TV Transcripts

“Our Hope of Glory” Part One
Broadcast #1493
May 16, 2021

Transcript of message from TV Broadcast 1493 -- taken from Closed Captioning Text

— Brother Phil Enlow: Well, good morning! I must confess this is one morning when I would be very happy if we had recorded the men’s meeting and simply played it back. The Lord blessed and an awful lot of what’s been on my heart was expressed there.

And I believe it’s from the burden of the Lord’s heart. He wants us to know something more of the reality of what He’s given to us, rather than us living on theology and theory, to the degree that we may. But I believe with all my heart, the Lord is coming forth in a way to stir up a hunger in His people.

You know, I had that burden Wednesday night that we needed Him and His presence, that it’s not enough to come and go through the form of what we do. And that’s all right, singing and worshipping and reading our Bibles and all that stuff is wonderful, but if the Lord’s not in the middle of it, it’s just a form. And we need Him.

( congregational amens ).

And I feel—I keenly feel my need this morning. And all I’m gonna do is just say, Lord, You’re gonna have to help me, You’re gonna have to help the people. That’s what this is for. If the Lord’s laid anything on my heart, it’s not for me, it’s for you, and it’s for everyone that may hear it.

But anyway, I’m gonna turn to a familiar scripture, as a jumping off point, in one of my favorite books, Colossians. Colossians was written by Paul the Apostle at a point in his life when he was in prison. He had suffered for the Lord. He had paid a high price to do what he did. And…but there he was.

He had heard about this church. It’s the one he’d never been to. It was founded by somebody who was in his circle of acquaintance in the ministry. But, anyway, he had heard of their faith and there just came into his heart a real burden to share the essence of what it meant to serve the Lord and encourage them, to instruct them.

But there’s one expression, toward the end of chapter 1 that just seems to come back to my mind, repeatedly. And, it’s found in…well, let’s see. Praise God! I’ll back up to verse 25. “I have become its servant…” the church, he’s talking about, “…by the commission God gave me to present to you the word of God in its fullness…” (NIV).

Then he refers to that as, “…the mystery that has been kept hidden for ages and generations, but is now disclosed to the saints. To them God has chosen to make known among the Gentiles the glorious riches of this mystery, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.” That’s the essence of what it means to be a part of God’s Kingdom, to be a part of His Church.

You know, the world is full of stuff…of organizations called churches. But I believe with all my heart, God has a Church. I’m not trying to say, we’re ‘it.’ I’m just trying to say, God has a people in the earth. And what distinguishes His work from everything else is this simple fact. It’s not Christ out there. It’s not the Christ of history, not the Christ who will come. It’s not the Christ of a book, although He is all of those things. It’s a Christ that literally comes into the heart of an individual.

Without that, that’s…that will be the dividing line of history. When everyone stands before the judgment seat of Christ, everyone will be divided by this issue. Everyone that Christ has literally come into their life, to take up residence, not just in the mind, but in the heart, to come in as Savior but also as Lord, as all that He is, everyone who has been begotten, literally, born by God’s Spirit, they will be standing on one side and they will be standing there in glory! There will be a brightness. There will be a purity that not one of us could ever think about deserving or achieving.

But everyone else, and it’s going to include a lot of religious people, will be standing there and some of them will be saying, “Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name?” (KJV). We’ve preached! Think about…think about what He’s saying there. There are preachers, who’ve given their lives to talking about Jesus, who will stand there and say, Lord, didn’t we preach in Your name? Haven’t we done many wonderful works in Your name? Haven’t we done all this stuff? We’ve performed miracles! Lord, what’s the deal here?

And He said, “…depart from me, ye that work iniquity….” The original word is lawlessness. There’s a spirit of self that’s on the throne. This is not somebody who’s surrendered the heart to the lordship of Jesus Christ. This is somebody who has embraced religion, but they’ve never had Jesus Christ come in and possess their hearts. And he said, “…depart from me, ye that work iniquity.” “I never knew you.”

