Into the Wilderness | Ep. 4 | TBN

Into the Wilderness | Ep. 4

Watch Into the Wilderness | Ep. 4
November 5, 2018
27:35

Anonymous with Alicia Britt Chole

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Into the Wilderness | Ep. 4

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  • smothered by what I'll call the uns,
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  • unseen, unappreciated, underestimated.
  • 00:00:05.220 --> 00:00:09.260
  • Has it ever seemed like something or someone
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  • pressed the pause button on your potential and dreams?
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  • Jesus understand what it's like to be hidden.
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  • His first 30 years were mostly undocumented
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  • and uncelebrated.
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  • But with his life and with ours,
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  • we dare not mistake unseen for unimportant,
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  • or unapplauded for unproductive.
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  • Join me as we discover the strength God grows
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  • in anonymous seasons.
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  • (inspiring music)
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  • Has following God ever led you into difficult times?
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  • If so, I've got great news.
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  • You're in really, and I do mean really, good company.
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  • Earlier in the series, we studied Jesus's baptism
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  • at the Jordan River,
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  • which concluded with Father God's heavenly shout,
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  • recorded in Matthew 3:17.
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  • "This is my son, whom I love.
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  • "With him, I am well pleased."
  • 00:01:25.140 --> 00:01:28.120
  • In the very next verse, Matthew 4:1,
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  • we read, "Then Jesus was led by the spirit
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  • "into the desert."
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  • At the waters of the Jordan, the sky ripped open,
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  • the Holy Spirit descended like a dove
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  • and rested upon Jesus.
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  • God thundered his unfailingly love from the heavens,
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  • and then he sent his beloved son into the desert.
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  • What?
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  • I love you, son, enjoy, the desert?
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  • Generally speaking, the sequence of events
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  • makes us a little uncomfortable.
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  • Can following God's good spirit
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  • lead us straight into a desert?
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  • Can perfect obedience deposit us in a wasteland?
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  • Can God's loving will call us to barren places?
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  • Evidently.
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  • Based on Jesus's example,
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  • the answer to all of the above seems to be yes.
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  • It's just something we don't talk about that often.
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  • We prefer it when following God leads us
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  • into green pastures, and quiet waters, and spas.
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  • It seems that God's good spirit
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  • would lead us to good places,
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  • like success and strength, happiness and wealth.
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  • God led me into the desert, hallelujah,
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  • is just not the stuff T shirts are made of,
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  • but it does seem to be the stuff
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  • that world changers are made of.
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  • After 30 years of hiddenness in Nazareth,
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  • Jesus offered no resistance
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  • when the Holy Spirit directed him into yet
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  • another type of desert.
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  • Matthew simply states that Jesus was led there.
  • 00:03:03.290 --> 00:03:08.140
  • Desert is translated from the Greek erimos,
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  • which speaks of the abandonment
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  • of a person, cause, or place.
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  • Though it can refer to an arid track of land
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  • or waterless region,
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  • the primary meaning of erimos,
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  • especially when used to describe a place,
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  • is that of solitude or emptiness.
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  • In this sense, desert is a descriptor for lonely places
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  • and uninhabited regions.
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  • Geographically for Jesus, desert probably referenced
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  • the untamed wilderness just west of the Jordan River
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  • that to this day features wave upon wave
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  • of dry, brown, barren hills where few things grow
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  • and fewer people pass.
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  • Mark adds two more details to our image
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  • of Jesus in the desert.
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  • In mark 1:13, we read that he was with the wild animals
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  • and angels attended him.
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  • Personally, I find the wild animals somewhat alarming,
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  • but the mention of angels is much more promising
  • 00:04:07.240 --> 00:04:10.130
  • and was no doubt a source of great comfort to Jesus.
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  • However, another presence was also in that desert,
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  • whose agenda was anything but comfort.
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  • Satan.
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  • He seems to find his way into most deserts.
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  • Satan's disagreeable company in the Judean wilderness
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  • appears to have been permitted by Father God himself.
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  • In his love, the Father led the Son
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  • into a place that was a desert
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  • by every imaginable definition.
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  • Physically, it was barren.
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  • Emotionally, it was lonely.
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  • And spiritually, it was troubled.
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  • And though we have no record of God's voice
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  • sounding in the desert as it did at the Jordan,
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  • we do know that Satan's voice was quiet clear.
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  • However, the Judean desert
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  • wasn't chapter one of Jesus's life.
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  • It was chapter 30.
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  • The Father didn't deposit the son on the earth
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  • as a grown man.
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  • Emmanuel, God incarnate, came to us as an infant.
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  • For three mostly unseen, unapplauded decades,
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  • Jesus made countless unseen, unapplauded choices.
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  • Year after year, those choices clustered, and gain momentum,
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  • and now shaped the earthshaking decisions Jesus faced
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  • during what destined to become
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  • one of the most well-known experiences
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  • in all of history, the temptation of Christ.
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  • Jesus's water baptism
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  • marked his first step out of hiddenness,
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  • and a documented, debated,
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  • scrutinized, and celebrated history.
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  • His second step took him
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  • from the cool waters of the Jordan
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  • into the dry wilderness of Judea.
