EVICTING HELL FROM YOUR PROMISED LAND
A. HUMOR: PARKING FINES
1. One little old lady came into the hair salon and told her elderly friend, “I got a compliment on my driving today! Someone put a note on my windshield that said, ‘Driving Fine!’”
2. A young man found his friend taking his windshield wipers completely off his car. He asked him, “What are you doing that for?” He answered, “Now that I’ve removed my windshield wipers I shouldn’t be getting any more parking tickets!”
1. The subduing of the nations which inhabited the Promised Land of Canaan was symbolic of the believer conquering their sinful nature, their thoughts, rebellious will, negative emotions and old lifestyle.
2. The principles that Moses gave the Israelites about NOT compromising and how the process would happen are still valid principles for defeating the old life and establishing the new life in Christ.
3. There are 5 principles for Evicting Hell from your Promised Land: Victory only comes by 1). Growth, 2). Communing, 3). No Compromise with Sin, 4). Death of the Old Life, and 5). Dependence on God’s Power. The 1st principle is:
I. DELIVERANCE COMES GRADUALLY, AS YOU GROW IN CHRIST
Exodus 23:28-30; I will send the hornet ahead of you to drive the Hivites, Canaanites and Hittites out of your way. But I will not drive them out in a single year, because the land would become desolate and the wild animals too numerous for you. LITTLE BY LITTLE I will drive them out before you, UNTIL YOU HAVE INCREASED enough to take possession of the land.
B. INCREASE IS NECESSARY FOR POSSESSION
1. Notice that you can’t defeat your enemies without growth in Christ. Only when more of Christ comes in, will more of your sinful life be forced out. That’s why we must have “more of Christ!” Only Christ can set you free and the more of Christ you absorb the more deliverance you get.
2. Pine Beetles can only attack pine trees with lower pressures of sap. If there’s a lot of inward pressure, they can’t get in. If Jesus has a monopoly of you, Satan can’t get in! The more you’re filled with the Holy Spirit, the less of you the world can have.
3. Victory = more of Jesus. That should be our motivation; it was for Paul. “And when I came to you…I determined to know nothing among you except Jesus Christ, and Him crucified” 1 Cor. 2:1-2.
4. “What is more, I consider everything a loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things. I consider them garbage, that I may gain Christ” Phip. 3:8.
5. “The glorious riches of this mystery, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory” Col. 1:27. Christ in you IS the hope of glory! The objective is that ‘Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith’ (Eph. 3:17). The next principle is:
C. GROWTH IS GRADUAL & SHOULD NEVER STOP
1. Exodus 23:28-30 tells us that we don’t grow to fulness in Christ all at once, but year after year we’re supposed to grow in Him and subdue different parts of our old nature.
2. When I first got saved, God pointed out 3 major areas of sin for me to conquer. Once I defeated those, he pointed out other bad habits. Then He moved on to anger, pride, jealousy, honesty, thoughts, motives, etc.
3. He is the Refiner who is purifying the sons of Levi (priests). Our purification will never end because the Fall affected every part of our beings.
4. So we should never think we’ve arrived or that there is no more progress to make. God will never be finished with you! So if you’ve been saved 70 years and have been a soul-winner, teacher & leader – it doesn’t matter; you’re not perfect yet.
5. There is still work to do. There is no time to retire. You haven’t graduated from the school of Christ! You need to show up for class with Jesus tomorrow morning! Principle #2 is:
II. REGULARLY COMMUNING WITH GOD KEEPS FOES AWAY
Exodus 34:24; “I will drive out nations before you and ENLARGE your territory, and NO ONE WILL COVET your land when you go up three times each year to appear before the Lord your God.”
B. PROMISE: GOD WILL ENLARGE YOUR TERRITORY
1. We should expect our spiritual power to increase, our knowledge of the Word to increase, our effectiveness in prayer to increase with exercise, our effectiveness in soul-winning to increase, and our influence over people to increase the longer we serve the Lord.
2. When Jabez prayed his famous prayer, “Oh, that you would bless me and enlarge my territory!” 1 Chron. 4:9, he was Probably NOT referring to property, but to how he might glorify God on a larger scale.
