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Rainbow Divider
MCM Broadcast

TV Broadcast #1026

Special Delivery
Part One

June 3, 2012

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Transcript of message from TV Broadcast 1026 -- taken from Closed Captioning Text

— Brother Phil Enlow: Well, praise God! I’ll share a little bit of a thought here. I don’t know how long this will go. Sometimes it surprises me that often it does. But anyway, I know the Lord wants to grow the Body up and use the Body. There’s more gifts than one or two or three. And I know there’s times it’s appropriate to just to have general teaching, but it’s appropriate, too, for others to participate and not just sit there and wait for one or two to do it. So, I just want to encourage you not to come in and just sit there. If the Lord’s given you something, then that’s what we need.

So anyway, let me just share a thought that came to me and kind of…you know you never know for sure whether they’re just for you or not, but I certainly know it is for me. But, a couple of Wednesday nights ago I shared a rather humorous picture that illustrates a problem we all tend to have and that’s the matter of special delivery and how adept Satan is at using it.

The illustration was simply the fact that we all understand what special delivery is. That’s when somebody comes to your door and knocks and announces special delivery. Well, what is it? It’s a letter or it’s a package, it’s something for which you have to sign. And you literally, when you do, you sign it, you sign your name, that means that I’m receiving this and then that thing becomes yours.

But how easy it is for Satan to use special delivery to send all kinds of bad stuff into our lives that just because it comes, we think we sort of have to sign for it and don’t recognize where it’s coming from. And I like the thought that Gwen tagged on to that…that not only do we have the right to return to sender, we have the right to mark ‘deceased—return to sender’, because the Word tells us to reckon ourselves to be “…dead indeed unto sin, but alive unto God through Jesus Christ our Lord.” (KJV).

And the Lord wants us to be alert and to aware that the enemy is gonna dump all kinds of stuff on you, if you let him. And we receive these packages of fear, of anxiety, of anger, of resentment, of jealousy, of 1001 bad things…condemnation certainly is a big one. But all of these things come and we just take them as a matter of course. That’s just the way it is. I’ve got to do this. My name’s on it. I’ve got to open it and…no you don’t. We need to learn to ‘return to sender.’

But you know, I got to thinking about that and that’s all well and good, but that’s only part of the picture, because that’s kind of a defensive thing. That’s what we don’t do. And we just can’t live our lives not receiving. God has things that He wants to send us that are special delivery and that are really special delivery. And I believe that God wants to deepen the relationship of everyone here. Now some need to have a relationship with Him. But for those who do, God wants to deepen that relationship and wants us to learn how to recognize and to seek the kinds of things that God wants us to have.

You know the scripture says we have not because we ask not. You know what? A lot of the special deliveries that we do have in the real world are the result of us actually ordering something. And if you order something you expect it to come, don’t you? And it’s simply, we have a certain amount of faith in the system and most of the time it works.

I think a lot of the times when we’re asking something from God, there’s not a whole lot of faith in it. Anybody ever discover that? It’s just sort of a crying, self-pity, belly-aching, ‘oh I wish God would do something’ kind of thing. And it’s like taking your order and throwing it out the window and hoping it somehow magically gets to where it’s supposed to go. But I’ll tell you, God wants us to learn how to seek Him, how to desire to learn to hear His voice in our lives, and to recognize the interaction—the personal interaction that He would have with every one of us.

You know in the Old Testament there was an arm’s length relationship that most of the people had with God. You remember what happened when they went to Mt. Sinai and God appeared in great power, and all of a sudden they saw a whole mountain on fire. They felt the ground shake. They heard the thunder rolling, and man they were terrified. God was at least making Himself known to them. Of course, He already had in Egypt. But I mean, really, really trying to impress upon them, this is God! This is Somebody really awesome and powerful. You need to respect Him.

But the response of the people was…we’re afraid of this God. Moses, you go find out what He wants. Tell us what He wants and that’ll be okay, but we don’t want to get too close to Him. But you know most of the time when somebody wanted to find out something from God in the Old Testament, what did they do?

( congregation inaudible ).

Did they just…oh God, speak? No! They went to the priest. They went to a prophet and said, “Inquire of the Lord for me.” But you know, it’s awfully easy for us to have that kind of arm’s length, secondhand relationship with God even today. And that’s not what God wants, is it?

( congregational response ).

God wants every one of us to really know Him and walk with Him and learn to recognize His Word when He speaks, His dealings in our lives. Turn if you will, to Hebrews chapter 8. Let’s actually bring some scripture into this. And of course, the writer here is forever throughout comparing the Old Covenant and the New…Moses and Christ, the Law and the Gospel, and how God has used the former to bring people to the latter.