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  • As Matthew 4:1 states,
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  • "To be tempted by the devil."
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  • Biblical language scholars tell us
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  • that the Greek word for tempted
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  • can mean to examine or test,
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  • to learn another's true nature or character,
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  • or to try to trap or attempt to catch in a mistake.
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  • When it appears as a noun,
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  • the same word is rendered temptation,
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  • testing, or trial,
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  • and is often used to describe the unglamorous realities
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  • of walking in faith
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  • when following God seems to lead us into deserts.
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  • James 1:2-4,
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  • "Consider it pure joy, my brothers,
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  • "whenever you face trials of many kinds,
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  • "because you know that the testing of your faith
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  • "develops perseverance.
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  • "Perseverance must finish its work
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  • "so that you may be mature and complete,
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  • "not lacking anything."
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  • And 1 Peter 4:12-13.
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  • "Dear friends, do not be surprised
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  • "at the painful trial you are suffering,
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  • "as though something strange were happening to you.
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  • "But rejoice that you participate
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  • "in the sufferings of Christ,
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  • "so that you may be overjoyed when his glory is revealed."
  • 00:07:17.280 --> 00:07:21.280
  • If taken seriously, these admonitions from James and Peter
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  • will challenge us to the core.
  • 00:07:27.220 --> 00:07:30.210
  • They call us to rejoice
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  • when we, like Jesus, experience testing times,
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  • These early church fathers instruct us to anticipate trials,
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  • persevere through them, and rest assured in them
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  • that we're somehow participating in Jesus's sufferings.
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  • But in the middle of a desert,
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  • James and Peter's words can be easy on the eyes
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  • and hard on the heart,
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  • because trials are, by definition, trying.
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  • Trials reduce us.
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  • And that process of reduction can be exhausting,
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  • emotionally, physically, and spiritually.
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  • When obedience leads us into deserts.
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  • When we're pressed by trying, testing, tempting times,
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  • we can strengthen our resolve by remembering
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  • that trials and temptations
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  • aren't our greatest foes.
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  • Eternally, perhaps the greater danger on this earth
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  • is losing perspective and beginning to value
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  • our fragile surroundings more
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  • than God's faithful friendship in our lives.
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  • If God's presence truly is our treasure in this life,
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  • and if that presence had led us, as it did Jesus,
  • 00:08:49.120 --> 00:08:53.050
  • into trying places,
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  • is there really anywhere else on earth that we'd rather be?
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  • For the love of his father's close companionship,
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  • Jesus followed God's spirit
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  • straight into the Judean wilderness.
  • 00:09:06.280 --> 00:09:10.080
  • And in that trying, tempting, testing space,
  • 00:09:10.080 --> 00:09:14.050
  • Jesus had choices to make, just as we do.
  • 00:09:14.050 --> 00:09:18.000
  • As we read in Hebrews 2:18 and 4:15.
  • 00:09:18.000 --> 00:09:22.160
  • "Because he himself suffered when he was tempted,
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  • "he was able to help those who are being tempted.
  • 00:09:25.290 --> 00:09:29.270
  • "For we do not of a high priest
  • 00:09:30.240 --> 00:09:32.180
  • "who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses,
  • 00:09:32.180 --> 00:09:36.020
  • "but we have one who has been tempted in every way,
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  • "just as we are, yet was without sin."
  • 00:09:39.200 --> 00:09:43.180
  • Throughout the New Testament,
  • 00:09:45.000 --> 00:09:46.130
  • the writers who inspired by God's spirit
  • 00:09:46.130 --> 00:09:49.050
  • to write about Jesus's wilderness experience,
  • 00:09:49.050 --> 00:09:52.030
  • asserted in unison that Jesus was tempted.
  • 00:09:52.030 --> 00:09:56.030
  • So I find it reasonable to conclude
  • 00:09:56.030 --> 00:09:58.170
  • that Jesus was temptable.
  • 00:09:58.170 --> 00:10:01.090
  • In the desert, Jesus was tried by Satan.
  • 00:10:01.090 --> 00:10:05.020
  • His faith was tested.
  • 00:10:05.020 --> 00:10:06.210
  • His soul was tempted.
  • 00:10:06.210 --> 00:10:08.270
  • In fact, as we just heard from Hebrews,
  • 00:10:08.270 --> 00:10:11.180
  • Jesus was tempted in every way, just as we are.
  • 00:10:11.180 --> 00:10:16.010
  • When we study Jesus's life,
  • 00:10:17.010 --> 00:10:18.280
  • it becomes clear that it is a possible
  • 00:10:18.280 --> 00:10:22.060
  • for God's good spirit to lead us into deserts,
  • 00:10:22.060 --> 00:10:25.290
  • for obedience to deposit us in seemingly barren spaces
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  • in seasons in which we feel tested, tempted, and tried,
  • 00:10:32.100 --> 00:10:36.040
  • but thanks be to God.
  • 00:10:36.260 --> 00:10:39.120
  • Because Jesus himself suffered
  • 00:10:39.120 --> 00:10:42.000
  • through tempting, testing times.
  • 00:10:42.000 --> 00:10:44.030
  • He is well able
  • 00:10:44.030 --> 00:10:46.240
  • to wisely mentor us with great compassion
  • 00:10:46.240 --> 00:10:51.010
  • through every trial and temptation
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  • we will ever face in this life.
