Beth Moore - Life Unhindered - Part 3
Listen, okay, Jesus does not promise that life will always be fun, but he does promise that it can always be fruitful. He said, "You abide in me, I'm going to tell you you can't go through the thing that I cannot produce fruit from. You can't. It's impossible. You abide in me and whatever you have been through it is impossible for me not to make it fruitful". And he said, "Make sure you understand," and I'm paraphrasing John chapter 15, "it is to my Father's glory that you bear much fruit and show yourself to be my disciple". Fruitful.
Now, fruitful is not always fun, but let me tell you something. Let me tell you something. It can often be fun. I say that because there's nothing quite like looking back on a moment and going, "There is no way that was me. I'm incapable of loving that person. In my natural man I cannot stand that person. There is no way I could do this job. There is no possible way I could get through this pro... I am telling you..." Where you want to take someone by the shoulders and just go, "I'm telling you it was the Lord". Anybody know what I'm talking about? Okay, that could get fun. That can get fun, and forever is so important.
The reason why I put it down is because Jesus makes a very big deal of this. He says, and I'm thinking in terms of John chapter 15 right now, "And this is life eternal, that you may know the Father and the Son". That knowing him, that salvation is coming into life eternal. And see, you might think, "Well, I mean, that's after this". Oh, no. No, it's not. It's now. You already have eternal life. Do you know, Perla, that if we could get this through our heads that we are living eternally, do you know how it would cut down on our fear of death? But we honestly think, here's what we think, that really, I'm talking about what we really, really, really believe.
I'm not talking about what we tell people. I'm not talking about what we talk about at church. I'm not talking about what we talk on the internets. I'm not talking about what we post on the Instagrams. I'm not talking about any of it. I'm talking about what we truly believe in our heart of hearts is that this is it and we hope something is afterwards. No, no, no, no, no, no. Whether you live a short time or a long time in that physical body that is sitting in that chair or not, you are living forever and ever and ever in the glorious kingdom of the Lord Jesus Christ. And so, to know that, there is no real killing me because I have already died with Christ. I have been crucified with Christ. Therefore I no longer live but Christ lives in me, and the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God who loved me and gave himself for me.
Unhindered life full, infused, fruitful forever. Those are promised to you. And if those are not in any way perceptible realities to us, we got some hindrances. So what do you say we get to the bottom of them? What if in this house tonight we made some decisions to begin living a life in pursuit of no hindrance to the witness of the gospel of Jesus in our lives? Okay. So if you're like me, what I need a teacher to do, the main reason I teach is because I love to study. I love to study. Listen, any teacher who does not like to study is not a teacher. She is a talker. Anybody understand what I'm saying? Big difference between talker and teacher because there's just a love of study, the love of study.
And so I try to think to myself, "Okay, I'm sitting in the class. I need practical examples. I need... what does this look like"? So what am I doing? You don't have time to take these down, so I'm just going to say them to you, and I don't even know if they're right. This is where you really go light pencil. And it's just in your mind, just light pencil, light pencil. I'm just throwing out some scenarios because what is the question on the table. Well, okay, give me some specifics, some practicalities. What does life look like if some of our hindrances move out of it? What would that even be like? So I'm going to give you, I'm going to put up four different screens, and I've got three on each one to just give you. And so I've thought these up, and that's why you can't depend on them, but I think they're pretty sound. I think they're pretty sound. I've tried to do a lot of thinking.
So let's bring up the first three so that you can kind of get an idea. Okay. So remember we're thinking in word equations. So think about this. So we've got a heartbreak, right? So a heartbreak. Has anybody in the room ever been through a heartbreak? And I mean, I'm talking true broken heart. All right, we got a heartbreak. What if we move... we can't get, just get rid of the heartbreak, Danielle. But could we get rid of the hindrance that came with the heartbreak? That's the question. So heartbreak minus hindrance. Well, intimacy with Christ. That's what we would have because we've got our heart broken.
