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Rainbow Divider
MCM Broadcast

TV Broadcast #1218

Finding Our Purpose
Part One

February 7, 2016

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Transcript of message from TV Broadcast 1218 -- taken from Closed Captioning Text

— Brother Phil Enlow: Praise the Lord! It’s good to see everybody this morning and I appreciate the Lord’s presence. It’s amazing when…the more we learn about ourselves, that God would actually want to come and spend time with us, it’s amazing. It just is a revelation of His grace and His…just who He is, and He’s worthy to be praised. Praise God!

( congregational amens ).

Praise the Lord. It never fails, when we have a men’s meeting it seems like so many things are expressed that I almost feel like I don’t have to come up here and say anything…so many things were just right in harmony with what I’ve been thinking. And a lot of it also really relates back to our prayer meeting. We had a very positive, wonderful sharing time and the general topic, I guess, would have been, ‘what is my purpose, what is my place?’

And, I’ve had thoughts along that line. I just want to go ahead and trust the Lord to help me to express things…to kind of pull together a lot of things, a lot of threads that I’ve been hearing. And hearing, not just from people, but I believe from the Lord, as well. Because I believe He wants us to know that we have a purpose. How many of you remember Timothy’s message last year?

( congregational response ).

Yeah. I believe that’s gonna be on a broadcast, by the way, coming up. But it was directed principally to the young people. You have a purpose in life. You’re not just here to…whatever. But it really applies to every one of us. And I believe God wants us to know, to really be able to find our reason for being.

It’s awfully easy just to settle into a routine and do our activities and just suppose that we’re just another person, no particular significance. And a lot of times, when you ask a question like that or pose a question like that within the Body of Christ, within the Church, you’re thinking in terms of…well, I need a specific title, a place…I guess Gwen put it as ‘a label.’

And that’s exactly right. You know, we think that, well, there are preachers, there are prophets, there are singers, there are miracle workers, and then there are the rest of us. And we’re just kind of nothing. But I’ll tell you what, I don’t believe that’s God’s vision, that’s God’s wisdom about the Body of Christ, because every one of us…clearly the Word teaches every one of us matters. But I believe it’s important that we learn how to find our place and how to find our purpose.

And, my mind went to more than one scripture, but then it kind of settled in a very familiar one in Romans chapter 12. But I’m gonna do something I’ve done a couple of times recently. I’m gonna use the New Living Translation which I think will bring out some thoughts and freshen it up a little from that standpoint.

But the Book of Romans, as we’ve said many times, is an exposition, first of all, of the Gospel. You know, what’s the deal? Why do we need a Savior? What has He done about our need? You know, we’re separated from God by our sins, but even if the guilt of our sins were done away, we still can’t live for God. We need a new life.

And that’s what He’s offered us in Christ. He’s blotted out our sins because they were paid at Calvary! Praise God! But He hasn’t left us there. He offers to come and to impart a brand new life on the inside. And the Christian life is about learning to live by that Life. Instead of living by the old one, we live by the new one.

But coming out of that section of Romans where Paul just really unpacks the Gospel, you come into the very end of chapter 11. And I believe it’s important to begin here, because if we don’t have some sense of who God is, then none of the rest of it makes much sense. I mean, we can talk about principles and rules for living, and all that stuff, but that’s not what it’s about. It really comes back to who God is!

And so, Paul finishes up his discussion here in verse 33. He says, “Oh, how great are God’s riches and wisdom and knowledge! How impossible it is for us to understand his decisions and his ways! For who can know the Lord’s thoughts? Who knows enough to give him advice? And who has given him so much that he needs to pay it back?” (NLT).

I mean, get a clue, here…get a grip! We think we can be good and God owes us? Oh no! He shows us favor because it’s in His purpose and His plan, and it’s in His heart. “For everything comes from him and exists by his power and is intended for his glory. All glory to him forever!” I pray that God will give me a fresh sense of that! Because if we don’t have that, what meaning does the rest of it have? We can cobble ourselves out a religion, and put principles in there and ways of doing things, and then follow that and think, oh, everything is great! That’s not it. It has got to be something that is alive!

( congregational response ).

It’s got to be something that God lives in, that He literally inhabits. If He’s not here and we’re just practicing religion, then we might as well close the door. There’s no point to that. It isn’t going anywhere. You know, it might help us a little bit in this life, but that’s it.

But I’ll tell you, what God is doing is something that is eternal! And everything about it comes from Him! It’s His ability! It’s His Life that is meant to be infused in us! And thank God, as we worship Him, He comes, doesn’t He? We have the chance of partaking of the very life of Christ who is here, that’s opening our hearts and drinking in of His presence. And that’s what He longs for, because without Him, what are we? We’re nothing. Praise God!

So anyway, it’s in view of this that Paul comes into the familiar scripture, and I’ll read it in this translation which is bit of a re-phrase, anyway, but I believe it faithfully expresses the thoughts. “And so, dear brothers and sisters, I plead with you to give your bodies to God because of all he has done for you. Let them be a living and holy sacrifice—the kind he will find acceptable. This is truly the way to worship him.”