  • 00:10:53.230 --> 00:10:57.130
  • That reality makes Jesus's wilderness experience
  • 00:10:57.130 --> 00:11:01.030
  • a worthy focus of our attention.
  • 00:11:01.030 --> 00:11:03.240
  • We'll continue that study in just a few minutes.
  • 00:11:03.240 --> 00:11:07.040
  • (gentle music)
  • 00:11:08.290 --> 00:11:11.170
  • - People always ask us like,
  • 00:11:13.020 --> 00:11:14.100
  • "How did you guys church grow here in Long Beach?
  • 00:11:14.100 --> 00:11:16.220
  • "How are you able to reach this community?
  • 00:11:16.220 --> 00:11:18.280
  • "How are you guys such a diverse and multiethnic church?"
  • 00:11:18.280 --> 00:11:22.080
  • We didn't start two or three years ago.
  • 00:11:22.080 --> 00:11:25.030
  • We planted 12 years ago,
  • 00:11:25.030 --> 00:11:26.140
  • we've been here in Long Beach for over 10 years,
  • 00:11:26.140 --> 00:11:29.040
  • and nobody what we were doing.
  • 00:11:29.040 --> 00:11:32.200
  • Hi, my name is Noemi Chavez,
  • 00:11:34.060 --> 00:11:35.230
  • and my husband and I are pastors here
  • 00:11:35.230 --> 00:11:37.220
  • at 7th Street Church
  • 00:11:37.220 --> 00:11:39.000
  • in the city of Long Beach in California.
  • 00:11:39.000 --> 00:11:41.160
  • In my college years, I feel like that was definitely
  • 00:11:43.080 --> 00:11:45.250
  • a hidden season for me.
  • 00:11:45.250 --> 00:11:47.180
  • I was a local youth pastor at a little church in East LA,
  • 00:11:47.180 --> 00:11:51.250
  • and I was serving the kids in that community.
  • 00:11:51.250 --> 00:11:54.250
  • I never knew that was gonna pastor a church or church plant.
  • 00:11:54.250 --> 00:11:58.210
  • But in those seasons when you're hidden,
  • 00:11:58.210 --> 00:12:00.170
  • you allow God to just shape your heart, your life,
  • 00:12:00.170 --> 00:12:04.070
  • so that you're not reacting to life,
  • 00:12:04.070 --> 00:12:06.200
  • but you're actually allowing the spirit of God
  • 00:12:06.200 --> 00:12:09.080
  • to lead you, to make decisions through the hard things.
  • 00:12:09.080 --> 00:12:12.000
  • I leaned then fully into the right now.
  • 00:12:13.060 --> 00:12:15.260
  • I am hands-on church planter with my husband,
  • 00:12:15.260 --> 00:12:19.120
  • and we're gonna build God's house in Long beach.
  • 00:12:19.120 --> 00:12:22.110
  • I've been pastoring already for about
  • 00:12:24.130 --> 00:12:25.240
  • six, almost seven years,
  • 00:12:25.240 --> 00:12:27.040
  • when we began the conversations of what can we do
  • 00:12:27.040 --> 00:12:31.240
  • preventatively as a church to help girls
  • 00:12:31.240 --> 00:12:33.260
  • before they end up being trafficked on the streets,
  • 00:12:33.260 --> 00:12:36.180
  • how can we partner with local authority.
  • 00:12:36.180 --> 00:12:38.180
  • So that season was a season of a lot of toiling.
  • 00:12:38.180 --> 00:12:42.150
  • It was work.
  • 00:12:42.150 --> 00:12:44.090
  • I was hanging out with one of my girlfriends
  • 00:12:44.090 --> 00:12:46.030
  • and she told me, "Don't you just long to travel
  • 00:12:46.030 --> 00:12:47.280
  • "and get to speak all over the place
  • 00:12:47.280 --> 00:12:49.210
  • "and all over the world?"
  • 00:12:49.210 --> 00:12:51.050
  • And I remember I told her there wasn't space in my life
  • 00:12:51.050 --> 00:12:54.030
  • for me to travel and be all over the place.
  • 00:12:54.030 --> 00:12:56.020
  • I needed to nurture and build
  • 00:12:56.020 --> 00:12:57.270
  • what God had trusted us in that season.
  • 00:12:57.270 --> 00:12:59.200
  • And so, my answer to her was, you know what,
  • 00:12:59.200 --> 00:13:02.140
  • God knows where to find me.
  • 00:13:02.140 --> 00:13:03.250
  • He knows where to find me.
  • 00:13:04.210 --> 00:13:05.200
  • My shelf life is not based on
  • 00:13:05.200 --> 00:13:08.270
  • my personal goals and dreams.
  • 00:13:08.270 --> 00:13:10.220
  • God knows the time when he needs me
  • 00:13:10.220 --> 00:13:13.270
  • in another place and space.
  • 00:13:13.270 --> 00:13:15.250
  • The book actually just helped me feel like
  • 00:13:15.250 --> 00:13:18.160
  • it's okay not to be pushing and struggling
  • 00:13:18.160 --> 00:13:22.220
  • to reach the next thing.
