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Watch 2022 online sermons » Jentezen Franklin » Jentezen Franklin - The 25th Bear

Jentezen Franklin - The 25th Bear


Jentezen Franklin - The 25th Bear
Jentezen Franklin - The 25th Bear

Hello, and welcome to Kingdom Connection I really want to thank you for watching today. The message that you're gonna hear I believe is one that will open your eyes and change your life. I shared it at our annual Forward Youth conference right here in Atlanta, Georgia. And so, today I want you to listen to this message. I believe, and you may wonder, "Where in the world is he going with this message"? Just listen to it because there's a truth and a revelation in it that you'll never forget. Let's go into that service.

If you have your Bibles, open them with me to the book of 2 Kings 2. 2 Kings 2. And I've got something I want to share and it's real in my heart tonight and I pray that God before I'm finished, I don't preach long, I'm on a clock right now and if you've got a clock you can set it, I'll be done in about 27 minutes. 2 Kings 2, this is what it says, verse 23, "Then he," Speaking of Elisha, "went up there to Bethel; and as he was going up the road, some youths came from the city". Everybody say, "Some youths, some young people". Turn to somebody and say, "That's us". "Came from the city and mocked him," who? The old prophet, Elisha.

"And they said to him, 'Go up your baldhead! Go up, you baldhead!' and he turned around and looked at them, and pronounced a curse", he didn't cuss 'em out, he didn't say he cussed 'em, it said he cursed them. Meaning in this text, I looked it up the other day and one translation said, "He turned them over to the Lord. He cursed them in the name of the Lord and two female bears came out of the woods and maul forty-two of the youth". That's what I'mma preach on. I'm not preaching on the three bears, I'm preaching on the two she bears.

Notice the Bible said they were she bears, you know why? Because she bears are meaner than he bears. Especially when you mess with their cubs. We all know your momma will kill somebody if they mess with you. I wanna talk to you about this strange text in the Bible. It seems brutal, it seems vicious. Forty-two young people splattered and torn to pieces by two bears because they were mocking and attacking and belittling, not just the messenger but the message going to Bethel, going with the word of the Lord. They were part of the place that he was going to but they had lost something in the house of the Lord, a reverence for God.

Sometime ago, it's hard to even find it in print but you can. A man wrote a book by the name of Frank Dufresne, he's the former director of the Alaska gang commission. A forest ranger. He lived his whole life, most of his adult life in the forest with grizzly bears on an island. He studied them for decades and he wrote a book called, "No Room for Bears". He points out that there's a huge difference between grizzly bears, or what is called brown bears, and black bears. Black bears are what we have in Georgia and Florida and the east coast, for the most part all the way up. Black bears are much smaller. The biggest they'll get, maybe a large male 500-600 pounds but a grizzly bear is totally different from a black bear. They're only on the other side of the Mississippi and mostly on the west coast.

This man who wrote this book was at a place, an island in Alaska that's famous. It has all the time more than 1,600 grizzly bears on it. Trophy bears, the largest bears in the world live on this island and he studied them for decades. He said that he tells in the book one story about how that there was call that there was a problem with a very aggressive bear. I'm going somewhere so just let me do what I wanna do right now. So they got a call that there was a very aggressive bear on the island and every time bears outnumber people there 30 to 1. For every person on the island there's 30 grizzly bears. And this particular bear they were afraid was responsible for taking human life.

And so, this ranger get's an assistant that he's training, the trainees name was Jose. And they go into this island and they said when they got into the island that there was a area of the stream where there were about 15 bears that hung out and that's where they were told this extremely aggressive grizzly would be in that area. And he said as soon as they got into that area they got the most creepiest feeling. And the experience forest ranger... Only one of them had a rifle, I must add, and that was the experienced forest ranger. The trainee was not allowed to bring a rifle. And the experienced ranger turns and he says, "I think he's close".

The young man starts looking around and suddenly he sees through the branches the piercing red eyes of a massive grizzly bear and all that he said he could see was his lips snarled up and his brown teeth. And when he touched the forest ranger and got his attention to look the forest ranger hit his safety on his gun and just loaded the shell and the second he did that bear that was 20 yards away started charging. The forest ranger shot that bear and hit it and tried to rechamber but before he could do it, in less than 1 ½ second, that bear covered 20 yards and was on top of that forest ranger. Jose the trainee was knocked back into a thorny area and rolled down a hill and into a stream and finally just climbed up a tree and waited and he had to hear the horror of the man who was supposed to train him how to deal with and recognize and be aware of grizzly bears and get along with them and he said he listened to that bear as it ripped and tore that man to pieces and he was helpless without a gun to do anything about it. He said, "I listened to the man who was supposed to train me be murdered by a grizzly bear".

A few months later he decided to go back, he felt like he needed to finish what that bear started and he said that they went back in, that one man went back in about a year later after he had trained. And he said he got in a tree and he did things to kill his scent so the bear wouldn't have the advantage of knowing where he was and he got set and in camouflage. And he said, within a few minutes he got set, he said suddenly he felt that creepy feeling and here comes that bear, that massive bear coming through that forest popping his jaws because that's what they do when they're really ticked and they think somebody's on their turf. Popping his jaws angry and mad. He said, "The moment that I chambered the bullet he turned and started charging," and was almost on him and he shot and it severed the spine of that massive, massive grizzly and it fell dead. And when they checked him and he had one place where he had been wounded, where the other ranger that had been killed had shot him.