Well, when you have your heart broken, there's been intimacy involved when your heart has been broken, whether that is with a very good friend, whether that is with a relative, whether that is with a romantic interest. Whatever it may be, when there's been a heartbreak, it has been intimate enough to have your heart broken over. So you've got this gaping canyon that needs intimacy, and you're missing it right now. And so what do you do with it? Well, the way you move the hindrance out of it, go for intimacy with Christ. All right? But what about breakups? So somebody in here has had a bad breakup lately. Breakup minus hindrance. So, we can't change the fact that we've had a breakup. Is everybody tracking with me? But what if we move the hindrance out of the breakup? What if it was no longer a hindrance to what God wanted to do in our lives?
Now, I'm just wondering, would we have some depth and dependency? I think we would. Okay, now listen. I'm naming this next one, and I want you to know this 'cause I'm going to name a few others that are about on this level. I do not minimize in any way how these equations are beginning. I'm not at these, it doesn't get bigger than some of these things we're about to hit on. But I'm just saying, could you consider with me? So if any of you are like me and have childhood trauma, you had some really traumatizing things in your childhood, so it becomes a very big hindrance in a thousand ways. Could we agree with that? But what if the hindrance to what God wanted to do in my life through his gospel, what if that was moved?
Well, let me tell you that what you would have is a phenomenal victory over demonic powers. That's what you would have because I promise you that the devil meant to finish you where you would have no impact whatsoever. See, he cannot take your salvation from you. I mean, you are sealed. So what he's going to do is everything he can to take your fruitfulness from you. What if he didn't get to do that? What if you dealt with those hindrances? What if you did what you needed to do? A very godly thing is therapy. Very godly thing is prayer. In the Word of God the mind renewed. Let's look at the next set, and I'll go a little faster. Okay, what about singleness? What about singleness? Okay. So you're single. Maybe you don't want to be and you're thinking, "My singleness is a huge hindrance to me". Why? Why does it have to be? What if, okay, you were still single but the hindrance moved out of it? What would it look like?
Well, it would look like a whole lot of liberty of availability and ministry. So many women in this room could tell you, "Girl, go for it while you can. Travel, go on a mission trip with your church every single chance you get. Do the thing. Do the thing. Do the thing". Celibacy. Somebody with same-sex attraction is thinking, "What according to the Scriptures, according to the Scriptures..." Not according to our culture, according to the Scriptures. We have to trust Jesus. We have to trust our Lord. "What am I to do with this"? Somebody realizes that, or maybe this is the case. Maybe for whatever reason, maybe there's been a stroke of a spouse and inability to have any intimacy with you whatsoever and you, though married, are called to complete celibacy. What do you do with that? That's a hindrance.
You think, "You know what? I deserved more than this". I mean, what do we do with that according to the Scriptures? What if the hindrances moved out of it and it was just like, y'all, holiness, set apartness? What about that? Childlessness. So painful, so painful. And I pray with all of my heart that for you that so long to have a child that God is going to grant you that request. I've seen him do it over and over again. I believe in miracles, signs, and wonders. But what if that hindrance, that it's been such a hindrance to the life, such a hindrance of abundant life? Like I can't get happy now because it's all I can think of. What if... we couldn't change the childlessness, but we did agree to let the hindrance be removed.
What does the Scripture say? It says it in Isaiah 54. It says it again in Galatians 4. More are the offspring of the woman who cannot bear children than the one that can. And do you know what me... that's spiritual offspring we're talking about here. Sons and daughters all over the place, more than you could possibly bring up in your home. Get out there and mentor people. Raise some children in the faith. They're out there. They're out there, and they're looking for you. Look for them. Disappointment minus hindrance. What does that become, trust? Well, we didn't get what we hoped for. We got disappointed. What can that turn into if we no longer let there just be the big hindrance and the disappointment, trust? What about devastation minus hindrance?
Well, you know what that's going to turn out to be? Resurrection power. You know how I know that? Because devastation is one of those things you are sure will kill you, you are sure will kill you. How many of you are like me, that you have endured something that you were absolutely positive you could not survive? Can I see your hand? I mean, absolutely positive. Like, "I am telling you that I am only alive by the resurrection power of the Lord Jesus Christ". That's what happens. Injustice.