  • 00:13:22.220 --> 00:13:24.250
  • She talks about main course and like the appetizers,
  • 00:13:24.250 --> 00:13:28.110
  • and the dessert part of the meal.
  • 00:13:28.110 --> 00:13:30.000
  • And so many times, we see a season in our life as
  • 00:13:30.000 --> 00:13:32.170
  • like this is just the first part of the meal.
  • 00:13:32.170 --> 00:13:34.230
  • I'm looking forward to the main course.
  • 00:13:34.230 --> 00:13:36.240
  • I really felt like this season,
  • 00:13:36.240 --> 00:13:38.270
  • this is my main course right now.
  • 00:13:38.270 --> 00:13:40.200
  • This is exactly where I'm supposed to be.
  • 00:13:40.200 --> 00:13:42.110
  • It's no less than what's coming.
  • 00:13:42.110 --> 00:13:44.280
  • And so, all of a sudden, this thing that was a hidden season
  • 00:13:44.280 --> 00:13:49.090
  • where we were just working
  • 00:13:49.090 --> 00:13:51.010
  • and organically finding ways
  • 00:13:51.010 --> 00:13:53.130
  • to serve the girls in our community,
  • 00:13:53.130 --> 00:13:55.180
  • it's like God says,
  • 00:13:55.180 --> 00:13:57.020
  • "Okay, now, how about you train other churches to do this?"
  • 00:13:57.020 --> 00:14:00.050
  • It was never the plan,
  • 00:14:00.050 --> 00:14:02.040
  • but God's plan is always so much better,
  • 00:14:02.040 --> 00:14:04.040
  • and God was getting ready to launch us into a new season
  • 00:14:04.040 --> 00:14:07.280
  • where we're going to impact
  • 00:14:07.280 --> 00:14:09.200
  • the lives of young girls throughout this nation
  • 00:14:09.200 --> 00:14:11.190
  • and even globally.
  • 00:14:11.190 --> 00:14:12.210
  • Hidden seasons are gonna be a continual cycle in our lives,
  • 00:14:14.180 --> 00:14:19.080
  • and they keep us grounded and they keep us close to Jesus,
  • 00:14:19.080 --> 00:14:22.260
  • and they remind us at the end of the day that
  • 00:14:22.260 --> 00:14:25.140
  • he is our source.
  • 00:14:25.140 --> 00:14:27.080
  • We really can't do this if he is not the one sustaining us,
  • 00:14:27.080 --> 00:14:30.240
  • that we really can do this
  • 00:14:30.240 --> 00:14:31.290
  • if we're not walking out our faith
  • 00:14:31.290 --> 00:14:34.170
  • and remembering that it is the private,
  • 00:14:34.170 --> 00:14:38.050
  • and the quiet, and the unseen places that are
  • 00:14:38.050 --> 00:14:41.080
  • most significant in our walk with Christ.
  • 00:14:41.080 --> 00:14:44.080
  • At the end of the day, God knows where to find me.
  • 00:14:45.210 --> 00:14:48.230
  • - [Announcer] Have you ever felt hidden or overlooked,
  • 00:14:54.180 --> 00:14:57.230
  • your potential unseen,
  • 00:14:57.230 --> 00:14:59.110
  • and your abilities unappreciated?
  • 00:15:00.210 --> 00:15:02.170
  • Jesus knew that season well.
  • 00:15:03.280 --> 00:15:05.230
  • The first three decades of his life
  • 00:15:06.270 --> 00:15:09.030
  • were unrecognized by the public eye,
  • 00:15:09.030 --> 00:15:11.110
  • and uncelebrated by those who knew him best.
  • 00:15:11.110 --> 00:15:14.260
  • In Dr. Alicia Chole's book, Anonymous,
  • 00:15:14.260 --> 00:15:17.240
  • you will discover how to overcome the temptation
  • 00:15:17.240 --> 00:15:20.290
  • that tries to steal your destiny,
  • 00:15:20.290 --> 00:15:23.160
  • embrace the beauty of hidden seasons,
  • 00:15:23.160 --> 00:15:26.110
  • and live a life of power and purpose.
  • 00:15:26.110 --> 00:15:29.110
  • Today, for your gift of $40 or more
  • 00:15:29.110 --> 00:15:31.280
  • to the many outreaches of TBN,
  • 00:15:31.280 --> 00:15:34.020
  • you will receive the book, Anonymous,
  • 00:15:34.020 --> 00:15:36.110
  • and a companion study guide,
  • 00:15:36.110 --> 00:15:38.000
  • so you can discover as so many others have
  • 00:15:38.000 --> 00:15:41.010
  • that hidden from the eyes and accolades of man
  • 00:15:41.010 --> 00:15:44.000
  • is where God does some of his greatest work.
  • 00:15:44.000 --> 00:15:47.210
  • Go online or call now.
  • 00:15:47.210 --> 00:15:49.210
  • (dramatic music)
  • 00:15:49.210 --> 00:15:52.130
  • - Jesus was immersed in the water of the Jordan
  • 00:15:55.010 --> 00:15:57.160
  • for only a few seconds.
  • 00:15:57.160 --> 00:15:59.060
  • His immersion in the temptation, however,
  • 00:15:59.060 --> 00:16:01.220
  • would last much, much longer.
