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Rainbow Divider
MCM Broadcast

TV Broadcast #971

One Way Out

May 15, 2011

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Transcript of message from TV Broadcast 971 -- taken from Closed Captioning Text

-- Brother Phil Enlow: The gospel, if it is anything, is a line in the sand. We are either citizens of this world serving self, or we are citizens of the kingdom of God serving Him. There absolutely is no middle ground. Now I understand that we’re imperfect in the process, but I tell you we are citizens of one country or another, and until we come to the place of utter surrender and honesty, and understanding of what we are in God’s sight, we will never, ever be building upon the foundation that God laid.

You know it says in the Old Testament, God laid a foundation, doesn’t it? Well, He did that because we had no way to do it. There is no other. There is no other way we can stand before Him. You can practice religious rituals, you can believe doctrines, you can practice the Christian religion if you want to sum it up, and be lost and go to Hell, because God, as we’ve said so many times, or Christ did not come to establish a religion. A religion just simply hands you things to do, you do that and you’re okay. It ain’t so.

The word of God, if it reveals anything at all, it reveals the utter, hopelessness of our need. I tell you we need honest hearts before God. You know the scripture in 1 John, “If we confess….” You know what that means - If we confess our sins? That’s to “say along with.” I mean there is an element – not more than an element – there is a fundamental agreement with God. Here you are, as it were, in the witness chair, being accused, and instead of sitting there defending yourself, you’re joining the prosecution and saying, guilty.

Our nature is to try to deflect and say I’m not as bad as all that. I’m not this, I’m not that, it’s their fault. A thousand and one ways to deflect and minimize what we are. You know what, there’s only one thing that God.… You know God can’t help someone like that, because here’s the light of truth – God is not exposing darkness in order to destroy, in order to humiliate. He is humbling in order to save and lift up. It’s because of the foundation that He laid that He will do that because He wants to get you off of your foundation onto His because He knows He loves you and He knows what it takes. Either you’re gonna go on bearing your own guilt or Jesus – or it’s going to be on Him. I tell you my hope is in Him.

( Congregational amens ).

I don’t come to Him with any protestation of, I mean anything. My God, if I look in the mirror there is nothing – I see nothing good there. But church pews this morning are filled with people who look in their eyes, they see pride. They look at their face in the mirror, they paint it up and doll it up and do whatever they do, but they have no sense at what they’re looking at – as a helpless sinner who needs the mercy of God.

( Congregational amens ).

I mean we’re talking here about calling upon God for salvation. You don’t need salvation if there’s something you can do for yourself. Salvation is for somebody who can’t help themselves. Like we’ve said before, if you’re chained up and lying at the bottom of the ocean, you don’t need swimming lessons. You need someone to go down there who has the power to pull you out, and I’m so glad to take that place before Him.

( Congregational amens ).

I have nothing but a helpless sinner in myself. My God, the further I go the more I know what I am. Think of Paul -- came to the place, the self-righteous Pharisee so supremely confident in what he was in his own righteousness, yet coming to the place where he could write, and I believe he was being completely honest, he wasn’t just blowing smoke, he said, “I know…” This is something I’ve come to know about myself. “I know that in me, that is in my flesh, dwells no…” Not some good things, just need a little help here. “…No good thing.”

That’s the great divide here that Paul is describing. You’ve got people who think they can somehow do something that will get God to accept ‘em without ever coming to the place where they recognize what they are. They can kind of hang on to that, hang on to self and somehow get God to accept ‘em. You will never be accepted that way. There’s only one thing God respects and that’s an honest heart that comes to Him as a broken, lost, helpless sinner.

God will not despise you. God can handle whatever there is in your life. He’s not put off, I don’t care what it is, I don’t care what men think of it, God is not put off by the depths of sin and iniquity in the human heart. What He’s put off by is pride and self that stays on the throne and refuses to come to Him with an honest heart. That’s what it comes down to. Somehow that’s got to get in our hearts.

He traces down, how does this all happen? It comes down to the fact that it’s proclaimed by people that God sends. How are they going to hear without a preacher, ‘course how they preach except they be sent, and all of that. You’ve got a process by which God proclaims this word.

You know we have a picture in the Gospels about people who hear the word of God and it has a different effect, not based upon the word of God and its quality but based upon the soil into which that seed falls. The soil represents the heart doesn’t it? Because men’s hearts are in all kinds of conditions and the first one of course is where people have been walking and beaten down the soil and it’s a path. It’s hard, there’s no way that soil can be penetrated by the seed of that word.

