Message preached by Pr. Brian Houston
Online from Hillsong TV
Transcripts by Eber Stevao
Jesus speaks about cheer. He said be of good cheer. But the NIV puts it in a different way, it says: “Take heart”. I wonder if you realize heart is something that you can take, receive or something that you can lose. I wonder if it comes to the real situations of your life. You are looking to Jesus whose word is: “Take heart” or whether you are looking at the situation which will cause you to lose heart.
In what areas of your life you have been losing heart? What areas of life do you find heart going from you? You see, here is an example in Matthew chapter 9 verse 2, Jesus was speaking to a man who was paralyzed an this is what he said to him: “Be of good cheer” or "Take heart, son; your sins are forgiven" (NIV). Same chapter verse 22, Jesus is talking to a woman who had heamorrhaged for a long time and what did Jesus say to her: "Take heart, daughter," he said, "your faith has healed you" (NIV).
But in Hebrews chapter 12 as one example, it says in verse 3 and in verse 5: “Do not lose heart”.
Heart is something that you can receive, that you can take and heart is something that you can lose. And if you lose heart, obviously it means heart is diminishing. Heart represents zeal. The Lord said about his house “for zeal for your house consumes me” (Psalm 69:9). You know when you are of good cheer it’s got a whole heartedness to about you, that brings zeal, and a life and a passion but when you lose heart, obviously heart is diminishing.
Think about someone who is half hearted? Half hearted. It means heart has diminished. I never want to be in a half hearted church with a pastor half hearted because when the heart is taken, when the whole heart is not involved in your relationship with God, when you don’t have the heart for the house, then what you get is half heartedness.
In area you are losing heart, any area, is affecting every area of your life that you’ve given your heart to. So if you are losing heart, heart is going from you, it’s obviously you haven’t got as much heart to put into anything. Losing heart is bigger than just yourself. It actually affects everything in your world that has a part of your heart. Ultimately, it affects your heart for God, it affects your heart for the house of God, it affects your heart for the people around you, it affects your heart for your endeavours, and so you cannot afford to lose heart.
When I look to the word of God and I see different areas where people lose heart:
1) The first thing that causes people to lose heart is “when you listen to the voices”. Whose perceptions cause you to lose heart. It is so easy to listen all the wrong voices and to begin to take on other people’s perspectives, begin to take on other people’s perceptions.
In Deuteronomy chapter 1 verse 28 is talking about the people of God, and listen to what it says, it says: “Where can we go? Our brothers have made us lose heart. They say, they say, the scripture says 'The people are stronger and taller than we are; the cities are large, with walls up to the sky. We even saw the Anakites there' " (NIV).
They are talking about what other have said and sometimes you can surround yourself with people who somehow you have to be around them it affects your heart and rather then replenishing, and receiving heart, you find yourself losing heart. Sometimes you can get around atmospheres where you end up feeling shorter and weaker. Where it looks like what you oppose is stronger; “the buildings are all the way to the sky”...
Can I tell you back the times when Deuteronomy was written, NY city didn’t exist, downtown Sidney was not there and so, I know, ancient civilizations accomplished some pretty incredible things. You just got to go to Jerusalem and see the temple and the stones and the scale of it all to realize that ancient generations accomplished some pretty amazing things, but really the walls of the cities go all the way to the sky? Someone is losing perspective here! All the way up to the sky?
Listen friend don’t worry about what they say. When it comes to the will of God in your life, when it comes to what God spoke, they say, they say, they say, they say, they say, you are not going to build heart around voices that make you feel smaller and weaker say let’s get around the word of God and listen what the Lord says and decide that we are going to turn to Jesus whose word to people is “Take heart”, and whenever Jesus says “Take heart” there was a miracle coming, there was a failure being overcoming, the power of sin was being broken. “Take heart” don’t listen to attitudes that will cause you to lose heart. If half heartedness come strong and half heartedness will never cause the purposes of God to be fulfilled in your lives.
2) Second thing people they lose heart is “when they get overwhelmed by the circumstances that conspire against them”. Just start to get overwhelmed by the size of it all. Maybe you fill things are working together to conspire against you. But the moment you are looking at the size of the challenge, believe me, you get lose heart.
David knew it. In I Samuel 17 facing Goliath, David was young and he says in verse 32: “Don’t let anyone lose heart on account of this Philistine”. He knew if they started to look at the size of the opposition they would lose heart. So is useful this even, David was able to say to Saul “Don’t let anybody lose heart”.
