Beth Moore - Taking Aim - Part 2
Paul is about taking aim. What is it in your few moments, I think he would challenge us to say, that you are aiming your life toward? What is your aim? Go with me to 2 Timothy 3:10. "You, however, have followed my teaching, my conduct, my aim in life, my faith, my patience, my love, and my steadfastness". Do you have an aim in life? Because it is crucial to us, and every single one of us is called into this aim, this aim. You are going to see scriptural evidence that you are the furthest thing from aimless, the furthest thing. There is nothing more depressing than aimless.
When that gets in your bones and gets down in your belief system, if for whatever reason you have outlived your purpose or because your marital status tragically changed for whatever reason, or you're no longer maybe the thing that you love more than anything else in all of life was raising a house full of kids, they're grown and they've moved away. And you've decided, "I have no aim. I'm aimless". Somebody else is just in the middle of college and you're thinking, "You know what? I thought I knew".
You know how we know, the first day of our freshman year we know exactly what we want to be when we grow up. And like by Christmas we're going, "I don't know, I have absolutely no, I have no aim in life whatsoever. I know nothing. I know absolutely nothing". Because that feeling of just like, "I just feel aimless". When that gets in there and then we just live, we're just like wandering. We don't, we don't have any idea where we're going. We don't know where this is heading. It is a game changer when we figure out, "I am the furthest thing from aimless".
I want to show you something. I want to show you a definition because it's really powerful. Remember that we've just read 2 Timothy 3:10 that says, "You, however, followed my teaching, my conduct, my aim in life". Everybody say, "My aim in life". My aim in life, I want you to know what that aim, what that word is coming from. I want to show you the Greek word on the screen. "Prothesis" is how you would say it, "a setting forth, presentation, and exposition, determination, plan, or will. It involves purpose, resolve, and design. A placing in viewer openly displaying something, a thought or purpose". Couple of words again, it involves purpose, resolve, and design. I want you to know that is used in the Scripture for both God and his own, God and his own, that God has every bit of this toward us, and he has called us to have this toward our lives in aim of him.
Now, let me tell you, remember that it says a setting forth, a presentation, exposition, something that's right out in front. It is a word that is used to, in the Greek, in a Greek version of the Old Testament, the Septuagint. And several times in the New Testament and regarded the same thing when it's talking about the bread of presence that was set on the table, the showbread, the word is being used there as something that was set forth, it was set out on the table. Listen carefully and track with me here for a moment. At no time does God forget his plan. Every bit of God's agenda, he knows exactly what he's doing at all of time. So, there was eternity without end or beginning, there's eternity, and then he sets time in it.
So, here's time. So, time is always earth related because in the throne room of God in the heavenlies where God abides, there is no time. Time is always an earthly and human thing. Every time you see it, it's in reference to something going on with man. So, he's already got that thing laid out. He knows the beginning, he knows the end of it, and then he brings a new beginning and it's without end. So, in this whole period of time, at all times, his plan is set out in front of him. I want you to picture it like on a table. And I'm not meaning that literally, but I want you to get the picture of it, that he has resolved where his plan is concerned. Nothing is turning it upside down. Everything, he knows exactly what he's doing at all times. It is a presentation before him. He's got determination where it's concerned. There is a plan, and it's got purpose, and it's got resolved, and it's got design.
I love that because when you and I have an aim in life, I need somebody to listen really carefully to me, when we have an aim in life, it's out on the table in front of us at all times. And when we do, when that's out on the table, then that's before me in any kind of situation. Okay, say for instance, let me give you an example that just hit me. I know a young woman that, somebody I love very, very much, a good friend of mine's daughter, who was offered a job here recently by an older man with a whole lot of money who drove a really, really nice car, offered a very inappropriate job where he said, "You will be set up financially".
Listen, he took a wad of cash, rolled up cash, and he set it in her hand and wrapped her hand around it. And she's like, drop it, drop it. 'Cause you know why? It did not go with her aim in life. When that aim is on the table right in front of me, whoever's sitting on the other side of it was between me and you is my aim in life. I love you so much, I love you so much. But if you try to lead me somewhere that's not within my aim in life then you know what's sitting between me and you is my aim. And if you're not going where I could still have my aim in life to go with you, then I'm gonna start getting unnerved here because what's in front of me at all times is I've got, somebody, I got a resolve and determination for my aim in life.