I tell you this isn’t just people “out there,” this is people in pews – church pews, who have become so gospel hardened that they can sit there. We’ve seen this in the past here in this church. We’ve seen people who could sit there in strong self-delusion and have no clue what was going on – what the reality was. Thought they were just fine and it was so obvious to anybody looking on.

Of course you’ve got all kinds of other things – you’ve got some that lands on rocky soil. There’s a little bit of moisture there, a little bit of soil and so people will gravitate to certain parts of the gospel that sounds nice – I can be forgiven. I can go to heaven one day. I can have joy and peace, and they’ll latch on to all these little things that are positives and boom, you see something seemingly come up. At least it looks like it does.

The problem is there’s no real root. No place for the roots to go because the heart is still hard underneath. That soil has never been broken down to where it’s actually able to nourish that seed of the word of God. So what happens? After a while they get… what does the Word say? They get offended, don’t they? Something happens- Something in their experience happens, some Word comes and boom, it runs into one of those rocks. I ain’t giving that up. God, you’re going to have to accommodate me in my little rebellion here. This little hard place in my heart, you’re going to have to work around that, that’s staying. That’s what’s happening.

How many times do people hear the word of God and they’re faced with this choice? Who are you going to serve? If they choose the rock that in there – the stony place in the heart – what they are saying in their heart is God, I don’t believe in you. I reject you. You have no right to touch this, that’s me.

Oh my, that’s what we need to be saved from and delivered. That’s what salvation is about. It’s about what we are in Adam. God has got to do a work that puts that to death, but in the process He gives us a new life that lives forever and has a different spirit about it. A Christian is not somebody who practices the Christian religion. A Christian is somebody who’s been born of God’s spirit, received his life and his nature. That only comes through Jesus Christ and Him coming in and becoming Lord.

( Congregational amens ).

Once that Word enters into the heart and the mouth gets engaged to what’s in the heart…. What is it that we’re confessing? We’re calling upon Him. We’re calling upon Him as Lord and we’re confessing Him as Lord. Jesus is Lord – the One that went on the cross didn’t stop there. They didn’t leave Him in the tomb and his bones are still in there somewhere. He came out. He didn’t just come out, He is on a throne in Heaven – the destiny of all men, the destiny of all men and women and boys and girls is in His hands. You and I will stand before Him one day.

Oh, I tell you there’s going to be weeping and wailing, and gnashing of teeth. Not just for lost sinners out here somewhere, but from people who have sat in church pews and heard the gospel of Jesus Christ and found some way to say, no, it’s not quite like that. I’m okay. I’m not what you say I am. Oh God, give us the grace to let go of self. I mean this is a process Christians need to understand and be willing to submit to as we go.

( Congregational amens ).

That old nature wants to rise up and contend against what God is doing. We need to humble ourselves and come right back to the foundation. But boy, if you don’t know Him, my prayer is that God will so penetrate your heart, will so convict you of what you are that you will come to the place that all you can do is cry out. You can’t even… you’re like that man in the temple. You can’t even lift up your eyes. You are so conscious of what you are and your utter unworthiness.

You’re not just, well, I got caught, you are broken-hearted over what you are with respect to God, and in the face of His love for you. Oh God, how can I… It’s a godly sorrow. Oh God, how can I be that way, how could I do… Oh God, help me. I don’t want to be this way. I need you. That’s what real calling upon Him is about. It’s for salvation. Lord, I don’t just need you to sort-of give me a boost here, I need you to change my heart and my life. I can’t… There’s nothing I can do. I’m a candidate for you to reach down and lift me up and put me on the foundation that God alone has laid.

I tell you what - what glorious promises for somebody who reaches that point where God has convicted you, and you know what you are, and you’re willing to embrace that knowing it’s the only pathway you have got to life. There is no such thing as salvation without repentance. There’s no such thing as salvation without coming to a place where you know that there is not one ounce of hope for you apart from what Jesus did on that cross, and you’re willing to cast your lot with Him for time and eternity.

You’re willing to stand on that side of the line that’s been drawn in the sand and say, I turn my back on the world, I turn my back on my life in this world. My life is no longer about what I can get, what I can do, all these things that sort of feed me where I’m the center of my little world. Lord, you become the center. Jesus, be the center. Oh, you think God takes people to grind them into the ground and abuse ‘em? Oh Lord. There’s hard things we go through sometimes, but I tell you we have a God whose love is so boundless, we will never find the end of it.