  • 00:16:01.220 --> 00:16:04.140
  • Obedience to Father God led Jesus to remain
  • 00:16:04.140 --> 00:16:07.240
  • in the Judean desert more than 40 days,
  • 00:16:07.240 --> 00:16:11.010
  • as we read in Matthew 4:1-2.
  • 00:16:11.010 --> 00:16:14.040
  • "Then Jesus was led by the Spirit into the desert
  • 00:16:14.040 --> 00:16:16.290
  • "to be tempted by the devil.
  • 00:16:16.290 --> 00:16:19.010
  • "After fasting 40 days and 40 nights, he was hungry."
  • 00:16:19.010 --> 00:16:23.170
  • I invite you to think of these 40 days
  • 00:16:23.170 --> 00:16:25.280
  • as a window that opens into Jesus's present,
  • 00:16:25.280 --> 00:16:29.130
  • his future, and his past.
  • 00:16:29.130 --> 00:16:32.230
  • Into his present, because the temptation was real.
  • 00:16:32.230 --> 00:16:36.030
  • It wasn't hypothetical.
  • 00:16:36.030 --> 00:16:37.160
  • It wasn't allegorical.
  • 00:16:37.160 --> 00:16:39.120
  • For Jesus, it was actual, he lived it.
  • 00:16:39.120 --> 00:16:42.240
  • Into his future, because in it we see hints of,
  • 00:16:42.240 --> 00:16:46.070
  • foreshadowing of the challenges he would face
  • 00:16:46.070 --> 00:16:49.080
  • as he journeyed crossward.
  • 00:16:49.080 --> 00:16:51.130
  • And the 40 days additionally opened a window
  • 00:16:51.130 --> 00:16:55.060
  • into Jesus's past into his hidden years.
  • 00:16:55.060 --> 00:16:59.000
  • Because for Jesus and for us,
  • 00:16:59.000 --> 00:17:01.250
  • the choices we make in the place of trials today
  • 00:17:01.250 --> 00:17:05.150
  • are greatly influenced by the choices we've made
  • 00:17:05.150 --> 00:17:08.260
  • in our yesterdays.
  • 00:17:08.260 --> 00:17:11.110
  • Today never exists in a vacuum.
  • 00:17:11.110 --> 00:17:14.240
  • Every documented choice Jesus made in the temptation
  • 00:17:14.240 --> 00:17:19.000
  • reflected undocumented choices
  • 00:17:19.000 --> 00:17:21.080
  • he was making before the temptation.
  • 00:17:21.080 --> 00:17:24.230
  • In hidden years, the father was preparing the son
  • 00:17:24.230 --> 00:17:28.080
  • to overcome three critical areas of temptation.
  • 00:17:28.080 --> 00:17:32.050
  • In Matthew's account, the first interaction
  • 00:17:33.110 --> 00:17:36.060
  • in Jesus's temptation physically took place
  • 00:17:36.060 --> 00:17:39.120
  • near some stones in the desert,
  • 00:17:39.120 --> 00:17:41.260
  • and the second at the tip of the temple,
  • 00:17:41.260 --> 00:17:43.270
  • and the third on a very high mountain.
  • 00:17:43.270 --> 00:17:46.260
  • Spiritually though, these exchanges had nothing to do
  • 00:17:46.260 --> 00:17:50.270
  • with the environment, religious landmarks, or random rocks.
  • 00:17:50.270 --> 00:17:55.120
  • Innumerable lessons could be mined
  • 00:17:55.120 --> 00:17:58.010
  • from this biblical account.
  • 00:17:58.010 --> 00:18:00.130
  • I invite you to think of Jesus's experience
  • 00:18:00.130 --> 00:18:03.180
  • in the Judean wilderness
  • 00:18:03.180 --> 00:18:05.090
  • as one singular temptation with three layers,
  • 00:18:05.090 --> 00:18:09.210
  • all of which we'll study in detail in the episodes to come.
  • 00:18:09.210 --> 00:18:13.230
  • A layer of appetite.
  • 00:18:13.230 --> 00:18:15.150
  • Tell these stones to become bread.
  • 00:18:15.150 --> 00:18:18.100
  • A layer of applause.
  • 00:18:18.100 --> 00:18:20.010
  • Throw yourself down from the temple.
  • 00:18:20.010 --> 00:18:22.240
  • And a layer of authority.
  • 00:18:22.240 --> 00:18:24.290
  • All of this I will give you
  • 00:18:24.290 --> 00:18:26.240
  • if you bow down and worship me.
  • 00:18:26.240 --> 00:18:30.030
  • In every one of these layers,
  • 00:18:30.030 --> 00:18:32.090
  • Satan used the same four-part strategy
  • 00:18:32.090 --> 00:18:35.200
  • to tempt Jesus in the wilderness
  • 00:18:35.200 --> 00:18:38.010
  • that he still uses to tempt us today.
  • 00:18:38.010 --> 00:18:40.290
  • First, he dangled a lure in front of Jesus
  • 00:18:42.040 --> 00:18:45.200
  • by offering him something attractive.