Boy, this is the essence of being the Church. And I believe with all my heart, God wants to bring us to a fresh reality of this.

( congregational response ).

The Kingdom of God is a supernatural thing! And that’s what He means it to be. I mean, you go back to the beginning. All that Adam and Eve received from God, in the beginning, was created life. It had no power in and of itself to endure. And they had a choice before them, didn’t they? Am I going to go my own rebellious way and seek my own godhood, take charge of this life that I have been given and use it for my benefit and for my, whatever? Am I gonna be in charge, or am I gonna surrender my life to Him?

And they made the choice that they made and this world has been plunged into darkness ever since. And the reality is, the life that became so corrupted by sin can never be changed! That’s what’s amazing! There is only one solution to this life and that’s to die!

That’s what’s wrong. There’s…I mean, you can’t come, for example, you can’t come to this church, or any church for that matter, and simply…come to church, talk about Jesus, sing about Jesus, and live a good life and expect to be received on that day. It’s not about that.

( congregational amens ).

Every one of us has been reduced to exactly the same level and the same level of need. I don’t care whether you came out of a gutter of sin. There will be people who will hear this, at some point, who are in prison for murder, and other terrible crimes. You are no worse…you have no greater need than I do! I was born into a world of sinners. I have a nature that I don’t care what I do, it will absolutely resist God. It will fight to the last breath for its own will and its own way.

I’ll tell you what, this is the issue that absolutely divides humankind. Jesus had some pretty pointed things to say about that, didn’t He? He said, he that loves his life, or he that will preserve his life, what’s the end result of that?

( congregational response ).

He’s gonna lose it! I mean, this world is full of people who value this life above everything and what they think they can get out of it, fulfilling their desires, pursuing their dreams—earthly dreams, and when they come to the end, what will they have? Jesus said, “What shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul?”

I mean, suppose you could suddenly become the king of the world, in some fashion. You own every diamond, you own every piece of gold, you own every bit of wealth there is, any pleasure that comes into your heart and your mind, you have instant access to it, you can do whatever you want to gratify whatever desire arises.

In the first place, you’re gonna be chock-full of empty! Look at the people that this week have committed suicide, and they’re talking about suicide being an epidemic. What’s the problem? People are trying so hard to get what they think they want out of this life, gratifying its desires, and they’re winding up feeling the emptiness to the point where they say there’s no use going on, the best choice that I can make is to end my life.

And some of them are wealthy people who had seemed to have it all. And people would look up to them and say, oh, if I could only be like them. And yet, there they are, demonstrating the emptiness of this life.

But suppose you could come to the end of your life, and have it all and not even feel that. Somehow, you’re so immune to reality that you think you’ve got it all. Your life is gonna end!

God had a reason, when He created this world. You know, it’s something we’ve said so many times lately, and the Lord must want to emphasize it, God had a purpose in eternity to build a family, but it’s not gonna be a family peopled by folks who are possessed of human nature as we know it. These are gonna be people who are absolutely changed, born, literally living by His life! That’s what’s really at…that’s the issue with the Kingdom of God!

It’s interesting that Paul, earlier in this very passage, he describes a lot of the background that leads into that summary statement of, “…Christ in you, the hope of glory.” And he talks about how we have been delivered “…from the power of darkness.”

This world doesn’t know, for the most part, what in the world is going on or why things are the way they are. There is a kingdom ruled over by God’s enemy, the Devil. It’s real. His emissaries, demons, are real. We are seeing the effects in our society of the loosing of Satan—the last loosing before the end of all things. And we are…I’ll tell you, it takes divine power to deliver people. But there is power in Him!

( congregational amens ).

He has already won the victory at the cross. Thank God! But it’s a real war. It’s a real battle. Boy, there’s a lot of stuff…like I say, I could’ve just played this from the men’s meeting this morning. But Praise God! That was an encouragement. The Lord’s trying to remind me that…trying to encourage me because I’m…I’ll tell you, the Devil has battled this.