I don’t know how big the challenge you are facing but what I know is when you focus on the challenge it’s going to cost your heart. You are going to start losing your heart for the battle; you are going to start losing your heart for the dream; you are going to start losing your heart for the will of God; you are going to start losing your heart for His house if you start looking at the size of the circumstance.
3) The third thing and want you to really think about this. People lose heart “when they get spooked by what is happening in the land”. You start looking at the forecast, you start looking at the indicators or the indexes or the price of fuel or you start looking at the indicators, you look the natural things you start getting spooked by it, but friend I have to tell you that if you are going to live a faith life then you can’t be ruled by what you see.
You know, people respond in two ways. When people are talking about interest rates going up, when people are talking there are some people that live just raucously. They take no notice and they don’t chew well the time they are in and there are others who just freeze. And they freeze and all of sudden is like faith went out the window. That trust in God disappeared.
Joseph (from the Egipt), he lived in seasons of plenty and he lived in seasons of challenge but in each of them he had a dependency on God, he had a generosity in difficult times when he puts his trust in God and I want to encourage you: “Don’t get spooked by the doom and gloom, the gloom and the doom, that is called “the evening news”.
The Jeremiah (book) chapter 51 verse 46. It was in Babylon and Babylon was a city on the path of destruction. Babylon was living in a very dangerous time where all was about to fall over. And God speaks to His people in the middle of Babylon and He talks about my “dear people”. He is talking to His people in the middle of a wild city. And this is what He says to them: “Do not lose heart or be afraid when rumors are heard in the land; one rumor comes this year, another the next, rumors of violence in the land and of ruler against ruler”. There is one rumor at this year another rumor will be next year, it might be rumors about the economy, it might be about the morality, it might be about difficult times ahead, it might be about what is happening in the land. I know if you are not going to take heart if you listen to the doom and the gloom, and you get your eye on the forecast and in the indexes or the indicators, hey keep your eyes on Jesus the author and finisher of your faith and decide that you are going to look at He who “gives heart”.
You don’t throw your faith at the window because the times have changed; faith is faith and by the way there is no point on faith if we live in a perfect world. Faith is what God has given us for a fallen world and it is not faith in faith, it is faith in Jesus. So, don’t be living raucously and on other hand don’t be just freeze where all of sudden you are being ruled by the times you are in. Keep your focus on Jesus; take heart, take heart, be of good cheer!
4) And the fourth thing that people lose heart is “when they get their eyes off Jesus and on to the mechanics of serving Him”. In another words you are going through the motions. You are doing all the right things, you are still reading the Bible but somehow it is becoming a labor, you are still living your life where you are involved in God’s house, just still serving and doing things. But you know something? The Bible is real clear on this. In Hebrews chapter 12 verse 3 it says: “Consider him who endured such opposition from sinful men, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart”. In another word, look at Jesus so that you will not grow weary and lose your heart. People lose heart, people grow weary and the two belong together, if you grow weary you get the battle weary, you get tire in the battle, you might still be going through the mechanics, trying to do the right thing but you kind of getting weary in it, it feels like you got church once too often, it feels like all you ever do is help somebody else, it feels like you have given up to many evenings of your time, you are growing weary in it, maybe even losing heart but you keep your eyes on Jesus, if you get set on Him who endured the opposition of sinful men so that you don’t grow weary as long as you keep your focus on Jesus, you will find the oil, you will find the fuel that will keep you motivated to serve and to put Him first and honor Him and live by principles of faith.
Because Jesus says: “Take heart” then it comes miracles. Life conspires to cause you to lose your heart.
You know David said one interesting thing about his enemies. David says this about his enemies in II Samuel chapter 22, verse 46, he says: “They all lose heart; they come trembling from their strongholds”. David knew a principle here. He knew that people lose heart they placed straight in the enemies’ hand. That is why the same David, it is said when he was a boy, in I Samuel 17, that is why the same David says: “Don’t let anybody lose heart when we face this Philistine”.
Now talking about of those who oppose the work of God, those who oppose what King David was and who he represented, the scripture says: “They all lose heart and they come trembling out of their strongholds”. That paint pictures in my mind: people who are well fortified, somehow they start losing heart, in the moment they lose heart they basically go trembling into their enemies’ hand.
