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uh blessings to you and we’re going to open the scripture today and I know youguys are hungry for the word and you’re fed well here so uh we are going to uhif you will open first to Luke 17 and uh you can Mark Luke17 and we’re going to read uh a passage a short passage out of Revelation 12 onour way to Luke 17 you know um somepeople notice the greatness of God when they’re looking at the mountains orlooking at the ocean or they’re seeing the grander of creation and amen to thatI see the greatness of God there but one of the places that I see the greatnessof God is is that in8 plus billion people on theplanet that he is aware of my my heart and he’s aware of your heart andhe hears your words and he hears your prayer and if your heart ever becomesWayward that he’ll step in gently and say hey this is not the best place for you to go and then we can turn our heartrepentance simply means coming into alignment with God agreeing with God andhe’s aware he keeps us he keeps us holy isn’t it kind of God to do that and that8 plus billion people and he knows them all he knows you he knows yourname he knows what you’re struggling with today we had such a sweet time ofprayer with Edgar and Anna this morning uh during worship and uh they asked mehow they could pray for me and uh I’m being gossiped about right now I’m beingI’m being being spoken of untruly and unfairly and maliciously right now it’shard and um and my flesh wants to lashout and you know the Lord has a better way right the Lord has a better way andand I want to show you where all this comes from in Revelation12 and we’re going to pick it up in verse 10 then I heard a loud voice in heavensay now have come the salvation and the power and the kingdom of our God and theauthority of his Christ for the accuser of our brothers he’s this is a title for the devil okayfor the accuser of our brothers who accuses them now watch thisbefore our God day and night night has been hurled down and they overcame him by the bloodof the lamb and by the word of their testimony they did not love their livesso much as to shrink from Death so I’ve been I’ve been thinkingabout how I can overcome the enemy now now if he’s called theaccuser we need to we need to understand how he operates and here’s how he operates he accuses you toGod God to you you toothers others to you and you toyourself and how often does he do it day and night that’s what he saysright here day and night but he’s been hurleddown but he still accuses but here’s notice what John sayshere about us that we overcame the Enemyby the blood of the lamb and by the word of OurTestimony so so let me hear me out as I say something stronghere okay in terms of overcoming the enemy the word of your test testimony isexactly as strong as the blood ofChrist okay not for salvation your salvation comes onlybecause of Christ but you can live as miserably as you wantto if you want to overcome the enemy the blood of Christ is enough to do that butyou’ve got to come into a g agreement with the blood of Christ okay so so that right there isthe way all Spiritual Authority is established is byagreement and so if you agree with God the protection of the authority ofGod overshadows you but if you agree with theEnemy which is most of the time what your flesh wants to dothen the authority of the enemy overshadows you does this make sense okay so so whenwe get accused it is a very very tricky place to stand because yourflesh wants to accuse back but if we come into agreement withthe Enemy listen the the enemy iscondemned so we if we agree with him we come under the shadow ofcondemnation do you see that if we if we disagree with him wecome out from under condemnation and into agreement with Redemption the word of God this makingsense so so when we’re accused of something it’s a is a very very trickyplace to stand because often everything inside of you wants to protect and defend andrecuse back and God goes hold on now hold on holdon I wouldn’t do that if I were you because to overcome the enemy theblood of Christ has done its work will I agree with the blood of Christor will I disagree an accusation is a very verydifficult thing for us he he dwells in the realm ofaccusation because he is and his goal isto is to come at you and just get you to give just a little bit of room for theaccusation just give it just a little roomand H how many of you know that there’s often an ounce of Truth in an accusation okay if if you’ve got a ifyou’ve got a 55 gallon barrel of drum full of water and five drops ofcyanide do you want to drink that I mean it’s all it’s 99% pure you wouldn’t youdrink that it’ll kill you but that’s that’s what an accusationis and so what he’s doing is he’s coming at you saying just give it just a littlebit of room here but the moment we do we come intoalignment with condemnation okay so if somebody comes to you and says you know that Marcus letme just tell you about that Marcus and you go oh wow huh I I had noidea about that about him so what you’ve done now is is you have you haveseparated relationship from me and whatever I am available to offer to youyou’re going to reject you see that and so that’s that’s whataccusation comes is it it comes to separaterelationship and so anytime we see a separation of relationship there isalways always always anaccusation and it results in broken relationships and you know what most ofus have never been taught how to handle brokenrelationships I was I was talking to Pastor Scott just this morning about about youknow I thought that I would be better at this by nowabout handling an accusation and I think I think we don’t get enoughrepetitions praise the Lord you know I don’t want it I don’t want it to happen every day enough thatI get good at it you know but when it happens I feel a little bit IL equippedI got to I got to go back to the word I got to