Boy, what a wonderful, awesome way to put that! This is what God is looking for. He’s not looking for religious practitioners. He’s looking for a means of expressing Himself within this broken and fallen world. Now, you go back to the ultimate pattern, who is our Lord Jesus. When He came, He literally could do nothing by Himself. Wasn’t that what He said?

( congregational response ).

“I can of mine own self do nothing.” (KJV). So how did He do what He did? The Father lived in Him. And so when people encountered Jesus, when He would speak, there was a spiritual Life that flowed in His words. When He did things, it was God’s power literally acting! He would stretch forth His hand, and God would move. So there was a living partnership between the person of Jesus, when He lived as a man, and His Father, who dwelt in Him. That’s exactly what He said. The words that I speak to you, I don’t speak by Myself. The Father who lives in Me does the work.

So you see that pattern now being replicated in His people. This is what He’s looking for. He’s not looking for our abilities to go do something for God. God, give me a title and I’ll run do something for You. This is God looking for your body to be literally given to Him! So, it’s no longer mine, is it?

( congregational response ).

My life is no longer mine. There is a surrender. There is a sense of committing everything I have because I understand, I get it now! I know what life is about! You know, the world really doesn’t have any answers, especially the atheists! My goodness, what can they tell you about your purpose? You have none. You’re just an animal here for a little while. You might as well gratify your lusts and be done with it.

But I’ll tell you, there is an overriding purpose in the creation of this world and the creation of the one to come. And I’ll tell you, it’s going to be filled with the Life of God! But God wants us to begin to participate in that here.

( congregational amens ).

And His purpose is not that we seize or retain rigid control of these bodies and say, no, it’s my life! I’m gonna use it the way I want! I’m gonna gratify what I…I’m gonna seek for my own pleasure and my own satisfaction! No! My body…if you do that, you’ll die. That’s the end of it. That’s the simple truth that God wants everyone to get!

I’ll tell you, you have no purpose outside of what he’s talking about here. But with it, we have the ultimate purpose because God is going to lift us up to a place of great power and glory and effectiveness and…He’s gonna share Himself with us, all the glories of heaven, all the love and the joy and the peace, and all that kind of stuff. Anybody want any of that?

(congregational response ).

Yeah, praise God! Well, that’s what’s coming and we can taste it now. But here’s the key! I mean, you want to find your purpose in life, you’d better start here! If you’re trying to sort of grab little principles out of the Bible and say, well, if I do this and do that and do the other, then it’s fine, but it’s my life! Forget it. The first thing is to hand our lives over to Him and say, Lord, I’m Yours! I need You to inhabit me! I need You to change Me! I need You to make me what I ought to be! This is my purpose in life. I will never find it outside of just simply surrendering and saying, Lord, I’m Yours. That’s it!

Isn’t that what Jesus did? He said, lo it’s written of me…I’ve come to do Your will, oh Lord, in a body You’ve given me. So you see again, the pattern, that we’re called to live the same way. And, so that’s the starting point. We lay down our lives and it’s called a living and holy sacrifice.

Now that almost sounds like a contradiction, doesn’t it? Because a sacrifice was literally, in the Old Testament and to these people’s minds, a sacrifice was something you literally killed. You would take an animal, perhaps, and sacrifice it on an altar, and offer that. And the heathens did that to their deities.

But, a sacrifice is something you kill, but yet this is a living sacrifice! Now who can think of a scripture that kind of really highlights exactly what he’s talking about there? Praise God! “I have been…

( congregational response ).

“…crucified with Christ…” (NIV). So Paul was looking back to something that had happened in history and he says, yeah, He was crucified, but I was there! I was crucified ‘with’ Him. This old life that I was born with here, that died back there! And so now I have the privilege of living a new life. “…The life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God.” (KJV). Or, “…by faith in the Son of God,” either way. (NIV).

I live by His faith! I live by His life! It’s a different life! I’m still walking around, but it’s different! There’s a change! I’ve let go of something! It’s being put to death! And yes, I understand that there is a walking out of that. It doesn’t just happen with an event. But there is a life that has to die in order for this new life to come forth.

So that’s my purpose. It’s a living sacrifice! I’m offering it to You, Lord. I recognize that if I’m gonna experience You and Your purpose in my life, I’ve got to die. But as I let go and let You come in, it’s all different. And it’s glorious and it’s wonderful. Praise God! Then I can begin to be what You want me to be.

And you know, we talk about worship…and praise God, when we come in here and we offer praises vocally, that’s worship. But this is the ultimate worship. And how many of you know what worship has to do with? It has to do with worth. It has to do with value. Is God worth our lives?

( congregational response ).

Is He so great that, yes, the greatest value that I could possibly obtain…the highest value that I could place would be, God, You are worthy. You are worth of everything. You didn’t just throw me in the trash when I was a sinner. You sent a Savior…great sacrifice. You loved me when I was Your enemy. Oh my, what a source of everything that we have! And everything does come from Him, doesn’t it? Praise God!