If you want to play into devil’s hand, discouragement, losing heart is the way to do it, because the moment you lose heart you are playing straight into the devil’s hand and I say: “Take heart my friend, let’s never lose a good cheer, let’s never lose our heart for God”. Have you got the stomach for it? Have you got the heart for it? Have you got the stomach for the battle? You have to get the battle for my friend because I believe the will of God is the Will of God, and the purpose of God is the Purpose of God, that Jesus is the author and the finisher, the beginning and the end, so let’s keep our heart for it! Whatever it is what God has called you to do, don’t lose your heart for it.
Have a look with me at Isaiah chapter 7. I want everyone to turn your Bible if you would. It is talking about the house of David. It is talking about the then king of Judah, Ahaz and Ahaz was a stupid king, he was actually an evil king and what happen was two enemies conspired against him and it is interesting to see what happens when two enemies allies. It says in the King James Version that Syria and Ephraim were confederate, so in another words they were working together and conspiring against him (Ahaz) and go overpower Jerusalem. Ahaz went the water! Listen to this I will read from verse 2 until 4: “Now the house of David was told, ‘Aram has allied itself with Ephraim’; so the hearts of Ahaz and his people were shaken, as the trees of the forest are shaken by the wind. Then the Lord said to Isaiah, ‘Go out, you and your son Shear-Jashub, to meet Ahaz at the end of the aqueduct of the Upper Pool, on the road to the Washerman's Field. Say to him, 'Be careful, keep calm and don't be afraid. Do not lose heart because of these two smoldering stubs of firewood’ ”.
“Two smoldering stubs of firewood” there was more smoke than fire! But the Bible paints a picture where Ahaz his heart moved, his heart was shaken. The scripture says that his heart moved or his heart was shaken and if the leader’s heart is going to be shaken, believe me the people’s heart are going to be shaken. And so not only was his heart shaken but the people’s heart were moving and shaking like the wind blowing through the trees of a forest. And the word of the Lord was “keep calm, be careful, keep calm, don’t panic”. And it comes to disquiet of your soul.
The Lord was saying in verse 7 “It will not happen! It will not come to pass!” But you see, two enemies are conspiring together maybe in your life it seems like you are facing in a battle and all sudden is another battle, another battle, and it is like these things are working together, the worst thing you can do if opposition is becoming confederate it is going to water! That is why the word of the Lord was so clear. And I believe this is word of the Lord for you today: “Guard your heart, guard your heart, be careful. Verse 4 “Be careful, keep calm”.
Don’t be afraid; do not lose heart because smoking smoldering fire brands, a couple of stubs, they represent where the fire had been. But Ahaz is mine these two things working together he was going to water and the scripture was saying “don’t panic, it is not going to happen, it is not going to come to pass”. What if, what if, what if…friends, Jesus is Lord He said “Take heart… be a good cheer”!
Look at verse 9 with me. Isaiah chapter 7 verse 9b says: “If you do not stand firm in your faith, you will not stand at all”. Or in our message’s translation: “If you don’t stand firm, take your stand in faith, you won’t have a leg to stand on”. So this is the thing. When you start losing heart you are playing straight into the devil’s hand. So if you don’t take a stand in faith you don’t have a leg to stand on. Guard your soul, keep calm. The psalmist said: “Why soul are you disquiet within me?” Why do you lose your quietness? You lose perspective, I don’t. I have been there plenty of times. Why do you lose the quietness that comes out of trusting in God. Then you are open, as susceptible for every kind of motion imaginable.
You have to learn how to take heart. The apostle Paul knew it. The apostle Paul face those sort of opposition, in II Corinthians chapter 4 verse 16, listen to what Paul said: “Therefore we do not lose heart”. He said the outward man might be wasting away but the inward man is being renewed day by day”. His mercies are new every morning. Of course is the only way that you are going to get your inward man renewed day by day is daily feeding the inner man, get the word of God in daily devotion, it is not just about religious mechanics, it is about feeding your soul, feeding your inner man with the word of God. “His word I have hidden in my heart” (Psalm 119:11). You get God’s word into you and feed the inner man, so the inward man is renewed, day by day, and then rather than lose heart you learn how to take heart.
I don know what is trying to robber heart from you but I know that if you lose heart you are playing to devil’s hand. Be in heart not dishearted; be incouraged not discouraged.
Maybe you see that heart in something that you can lose then you should never be surprised when you see people that they don’t have the heart for the battle anymore. Haven’t got the stomach for it! If you don’t take a stand in faith you haven’t going to have a leg to stand on.