go back to the Lord and say okaynow walk me through this one more time but let me say this about about a personwho accuses I have learned to have mercy onthem because I know what they live under they live undercondemnation and they’re simply giving away what they have and it’s hard for me to watch aperson who has has nothing better to give than anaccusation and so today I want us to look to Jesus if you’d flip over there to Luke17 I want us to look to Jesus and find out how do we deal withpeople and and I’m praying today that nobody’s asking the Lord how to dealwith me okay and Jesus is going to speak into that for you and me today so whenwe get to Luke 17 so so Jesus at Luke 17 he’s about 6 months away from the crossokay so his ministry on the Earth was about three and a half years he’s been at this for about three years and noweverywhere he goes he can’t go into a house can’t go into a building he’s got Scholars estimate 30 to50,000 people following him around but but as the crowds increasehis Focus Narrows and by this point in Luke’sgospel he’s speaking to three groups of of people almostspecifically he’s speaking to Apostles and there’s12 he’s speaking to disciples and it’s the front row folksit’s the folks most devoted to him probably 50 to100 and he speaking speaking to the Pharisees he’s speaking to thePharisees and often what he’s doing when he speaks to the Pharisees is he is heis singling out a way of relating to God that’s different than hisway and the way the Pharisees related to God was through Pride okay he’s going to talk in just asecond about you you increase your Flor that was the Box on their forehead wherethey put the scriptures in and they walked around and they they got them bigger and bigger and bigger think goldsuits here today okay they increased the the length of their tassels on their prayer theyhad these prayer Shaws and at the end of the prayer Shaw they would have tassels and they kept getting them a littlelonger and a little longer and a little longer and he said you you you wantedthe you wanted the chief seats at the at the banquet so they’d be invited todinner and they’d walk right up to the front and sit down and cross their legs and say anybody need wisdom I’m here I’mhere for you and everybody’s going uh who are thesepeople and so Jesus starts speaking to the Pharisees and he’s trying to help folks like you and me understand here’swhat’s wrong with that I don’t hate them I hate the waythey come to God because they’re better than everybodythey’re they’re important they think God’s impressed because their tassels are long and theirboxes are big and they’re sitting at the front of thetable they walk around through the crowded streets of Jerusalem and they say call meRabbi Jesus says no no nothat’s not how I relate to people so if you if you page throughLuke about 15 on you’re going to start seeing him develop a habit and he goesalmost Pharisees disciples Apostles disciples Pharisees Apostles and here’swhat we find in Luke 17 that he turns to his disciples in verse one and he saysthings that cause people to sin are bound to comebut woe to that person through whom they come it would be better for him to bethrown into the sea with a a millstone weighs a ton y’all 2,000 PBS into thesea with a millstone tied around his neck than for him to cause one of theselittle ones to sin so watch yourselves if if your brother sins rebuke him if he repents forgive him ifhe sins against you seven times in a day and seven times comes back to you and says IRepent forgive him the apostlessaid we’re going to need more faith forthat and he replied if you have faith as small as a mustard seed you can say tothis mulberry tree be uprooted planted the see and it’ll obey you suppose one of you had a servantplowing or looking after the Sheep would he say to the servant when he comes in from the field come along now and sitdown and eat would he not rather say prepare my supper get yourself readywait on me while I eat and drink and after that you may eat and drink would he thank the servant because he did whathe was told to do so you also when you’ve done everything you were told to do shouldsay we’re worthy servants we have only done ourduty so let me walk through this little text with you and I want to pointout four things that Jesus said to help us get along with people okay I need this today preachingto me first okay the first oneis don’t don’t be offensive don’t be offensive you see it mostly onsocial media I wonder why people say things to others on social media that they wouldnever say to someone’s face isn’t that an oddthing I guess there’s protection behind a screendistance but but it it applies Jesus said don’t be offensive verse one saysit’s inevitable that stumbling blocks will come but woe to those through whomthey come I don’t want to be one that Jesus says woe to you he said that to thePharisees but I I want to call your attention to a very delicate balance here okay because because on the onehand if we if we become a people that just I just have to make everyone happyis everyone happy anyone not happy I want to come make you happy I don’t want to I don’t want to ever do anything thatmight upset you if if there’s anything that I can do to make sure that nobody’supset you see how awful that is let me just tell you something if you love thetruth it’s just a matter of time until someone is offended atyou okay that is not beingoffensive okay now you realize Jesus was was neveroffensive but a lot of people got offended at him do you see that how delicate thisbalance is so we’ve got to be people that love thetruth and yet we don’t become offensive with the truth it’s it can it can be hard to do Imean so let me let me give you a couple examples when when Lexa and I got married I played golf tomuch I had I had a very low handicap but I played way too much and so we gotmarried and she goes honey you