Learning To Reign II

A.     Introduction:  It is Godís will that we reign in this life. Rom 5:17
     1.     Reigning in life does not mean problem free living.  It means:
               a.     In the midst of trouble, we have victory -- peace, joy, wisdom, provision, etc.
               b.     In the midst of trouble, we experience all that the Cross of Christ has provided --                health, freedom from sin and condemnation, freedom from lack, etc.
               c.     We have ability to accurately represent Jesus in this life, both His character and                His power.
     2.     Reigning in life doesnít happen automatically.  We have to learn how to do it.
               a.     Paul said he learned to be independent of circumstances.
               b.     Phil 4:11--For, however I am placed, I, at least, have learnt to be independent of                circumstances. (20th Cent)
               c.     We are taking some time to learn the things necessary for us to reign in life.
     3.     In the last lesson, we said that if you are going to reign in life, you must learn to see           yourself and your situation according to unseen realities.
               a.     Then, you must learn to walk in the light of those realities.  
               b.     We used Israel at the edge of the promised land and David fighting Goliath as                examples of this. Num 13,14; I Sam 17
     4.     Several things are involved in seeing unseen realities.
               a.     You must recognize that there is an unseen realm, the eternal realm of God.
                    II Cor 4:18
                    1.     This unseen, invisible realm created the visible, will outlast the visible, and                     can and does change and affect the visible. Heb 11:3; Gen 1:3; Mark 4:39
                    2.     All of Godís help and provision for us is spiritual or invisible or unseen at                     first. Eph 1:3
                    3.     Just because you canít see it doesnít mean itís not real. II Kings 6:13-17
               b.     You must recognize that your true identity is spirit (unseen, eternal). I Thess 5:23;                John 3:6
                    1.     There is a sense in which we cannot see the real you.
                    2.     When you were born again, everything that happened to you happened in                     the part we cannot see, in your spirit. II Cor 5:17
                    3.     Just because you canít see the changes which occurred doesnít mean                     they arenít real.
               c.     Our only 100% reliable source of information about the unseen is Godís word.
     5.     Several things are involved in walking in the light of unseen realities.
               a.     You must assess you and your situation based on what God says about you and                it despite what your see or feel.
               b.     You must then talk and act based on what God says rather than on what you see                and feel.
     6.     There are two ways to view yourself and your situation -- according to what you can see           or according to what God says.
               a.     You can live according to the visible, or you can live according to the invisible,                according to the natural, or according to the supernatural.
               b.     Both produce definite results in our lives.  
                    1.     Israel at the edge of the promised land looked only at the visible and                    
failed to enter the land (Num 13,14).  
                    2.     David looked at the unseen and defeated Goliath (I Sam 17).
     7.     In this lesson, we want to deal with some more issues related to walking in the light of           
the unseen to help us learn to reign in life.

B.     We must understand the role of Godís word, the Bible, in reigning in life.
     1.     In the Bible, God tells us about unseen realities.
               a.     He gives us revelation knowledge = information we could not possibly have if He                did not tell us about it, because our five senses cannot perceive it.
                b.     Sense knowledge is not necessarily, automatically, wrong.  It is limited, because it                cannot perceive unseen facts.
               c.     Godís word takes us beyond sense knowledge.
     2.     We reign in life when we reach the point where revelation knowledge dominates sense           knowledge in our lives.
               a.     We reign in life when we are able to say ďI donít care what I see.  God says...,                and what God says is soĒ.
               b.     I John 5:4--This is the victory that overcomes the world, our faith.
                    1.     Faith is the word prevailing over sense evidence.
                    2.     Luke 5:1-6--Sense knowledge = we, experienced fishermen, have worked                     all night and caught nothing.
                    3.     Revelation knowledge = go back out and put your nets into the water.
     3.     When you say:  I know what the Bible says, but..., that shows your are sense ruled (at           least in that area) and are living as a mere man. I Cor 3:3
     4.     We must give the word of God the same place we would give Jesus if He were here with           us physically.
     5.     God wants us to take Him at His word and then act accordingly.
               a.     Faith is acting on Godís word.  Believing is acting on Godís word as we would the                word of a banker or a lawyer or a doctor.
               b.     If a bank statement says I have $1000.00 in the bank, I donít try to believe it,                wonder if I have the faith to believe it, I accept it and act on that word = live my life as though it were so.
               c.     The issue isnít -- do I have enough faith -- the issues are:  Is this man trustworthy,                reliable?  Does he have the power to make good what he said?