What was the role of Law? The role of Law, of God giving laws was to demonstrate to those under it that they couldn’t keep it, that they were sinners, that they needed something that was outside of themselves. Paul discovered that as soon as he tried to serve God by obeying laws, man it stirred up something in him that just made it impossible. And so God taught him to let go of that and come the new way of the Spirit and live by the presence of God in his life.

But here is the writer, and we truly don’t know who it was, but we accept that we know the Lord was behind it. But anyway, he’s talking, let’s begin in verse 10, because he quotes, I believe it’s from Jeremiah. He says, “This is the covenant I will make with the house of Israel after that time, declares the Lord.” (NIV). Now somebody will stop and say, well yeah, but that’s the house of Israel. But I’ll tell you, there was a remnant people…most of the people did not get it. Most of the people heard the Law, they made a religion out of it. They took control, they took ownership of their religion and they were completely divorced from any real contact with God to the point that when Jesus came, they didn’t recognize Him. The very One that their scriptures said was coming…not only did they not recognize Him, they rejected Him, they killed Him. But there was a true Israel within Israel, wasn’t there?

You know, we know that God did not even recognize those among the Jews, though they were outwardly Israelites, He did not recognize them as children of Abraham. He said to some, if you were the children of Abraham—if you were, you would do the works of Abraham. Your father is the Devil.

But there was a true remnant. There was a remnant of believers who were Israel in His eyes, so the Covenant was made with them. They were the heirs! But it was not meant to be confined to them, was it? It was meant to reach out to all of God’s Israel, all of God’s children who were of the faith of Abraham. If you be Christ’s then are you Abraham’s seed. And what? Heirs according to the promise.

So are you Christ’s this morning? Do you belong to Him? This is about you, this about me. This is the Covenant that God has made and it was meant, as I say, to be something that was a blessing to all nations, not simply about just a blessing of a people in a land. This was a blessing of eternal weight.

“This is the covenant I will make with the house of Israel after that time, declares the Lord. I will put my laws in their minds and write them on their hearts. I will be their God, and they will be my people.” Now you’ve got a real relationship going on there. You’ve got something where the Law is not simply ‘you go to a priest and you hear him tell people what the law is or what they’re supposed to do. Now it’s internal. Now it’s become a matter of the heart. I do it because I want to. I do it because there’s something on the inside that makes it possible for me, that causes me to want to, but it also gives me the strength to do it.

The problem with laws…if you tell people to do it, all it does is provoke that rebellious nature that we have. It offers no help! But I’ll tell you, the Gospel of Jesus Christ does something to the heart. It changes the heart. There’s a new heart and there’s a new Spirit that God puts within. That’s why people have to be born again. That’s why you can’t just adopt a Christian lifestyle and become a Christian. There’s a real birth that needs to take place and God is willing and able for anyone that reaches out in faith to the One we’ve been singing about this morning!

There is something that God will do that’s very real. I’ll tell you, His Word is so. Everyone who calls upon the name of the Lord will be saved the Word says in Romans chapter 10. But I’ll tell you, there’s a calling that implies that you’re recognizing you need Him, you believe in Him, you trust in Him, and you’re depending completely upon His promise. Praise God!

But anyway, here’s the nature of the relationship. “No longer will a man teach his neighbor, or a man his brother, saying, Know the Lord.…” You know there’s this external trying to get people to be what they’re supposed to be from the outside, and it’s true there needs to be that, I guess, to the point where people come to realize they need a Savior. But that’s not New Testament Christianity. It has to get beyond that to where people have a knowledge of the Lord for themselves. You better know Him yourself. Your mama and papa’s religion and their faith isn’t gonna save you. God wants to have…wants you to know Him and to walk with Him. So this is not it.

It says, “…Because they will all know me…” Now listen to this, if you think you’re nobody. “…From the least…” Are you the least this morning? Do you feel like the least? Do you feel like nobody? Well God says He includes you, doesn’t He? “…From the least of them to the greatest.” I’ll tell you, we go through our lives, so often, just blundering along and the Devil beating on us, but not realizing what we have in the Lord and how greatly He wants to interact with us and speak to us.

And of course, there’s so many ways…Brother Thomas preached on this, but he wrote on it. One of the books he had was “Does God Speak to You?” And he enumerates in there, and I haven’t read it in a while, but he enumerates in there how many different ways that God speaks. How many know what I’m talking about?

( congregational response ).

You know what it is to go through life and you need a word and then God just gives a word in due season. It’s just what you need at the right time. And I’ll tell you, God is not a chatterbox. Do you know what I mean? When He speaks He doesn’t have to use a lot of words. Man, one little phrase can absolutely just get in there and it’s just like a bomb goes off and the darkness goes and light comes, and peace comes.