play too muchGolf and you know what she was right but I gotoffended she wasn’t being offensive but I wanted what Iwanted I wanted my cake and eat it too and I couldn’t have it and so I went went to prayer and theLord said she’s right well not the first time in ourmarriage that that happened okay but I wound up putting my golfclubs in the closet and our marriage got a whole lotbetter but it was right for her to call me out onthat um years ago at one of our campuses we had a we had a guy that was part ofour church a just a great guy he was a a truck driver north of 300 lbs woroveralls and combat boots and he had been so deeply touchedby the Lord that you couldn’t get around him for for 60 seconds without withoutunderstanding God did a work on this guy and it was it wasawesome but he would come to church early he would park on the front row he would enter into worship ship and hewould enter into to intercession before the church service started and by the time service started this is the way weall ought to be by the way by the time the service started his worship was already increasing nobody had to callhim to worship I mean he was there before anybody else started he was he was numberone okay but about five or six minutes in he would get so touched by the Lord that hegot to jumping up and down he would walk the altar back and forth and he would beclaiming the promises of God and I noticed that about five or six rows backthe worship subdued because his presence was sostrong and it became consistent and so I went to him oneday I said hey I love you can we have a conversation he said sure I said manit’s obvious how much the Lord’s touched you and I said you would never want todo anything to take attention away from the Lord and put it on yourself he saidno I wouldn’t and I said are you aware that that’s what’shappening and he said no I said can we work together he saidyes let’s take care of this and so we worked on it and and and wefixed the problem together but I want I wasn’t offensive but I had to I had to guardover the the congregation this was my calling okay so so he and I togetherfixed that problem and and it was I I honor him tothis day we’re still we’re still friends and and there but there’s a there’s away to carry out the word of the Lord that is kind I could have gone to him and I saidand said stop it you you you are getting all the attention off of God and you just needto calm down okay but how wrong would that havebeen okay so so there’s a there’s a way to say it there there’s a thing to besaid and then there’s a way to say it and what Jesus is saying here is don’t beoffensive you don’t have to be offensive here’s the second thing is he says be ready toforgive be ready to forgive now I want I want you tonotice verse uh let’s pick it up in verse three he said so watchyourselves if your brother sins rebuke him if he repents forgive him if he sinsagainst you seven times in a day and seven times comes back and says I Repentthen forgive him and all this is f is is a followup to what he said about it’simpossible that offense don’t come that that offenses don’t come meaning I promise you’re going tohave opportunity to be offended one translation puts it thisway Temptations to sin it it’s it’simpossible that Temptations to sin don’t come isn’t that an odd translation but but here’s what he’ssaying every time you’re offended it’s a Temptation for you to sin so just know that if there’s everanything in your heart that says that doesn’t sit right with me there’s a Temptation there that’strying to draw you in tosin what offends you what off I I want to becomeunoffendable I want to be a person that lives before God and I am not availablefor offense but I am so far from that let me tell you let me tell you what offends meokay so so I have a travel job I don’t travel a lot but I travel some and andbecause I travel a lot I recently got upgraded to First Class I was like whoaI’m not used to this so I get on the plane with my bag find my seat near the front of theplane Hallelujah and right above my seat is a bin and there’s a bag init okay every seat has a bin above it for the bag of the person sitting inthat seat somebody put their bag in the bin above myseat you see how mature I am here I’moffended okay I’m I’m riding first class and ticked aboutit so we land and we and this is a large airport where you’ve got to ride a busfor a long way to get to your rental car so the bus makes stops about every hundred feet it seems and every time thebus stops more people get on so I’m sitting there and the bus now everyseat’s taken we stop again and more people get on and there’s there’s a woman that getson so I stand up and say please have my seat men if you don’t know this is athing don’t sit while a woman stands okay this is athing okay it’s called being a gentleman and so we stop again and a very oldwoman gets on the bus and right down the road are four very strong College agemen who don’t get up and let the old woman sit and I got offendedagain see how mature I am I’m just getting offended all daylong here so what G that’s what Jesus means when he says it isimpossible that you not be offended I got I bumped into a an old friendrecently and he talked to me about another friend of ours that we both have and he told me how successful thisguy how how prosperous his business had become well this guy betrayedme I don’t want him to prosper God what are you prospering thisguy for I got offended see how mature Iam I’m I’m Petty but it is impossible for Lifecircumstances to not offend you and so there was a whole brand ofChristianity back in the Middle Ages called stoicism okay and the stoics were peoplethat just learned how to get through life without responding to any of itgood bad they’re not going to laugh they’re not going to cry they’re just just stonefacestoic okay the gospel doesn’t come to make us less human the gospel comes