  • 00:18:45.200 --> 00:18:48.200
  • Second, he appealed to a natural longing in Jesus
  • 00:18:48.200 --> 00:18:53.010
  • by appealing to normal, neutral human desires.
  • 00:18:53.010 --> 00:18:57.080
  • Third, he identified a means
  • 00:18:57.080 --> 00:18:59.230
  • to satisfying that natural longing
  • 00:18:59.230 --> 00:19:02.120
  • by suggesting how Jesus can get what he wants.
  • 00:19:02.120 --> 00:19:06.050
  • And fourth, he sounded a tempting invitation to sin
  • 00:19:06.050 --> 00:19:11.040
  • by masterfully mixing truth with his lies.
  • 00:19:12.100 --> 00:19:16.020
  • Jesus's strategy in resisting temptation
  • 00:19:16.020 --> 00:19:19.140
  • also followed a clear two-part pattern.
  • 00:19:19.140 --> 00:19:22.290
  • In every layer, Jesus first anchored himself
  • 00:19:22.290 --> 00:19:26.120
  • by looking to Father God and his word.
  • 00:19:26.120 --> 00:19:29.030
  • Then secondly, Jesus made a definitive choice
  • 00:19:30.080 --> 00:19:33.260
  • that rendered each layer's invitation ineffective.
  • 00:19:33.260 --> 00:19:38.210
  • One of the discoveries fascinated me in this study.
  • 00:19:38.210 --> 00:19:42.190
  • It was that Satan's basic methodology
  • 00:19:42.190 --> 00:19:45.220
  • hasn't changed since Jesus's day
  • 00:19:45.220 --> 00:19:48.050
  • in the Judean wilderness
  • 00:19:48.050 --> 00:19:50.020
  • or, for that matter, Adam and Eve's day
  • 00:19:50.020 --> 00:19:52.240
  • in the Garden of Eden.
  • 00:19:52.240 --> 00:19:54.020
  • The same tempting invitations have sounded
  • 00:19:55.050 --> 00:19:57.270
  • throughout centuries
  • 00:19:57.270 --> 00:19:59.100
  • and still loudly command our attention today.
  • 00:19:59.100 --> 00:20:03.050
  • There's new packaging for sure,
  • 00:20:04.120 --> 00:20:06.170
  • but every one of Satan's shiny modernized packages
  • 00:20:06.170 --> 00:20:10.090
  • contains the same tried and tired tune.
  • 00:20:10.090 --> 00:20:14.150
  • Thankfully, the powerful of Jesus's choices
  • 00:20:14.150 --> 00:20:17.210
  • have also not change.
  • 00:20:17.210 --> 00:20:20.240
  • His decisions and the process by which he made them
  • 00:20:20.240 --> 00:20:24.210
  • can guide all of us safely
  • 00:20:24.210 --> 00:20:27.040
  • through every tempting trial on this earth.
  • 00:20:27.040 --> 00:20:31.090
  • Here are two truths that I hope you can take home
  • 00:20:31.090 --> 00:20:34.080
  • from today's study of Anonymous.
  • 00:20:34.080 --> 00:20:36.100
  • Number one, obedience sometimes leads us into deserts.
  • 00:20:37.190 --> 00:20:42.070
  • And number two, today's choices shape tomorrow's decisions.
  • 00:20:43.190 --> 00:20:47.240
  • In unseen, unapplauded space,
  • 00:20:49.100 --> 00:20:52.080
  • we all are making unseen, unapplauded choices.
  • 00:20:52.080 --> 00:20:56.180
  • And those choices cluster and gather momentum
  • 00:20:56.180 --> 00:21:00.040
  • and profoundly influence the decisions we will make
  • 00:21:00.040 --> 00:21:04.030
  • in trials and temptations.
  • 00:21:04.030 --> 00:21:06.080
  • The reason I emphasize viewing Jesus's wilderness experience
  • 00:21:07.220 --> 00:21:11.140
  • as one temptation with three layers
  • 00:21:11.140 --> 00:21:14.130
  • is because we tend to isolate temptations
  • 00:21:14.130 --> 00:21:17.230
  • and miss seeing how interconnected they are
  • 00:21:17.230 --> 00:21:21.080
  • in the enemy's strategies against us.
  • 00:21:21.080 --> 00:21:24.020
  • Each layer in Jesus's temptation
  • 00:21:25.000 --> 00:21:27.190
  • was connected, consecutive, and cumulative.
  • 00:21:27.190 --> 00:21:31.150
  • Let me illustrate.
  • 00:21:31.150 --> 00:21:33.130
  • Think of Jesus's temptation as one house with three stories.
  • 00:21:33.130 --> 00:21:38.130
  • Our home only has two stories,
  • 00:21:39.090 --> 00:21:40.200
  • but it'll suffice as an illustration.
  • 00:21:40.200 --> 00:21:43.170
  • Perhaps you've heard the phrase fixer upper.
  • 00:21:43.170 --> 00:21:46.230
  • Well, my husband and I purchased
  • 00:21:46.230 --> 00:21:48.120
  • sort of a second cousin to a fixer upper.
  • 00:21:48.120 --> 00:21:51.020
  • I called it a gutter outer.
  • 00:21:51.020 --> 00:21:53.040
  • The house was a mess.