I’m in this battle with you. If you’re fighting battles in your mind and your heart right today, yeah, so am I. But the Lord is putting us through battles for a reason. He wants us to know that the enemy is real. He wants us to know that the issues are real. He wants us to know that we need Him. We need deliverance from what we are naturally. But He also wants to drive us to call upon Him and to open our hearts to the reality of who He is. He reigns!

( congregational response ).

He lives! He reigns! How little do we enter into that! What a low level of life that we accept as normal and natural and we’re just doing fine. Oh, God! It’s like I’ve said several times lately, the greatest danger I see and I can imagine if Brother Thomas were here he’d be saying a lot of the same things—the greatest danger is that we will simply take our history and the truths that the Lord has made real to us, and that they will simply become doctrine. They will simply become tradition. We will seek to indoctrinate the next generation in all of these wonderful things that we have learned, and imagine that they’re just gonna embrace them with their minds and go on and carry on and do ‘church’ just like we have taught them to do. My God, we need Christ!

( congregational amens ).

We need His living presence! It’s not Christ out there. It’s not Christ of history, like I’ve said, or Christ of doctrine. It’s a Christ in us! He literally lives in a people! Praise God! You know, in the Old Testament, God was doing a work of preparation, wasn’t He? He never meant for that to be the end game.

He gave them laws to follow, but He gave them laws knowing full well that they could not possible live up to them. But along with those laws, He gave them sacrifices. And so, when they failed and when they sinned they had a way to go to God and it was a sacrifice that involved death.

Oh, do you see the lessons that He was teaching in that? How sin…the consequence of sin is death! That’s the only answer. When something becomes truly infected with this disease called sin, there’s only one cure, and that’s death! But oh, there came One into the world—there came One, the very Son of God.

And again, you look back in this passage and you see who this was. Look at 15: “He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. For by him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things were created by him and for him. He is before all things, and in him all things hold together.” (NIV).

I mean, it goes on and on with who this is. This is amazing. This is the One who absolutely spoke the stars into existence. And here we were, worthy only to die and be destroyed, and just a blot on the universe. And yet, He came.

And He didn’t come as some grand monarch. He came as a little baby, born of human flesh, and He experienced everything that you and I experience. But by the grace of God, He never gave in to the principle of sin.

And so that time came when He, the Lamb of God, assumed the guilt for every sin, every lie you’ve ever told! Every evil thought, every evil word, every evil motive, every evil deed that’s ever proceeded from your life and your being, every one that’s ever happened in the world, He took it upon Himself, as though, I accept the guilt. I’m guilty, I plead guilty of all of it.

This is Somebody pretty amazing! And yet, He took it upon Himself. And they killed Him in the most painful, humiliating way possible. And they put Him in a grave and the demons danced. And three days later they shrieked as they realized what had happened, that God had turned what looked like absolute defeat into complete victory.

And it was through that that you and I have hope today. We don’t have hope because we’re anything. We’re nothing! I don’t care who you are today. We have the same need before God but we have the same Savior.

( congregational amens ).

You know, one thing kept coming back to my mind as I was thinking about when Jesus was talking to Nicodemus. Nicodemus was a man who was schooled in the Jews’ religion. They had taken the laws that God had given them and turned them into a man-made religion of self-righteousness. They imagined that if they did things the way they had learned to do them and followed their traditions that God would think highly of them and accept them.

And Jesus made the point very clear, you have to be born again. I don’t care what you do. I don’t care what religion you practice. I don’t care how you live your life, in one sense. I mean, obviously, we care, but you understand what I’m saying. It’s not a matter of how you live your life, it’s a matter of what kind of life you have. You have to be born again!

You can take flesh, somebody that’s simply born into Adam’s family and you can make him as religious as you want to! All you’ve got is a religious sinner, who’s gonna die in the end.

Oh, Nicodemus couldn’t understand that. You’ve got to be born again. You’ve got to have a literal birth, a miracle of God, because God’s new covenant is not about laws and do’s and don’ts and religious practices and all of that. It’s about a new heart and a new spirit that only God can put in us.