to make us morehuman and so as followers of Jesus we experience a full range of disappointments emotions common to allpeople but how do we respond let me just say we wecharismatics love to talk about the Holy Spirit and when we talk about thefullness of the Holy Spirit most often the time we’re talking about healingprophecy tongues interpretation stuff you can’t dowithout God right can I just tell youthat if you stop being offensive and you learn how to forgive quickly you will never be more full of the Holy Ghostthen you will be in that moment that is the fullness ofGod I’ve got a I’ve got a Samson Theory man I’m running out oftime let me get let me give you my Samson Theory right quick everybody thinks Samson was was SI 610 350 lbs andlook like Arnold but that guy rips Gates off of acity everybody goes look at him I think Samson was 56 and a buck25 skinny no definition this is who Samsonwas because if that guy ripped the gates off of a city wall everybody goes LordGod is on him right that’s my that’s my SamsonTheory so let me give you four reasons we Overlook an offense one is yourhonor Proverbs 1911 says it is to a man’s honor to overlook anoffense number two is your own sin Luke 642 says how can you say to your brotherbrother let me take the speck out of your eye when when you call when you yourself fail to see the plank in yourown eye ouch you hypocrite first take the plank out of your eye and then you’ll seeclearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye number three is your growth secondPeter 3:18 says but grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and SaviorJesus Christ this is spiritual growth and number four is your forgiveness Luke16 37 sayso not judge and you will not be judged do not condemn and you willnot be condemned forgive and you’ll be forgiven all right so here’s the thirdthing is to recognize your own weakness and here’s what I mean by thatthey said in response to don’t be offensive and be ready to forgive they said we’re going to need morefaith and they were exactly right because you can’t dothis without faith they had watched him heal they had watched him preach they’d watched him gatherpeople but when he calls them to forgive quickly they said this is going to takesome work this is going to take a leap cuz we stink atthis God we’re going to need more faith and he goes uh you’re exactly rightbut let me tell you how Faith Works and this is what Jesus says if you got faith like a mustard seed listen you can hold50 mustard seeds in the palm of your hand and yet the tree that grows from amustard seed is disproportionate to the size of the seed do you hear what Jesus is sayinghere the the the mustard tree can be 40t tall and 40t wide and sofull you can’t see the birds in it and yet you can hold 50 seeds in thepalm of your hand here’s here’s what he’s saying if you’ll not be offensive and you’ll forgivequickly the fruit that grows from that will be disproportionate to the energy and Faithit took for you to do it does thiscommunicate G Jesus was a a master communicator and then he says he saysthis this if you’ll do this now you can say to the to the Mulberry Tree be thrown into thesea have you ever seen anybody throw a mulberry tree into the sea I’ve seen people triedthat and then they beat themselves up for not having a faith okay this is not what Jesus issaying here if you spoke to a mberry tree and said mulberry tree tree be cast into thesea and it happened everybody around you wouldsay wow that’s the power of God we justsaw and if you forgive quickly everybody around you will say we just saw thepower of God on him that’s what Jesus issaying the fourth thing he says is to reject honor as unworthy servants andyou can you can read through that to the end if you want to I’m out of time buthere here’s what Jesus is saying look if you if you learn how to be non-offensiveand quick to forgive it doesn’t make you ahero you could stand up and say yeah let me tell y’all what I’vedone let me tell you about the offense that I forgaveand God goes you’re just doing what I told you to do this is not extra credit here okaythis is this is fundamental foundational children of Godstuff but if you’ll do it the power of God will so rest on yourlife that the fruit that results would be dis disproportionate to what it tookfor you to do it that’s what he’s saying here and so this is the kind of personthat Jesus is calling us to be okay so I want you to Bow your headand close your eyes and I want you to think rightnow about the opportunities the opportunities in yourlife right now that you have not somebody else that you have tobe offended what have people said aboutyou and so now we’ve got a fork in the road and we can eitherdecide we’re going to go the way of the flesh we’re going to seekrevenge or we’re going to sayGod I need the power of God to come now in jesus’ name and rest onme because I am not strong enough to do this withoutyou God I need your grace to come rightnow and the moment that you that you meet that fork in the road and listen ifyou’ve already begun down the road of Revenge repentance says I’m going tocome into agreement with God and that’s all you have to do is say God IRepent I want to agree with you I want I want the shadow of your authority to toto cast overme now here’s what the Lord is calling you to right now today you’re going todo the right thing you’re going to do the right thing In This Moment it’s hard to say Ijust have to let them go Yes actually you’re going to let them go toGod but for you you’re not going to speakoffensively and you’re going to be quick to [Music] forgive so God thank youtoday thank you that that we are becoming acquainted with the power ofGod that redeems broken relationship ships God we’re asking you that youwould make your presence known in our lives today God thank you for opening your word and your heart to ustoday in Jesus nameamen