3. Jabez realized that, “In a large house there are articles not only of gold and silver, but also of wood and clay; some are for noble purposes and some for ignoble.” 2 Tim. 2:20. We choose which type of vessel we will be.
4. Jabez wanted to be valuable to the Lord -- a vessel of honor -- with a noble purpose. Do you want to be valuable to the Lord? It has a price tag. How do you become valuable to God?
5. Sometimes a small, struggling start seems to indicate a limited life. If we’re not careful, the adversary may convince us that we shouldn’t expect our future to be different from our past and hinder God's larger design for our lives.
B. COMMUNING WITH GOD BRINGS THE BLESSINGS
1. God asked the Israelites to travel 100s of miles 3X a year and to come before His presence. It was in His presence that He imparted blessings to them.
2. When we please the Lord, He makes even our enemies be at peace with us (Prov. 16:7). Ex. 34:24 seems to indicate God would make their possessions secure if they would put Him first. “Seek ye first the kingdom of God…and all these things will be added to you as well” Mt. 6:33.
3. God still bestows blessings on those who come into His presence regularly.
“All these blessings will come down on you…because you have responded to the Voice of God, your God: God’s blessing inside the city, God’s blessing in the country, God’s blessing on your children, God’s blessing in your coming in, God’s blessing in your going out. 7 God will defeat your enemies who attack you…8 God will order a blessing on your…workplaces; he’ll bless you in the land that God, your God, is giving you” Deut. 28:2-4,6-8, MSG. God will work all things together for good to those who love Him! The 3rd Principle is:
III. ALLOW NO COMPROMISE WITH YOUR SINS
Numbers 33:55; “But IF YOU DO NOT DRIVE OUT the inhabitants of the land, those you allow to remain WILL BECOME BARBS in your eyes and THORNS in your sides. They will give you trouble in the land where you will live. Joshua 23:12-14; 12 “But …if you intermarry with them and associate with them, 13 then…they will become snares and traps for you, whips on your backs and thorns in your eyes, until you perish from this good land, which the Lord your God has given you.”
B. NO STANDING STILL, NEUTRAL GROUND
1. If we stop growing and start making compromises and regressing, then the areas of our former sinful life won’t stay the same, but will grow more evil.
2. We’ve probably all gotten a splinter or infection, and watched as it grew red, swelled, became feverish and filled with puss.
3. So it is when the new creature allows a splinter of the old life to remain in us and don’t expel it from our being. This reminds us that we’re never standing still. If we stop going forward, then we immediately start going backward. There is no neutral ground.
C. COMPROMISE BRINGS SWIFT JUDGMENT
1. To allow our old thoughts/ emotions/ motives, etc. will bring trouble on us. God has to judge those things. For our own good God will judge us quicker and harsher than other people, because, “Those whom the Lord loves, He chastens!”
2. Before my family were Christians, while I was a teenager, my mother would always warn me; “The Lord doesn’t let us get away with anything. If you do it, you’re going to get caught, because the Lord loves this family.”
3. She was right; I got caught every time I did something! But God’s stern discipline made me change course from addiction and crime to a more normal way of life.
IV. ONLY DEATH OF THE OLD ENSURES NEW LIFE
Deut. 7:2-6; “When the Lord your God brings you into the land you are entering to possess and drives out before you many nations…you must DESTROY THEM TOTALLY. Make no treaty with them, and show them no mercy. 5 Break down their altars, smash their sacred stones, cut down their Asherah poles and burn their idols in the fire. 6 For you are a people holy to the Lord your God.”
A. COMMAND: DESTROY YOUR OLD LIFE TOTALLY
1. Paul said, “Put to death, therefore, whatever belongs to your earthly nature: sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desires and greed, which is idolatry” Col. 3:5 (see Rom. 8:13; Gal. 5:19-21).
2. The death penalty is the most extreme form of punishment and is an acknowledgement that no lesser remedy will be successful in rehabilitating the criminal. It’s impossible. They are so detrimental to society that the only remedy is death.
3. So it is with our old nature. It must die. It can’t be renovated, altered, or rehabilitated. Only a new creation in Christ will suffice for heaven’s perfection and the holy presence of God.