And here's why I told you all of that because I think it's important. They have determined, scientist, bear people who study these animals, especially grizzly bears. They have determined that all bears are not looking for a fight. All bears are not angry and killers and vicious and aggressive. They will if they have to but most of the time, even grizzly bears, they're not necessarily looking to kill somebody and this is what the man determined after doing extensive studies and this is well documented. He said, "Only one out of 25 grizzly bears will stalk you and kill you and track you and aggressively try to kill you on purpose". They call it the 25th grizzly. And this is what it says if you look up the 25th grizzly. It is a scientific and studied phenomenon that 1 out of 25 grizzlies are not looking for a peace treaty under any conditions.

Here's the actual definition of the 25th grizzly, "One that tolerates no man or bear. One that will kill without bias". Only 1 out of 25 really will not back down. Most of the time if you're out in the forest and they hear you, they'll take off. Or maybe you have to say, "Hey bear! Hey bear"! And they'll take off. That's why they tell you if you're walking through the forest where there are bears, don't surprise them. Speak up and say something and usually they'll just run off. But 1 out of 25 grizzlies they say what you ought to do if you see a bear who's is a, y'know, make yourself as big as you can and get loud if you have to and, "Hey bear"! And usually they'll take off but if you do that to the 25th bear.

See, the problem is, you don't know which number you're dealing with. They don't wear numbered football jerseys, they don't go through the, "I'm number 12, you don't have to worry about me. I'm number one, you don't have to worry about me". Oh you got a bunch more, "I'm number 18, you can do it all you wanna do it. And come in this area and do anything you wanna do and I won't mess with you". But they're not numbered, you never know when you're coming up on bear number 25. And if it's number 25 and you say, "Hey bear"! And you stand there trying to look big and bad, he'll say, "Challenge accepted. I'm going to tear you to pieces".

I don't speak Latin but let me give you the scientific name for the grizzly bear, this is the Latin name and scientific name. Ursus arctos horribilis. I'm not making this up and I don't understand Latin, I don't understand the first two words but I do get the last word, horribilis. I can translate that. It means horrible bear. It means this thing is horror-able. It is able to bring horror to your life like you can not even imagine. It's a horribilis, it's a horrible bear. It's got claws, it's got teeth, it's mighty, it's 1,100 pounds, it's ten feet tall and it is not afraid and it is not going to back up. If you come on its territory, it's going to be horrible. I'll tell you it's horrible what sin can do to somebody's life, that's full of potential. They're some places and some people and some things you just can't touch.

One unguarded moment, Samson kept going to Delilah and at first he held the secrets back, at first he didn't tell her and she would get him to lay his head in her lap and he had the long hair and she would run her fingers through his hair and she would say, "Tell me the secret to your power". And at first he wouldn't do it and the thing about that story that drives me crazy is how could he keep laying his head down after the first time he should've got his wake-up call. When he told her, he said, "Y'know, if you do this or you do that then I'll lose my power". And she told the Philistines while he was sleeping and when he woke up the Philistines come running in and they try to bind him up with chords and it didn't work and he broke the chords and he slew 'em. He should've known then this situation right here is not my friend. But he kept going back and laying down and doing it again and doing it again and doing it again and finally the 25th bear showed up. You can't just keep doing things that you know are not right.

Finally, Samson laid down and she said, "Tell me the secret". And my point to you is not just to tell you horrible stories but I have lived long enough, I have had that bear come into my home, into my family and try its best to kill, steal and destroy on levels that I cannot even speak of. And I told God if ever got to preach at Forward Conference again, I was gonna make hell pay. It's not gonna happen to you and it's not gonna happen to you and it's not gonna happen to you and you. We're not gon' drop you off in a drug rehab, we're not gonna do that to you. You're not gonna do it, you're gonna say, "My body is the temple of the Holy Ghost". You're gonna say, "I've got a purpose greater than anything this world can offer me".

Come on, somebody. Somebody reach out to God. Somebody who's fighting with a bear. Somebody who's really got a problem and you can't just cover it up. You need help! You know what I read? I mean, you keep doing it, it's just a matter of time twenty five is gon' show up, "But I been doing it so long it's just... If something doesn't hurt it's okay. I'm used to it". You can't keep doing things that are blatantly wrong and it be okay. Repent means to turn completely in the opposite direction and get as far out of there as you can get. You know what I read? They said, "There's three things you ought to do if a grizzly's coming after you or you come up on one on a trail".

Number one, they said, basically, "Group up. Get in a group. If there's any other people out there and they're walking up the trail, all of y'all need to get together". And I thought, "My goodness". Because you look real vulnerable when you're isolated all by yourself. But we're in a big ol' group here and Satan is trembling. The greater is He that is in us and if you're weak I'm gonna reach up and pick you up and when I'm weak you can reach up and pick me up. But you know what else they said? They said, "Make a lot of noise".

It's more than noise when you praise the Lord because his blood has made you righteous. His blood has taken the shame and the guilt. His blood has redeemed you. He hung on that cross. That bear that tore Him up on that cross, it ripped His back, it tore His face off. He had scars all over His body. He took the attack of the grizzly of sin. He conquered the 25th grizzly that wants to destroy your destiny. He already defeated it. So make some noise and say, "Jesus! Jesus, you are my refuge! Jesus, you are my hiding place"!

And lastly, I promise you this is the truth. The difference between a smaller black bear and a massive grizzly bear is if you climb up a tree and a black bear is after you, they can climb better than you can. A black bear will go right up, I know 'cause I've seen 'em do it and they'll be right on ya. But a grizzly is so big and heavy they cannot climb trees. Never will you see a grizzly climb a tree. Brown bears can't climb. And I thought, "Well, get in a good group, make some noise and climb up higher". Get up on your feet, get up higher, get up higher. We're not a bunch of defeated people, we're not afraid of the bear, we're not afraid of anything in our culture, our society because the blood of Jesus make us overcomers. Now lift up your voice and begin to say, "God, I'm bringing that bear to you tonight".
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