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Watch 2022 online sermons » Jentezen Franklin » Jentezen Franklin - Climbers

Jentezen Franklin - Climbers


Jentezen Franklin - Climbers
Jentezen Franklin - Climbers

If you have your Bibles, I'd like for you to open them with me, and I wanna go to the Book of Psalms 24. Verse 3, "Who will ascend into the hill of the Lord or who may stand in His holy place? He who has clean hands and a pure heart who has not lifted up his soul to an idol, nor sworn deceitfully. He shall receive the blessing from the Lord". I want you to notice that first verse, "Who will ascend into the hill of the Lord"?

That's what I wanna preach on; sending, going up to the top of the mountain with Jesus. I don't know if you've realized it or not, but life is an uphill climb, but the view is worth it. Life is like an uphill. It is full of challenges, and it requires of us to keep climbing, and I love this verse because he said who will ascend, who will keep climbing, who will keep going until you get beyond just a start in God or a comfortable place in God, but who will ascend to the hill, to the top. That one will obtain, the text said, a mighty blessing. Moses climbed Mount Sinai. He didn't climb it half way. He went all the way to the top and when he got to the top, God gave him his assignment. God gave him the Ten Commandments.

Elijah climbed Mount Carmel, and he prayed a 14-word prayer, and the fire of God fell. It didn't happen down in the valley or half way up the mountain. It happened on the mountain top. You have to keep climbing to get God's best. Peter, James, and John climbed the Mount of Transfiguration, and there they saw the glory of God on top of that mountain. Notice that the blessings were on top of the mountain, and it required climbing. Don't just arrive, but you have to climb. You won't just get to the top. You have to climb, and our journey is an uphill climb. And there are three kinds of people in life and in the church and in our walk with God there are people who start the climb but quit. There are people who climb so high and then they camp out and get comfortable and complacent.

But then there are those people who are not just starters and they quit, and they're not just people who get to a certain place and camp out and get comfortable and become a little lukewarm, but there's that last group that I wanna be a part of. They just keep climbing. You're either a quitter, a camper, or a climber. You see, quitters are crybabies. Quitters abandon the climb when things get tough. Quitters end up bitter and depressed because of what happened to them in life and they're a drag to be around. Quitters have excuses for depression and worry and fear dominating their life. They opt out, they back out, they drop out of every great thing that God has in their future. They quit climbing because it gets too hard. It's not easy. I thought God would just give it to me. No, no. Life is an uphill climb, but the view up there is worth it. It's easier to quit than endure.

And then there are campers. That's the person who goes further, He's not a quitter. He doesn't throw in the towel at the first challenge, but they get up and they win and they have some successes. They only go so far. A camper goes a little ways and then stops. They have a few successes and then they get satisfied and complacent. They don't go all the way. They say things like, well, it's good enough for me. This is good enough for me. They say things like I'm doing better than most folks. They say things like it's comfortable here, and they grow weary of the climb. They terminate the ascent. They get to a comfortable place in their marriage, a comfortable place in their walk with God, a comfortable place.

I'm not a quitter, I started. I'm in it, but I'm not really reaching and climbing and grabbing and fighting for more territory and trying to get up there where God has shown me I'm supposed to be. They just start camping out. They find a small, smooth plateau and they camp out there. They pitch a tent, make a campfire, and kick back and say I have arrived in life. They're that same way spiritually. I made the team. I started the game. I even played the last game, but I'm comfortable now. I don't have to try much. I don't have to strain anymore climbing this mountain. I'm in a good place. Just leave me alone. I wanna say something big. They start hanging out with other campers and before you know it, they're real comfortable right where they are and there's no hunger for more.

Success should not diminish our desire. Amen, Brother Franklin. Success should not diminish our desire. If it does, you will not remain successful very long. If we as a church get comfortable and camp out and say, well, we've done more than most churches and we've grown more than most churches, and we feel more than most churches, so we'll just settle here. Not with this pastor you won't. I am not a quitter, and I am not a camper. I'm a climber, and I'm going up there where the glory is. I'm going up there where the miracles are. I'm going up there where my church will be built, and the gates of hell will not prevail against it. Somebody clap your hands and say, God, don't let me lose the climb. I'm a climber.