C.     Weíve misunderstood some things about faith and the new birth, and we have confused some things, and it has made us less effective at reigning in life.
     1.     Godís plan for our lives is that we become holy, blameless sons and daughters who are conformed to the image of Jesus. Eph 1:4,5; Rom 8:29
               a.     When we talk about Godís plan, we arenít talking about something you do, but                about something you are.
               b.     Then, you act because of what you are.  You do what you do because of what                you are.  You act like what you are.
     2.     You must understand that you are what you are either by Godís decree or by birth.
               a.     Abraham became a father by Godís decree. Gen 17:5
                    1.     Because God is so reliable and His word is so effective, once He declared                     Abraham a father, it was as good as done. Rom 4:17
                    2.     However, Isaac did not exist at that point.  He did not come into existence                     until the moment of his conception.
               b.     We become Godís sons and daughters by birth.  God puts His life and nature                
in us at the new birth and we become literal, actual new creatures. II Cor 5:17;
                    I John 5:11,12
     3.     When God tells us about what we are in Christ, what we have in Christ, He is not talking           about something that will be true at some point in the future, He is talking about a           
present tense, unseen reality.
               a.     He that believeth hath eternal life, ZOE, the life and nature of God in him.
                    John 3:36; 6:47
               b.     Whatever is in that life is in us because that life is now in us. I Cor 1:30;
                    John 15:5
               c.     I have these things, not because I believe it,  but because I am a believer.
     4.     I have these things because I am born again -- whether I believe I have them or not.
               a.     I am a citizen of the US and have the benefits of citizenship whether I believe it or                not.  I am and have those things because of my birth.
               b.     Believers have, not because of something they did, but because of something                they are.
               c.     Believers have because they are believers, not because they believe.
     5.     Mark 9:23--All things are possible to him that believeth = a believing one = one who has           come into the family = a new creature.
               a.     The question or issue now is walking in the light of what I am and what I have.
               b.     As a new creature, if you are trying to get or become something (anything already                provided by the new birth), you are on the wrong track.
     6.     Godís plan for us has been carried out through the Cross of Christ. Eph 1:3-7
               a.     Now that you are born again, you donít need faith for any of this -- itís yours                because you are Godís son.
               b.     He that believeth (he who is a believer, is born of God, is a new creature) hath.
               c.     Now, it is a question of us taking our place and enjoying our rights (walking in the                light of what we are and have).
               d.     Faith is used for things that are not yet ours, things we must take hold of and                possess (healings in the gospels, salvation before we are saved).
     7.     Now. we simply know what God has made us, has given us, through the new birth, we           thank Him for it and act on His word as we would the word of a banker or a lawyer.
               John 8:31,32

D.     If we are going to reign in life, we have to learn the importance of words, the words we speak.
     1.     We must learn to speak Godís word about ourselves and our situation despite what we           see or feel.
               a.     Heb 10:23--We are to hold fast to saying the same thing God says.  Profession =                 HOMOLOGIA = to say the same thing as.
               b.     Notice, we say it because God is faithful, not because we feel like it. Heb 11:11
     2.     Many Christians struggle with this issue of the words of our mouth.  But, consider these           points:
               a.     In the examples we looked at in the last lesson, Israel at the edge of the promised                land and David taking on Goliath, each experienced exactly what they said at the               
 outset about themselves and their situation.
                    1.     God specifically told Israel that He was giving them exactly what they said.                      They said they couldnít go in the land, and they didnít. Num 14:28-30
                    2.     Heb 3:19--What they did at the edge of the land is called unbelief.
                    3.     Confession is faith expressing itself.  Confession is unbelief expressing                     itself.  Every time we speak we are confessing something.
               b.     When you say what God says despite what you see or feel, you are not lying.                 You are speaking of unseen realities which have been revealed to us by God in  His word.
               c.     We are to act like Jesus in this life.  He continually confessed who He was -- not                according to sight, but according to His Father. John 6:35; 8:12; 10:9; 11:25; 14:6
     3.     God works through words.  Godís word is Godís faith expressed.  It is His confession.
               a.     When He speaks, things happen.  He rules through the word of His power.
               b.     When He created the world, He spoke.  His words were His acts of creation.
               c.     We act or express our faith through the words we speak.
               d.     Through our words, we imitate God.  Through our words, we obey God.
     4.     Heb 13:5,6--God has spoken His word to us so that we will believe it, feed on it                (meditate), and act on it (speak it out).  Then, weíll see visible results.
               a.     This verse is actually a quote from the OT.  It is interesting to note when God first                spoke these words.  He gave them to Israel at the edge of the promised land. osh 1:5
               b.     Why?  So that they would take those words, and in the face of sense evidence                (walled cities and giants), say: God will not fail us.  Weíre going to take this land.
               c.     Notice, the connection of these verses to Godís number one key to success in life                -- meditation in Godís word. Josh 1:8
E.     Conclusion:  We can learn to reign in life through Christ Jesus -- if we will learn to use His word rightly.
     1.     God has given us His word to give us access to the unseen realm.
               a.     His word tells us what He has done to us and for us through the new birth.
               b.     Now, we must walk in the light of these realities and learn to talk and act based                on what God says rather than on what we see or feel.
     2.     The number one thing we need to do is meditate on Godís word, saying it over and over,           until it begins to dawn on us, take on reality to us, so that it will be our response to life, so that it becomes part of our consciousness and becomes our reaction to life. (Indian and gun story)
     3.     Through the new birth, God has made us masters who reign with words.  Learn to say           what God says about you and your situation, despite what you see or feel.  That is a vital key to learning to reign in life.
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