I’ll tell you, that’s what God wants for every single one of you…to absolutely have an ear that is so tuned to listening for God’s voice that He can actually speak to you, and you realize you don’t just have to come and get a secondhand word from the preacher or from somebody, God wants to talk to you personally. He cares about you. You have just as much right to hear His voice as anybody does. Praise the Lord!

One thing that illustrates, I guess, in somebody’s experience, this truth is John Bunyan. And of course, we all know him or many of us know him as the author of “Pilgrim’s Progress,” but I go back many times to a book I read, and I guess I need to get it out and re-read it if I’ve got it anywhere, but it was his testimony. And I think the title is something like “Grace Abounding to the Chief of Sinners.” If that isn’t it, it’s very close to that. So you can look it up on Amazon, I’m sure it’s there.

But anyway, he had an awful time coming to the Lord. It was a spiritual battle. He didn’t have a lot of help. It was a dark time, religiously speaking. There were all kinds of high churches and this and that and the other, but they were dead. He didn’t really have a ministry of life, but there was something…God began to talk to him. How many of you know that you’ll never to come to God if God doesn’t talk to you to begin with?

( congregational response ).

See Jesus said, everyone that the Father has heard and learned of the Father comes to Me. See, God actually talks to you. If you have any interest in God, if there is any hunger, if there’s any desire, God’s already talked to you. You need to take courage and take heart, and say, hey, wait a minute. The God of the universe, the God who can create all of this immensity that the scientists are discovering…He’s actually interested in me. He’s not put off by all the things that I’m not, all of my weaknesses, all of my failures. He actually loves me and wants me to know Him.

But anyway, in the process of time, Bunyan’s conscience became awakened. He was a real rapscallion, I mean just a character. He loved to run with the wrong crowd and do all the wrong things, but God began to deal with his conscience. And the thing that just sticks with me as I think of his testimony, I can’t remember all the details, but I do remember this…that he would go through long periods of time, I mean days and weeks sometimes, where the Devil would just beat on him. I mean, he would do some little thing, or say some little thing, and the Devil would just pound on condemnation, condemnation, condemnation, and just try to take away all his hope.

And he’s just sitting there trying to hang on by his fingernails and just…I guess that implies, Devil, I really don’t want to believe you. There was something in him that was really reaching out even though he could hardly pray! Do you understand what’s going on here—you see what’s happening? Bunyan was actually wanting God, but the Lord allowed him to experience these deep attacks of the Devil.

You can see it in his life and in his ministry…the fruit of what he went through. He knew what he was talking about. When Christian sets out for the Celestial City, there’s a whole lot of attacks to try to keep him from doing it—keep him from even making the journey. And he experienced all this in his life, but over and over and over and over again the Devil would just beat on him…there’s no hope! You’re lost, you’ve committed the unpardonable sin, you’ve done this, you’ve done that, and then all of sudden there would be a little word, sometimes three and four words.

But they would come like a ray of light from heaven and they would just settle in his heart and his mind and all of sudden he had something to hang on to, and just look at the Devil and say, get out of here, Devil! And then something else would happen and all of sudden, he’d go right back into the throes of that thing and then one little word. I’ll tell you, Martin Luther wrote the song about “A Mighty Fortress is Our God”. You remember right toward the end it talks about the Devil and all his raging. What does it say? “One little word will fell him.” Praise God! I’ll tell you, the Word of God is the most powerful thing in the universe.

( congregational amens ).

And we need to recognize that God wants to plant His words in our hearts. And it’s not just a knowledge of the Book, it’s something that is very personal, because you and I are unique individuals. We each have our…it’s amazing when you think about it…we each have our own characteristics, our own purpose…in the mind and the purpose of God we are unique. God made us for a special thing in His kingdom. And yet our lives are so intertwined that God knows how to speak and He knows how to deal with each of us right at the point of need in our journey.

I mean, how many times do we come in here and the Lord gives a word, and whoever…it doesn’t matter who’s speaking, it’s not something they’ve thought about or planned, or said, well I think this would make a good sermon…there’s something that is just quickened—it’s made alive. And afterwards, man, have you been walking with me? This exactly what I’ve been dealing with. This is exactly the question I’ve been asking God. God’s speaking. He’s sending a word to you and yet…though that word goes out to a great congregation, yet each one in their individual place in the journey that word just ministers faith and hope and strength. Man, God’s Word is awesome!

( congregational amens ).

And talk about special delivery, you need to hang on to that with all your life and take ownership of it! Isn’t it crazy that we so readily take ownership of what the Devil sends and so fearfully and reluctantly…oh, that couldn’t be for me…when God would speak and minister faith? And all we’re doing is continuing to listen to that negative voice of the Devil that just wants to paint a black, dark picture about where you’re at. I’ll tell you, you’re the very one that God sent His Son to redeem! Christ Jesus came into the world, Paul said, to save sinners!