Campers see the campground as a permanent address. You're supposed to just stay there and get refreshed and renewed, but instead you get you a leather sectional. You get you a cappuccino machine. You get you a nice warm blanket and a blazing fire, and you kick back, and you take it easy, and I wonder how many I'm describing spiritually. That's where you are. In your mindset, that's where you are. But then there's climbers. It's what God wants you to be; is a climber. Dedicated to a lifelong journey that says I have not arrived. I have not reached my place that I'm supposed to be. I will not. I say no to the plateau. I have not peaked. I have not reached my high mark in God. They continue an upward journey, listen to me, regardless of misfortune, regardless of disadvantage, regardless of pain, regardless of past achievement. They do not get satisfied.

I'm telling you today that climbers see obstacles as opportunities. Climbers see the glass half full. Climbers understand that a bend in the road is not the end of the road. Climbers get hurt. They get bruised, here it is, and then they get over it. They put some Bengay on it, and they say I am not through climbing. Praise God. Hallelujah. And I tell you, I've been bruised and I've been hit, but devil, I will not quit 'til I get to higher ground. I'm going up. I'm going higher. I don't know about you, but I'm going to the high place. Shout amen, somebody. A climber is like the painting "Mona Lisa". It keeps smiling when it's back is to the wall. The climber stops at campgrounds and gets refreshed, takes a minute and gets refueled, but they don't sit there and set up a satellite dish over their tent and kick back.

I wanna be a climber all my life and in order to do that, here are some things you need to do. Quit being a quitter. Most people, many people start out and then it gets hard and they quit. Quitting can become a habit just like winning. And we better not let our children get used to quitting. Make them finish something. Make them do something until it's done right because quitting can become habitual. They can develop in their minds that if it's hard, I quit and there are no ramifications. Quitting can become a habit just like winning can become a habit. To finish first, you must first finish. There are two times when you're likely to quit. After a failure, you just get discouraged and after a great success. After a victory. Success has made failures out of many people.

2 Corinthians 4:8 said, "We're pressed on every side, but we are not crushed". Said we are defeated it seems like and we're perplexed, but we don't give up and we don't quit. A man is not finished when he defeated. He is finished when he quits. There's a difference between a quitter and a climber, and the difference is not no pain. Both of them have pain, but one chooses not to quit, and the other says I give up. I'm afraid that if you don't watch it, a quitting mentality will get a hold of you, and you'll quit your marriage, you'll quit your education, you'll quit job after job when it gets hard and tough. In trying times, you don't stop trying. You keep climbing. Never, never, never give up. Hold on. Hold fast. Hold out. Don't quit.

The second lesson... the first one is quit quitting. Turn to somebody and say quit quitting. The second lesson is this, and this is for those who are a little bit better than quitters. They're campers. Don't unfold your tent at the campground of complacency. What do you mean? Proverbs 1:32, "Their own complacency will destroy them". Some people make some progress and then they become complacent. There are two byproducts of success. Number one, arrogance, and the other complacency, and this is what happens to people who have a measure of success in their life. The byproducts naturally are you get arrogant. Nobody can teach you anything. You don't need anybody's advice. We're the best. We're the biggest. We know it all. You don't know nothing, and there's some little body in a garage somewhere inventing something that's gonna make you obsolete in a little while.

You're gonna be a dinosaur. You're gonna be a hula hoop. The two byproducts of success are arrogance and complacency. You stop learning. You stop being sharp. You stop being teachable. You stop being passionate about what you do, and you become arrogant and complacent. Many times businesses and churches move into a zone of complacency. That's why our worship is not passionate. That's why our prayers are not passionate. That's why we don't really, you know sometimes if we don't watch it, we move into, because we've had success we become arrogant and complacent, and we think we know it all, and God says I'll never allow people in my kingdom to become arrogant and complacent after I bless them.

