TV Transcripts

“A Call to Go Deeper” Conclusion
Broadcast #1575
December 11, 2022

Transcript of message from TV Broadcast 1575 -- taken from Closed Captioning Text

— Brother Phil Enlow: I thought about something that I’m gonna…I guess I’ll do it right now. I don’t how long this is gonna go, but we’ll just see. But here are some scriptures that I’ll guarantee every thoughtful Christian has read and said, boy, that sounds amazing. That’s way off in never-never land. I could never be a part of that. Or how does that work? I’m just gonna read the scriptures, and you can look them up later if you want.

John 15 actually is part of that passage. It says, “If you remain in me…” verse 7. “If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you.” (NIV). Anybody ever sat there and wondered? I mean, that was really the question the other night. How does that work? How…I don’t get this. I mean, I know it’s in the Word. I’m supposed to believe it.

We sing songs based on some of these. But do you think God actually wants to bring us closer and closer to a place where this actually works? Was He just spouting words that sounded good, or are they meant to actually have a practical effect in our lives? Yeah, I believe they’re meant to be practical.

John 14:12-14, “Very truly I’ll tell you, whoever believes in me will do the works I have been doing, and they will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father.” Anybody ever read that, and your basic reaction is, yeah, right? That certainly doesn’t apply to me. I won’t ask you again for a raising your hand!

“And I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it.” Aha! John 16:23-24, “In that day you will no longer ask me anything. Very truly I’ll tell you, my Father will give you whatever you ask in my name. Until now you have not asked for anything in my name. Ask and you will receive, and your joy will be complete.”

“Truly I’ll tell you…,” Matthew 21:21-22, “Truly I’ll tell you, if you have faith and do not doubt, not only can you do what was done to the fig tree…,” which He cursed, and it died, “…but also you can say to this mountain, Go, throw yourself in the sea, and it will be done. If you believe, you will receive whatever you ask for in prayer.”

Then a parallel passage in Mark 11, “Have faith in God, Jesus answered. Truly I’ll tell you, if anyone says to this mountain, Go, throw yourself into the sea, and does not doubt in their heart but believes that what they say will happen, it will be done for them. Therefore I’ll tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours. And when you stand praying, if you hold anything against anyone, forgive them, so that you Father in heaven may forgive you your sins.” That’s important, isn’t it?

( congregational response ).

There’s no way to do any of this other and not have a forgiving spirit. All right…other words of Jesus. Matthew 18, “Again, truly I’ll tell you that if two of you on earth agree about anything they ask for, it will be done for them by my Father in heaven. For where two or three gather in my name, there am in with them.” And the Greek says they ‘are gathered,’ as I’ve have pointed out in the past.

1st John 5:14-15, “This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us. And if we know that he hears us—whatever we ask—we know that we have what we asked of him.”

Everybody ready to throw up your hands and say, this is beyond me? This is nice. This is nice theory, nice theology and all that. We can affirm that Jesus said this, but it doesn’t have any practical bearing on our lives. How many of you think that the Lord has more for us?

( congregational response ).

But, you know, there’s a problem with how we approach things like this, especially in western society. We are very logical, or we think we are. But we’ve got to understand something. We’ve got to bring it down to a formula.

And you know, when you’re growing up as a human being, we learn about the world in which we live. We learn how things work. We learn what to do if we want to produce a certain result. And you know, we’re all about understanding something and feeling like we can do it, and there’s a sense of control. And one of the problems that has recurred and is widely true in our day, is people trying to find a formula for getting spiritual stuff to happen.

And you know, it’s almost implicit in the question that was asked, because that’s one way that people look at this. Okay, what’s the secret? I know what the scripture says, but how does it work? I don’t quite understand where does…how do I get faith…and how do I know what to ask for, all these logical questions that rise up.

And many people have, absolutely, turned to this, and I think God has been merciful in many cases…but have tried to find the formula for spiritual stuff, and it’s not a formula. Did Jesus go by formulas? See, isn’t He the perfect example? How many times have we talked about how He did what He did, that He didn’t do by His own energy?

Again, it was the Father in Him. We’ve quoted that scripture. But how did He know what to do? How did He know what to do? The Father showed Him. Yeah. There was a…there was such a connection, a living connection between Jesus and His Father, that He knew what to do in every given situation.

How in the world did He manage to go into, how did He go into the pool at Bethesda, for example? How did He know to go in there in the first place? The Father showed Him. And when He got there, and saw all those people, what did He do? How many did He heal? One man. How did He know to do that?

See, there was a purpose, and yet, He’d go to another village, some place up in Galilee, and heal everybody. Or He’d go to Bethsaida, was the village, wasn’t it? Late in His ministry, after He’d been so badly rejected, disbelieved in that town, and a blind man is brought to Him, and He leads Him out of the town. He prays for him, and the first prayer is not enough. He prays for him a second time, and finally, his eyes are opened.

Boy, do see the effect of unbelief in all that going on there? And then He says, don’t go back in there, and don’t tell anybody who’s going in there. Folks, we’re getting pretty darn close to that place in our world today. God is still reaching a remnant of people. There are people that He’s reaching. Thank God for every one. But I’ll tell you, the unbelief, the rebellious, willful unbelief in our world is getting to that point.

