Summary: There are 3 people sitting in your seat right now. [not a fat joke!] 1-The person you are today. 2-The person you could be for evil. 3-The complete person you could be for God. Link inc. to formatted text, audio & video, Powerpoint.

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Reaching Your Full Potential

Joshua 17:12-18

There are 3 people sitting in your seat right now. [not a fat joke!] There’s the person you are today. Then there’s the person you could be for evil. And then there is the complete person you could be for God. Who will you be tomorrow? A year from now? When you die? To go backward would be foolish. To remain the same would be very tempting. But we must charge forward or we’ll never realize our full potential that God left us here to become for His glory!

The mediocre men of Manasseh did not fully possess their land.

The 12 tribes of Israel were each divided a portion of the land to take control of, but Manasseh did not, for several reasons:

1. Incomplete Obedience.

This will keep you from being all you can be.

v. 12-13 ‘utterly’ = ‘completely’. Don’t do it halfway. Incomplete obedience is also known as disobedience. This is true when it comes to our faithfulness-to God, to our spouse, to church. We come back to town this week and several comment about some who were also gone. I say, Oh, I didn’t know they were traveling, and they say, no, they weren’t gone, YOU were. How sad. Let’s follow the Lord!

This is true of our tithe. All or nothing, when you are here and make up when you are away. When it’s easy and when it hurts. Anything less than complete obedience and you might as well keep it because you’re gonna need it w/out God’s blessing being on your finances!

Complete victory is what our commander has charged us with, not just being satisfied w/ mediocrity. No backing up, no backing down, no compromise!

Douglas MacArthur is a true American hero. The second greatest tragedy of our nation is that he never sat in the White House. The first greatest is that Clinton did! MacArthur said, “In war there is no substitute for victory.” But there is an alternative, which is defeat.

Manasseh was comfortable to let a few Canaanites stay in the land. They didn’t take God literally or seriously and they didn’t obey if they were the exception to God’s rule. Maybe they had a better idea and God would understand?

What are the Canaanites in your land? What is inhabiting your heart, your home, and God wants you to drive it out?

• The Canaanites they favored, or tried to use—v. 13—‘Tribute’ = ‘tax’. They tried to make slaves out of them. They wanted to make them be a blessing to them.

Ill.—a family in Texas once acquired a lion cub, and they made a pet out of it. They lived in an apartment building. They had a new baby boy and set up a nursery. One morning they crossed the hall to visit a neighbor as the baby slept in the crib. The cub had the freedom to roam. They heard a blood curdling scream, and they rushed in to find the lion cub had bitten several of the fingers off their baby. Today that boy is grown up and walking around w/out several of his fingers because his parents thought they could tame a wild animal.

What is your pet sin? Someday it will rise up and devour something precious in your life.

So, what sin is there in your life and you are trying to tame it and keep it around? To use to your advantage? Compromise with? You think, I can handle this. [That’s what Manasseh thought.] You think, this won’t hurt anybody. [That’s what Manasseh thought.] The devil may have you so warped and perverted in your thinking that you think you are actually better off because of that sin you hold on to. “I’m better off holding on to this...after all, this relaxes me and helps dispel my nervous energy. This helps me cope.”

No slave to alcohol, drugs, sex, porn or otherwise ever became that way w/out first saying, I can handle this. I can quit anytime I want to. You may think you’ve made a slave out of that sin, but in no time it will make a slave out of you.

The Canaanites they favored...

• The Canaanites they feared—v. 16—these they didn’t think they could drive out.

But for the child of God there should not be one sin that has dominion over you. Don’t roll over on this one. Don’t give up! Don’t tell me you have a family predisposition to it, that your daddy and your g’pa had it too. That may be, because we all have the ‘sin gene’, but somebody must break the cycle!

I’m not talking about sinless perfection, but sin habits. There’s a difference between falling in the mud and wallowing in it.

No sin, no matter how powerful it is, can stand against the power of God, if we rely on that power.

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