  • 00:21:53.040 --> 00:21:55.170
  • But my incredible husband who naturally sees potential
  • 00:21:55.170 --> 00:21:59.090
  • in all people and all things said,
  • 00:21:59.090 --> 00:22:02.030
  • "It's got a solid foundation
  • 00:22:02.030 --> 00:22:04.030
  • "for us to build on, babe."
  • 00:22:04.030 --> 00:22:06.080
  • So, we bought the house.
  • 00:22:06.080 --> 00:22:08.010
  • And in a few years, my husband, Barry,
  • 00:22:08.010 --> 00:22:10.270
  • started drawing up plans to gut the first story
  • 00:22:10.270 --> 00:22:15.150
  • and add a second story to our humble abode.
  • 00:22:15.150 --> 00:22:19.070
  • During that process, Barry start spending
  • 00:22:19.070 --> 00:22:22.000
  • a lot of time under the house.
  • 00:22:22.000 --> 00:22:24.290
  • Well, being a writer and not a builder,
  • 00:22:24.290 --> 00:22:27.150
  • I immediately thought of the connection
  • 00:22:27.150 --> 00:22:29.290
  • between that crawl space and our hidden years.
  • 00:22:29.290 --> 00:22:33.280
  • Have you noticed that no one asks
  • 00:22:33.280 --> 00:22:36.040
  • for a tour of our crawl spaces?
  • 00:22:36.040 --> 00:22:39.210
  • But everything in our home is dependent
  • 00:22:39.210 --> 00:22:42.010
  • upon what's under our home.
  • 00:22:42.010 --> 00:22:44.200
  • Because Barry attended so carefully
  • 00:22:44.200 --> 00:22:47.150
  • to what was unseen and uncelebrated,
  • 00:22:47.150 --> 00:22:50.130
  • we were able to build what would be visible
  • 00:22:50.130 --> 00:22:53.210
  • without fear that its cumulative weight
  • 00:22:53.210 --> 00:22:56.210
  • would cause the whole structure to collapse.
  • 00:22:56.210 --> 00:23:00.110
  • In the same way, people generally don't stand in line
  • 00:23:00.110 --> 00:23:04.060
  • for a tour of our hidden years, do they?
  • 00:23:04.060 --> 00:23:07.180
  • Which can be rather disheartening
  • 00:23:07.180 --> 00:23:09.230
  • if we're in a habit of determining the value
  • 00:23:09.230 --> 00:23:12.070
  • of our life's seasons by ticket sales.
  • 00:23:12.070 --> 00:23:15.180
  • But just like that crawl space,
  • 00:23:15.180 --> 00:23:17.270
  • our hidden years house,
  • 00:23:17.270 --> 00:23:19.180
  • the unglamorous guts of a truly fruitful existence.
  • 00:23:19.180 --> 00:23:23.250
  • There in the underestimated and uncelebrated space of life,
  • 00:23:25.070 --> 00:23:29.140
  • God builds within us a sturdy support system
  • 00:23:29.140 --> 00:23:32.270
  • for our souls.
  • 00:23:32.270 --> 00:23:34.290
  • If we don't respect God's craftsmanship
  • 00:23:34.290 --> 00:23:37.250
  • in unapplauded seasons,
  • 00:23:37.250 --> 00:23:39.240
  • all that is applauded in our lives
  • 00:23:39.240 --> 00:23:42.060
  • will rest on a fragile foundation
  • 00:23:42.060 --> 00:23:44.210
  • and eventually, through the added weight the visible brings,
  • 00:23:44.210 --> 00:23:48.180
  • will be in danger of collapse.
  • 00:23:48.180 --> 00:23:51.230
  • Think of Jesus's life, there's a hidden foundation,
  • 00:23:51.230 --> 00:23:55.200
  • 30 years of relative anonymity,
  • 00:23:55.200 --> 00:23:58.130
  • three mostly undocumented, uncelebrated,
  • 00:23:58.130 --> 00:24:01.280
  • underestimated decades.
  • 00:24:01.280 --> 00:24:04.100
  • Then Jesus steps out of anonymity
  • 00:24:04.100 --> 00:24:06.270
  • and is tested in three layers of the temptation.
  • 00:24:06.270 --> 00:24:11.050
  • A layer of appetite, a layer of applause,
  • 00:24:11.050 --> 00:24:13.280
  • a layer of authority.
  • 00:24:13.280 --> 00:24:15.290
  • But Jesus's hidden years
  • 00:24:15.290 --> 00:24:17.290
  • had forged a trustworthy foundation.
  • 00:24:17.290 --> 00:24:21.240
  • Month after month after month,
  • 00:24:21.240 --> 00:24:24.070
  • he resisted rushing and took the time
  • 00:24:24.070 --> 00:24:27.020
  • to live those years well.
  • 00:24:27.020 --> 00:24:29.280
  • Now, as Jesus entered the Judean wilderness,
  • 00:24:29.280 --> 00:24:33.130
  • each layer of the temptation
  • 00:24:33.130 --> 00:24:35.130
  • would rest on the one before it,
  • 00:24:35.130 --> 00:24:37.140
  • like a second floor does on a first floor,
  • 00:24:37.140 --> 00:24:40.160
  • and double or triple the full weight bearing down
  • 00:24:40.160 --> 00:24:44.040
  • on Jesus's hidden foundation.