Now let me tell you something. We want to fight against injustice. That is a gospel cause in my understanding of the Scriptures. But say that injustice where you are concerned or where your loved one is concerned does not change, what do we do? Is that... now, that's a hindrance to us. We can't get on with it. We can't operate in the spirit. We can't do anything because this right here: "I have been wronged". And it's true. It's true. We can let that cease being a hindrance to us because we can know. I promise you, sister, in the name of Jesus, that what someone does to you that is unjust, Jesus takes very personally, very personally. He says to us, "You know what? I'm going to tell you something. You keep your nose clean. I'm going to handle this, and they don't want me to have to handle it".
He will right every single wrong. Lastly, loss. What do we do with that? If we move the hindrance out of the loss, it becomes fellowship in Christ's sufferings. I'm going to tell you something about that because I know that doesn't sound romantic. I know none of us want it. We say, "In our natural self who wants that"? Like, "Jesus has the Father and the Spirit. He can fellowship with the angels. I don't want to go through loss". But I'm going to tell you what happens after you fellowship with Christ in his sufferings. You will have a lot of doubts of different kinds in the course of your life. Whether or not Jesus is real and is your Savior will not be one of them because he will be so attentive to you in your suffering that you will never, ever have to be told that he is a greater reality than anything you can see or feel or sense.
I'll take this one to the bank. I've said it so many times. And so, this I'm putting in you. I said my because I want you to see it as yours. My pain minus the hindrance of my pain becomes my passion. I have a very, very tender place in my heart for people who've been abused. I mean, when that's the call I get on a prayer Tuesday or when that's when... I mean, because it speaks right into where I've been in my life. I mean, I can honestly... I told somebody last Tuesday. I said God connected to you with the right person because our backgrounds. What she had been through I could tell her almost verbatim was what I had been through, almost verbatim, even the same relationship in her life it... And in so many ways that pain became my passion.
This is the last one. What happened minus what hinders equals God's glory and human good. What would happen if we got the hindrance out of our hurt? Well, don't let it be a hindrance to me. You know what's going to happen? The hindrance will move first. Then you know what's going to follow behind it eventually? Then the hurt will begin to ease because that's how it goes. What do hindrances look like? We're looking at biblical categories of general hindrances. This is the circumstantial. This is the personal. This is the relational. So this is going to like... okay, our fear becomes a big hindrance to us. Our unforgiveness becomes a hindrance to us. Porn, hindrance to us. Bitterness, hindrance to us. These are personal things, circumstantial or personal, psychological, emotional, or relational. In other words, that person and that relationship with that person has become an enormous hindrance to me.
So listen to Hebrews 12:1. "Therefore, since we also have such a large cloud of witnesses surrounding us, let us lay aside every hindrance and the sin that so easily ensnares us and let us run with endurance the race that lies before us, keeping our eyes on Jesus, the source and perfecter of our faith". Stop there for just a minute. Did you notice it says the sin that so easily ensnares us and hindrance? They're not always the same thing. This is a very important thing to know about hindrances. They're not always sins. Sometimes a hindrance is, "I have simply got too much going to be able to live unhindered in the calling that God has put on my life. I'm trying to do 500 things to the glory of God, and I'm not doing any of them well". Is anybody tracking with me tonight? Let him guide you through it.
Number two, demonic hindrances, demonic hindrances. They can take all manner of form, but I want to read you one in particular because I am fascinated by it. Absolutely fascinated. Now, when I keep going like absolutely fascinated, I keep going on with the adjectives, that means I can't find the verse right now. So any time I just keep talking, it's because I have no idea where the verse is. None. None. But I have now found it, I think. Yes. 1 Thessalonians 2:17 through 20. Listen to this. This is Paul talking. "But as for us, brothers and sisters, after we were forced to leave you for a short time, in person, not in heart, we greatly desired and made every effort to return to you and see you face to face. So we wanted to come to you. I, Paul, again and again, but Satan hindered us. For who is our hope or joy or crown of boasting in the presence of our Lord Jesus at his coming? Is it not you? Indeed you are our glory and joy".