Second thing the Isaiah, the man of God said to Ahaz, was to get a word of God or a word from God for yourself. I believe it is always the will of the Lord for you to get a word from God for yourself. Actually, I love the scripture. Have a look to it with me. In verse 10 now: “Again the Lord spoke to Ahaz, ‘Ask the Lord your God for a sign, whether in the deepest depths or in the highest heights’ ”. In another word, ask Him for anything but the scripture says “But Ahaz said, ‘I will not ask; I will not put the Lord to the test’ ”. Look into the message, hey listen to this, it’s a awesome: “Then the Lord spoke again to Ahaz, this time He said Ask for a sign from God, ask anything. Be extravagant, ask for the moon, never stop of being outrageous in what you believe God for.
Isn’t that something when you have got a word from God for yourself you can stand on that. You can listen to a thousand of my sermons, ten thousand of Robin Ferguson’s sermons, you can maybe hear preachings CDs, watch Christian television and get twenty five thousand other people’s revelation into you and as good to seat under the word of God and to be taught by the word but believe me there is nothing like God given you a sign, God putting a word in your own heart, and that is what in the New King James version says: “Ask a sign for yourself”. Learn how to get something from God’s word for yourself because that will fill you in tough time when God spoke something into your spirit, when God puts something in your heart. Be extravagant, I love that in the message “Be extravagant”, the scripture says. Ask God for anything, ask Him for the moon. Don’t stop asking God for the moon, don’t stop believing God for the ridiculous.
Listen to me, somehow when we start losing heart we don’t go to the deepest and the highest of what we believe God for, we can’t get higher than our forehead because you can get apart of your own thinking. But when you decide you get to take heart by looking at Jesus and decide He is the beginning and the end then you start to give in a more extravagant and the word of the Lord was “It is not going to happen”, come on Ahaz, start believing God, you can as from that high to the highest as you like, just ask God for a sign. You have to get a word of God for yourself. There is nothing like God putting something in your own heart.
If you don’t want to lose heart then you got to be sure how you get a word from God for yourself.
An the third thing and I think it is the most wonderful thing Isaiah said, this is right back in the book of Isaiah in the verse 14. Isaiah begins to point Ahaz to a Savior. Have a look into the verse 14 says “Therefore the Lord Himself will give you a sign: Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a Son, and shall call His name Immanuel. Can you imagine it? Can you imagine what a beautiful picture of Jesus. Here is Ahaz, his heart is moved, his heart has been shaken and the word of the Lord is coming to him is “Don’t lose heart, it is not going to happen, it is not going to pass”. If you don’t take your stand in faith you are not going to have a leg to stand on and in the middle of all of that He is the sign they begin to paint a picture of Jesus. What a wonderful time of Jesus, Immanuel, God with us.
Whatever you are losing heart listen Immanuel, God with us. The apostle Paul knew that. He said in II Corinthians chapter 4 verse 1 “Therefore, since through God's mercy we have this ministry, we do not lose heart”. He says through the mercy of God we have this ministry and that is why we don’t lose heart. Immanuel, God with you. Listen to it my friend keep you eyes in Jesus.
Hebrews chapter 12 verse 3 “Consider him who endured such opposition from sinful men, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart”. Keep looking to Jesus, Immanuel, God with us, Immanuel, God with you. What area are you losing heart, Immanuel, God with you. It is through the mercy of God Paul says that we have this ministry and that is how we don’t lose heart.
You know the Lord said He would build His church and the word says “Unless the Lord builds the house, its builders labor in vain” (Psalm 127:1). The Lord said the zeal for his own house consumed Him. Jesus taught about the house of God and he called “my house”. And I look into my ministry and my opportunity and as long as I remember that is about the mercy and the grace of God then I will not lose heart. They get my eyes off Immanuel, God with us, and all of sudden I bring myself there into the whatever, you know, I bring myself whatever it might be battling today and I am going to suddenly find that the word of the Lord that is saying “Be careful it is going to out the window”. Keep calm, don’t be afraid, don’t lose heart, Immanuel, God with us; Immanuel, God with you; Immanuel, God with you. Amen
“If God is for us, who can be against us?” (Romans 8:31). The devil is having a hell of a time. God is on your side my friend.
There are people here and you are losing heart and I believe it is the will of God not for you to lose heart or you are playing straight into the devil’s hand but know the power of taking heart that Jesus is offering you today.
Escrito e publicado por Éber Stevão