What happens is people get half way, and they just want security, and they just wanna play it safe, and they just want safety, but every time that we've seen miracles happen in this ministry, we had to refuse to allow the desire for safety and security to grip our heart because God is a faith God, and without faith it's impossible to please Him. I don't care how much you go to church. I don't care how holy you act. I don't care how blessed you are. If whatever you're involved in does not require you to trust God and have faith for, you are not pleasing God because without faith, it's impossible to please Him. Are you doing anything that requires you to have your faith in God? Security many times is the first step to stagnation.

Let me give you this. I wanna challenge everyone under the sound of my voice at all of our campuses and all of you online to dare to climb again. If you endure now, you will enjoy later. Philippians 3:12-14. This one thing he said, "I count not myself to have apprehended". I count not myself as someone who has arrived and gotten a hold of the prize. But he said, "this one thing I do, forgetting those things that are behind, I stretch, I reach for that which is ahead. I press," listen, "for the high calling of God in Christ Jesus". He's calling us upward. He's calling us to press on. He's calling us to get hungry again. He's calling us to put our tent back up on the backpack and keep climbing. Because you have not arrived, refuse to become a lukewarm Christian. Forget about what lies behind and reach for that which is ahead.

Edmund Hillary in 1952 tried to climb Mount Everest, and he failed, but he went back later, and he was the first one to do it successfully, but he gave a speech after he failed the first time, and he made these words pretty powerful. He said, "Mount Everest, you beat me the first time, but I'll beat you the next time because you're as big as you're gonna ever be, but I'm still growing". Clap your hands and shout I'm still growing. Here's a big point. Don't miss this one. If you're taking notes, write this one down, hang out with people who are climbers. Don't hang out with people who are campers and quitters.

Now, if you're gonna hang out with them, just hang out with them long enough to pull them up, but don't dare hang out with people who cause you to feel comfortable with the mediocre. I like to get around climbers. I like to get around people who are up here, and I'm still here, but they inspire the fire out of me. They make something in my say, well, why am I settling here if they can do it? I know that person. They haven't quit. God's used them, and I've got some talents they don't have. We need to hang around with climbers. Are there any climbers at Free Chapel? Anybody who still believes that our greatest days are up there, not back there? Hallelujah! Don't go back to what you used to be.

Come on. I wish we could go back to... that's how I feel. I don't wanna go back none of it. Climbers always look up. Climbers keep looking up. Life could get them down. Troubles and trials could get them down, but climbers keep looking up. 70% of the accidents in mountain climbers, 70% of the accidents happen on the way down. Isn't that amazing? I didn't know that. 70% of the people who get hurt. It's not climbing. Have you seen these people on the side of mountains? They don't get hurt going up 'cause they're real focused, but when they're coming down, they're careless. They're not paying attention. They're trying to hurry up. The words press on always have solved problems in the human race. Climbers endure. Hebrews 10 puts it likes this, "I will have no pleasure in those who turn back".

God said I will have no pleasure in the people who turn back and quit and give up and go back down. Through faith and patience we obtain the promise. For the joy that was set before in that mountain climber, Jesus. I'm so glad He didn't quit. When He was in the garden of Gethsemane, He didn't quit. When He was carrying the cross down the Via Dolorosa in Jerusalem and He collapsed under the weight of the cross, He didn't quit. When Simon of Cyrene helped Him carry His cross, He could have climbed, but He climbed Calvary's hill and for the joy that was set before Him, He endured the cross because He knew there would be a victory on top of that hill that would forever bring blessing and joy and peace and deliverance to you and to me. He didn't quite when He was carrying His cross.

Why are you quitting? Why are you camping out? God hasn't brought you this far to get you half way to tease you. He's saying come on up a little bit higher. I'm not through with you. I'm not through blessing you. I'm not through anointing you. I want somebody today to get something in your spirit that says I am not a quitter and I am not a camper. I am a climber and nothing's gonna stop me until I reach my place. There is a place that God has ordained for you and if you'll keep climbing, there's victory there. There's glory there. There's fire on that mountain, as Elijah found out. There's victory. There's prosperity. There's blessing. There's success. And I want it. Do I have any fellow companion climbers in this church who would dare say this morning I am not satisfied and maybe I had my tent out, but I'm packing it back up 'cause I've gotta go up a little bit higher.
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