Do you know what the price of that is? See, Jesus doesn’t come in to enhance your earthly life. He doesn’t come in to fulfill your dream—your earthly dreams. He comes in as a replacement. You know the entry ‘rite,’ if you want to call it that, but the outward expression of somebody coming to Christ? You look in the New Testament. What was it? When somebody came to Christ, what did they do?

( congregational response ).

They were baptized! They didn’t have altars. They were baptized. What did that mean? What does baptism mean?

( congregational response ).

Yeah, it’s death, isn’t it? When I go into the water, I am literally laying down my life. I am giving it up. I’m saying, Lord, I embrace what Jesus did in my place on that cross. I deserve to die. I deserve what He got. And I am willingly laying down my life, but I’m doing so based upon your promise, the hope of His promise…what we were just singing about. The hope of His promise, that if I lay down my life and call upon the name of the Lord, that You will come and give me the life that came forth out of that tomb.

That’s been Your dream. That’s been Your plan from the beginning is to share Yourself with me! All that You are, the joy, the power, the freedom, all of that to come in and to literally live in me! That’s what it means to be His child! That’s what it means to be the Church of Jesus Christ.

Oh, the greatest danger for younger generations is to grow up and learn the truths, learn the doctrines, learn how to sing, but all you’ve got is up here. And you never come to the point where you realize what it means!

There’s one thing that really jumped out at me, among others, but one particular thing that jumps out at me right now is that Paul calls this a mystery. The NLT uses the word ‘secret.’ This is the kind of knowledge of what he’s talking about. You cannot posses this knowledge by…I don’t care who you are, how smart you are, how diligent you are to search out truth. If you’re simply going and looking for it with natural intelligence, you will never, ever discover this.

( congregational amens ).

It is so contrary to human nature to think that I live because I die, that I am…in myself I am a worthless sinner deserving death. But in Christ, I am loved as His child because I have received His life in my place…in its place.

I’ll tell you, it’s like I said recently, the Devil had no clue what was going on, what he’d got himself into when he crucified the Lord. He thought he was winning. But I’ll tell you, what does the scripture say? That, if they had known, if they’d understood these things, “…they would not have crucified the Lord of glory.” (NIV). You see why it was kept a mystery? This is truth that can only be revealed by God’s Spirit.

And one thing that is interesting to me in Paul’s words of exhortation to these people. Look…go back and…let’s see, back in verse 9, there’s a thought here that needs to be expressed. Paul says…he’s writing to believers here, by the way. “For this reason, since the day we heard about you, we have not stopped praying for you and asking God to fill you with the knowledge of his will through all spiritual wisdom and understanding.”

Now this is Christians he’s talking about. And basically, Paul is saying, I know you don’t really understand what you need to understand. You don’t fully appreciate what God has given you when He gave you His Son. And so, my prayer for you is, God, open your understanding.

Well, my God, if that’s true of Christians, how much more true is it of people that have never come to this! You can’t explain people into this. We need…my God, we need to pray that God will bring every person for whom this is not true, Christ is not your life…that God will bring you to such a point of conviction where you will know what you are! You will know who He is! You will know what’s needed and you’ll be moved by the grace of God to lay down your life and embrace His!

There’s got to be that point in time, whether it’s dramatic or quiet, there’s got to be a point of real divine revelation that goes to the heart! You think about Paul as the poster child of this. This was a guy who was so given to his religion that he used that as a pretext to go out and persecute Christians! That’s how blind he was! That’s how much of a mystery what he later came to understand was to Paul. Paul had no clue what was going on and what he was really doing until he met Jesus, rather dramatically, in his case.

But how does he describe that? He describes that as the revelation of the mystery, “…of the knowledge of…God in the face of Jesus Christ.” (KJV). And where did it come to? Was it just his mind? Did somebody sit him down and say, let me explain this doctrine to you? No! This was something that God used to penetrate his heart!

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