear the pain/suffering leading to death,
others fear the death of the people they love.
A Mom/Dad may not be afraid of death themselves but it is frightening to think of losing a child.
We all must deal with the issue of death at some level.
According to a Gallop poll- top fears of ways to die-
3.followed by- drowning
4.falling, being murdered.
How do we deal w/death and dying Biblically?
What does the Bible say about death?
We were designed for life not death.
People were not created to die-
we were created to live and to live forever
God created man to be eternal
death was not part of the original plan
This helps to explain why we struggle w/pain of death
Bkgrd: God put Adam/Eve in a beautiful garden. He told them that all creation was theirs, they had dominion over the entire earth, the earth would provide their food and all of their needs. God gave them ONE rule- do not eat of the tree in the center of the garden. However, they ate of the tree and were filled w/shame. Now the God that would walk w/them in the cool of the day would no longer be able to walk with them, because a Holy God cannot walk with sin.
Creation had turned against its Creator-
Adam- the earth will still produce what you need but it will come with great struggle/pain/suffering.
Adam- our trust/relationship is broken- you now know good and evil.
Because of your actions, life will to be filled w/hardship/pain/suffering/death.
However, God did not want man to suffer forever, so He limited man’s physical life- he would die.
Perhaps-an early picture of God’s mercy/grace.
Man is eternal, but his physical life has an end point.
Man will only enjoy everything he was created to enjoy when he can again walk with God.
God sent Jesus Christ to this earth to provide a way for man’s relationship w/God to be restored.
Christian life- taste of what we will have in eternity.
Suffering and pain are a reality of a fallen world.
We live in a world where we must struggle to survive, where we face disease, suffering, pain, and lose-
parents watching a child die,
children watching parents take their last breath.
Man- not created to live w/pain/separation from God.
Man was created for life, death is the result of the fall.
Therefore, just as through one man sin entered into the world, and death through sin, and so death spread to all men, because all sinned- NASU
From the fall of Adam we are all born with a sin nature- parents can see this w/young children.
John 11:32-36 (review background)
Bkgrnd: Lazarus had been very sick. His sister’s Mary/Martha send for Jesus. As Jesus approaches, Martha runs to meet Him to tell Him it is too late, Lazarus is dead.
If anyone should NOT be crying in the face of death, it seems that it should be Jesus
He understands that man lives forever
He sees death from a different perspective
He knew He was going to raise Lazarus up
I believe Jesus wept when His humanity saw their sorrow/pain- as He weeps w/us today.
Jesus understands we live in a fallen world.
The tighter we hold onto life
the harder it will be to let go.
For those here today that may not be Christians, this explains why it is hard to think about death,
If you do not have a hope in eternal life, this is all there is to life, there is nothing else beyond it.
For a Christian, this world is not our permanent home.