And here's the beauty of it. Here's the beauty of it. When the things of God become our aim in life, he has promised us that if we set everything else aside to this one in, to this one in, lose everything else to gain him, he said, "You will end up gaining everything of value. You seek my kingdom and my righteousness, and I will add everything to your life that was valuable for you to do what you have been called to do and live a life that really does mean something". My aim, my aim in life. He cannot lead you astray. He cannot lead you into worthless things. He cannot lead you into just vain things that didn't end up meaning anything. He cannot waste your time. He cannot waste your life. He's incapable of doing it.
So, when we take on his aim and we begin to aim that direction, and then our priority energies that we're, that how we're checking everything else that gets our attention is, does it go in contrast to my aim? And there are many, many things that wouldn't. Listen, never think that if we're gonna have that aim in life, then we have to begin some kind of ministry. God wants us all over the world in any kind. Listen, if it's honest and ethical, God can use you for the sake of the gospel. We need to be in places of government, in medicine, in school systems, in banking, in retail, that we're just strung out all over the world in whatever kind of commerce and in software development, whatever it may be, that we're bearing out for the sake of the gospel. That our aim, this is our aim, that no matter what I do between me and that screen is my aim. Somebody getting that with me?
You go back to 1 Corinthians 9, and I'm going to read you something out of the Ephesians 1:9 through 11, something I love, something I love. Ephesians 1:9 through 11 says... well, I have to start at 7 because it starts the sentence there. "In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of his grace, which he lavished upon us, in all wisdom and insight making known to us the mystery of his will, according to his purpose, which he set forth in Christ as a plan for the fullness of time, to unite all things in him, things in heaven and things on earth. In him we have obtained an inheritance, having been predestined according to the purpose, purpose of him," purpose is our word, "of him who works all things according to the counsel of his will".
The word that is a translation of our word here "prothesis" is purpose. Have you been predestined according to the purpose of him who works all things according to the counsel of his will, the counsel of his will? In other words, he's already thought this through. He said, Listen, a lot of thought went into you. But what I want you to understand, with the same forethought and plan for man in general, and heaven and earth, God has that for you. Somebody in the house needs to know God has perfect aim, absolutely perfect aim. Genesis to Revelation, he never ever misses the mark. I jotted a few things down. I hope to prove this.
God aimed his Son for the world, and not just any part of the world. He had already foretold in the Old Testament that he would be born in Bethlehem. He was not born five miles from Bethlehem. He was born in Bethlehem because God chose Bethlehem and so Bethlehem was where Jesus was going to be born. Jesus was not more than five minutes too early or five minutes too late. He was born when the time came that she should be delivered, and he chose it. And he had perfect aim. He aims his Word, Isaiah 55 says, and it never returns to him empty. He aimed for every single writer that he inspired to write Scripture. And if you don't think that's impressive, I want you to understand with me, now I'm approximating here because nobody knows for sure down to the year.
But do you realize that the inspiration of Scripture from Genesis to Revelation took place over the course of about 1400 years? How patient and how specific could God possibly be that he's gonna, I mean, if I'd have gone like, you know what, let's get it over with. I choose you. You know what I'm saying? Like, wow, why wait 400 years here? Like go ahead with the next one, for crying out loud. It's so interesting because the Old Testament is written, I'm approximating here, it's written over about a millennium, so right around a thousand years, whereas the New Testament, it is like then time is on steroids because it's getting closer and closer and closer to the return of Christ.
So, the New Testament is written in only a couple of decades, beautiful. He aimed right for Saul of Tarsus. He knew exactly where he'd be on that road, exactly where he'd be. Paul said it himself out of the Book of Galatians when he said, "When he who set me apart before I was born, and you called me by his grace was pleased to reveal his Son to me". I want to ask you, does anybody in the room know Jesus Christ personally? Do you realize that if you know Jesus Christ personally, that it was because Jesus was pleased to reveal his Son to you? I want somebody to try to wrap your brain around that for a minute. You did not get in on a group pass. You didn't get in because your family got in. You didn't get in because you had some kind of Christian heritage that made you where you just got somehow a free pass with everybody else. God knows that you yourself are here.
Somebody needs to know that, that he aimed at you, he aimed where your seat would sit in this house. He knows the exact number of hairs on your head and how many of them have color on them. Knows exactly how many are gray, how many are brown, how many are gray under the brown, he knows. He knows all of that. And we've been targeted by the great affection of God through our Lord Jesus Christ. Like you didn't just like somehow slipped in. He planned for you. He has resolve where you are concerned. He has a will for your life. He's got design for you, a design about how he intends for it to come to pass. Like, of all the millions of people on the planet, he sees you. And he really does know, he knows the real you. He chose you. He knows all your passwords that you can no longer remember. I mean, we aim to just have fun, but the fun always wore off.