Listen, the devil can do everything he can to keep people apart who would be a joy to one another in the faith. Mark it down because it said Satan hindered us because Satan knew that there would be a lot of joy, a lot of boasting in the Lord Jesus that would have come from that relationship. And so, he did everything to keep it apart. Demonic hindrances. Three and lastly, divine hindrances. This one's huge. Turn with me to Acts chapter 16, and I want to read verses 6 through 10. This kind of stuff fascinates me to no end. Just fascinates me. Now, these people that are talking about this leadership of the Spirit have a Spirit inside of them just like we do, but I want you to watch what happens here.
"They went..." This is Luke talking about Paul and his small little band of gospel warriors. "They went through the region of Phrygia and Galatia, and they had been forbidden by the Holy Spirit to speak the word in Asia. When they came to Mysia, they tried to go to Bithynia, but the Spirit of Jesus did not allow them. Passing by Mysia they went down to Troas, and during the night Paul had a vision in which a Macedonian man was standing and pleading with him, 'Cross over to Macedonia and help us.' So after we'd seen the vision, we immediately made efforts to set out for us, concluding that God had called us to preach the gospel to them". Concluding that. In other words, then they had to figure out, "Well, it seems that since he's calling us there, we must be taking the gospel here".
Okay, what does it mean that the Holy Spirit forbade them? Did the Holy Spirit go, "I forbid you"? We don't know. There are places where the Scripture says that Jesus spoke to Paul, but it seems to convey that it was the Holy Spirit through a Holy Spirit work just going like, "No". I mean, exactly... what does that look like? I can't answer that question, but this is the kind of leadership I want. And they tried to go somewhere... So they turned to go some other way. Well, the Spirit of Jesus then does not allow them to go there either. So this is a very, very big deal because my question to you before we leave this place is, how do we know which is which? How do we know that the enemy is not trying to get in our way and keep us from a gospel destination or someplace that is important to our calling, someplace we are supposed to go? How do we know the difference?
This is where we have to walk in the Spirit. This is where we just can't look at a list of laws. We have to walk in the Spirit in intimacy with Christ because if we do, the Spirit is very, very full in us and operating in leadership in us, then what happens is, that hindrance comes but we are not released from the compelling. That's when you know it's some other hindrance. If the Holy Spirit is still going, "Oh no, no, no. You're going. You're going". 'Cause the Holy Spirit kept saying, "Oh no, you're going to Rome. You're going to Rome". So he just wouldn't stop. He said, "Keep me 3 months. Keep me 2 years. I'm still going to Rome. It doesn't matter how you hinder, I'm going to Rome". Because the compelling was still there, that Holy Ghost drive was still there.
That's when you keep pressing. That's when you keep waiting. That's when you keep patient. That's when you keep praying. But there are times that God just goes, "That's done". You're like, "Why"? You may not know till you see him face to face, but I want to promise you something. When the Holy Spirit warns you not to go forward, I would suggest to you strongly, having disobeyed Him on no few occasions, that is best to do what he says. Acts 28:30 and 31, "Paul stayed two whole years in his own rented house. He welcomed all who visited him, proclaiming the kingdom of God and teaching about the Lord Jesus Christ with all boldness and," tell me those two words, "without hindrance," without hindrance.
So wait, wait, wait, wait, wait, wait. But what about the trial? I mean, did he appear before Caesar? 'Cause he's only... but must have. I mean, Luke's going to stop us with that? Oh yeah, he is. Because Luke's big interest is not in Paul going before Caesar. Oh, somebody work with me tonight. It's in the gospel going forth into all the world that we proclaim the goodness of our God through the salvation of our Lord Jesus Christ. So the whole point was made. Acts chapter 1. Go, go from Jerusalem into all Judea, into Samaria, into the uttermost parts of the world. And we get to all the way to the end of Acts and it is. They proclaim the gospel without hindrance. And ever since it's just been going from one place to another place, back behind walls where it is not allowed. The underground church is exploding with faith in Jesus Christ unhindered.