So this is the starting point! Are we going to give Him our lives and worship Him by doing that? All right, now the door is open a crack. We can begin to explore what is my place, what is my purpose, when we do that, okay? And so, now he comes to the process. Because, as I say, it’s not an event where suddenly we become totally different people and everything is changed. We’ve got a lot of grave clothes, as it were, that have got to come off from that old life.

And so he says, “Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think.” (NLT). Now is that plain? Yeah. You know, we just automatically think like the people we’re around. Young people, you hang around your friends and you want to be liked. They have ideas. They have values. Where did they come from?

That goes for every one of us. We work with people. We grow up. We just simply drink in the environment of living in this world! And I’ll tell you, to the extent that there are ideas that have come from the world, as we’ve said recently, they are founded upon a lie! That man can live apart from his Creator and somehow succeed, that’s the way to meaning and happiness…and it’s all a lie! And all of the lies that we break down from that, come from that fundamental lie. But that is the philosophy, that is the way of thinking, that is the value system of this world!

And we are all affected by it. No matter what we say we believe, the way we live is what determines, as we’ve said, what we truly believe! That is the ‘proof of the pudding.’ We can say, I believe this, but we live this way…that’s really what we’re believing, that’s what we’re going by.

And so God’s got to change the way we think. He’s gonna change the way we look at life, the way we look at ourselves, the way we look at others.

You know, one way that people cope with some of these ultimate questions is, like I say, to become religious. And what they do is, they’ll adopt a code, as it were, of what is right and what is wrong…what we ought to do and what we ought not to do. And by God, they’re going…in their own minds, because they supposedly live up to all that, they are very righteous. They’re like the Pharisees that Jesus had to contend with so much. Oh my, we’re God’s people! Sinner down there…don’t even touch him. Don’t get near him. You might get cooties or something, I guess.

( laughter ).

But you know, that breeds…that kind of a heart, that kind of a spirit is of the world! And it breeds ugly stuff as to how we look at people and their needs! God wants us to have the same kind of compassion toward the worst of the worst that He has!

( congregational response ).

Because, but for the grace of God, that could be us! We are no better! Fundamentally, we are no better! We are sinners in need of a Savior! Praise God, we’ve got one!

( congregational response ).

But oh, you think of how Jesus reacted to people, because that was the Father in Him. You want to know what He’s like? Look at Jesus. Look at the compassion He had for people who had been caught by the power of sin! And there was something in His heart that longed, not to condemn, but to lift them out, to say, there’s a hope, there’s a way out! I can give you a new life that will change you! Not just changing your behavior, but will change your heart, set you free from that power that’s got you. You think maybe we’ve got a little bit of room to grow in some of these things?

( congregational response ).

Yeah, but this is…you want to find your purpose? Start by giving yourself to Him and then saying, oh God, I need to be changed!

( congregational amens ).

I think I know what’s right! I think that I’ve got it figured out. I’ve listened to my friends and we all got together and…God, help us! Oh Lord! God, help us to get to the point where we say, like Paul said. If anybody thinks he knows a thing, he knows nothing as he ought to. Oh my, we’ve got a lot to be humble about. We just think we know so much. And, how many of you have gone along, you’ve rocked along, and all of a sudden, God has just really rocked your world?

( congregational response ).

And you suddenly saw the truth about yourself in some area. And all of a sudden, you say, oh my God! And you realize He’s put up with you all that time, and He’s loved you and He’s blessed you anyway. We have an awesome God!

( congregational amens ).

You know, that song we just sang, ‘He loves me like I am,’ is true. But loving me as I am doesn’t involve leaving me there.

( congregational amens ).

He loves me enough to fix me, to change me, to offer me a whole new life! But that’s gonna have to change the way I think about everything—everything! The first thing I’ve got to have changed is my attitude and apprehension of myself! My God, if you don’t see yourself as a needy sinner, you’re on the wrong track to begin with. There’s no way you’re ever gonna find your purpose in life!

But oh, if you can come to the place where Paul said, I give you something…how did he put it to Timothy? I tell you a faithful saying, worthy of all acceptance. “…Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners—of whom I am the worst.” (NIV).

See there was no sense of, hey, I’m way up here. I’m the Apostle Paul. You’d better…you know, there was none of that. This was somebody who came in among God’s people as a servant who laid down his life! He had been changed from that old Pharisee that he was. Something had happened to Paul and his whole thinking had been transformed because he’d met the Lord! And in the light of the One who is Truth, he opened his heart and said, Lord change me. I need to be changed. Do you get that?

( congregational response ).

Do you understand how desperately you need to be changed? Do I? All of us! You know, that’s one of the awesome things, that when God does begin to express himself through the body of Christ in each of its members, he’s not looking for perfection. If He were, we’d all leave, starting with me. Boy, he uses weak, broken vessels that don’t have it all together ourselves, who can’t do it!

This is a supernatural deal here, folks! This is where everything comes from Him, remember? But, if you want to find your purpose, you give Him yourself. You present yourself as a student and say, Lord, change my thinking. Help me to get off my high horse and realize I don’t know all the stuff I think I know. Change me. Help me, Lord!