Does anybody get what I'm saying? That level of fun always wore off and then we needed more fun, and then fun wouldn't pay the bills. We aim to please people, but we can't keep them pleased. We aim to live happily ever after, but we forgot the after in happily ever. Is there are a lot of happy times in this life? But the happily ever after is promised actually after after. We aimed to impress, but what we got was criticism, or maybe we did impress and then we had to figure out how to impress again and be more impressive. Anybody?
Have you ever been impressive and then now that you were impressive, like it only lasts for about three minutes. It only lasts until you get to the car because man wasn't that impressive. And now it's, what am I going to do to be more impressive? And it has to be bigger and better. And now we're not just competing with one another. We're competing with our own self with last time's impression. This is no way to live. Now, this is a wonderful thing, but I'm saying as an aim in life, some of us that we aim just to help people. Oh, that's a good thing, that's a good thing. But as an aim in life, here's what happens, we cannot do enough.
Some of you are going like, "I'm trying to help you. I'm trying to help you. I'm trying to"... Have you ever noticed that people have to want to be helped? Have you ever noticed that some people will just like cooperate with just enough of your help to keep you hanging on, keep you hanging on? I mean, also you tried to help one person for 25 years, they have not been helped yet, not been helped yet. But there are 400 people out there that might really be helped. But we keep trying to help who doesn't want any, and we're exhausted.
Let me tell you something, we aim for fame, what we get is the fires of hell. And boy, am I not kidding, boy, am I not kidding? We aim for painlessness. It's a huge aim, especially for those of us in first world countries where we have all of these comforts and where in regard to the entire globe, every single one of us would be considered wealthy, every one of us in this room, whether you could pay your bills this month or not, we would be considered wealthy. And so, one of the things that we have just adapted to is we're constantly seeking painlessness, every kind of comfort. So, we aim for painlessness and what we end up with is an addiction. Anybody know what I'm talking about?
We aim for financial security, and you can have a vault full of money and you still do not feel secure. It's never enough, it's never enough. And we can so aim to win one earthly thing, that we lose everything else. One thing just drove us and drove us and drove us and drove us. But where they had that one thing, but we got nothing else, nothing else. I want you to turn with me to Philippians chapter 3, verses 12 through 14. "Not that I have already obtained this or am already perfect, but I press on to make it my own, because Christ Jesus has made me his own. Brothers, I do not consider that I have made it my own. But this I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Jesus Christ".
The word being used for the prize is the same one. It's the only two times the Greek word is used in all the New Testament is right here and back in 1 Corinthians chapter 9 where Paul says, "You run so that you can obtain the prize". It's a really great word, but I read in a couple of commentaries that it was often that in the games, it was often a celery wreath. Now, I don't know what that does to you, but I'm gonna tell you something, I have zero interest in doing all of this for a celery wreath, zero interest. And can you, can you imagine how wilted the celery, after it has been on your sweaty head out in the heat trying to have a little dignity with your prize. One other commentary was even worse, it called it a vegetable wreath. It said that a perishable crown would have been like, at the end of the games, would have been a vegetable wreath.
And I'm like what is that like green peppers and like cherry tomatoes and onions? I mean for crying out loud, I'm gonna tell you something. Here's how I feel about it, here's how I feel about it, here's how I feel about it. If I am going to have a food crown, I want a carb, I do, I do. Lace me up some tortillas. Give me one of those bread braids. I'll take, I'll take home a pretzel, I'll take a pretzel. I'll take a pretzel, just cut out the inside of it, leave it, set that on my head. If I'm gonna have a food wreath, I want it to be good. I want it to be good. But you see, it's not perishable. It's an imperishable wreath. Because I'm about to give you something that we're gonna call five spiritual fitness resolutions.
You and I are about to take down five spiritual fitness resolutions. Every one of us in this room, no matter what, if we are in Christ, is fully empowered and invited to step into every one of these resolutions. Number one is this, I'm following Jesus en route to Jesus. So, he's with us, but he's waiting for us. That metaphor is gonna tell us at the very beginning of Hebrews chapter 12, that we run this race before such a great cloud of witnesses, but we keep our eyes fixed on Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith. Number two is this, I do not run aimlessly. I don't box air. I take good aim.
Number five, my life has a point. You really are en route. You're following Jesus en route to Jesus that you began in Christ when he targeted you for salvation, called you by name. And you're on your way somewhere and it has a point. It has a point, that you're following Jesus en route to Jesus, that you do not run aimlessly, you really do know where you're going. You do not box air, you take good aim and your life has a point. And I'm gonna ask you this, whether or not you could say that right now you believe that, what if you did?