  • 00:24:44.040 --> 00:24:46.270
  • If there had been any cracks in that foundation,
  • 00:24:46.270 --> 00:24:50.150
  • the compounded stress of appetite, applause, and authority
  • 00:24:50.150 --> 00:24:54.220
  • would have revealed and exploited them.
  • 00:24:54.220 --> 00:24:57.280
  • But since his hidden foundation was sound,
  • 00:24:57.280 --> 00:25:01.140
  • all the temptations in the world could not crush him,
  • 00:25:01.140 --> 00:25:05.270
  • and the same can be true for us.
  • 00:25:05.270 --> 00:25:08.200
  • If we honor what God grows in us in hidden seasons,
  • 00:25:08.200 --> 00:25:13.050
  • we won't be seduced by what man offers to us
  • 00:25:13.050 --> 00:25:16.250
  • in visible seasons,
  • 00:25:16.250 --> 00:25:19.110
  • which returns us to a respect
  • 00:25:19.110 --> 00:25:21.220
  • for the mighty power of seemingly small choices.
  • 00:25:21.220 --> 00:25:26.130
  • Every choice we make is an investment
  • 00:25:26.130 --> 00:25:29.110
  • in a future we cannot see.
  • 00:25:29.110 --> 00:25:32.070
  • As the clock keeps ticking,
  • 00:25:32.070 --> 00:25:34.130
  • the stresses of appetite, applause, and authority
  • 00:25:34.130 --> 00:25:37.240
  • expose the state of our hearts
  • 00:25:37.240 --> 00:25:39.260
  • and the stability of our souls.
  • 00:25:39.260 --> 00:25:42.230
  • May the God of grace strengthen us by his word,
  • 00:25:42.230 --> 00:25:46.080
  • by his spirit, and by his people
  • 00:25:46.080 --> 00:25:48.260
  • to invest each tick well.
  • 00:25:48.260 --> 00:25:51.260
  • Until next time.
  • 00:25:51.260 --> 00:25:53.180
  • (gentle music)
  • 00:25:53.180 --> 00:25:56.060
  • - [Announcer] In a world consumed by becoming someone,
  • 00:26:00.290 --> 00:26:03.200
  • going somewhere, and being known,
  • 00:26:03.200 --> 00:26:06.020
  • it's time to stop, take a breath,
  • 00:26:06.020 --> 00:26:08.270
  • and discover the beauty of being hidden.
  • 00:26:08.270 --> 00:26:11.170
  • Through Dr. Alicia Chole's book, Anonymous,
  • 00:26:12.200 --> 00:26:15.140
  • you will discover the keys to walking in your identity,
  • 00:26:15.140 --> 00:26:18.260
  • understanding your purpose,
  • 00:26:18.260 --> 00:26:20.140
  • and living with intentionality,
  • 00:26:20.140 --> 00:26:22.200
  • and you'll develop, as Jesus did,
  • 00:26:22.200 --> 00:26:24.240
  • the strength necessary to withstand the trials and tests
  • 00:26:24.240 --> 00:26:28.180
  • that so often come with the spotlight.
  • 00:26:28.180 --> 00:26:31.060
  • - I think that what Alicia has done with the book Anonymous
  • 00:26:31.060 --> 00:26:33.290
  • and the work that she continues to do
  • 00:26:33.290 --> 00:26:36.010
  • is really transforming lives
  • 00:26:36.010 --> 00:26:38.000
  • - I see so many people that want to live
  • 00:26:38.000 --> 00:26:40.200
  • a deep, authentic, not a striving, performance=chasing,
  • 00:26:40.200 --> 00:26:45.200
  • hustling for love kind of life.
  • 00:26:46.160 --> 00:26:49.220
  • I feel like that's where Anonymous
  • 00:26:49.220 --> 00:26:51.170
  • kind of intersected my life.
  • 00:26:51.170 --> 00:26:53.180
  • - The book Anonymous is unbelievable book.
  • 00:26:53.180 --> 00:26:56.020
  • I mean Alicia, great writer.
  • 00:26:56.020 --> 00:26:59.030
  • - She made a statement that 90% of Jesus's life
  • 00:26:59.030 --> 00:27:02.160
  • was anonymous,
  • 00:27:02.160 --> 00:27:03.140
  • and no one knew that he existed.
  • 00:27:03.140 --> 00:27:05.040
  • Reading these words, like it just leapt off the page
  • 00:27:05.040 --> 00:27:07.270
  • and really transformed my life.
  • 00:27:07.270 --> 00:27:10.040
  • - [Announcer] Today, for your gift of $40 or more
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  • in support of the many outreaches of TBN,
  • 00:27:12.180 --> 00:27:15.080
  • we want to send you your very own book, Anonymous,
  • 00:27:15.080 --> 00:27:18.110
  • along with the companion study guide.
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  • Discover purpose in the hidden seasons.
  • 00:27:20.170 --> 00:27:23.140
  • Call or go online to receive yours today.
  • 00:27:23.140 --> 00:27:26.260
  • (dramatic music)
  • 00:27:26.260 --> 00:27:29.180