( Congregational amens ).

We will never, ever experience the end of it. Praise God! Yeah, He disciplines, He works in our lives. I made a comment recently about God not punishing his children and I thought after I sat down, something that would have made that, would have brought that home a lot better. You know there is punishment with respect to our sins, but where was that carried out?

( Congregational response ).

That’s it. We come to Him - the punishment that was rightly due for every wrong thing we have done or will ever do was already placed upon Him. There’s no more punishment. So what God allows in our lives is training, discipline, shaping us, moving us into the center of His will so that we can be blessed, so that we can enjoy the peace and the joy that He has purchased for us.

You know in one way, we’ve said these things so many times and all we can do is just put it out there and say, God, you’re gonna have to take this and drive it into somebody’s heart. Because that is what it comes down to – it comes down to the individual heart. Where do you stand with respect to this? Have you really come to the place where you’ve seen what you are? Have you seen how great and desperate your need is of this salvation that has been provided by God about which the gospel message is revealing.

This is what the gospel… It’s the good news of God. Have you ever really seen it? Because if you see it and you see yourself in the light of eternity, you will know that that is something you need more than you need life, more than you need the next breath that you’re gonna breathe. I need you Lord, and I want you and I surrender my life to you. I put my hope upon your promise.

That’s what God is looking for. Anybody who comes to that place He doesn’t despise you. He loves you. I tell you Heaven is going to have a celebration every time somebody… I don’t care you could be a child. You could be anybody, but when someone comes to that place where they say, let go and they put their hope in Him and they confess Him. Jesus. I believe in you, you’re my Lord. I confess you today. I’m not ashamed of you, I love you. My hope is in you. Oh I tell you, there’s a celebration that breaks out in Heaven.

( Congregational amens ).

You may be completely overlooked down here, but Heaven takes notice of you. That’s where I want my reputation to be set. I don’t care what men think. You know, we do I guess, but that’s something that we need to outgrow. But I tell you when it gets right down to it, I don’t care what men think.

Jesus didn’t care what they thought did he? He was willing to be thought ill of, to be written off as a common criminal, as a false prophet, despised, rejected. Didn’t stop Him for one second for moving right ahead, because He knew something they didn’t know – that God has a kingdom that lasts forever, and what He was doing was pointing toward that.

I tell you the citizens of this world don’t have any idea of their position. Citizens of this world whose hearts are here, they are like men chained to a ship and that ship is inevitably headed for the rocks and for utter destruction. That’s a very mild picture of it. We’ve all seen movies where the old Roman slaves that were… What were they called? Galley slaves or whatever they were that were chained to the oars down there. That was their life, rowing the ship.

That’s your life in this world. You don’t know it, but if you don’t know Him, you are chained to something that has no future. You are stuck on a ball hanging in space that one day fire is going to fall, and you don’t know when that’s going to happen. But there is a God who’s proclaimed a day when it will happen.

( Congregational amens ).

He’s given us one out and that out is not a religion, it’s a Person. My hope is in Him. I confess Him. I’m with Him. I’m on His side, the world can…I mean if the Lord wants the world to go on and other people to be saved, that’s awesome. But if the Lord wants to come today and burn it up, praise God, I’m looking that direction, not this one wishing it weren’t so. I want to look forward and say God, I’m with you.

And that’s the line and the question is for everybody that you’re gonna have to answer between you and God. Which side are you on? Because if you’re not a hundred percent on His side, then you’re not, you’re part of the world. You can pretend, you can be religious, you can do everything you think you oughta do to try to be a Christian, try to be acceptable to Him, you won’t. There’s only one way – it’s surrender and repentance and putting your whole heart’s faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. What a glorious promise we have – somebody who does that they will be saved. Praise God!

( Congregational amens ).

Praise God! What a hope we have! I don’t want to compromise this message, I don’t want to give people a false hope and suppose that we can sweet-talk you into coming to our church. God needs to do a heart operation in your life or you’re not a Christian.

If you can hear His voice, don’t harden your heart, open it up to Him. Let that Word prepare the soil of your heart and let it grow and then give Him your all. He will love you and you’ll enter a relationship that will never end. I tell you what, Praise God!