B. OUR NATURE DEMANDS THIS CHOICE
1. God commands that you make a choice! He doesn't give us the luxury or option of not choosing. When we get married, we pledge to "forsaking all others, keeping only to you."
2. God is at Jealous God. He wants all our love or none of it; He won't take only part. Our nature demands it. You can't serve two masters/2 bosses.
3. There was a circus rider who rode on two horses: 1 foot on each horse’s back. If one of the horses veered, the contingency plan of the rider was to jump on the horse he was closest to. That's what we attempt to do spiritually too, but God won’t share us with the world!
V. VICTORY COMES BY DEPENDING ON GOD’S POWER
A. TEXT: Deut. 7:17-22
17 You may say to yourselves, “THESE NATIONS ARE STRONGER THAN WE ARE. How can we drive them out?” 18 But do not be afraid of them; remember well what the Lord your God did to Pharaoh and to all Egypt. 19 You saw with your own eyes the great trials, the signs and wonders, the mighty hand and outstretched arm, with which the Lord your God brought you out. The Lord your God will do the same to all the peoples you now fear. 21 Do not be terrified by them, for THE LORD your God, who is among you, IS A GREAT & AWESOME GOD. 22 The Lord your God will drive out those nations before you…”
B. THE IMPOSSIBLITY OF CHANGING OURSELVES
1. When we look at the towering walls of our addictions or the giants of our unchangeable fallen natures, we may quail at the thought of trying to defeat them.
2. They may be bigger and stronger than us. We could say with Jeremiah, ‘Can a leopard change its spots?’ Can a polluted well produce pure water? How can we who are unclean with the ravages of leprosy ever be cleansed from our disease?
C. THE POWER FOR VICTORY
1. The wonderful news is that it won’t be you who does the transformation. It wasn’t the Israelites that defeated the 7 stronger nations, but God.
2. It all starts when you totally surrender and let Jesus have all of you. Only when He’s in the driver seat can He steer your life.
3. When the Spirit came on Samson, he could do feats normally impossible. Jesus will implant His holy & pure nature in you and transform you from the inside out. He will purify your mind and heart – giving you a new heart and the mind of Christ.
4. As you listen to the Spirit and respond in obedience to His correction, He’ll redirect your life and give you heavenly wisdom and insight. The Bible will help you think God’s thoughts and walk in His ways. Praise God!
A. ILLUSTRATION: TAKING CARE OF FIRST BASE
1. Coach Bobby Bowden tells this story about himself. He was playing college baseball and had never hit a home run.
2. Finally he hit one down the right-field line, into the corner. He rounded first and looked to the third base coach. He turned at second, was halfway to third base and the coach was still waving him on.
3. He got to home, he hit the plate. He had his first home run. He was so excited everybody was slapping him five.
4. Then the pitcher took the ball, threw it to the first baseman, and the umpire called him out.
5. Coach Bowden learned this important lesson: "If you don't take care of first base, it doesn't matter what else you do. If you don't honor the Lord first, it doesn't matter what else you accomplish."
6. There’s some of you here who feel like you’ve fit a home run, but is it possible that you missed the bag at first base? Have you really consecrated your hearts to the Lord?
B. THE CALL
1. Let’s make a new commitment to the Lord tonight. The most important step is surrendering your life to Jesus. How many would say “I want to let Jesus take the driver’s seat in my life?” Let’s pray and make him Savior & Lord.
2. For the rest of us, we’re going to fill out our Eviction Notice for the devil. So take it out and let’s say it together:
“HELL, I WANT YOU OUT OF MY LIFE!”
I WANT YOUR ROTTEN HABITS TO GO!
I WANT YOUR BAD THOUGHTS TO GO!
I WANT YOUR EVIL SUGGESTIONS TO GO!
I WANT YOUR UNKINDNESS & IMPATIENCE TO GO!
I WANT YOUR PRAYERLESSNESS TO GO!
I WANT YOUR DISOBEDIENCE TO GO!
I WANT YOUR FEARS & DISCOURAGEMENTS TO GO!
I WANT YOUR _____________ TO GO!
HELL, AS OF TODAY, YOU ARE EVICTED FROM MY LIFE!