Maybe that’s a reason why we’re not seeing more signs and wonders here, because that’s not the essence of it. Boy, to some people, that’s all it’s about. I mean, you think about how people have tried to bring the things of God down into the realm of the natural, things that we can think about, reason, we can see, we can touch.

And so, you’ve got people that are all about the supernatural. They’ll look at this and say oh, yeah, that’s what we’ve got to…if we can’t see something that’s really supernatural, if we can’t feel something, if there isn’t an excitement, then, God’s not here. Is that true?

No, it’s not. Folks, the presence of God is so much deeper than that. I guess it’s a different purpose, but I’m gonna go ahead and tell you something I’ve told you many times, but it illustrates what I’m talking about, because I went through a period…I guess I was in my graduate school, a year after college.

And I was around a lot of these people that emphasize feelings and experiences, and of course, I wanted that. And somehow, there came to a weekend when…you know, it seemed like everybody around me was just doing great. They were happy and exhilarated, and I was not. And so, frankly, I just got mad at God.

And I just went into a spiritual pout. Emotionally, I just stopped, stopped trying, stopped caring. And, I’ve told this story many times, but…several days, I think it was like, maybe, on a Wednesday after that. This didn’t go on a long time. I went through the motions. I just kind of…but, inside I was dead. I just didn’t put forth any effort. There was nothing coming from me.

But down deep, I knew. Where did that come from? See, I…there was no human energy going into this at all, but God had put something down in here that was a conviction, that I knew better. I knew He was real. And I knew I could not equate Him with feelings and experiences.

And I finally…I just prayed a simple prayer. Lord, if I never have a feeling, I’m gonna serve You. And I did not have any feelings to go with that. I didn’t feel any different in some respects. I felt a peace, perhaps, I guess would be fair to say. I knew things were okay, but I didn’t have any feelings to rise up and say, yeah, that was right! See!

Oh, how we look for signs. We want to know that…we want to be able to see something or touch something or feel something to know God is real. So much religion is about that, where the presence of God and the anointing is equated with preaching that is just, basically, somebody worked up into a frenzy and pouring out words, and that’s supposed to be the evidence that God is in it.

Well, I mean, God can be in a lot of things on occasion, but I mean, for people to equate that with God’s presence and God’s anointing, that’s just a form. Folks, there’s a danger. We are so constituted, that form so quickly becomes what we go by. We’re not immune to getting to the point where we do the right stuff in our behavior, but it’s not as connected to the vine as we might like to think it is.

God doesn’t want a form. God doesn’t want something that just…that we know what to do, and we know how to behave, because it’s so easy to come in here and think that everything is right.

The Pharisee’s were convinced they were right. They obeyed the law meticulously, zealously! And yet, they didn’t have what they needed. But even as believers, do we settle for just doing the right stuff? I thank God for the measure of life that God has blessed us with. I believe He’s with us, and I believe He’s helped us.

But oh, how many times in history have you had a move of God start out with great life and power? Then, you go back in a generation or three, and what’s left? They handed down the form.

See, folks, we are so geared to what we see and what we do and the formula side of it, that it’s so easy for us to think, oh, if I’m doing the right thing, God will show up. God is looking for a heart relationship with Him. And I’ll tell you, if He gets that, He can train us and teach us, and bring us into the reality of what He’s talking about here.

How many of you would like to be in a place where you could be so close to Him that a situation would arise, and you would know how to pray? Yeah, that would be a wonderful thing, wouldn’t it? I believe many of you have experienced that kind thing. I’m not talking about something that’s just totally foreign. God has, many times, helped us in prayer.

Aren’t we promised that? We don’t know how to pray, but the Holy Spirit will help us, “…with groanings which cannot be uttered.” (KJV). Yeah. God offers so much to us that we just simply try to bring what He gives us down into the human realm where we know what to do, we know how to do it, and we think that’s what He wants.

But the thing is, you can do that and miss the inward connection that He’s really looking for. God is going to have a people in the darkest hour of earth’s history, who walk with Him, who learn that being…that abiding in the vine is not something that just happens when we turn on the spiritual switch.

It’s gotten real quiet. It’s a lot to think about, isn’t it? But how does the Lord feel about us in all of this? Is He mad with us? No. There’s such a heart of love that reaches out. Like we sang the song, “Just as I Am.”

So, what do we do with this? Do we just give up in defeat, throw up our hands and say I guess this isn’t for me? I’m just so bad. You know, what are you looking at when you think that way? You’re looking at yourself. If you look at yourself, you’re not gonna be very encouraged, not if you’re honest. I never am.

But I’ll tell you, the Lord wants us to fix our eyes on Him, and if we do, we will see a heart of love and mercy, that longs for us to know Him in a deeper way, that has the power to bring us to a place where we can be so in harmony with Him when we pray, that we can more and more know how to pray.

We can pray, and it will be not just us uttering words and Santa Clause requests of God, but there’ll be…it’ll be something that God wants to accomplish, and He means to do it by using us to pray and to speak the words.

When the Father created everything, how did He do it? He gave the job to His Son, and the Words were spoken by the Son. They had power to do what needed to be done. God wants to speak words through us. God wants to speak powerful, creative words through us.

That doesn’t mean we chase signs and wonders. That means we just come into harmony with Him, whether there are feelings that are high or low or whatever the circumstances are. We just simply yield ourselves to Him and say, oh God, just live through me, and I don’t have to be anxious. Oh my God, am I doing it right? Where am I supposed go now? What am I supposed to do next?

Lord, have mercy. I remember some poor guy that I knew in college, and I guess, today, they would say he has PTSD. He’d come out of the Korean war at that time. That’s how long ago this was. And oh, he was determined to be led of God!

But I mean, the guy was so obsessed with being led of the Spirit. He had to be led of the Spirit to go to lunch. He had to be led of the Spirit to go to the bathroom, just about. I mean, it was such an extreme. The enemy had just brought him into this anxious, extreme.

You know, I believe we can rest. The Lord wants us to have a spirit of rest. Our heart is, Lord, I’m Yours, I’m yielded, I’m open, I’m listening, I’m not obsessing, I’m not being anxious about it. I believe if You want me to know something, You can help me to know it. I can have that conviction that’s deep in my spirit that has nothing to do with feelings, because I’m not always gonna feel like…you know, exhilarated.

But yet, You can do something that is eternal whether I have a feeling or not, because it’s not about any of that. It’s not about being a scholar. It’s not about being a sign and wonder producer. And yet, God can do all of those things. But it’s just a people that know Him, that walk with Him, and know that that’s what He wants.

Do you really believe the Lord wants to walk with every single one of you, that He loves you, that He starts by accepting you where you’re at, but He says I’ve got more for you? You have the right to walk with Me and to look to Me, and I will teach you, just like that little child is nowhere near ready to get on the football field.

Just like that, but I will start where you’re at, and I will teach you, and I’m gonna bring you to a place where some of these things are real, and we know them, not because we’ve learned a formula, not because we’ve worked up something we call faith or worked up and emotion, but because there’s a deep conviction in our hearts that we know Him.

Paul didn’t say that I may know more about Him, did he? He said, “…that I may know Him…” Yeah! “…And the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his death.” And it had to do with experiencing resurrection life.

But he also said…I’m not gonna open it up, but you remember what he talked about…that I’m not there yet, basically. I’m forgetting what’s behind. I’m reaching for what’s before. “I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God….” Paul hadn’t entered into all of this, and yet, look at all the amazing things God did though him. And yet, here’s Paul reaching out and saying, there’s more.

You think God wants us to be just satisfied and say, well thank God, we’ve got a good place to go, and we sing good songs, and we’ve got people who love the Lord. That’s wonderful. But God wants a relationship with every single one of you, and with me, where divine life can flow in whatever way He has designed you to express it, and eternal results will happen.

Folks, I believe He can teach us to pray. Let’s just start where we’re at, not worry about it, not be anxious about it. Say, Lord, You know where I’m at. I’m just gonna talk to You, Lord, and I’m gonna bring my concerns.

But you know, even in that…I can’t remember what I said the other night. I think I may have mentioned the Lord’s Prayer where you’ve got to start with oh, “…Father in heaven, hallowed be your name, your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.” (NIV). See, the very foundation of the relationship is not what I want in my earthly life. It’s all about what Your eternal purpose, Your kingdom, and my place in it while I’m in this world.

I’ll tell you, we come on that basis, and we relate to Him as we are called to do, I’ll tell you, there’s no limit to what God can do. We hear about miracles and amazing things happening in other parts of the world. If God purposed to do it, and it were needful here, He can do anything. We’ve seen Him, over the years, do miraculous healings that weren’t even talked about, instant ones.

I’ve seen it myself. I won’t go into some of it, but I know these things are real. But I also know that God wants to establish a relationship. He will never give you a formula for living the Christian life other than abide in the vine. Praise God. Praise God!

It’s something to think about, isn’t it? I’ll just ask you all to pray with me, and just ask the Lord to teach us these things, to teach us to live for Him and to live in a living relationship with Him that just doesn’t get switched off when we walk out of here, but rather, we’re conscious.

You come up short, praise God. Lord, help me. Thank God for the blood. We sang about it this morning. Thank God that we always have a place to go, that we can always come to Him and know that He understands.

At the same time, He’s my help. My God, we can’t just cut ourselves off because we haven’t measured up in our own eyes. Again, what are we looking at? We’ve got to get beyond the point where we’re just obsessed with how I’m doing and how I’m feeling and just say, Lord, You know all about that. You love me. You loved me before the foundation of the world. You knew my name. You planned for me.

Help me to let go of all this junk and just say, Lord, help me to find Your plan, and live in it, and know that You’re gonna do what You’re gonna do. And I’ll tell you, the whole body of Christ is gonna benefit. That measure of light that You’ve given to me is gonna be for the benefit of everybody else, and theirs is gonna be for the benefit of me, as well.

This is simple, and yet, it’s profound truth. Folks, do you want a form, or do you want Christ? I want Him, don’t you? I believe He wants us, too. That’s the most wonderful thing. Praise God!

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