Joyce Meyer - A Living Hope
Do you feel you have done things so bad that you're out of God's reach? Or maybe, no matter how hard you try, you keep repeating the same mistakes and feel there's no hope for you. Well, I want you to know that God has already made a way for you to be born again to a living hope. To be born again, to be saved, whatever language you use, means that you receive Christ as your Savior, the payment for your sins, and that He comes to live inside of you.
You know, when you're saved, it doesn't just mean that you agree to try to be good and go to church once a week. It means that God comes to live in you. You become the home of God. A new creature. You know, if you're born again, you're different than other people who aren't born again. You have a power in you. You have a hope in you. The Bible says that we're born again into an ever-living hope.
You know, the interesting thing about salvation is it's already a done deal. You don't have to struggle to try to get it. You don't have to try to talk God into doing something for you. Jesus already died for us. He's already paid for our sins. Whether you know it or not, every sin that you've ever committed or ever will commit has already been forgiven. All you have to do is receive it.
The word "Get" means to obtain by struggle and effort, but to "Receive" means to just take in what's being offered. Become a receptacle and just, whoosh, take in what's being offered. You say, "Well, maybe I've committed too many sins." well, let's just use an example.
There's a power line coming into this building. If someone would reach up and cut the power line one time, we would have no power, right? It'd all be gone. Well, let's just say somebody cut the power line five times. We still wouldn't have any power. Or let's say they cut it 100 times. We wouldn't have any power. So whether you cut the power line once or 100 times, you don't have any power.
So, whether you sin one time and manage to be good the whole entire rest of your life, which is not too likely or if you're like I was, one of those especially wicked sinners that the Bible talks about, somebody who just feels like you've done so many things wrong that there couldn't possibly be any hope for you. Either way, the power line between us and God is cut and we need somebody to restore that. And we can't do that. Our sin is so great and God's holiness is so amazing that there's no way that through any effort or works of our own, or any amount of good behavior, or any trying to pay for our sins that we could ever restore what's been broken.
But God so loved the world that he sent his only begotten Son, that whosoever (I think that's you). That "Whosoever," not some people, not a few people, not special people, but whosoever, what? Believeth in Him. Now, you know, could I tell you something? You could choose to believe what you want to. You don't have to have some special feeling to believe. You can just choose to believe the truth that Jesus died for all your sins over 2,000 years ago, that He loves you.
You say, "I don't feel loved." Choose to believe it and the feelings'll catch up with it. Anything you choose to believe, your feelings will catch up with it eventually. Choose to believe that the Word of God is true, that God not only forgives your sins, but he forgets them and he removes them as far as the east is from the west.
In order to enter the Kingdom of Heaven, a man must be born again. When you're born again, a seed of everything that God is comes to live in you. You become pregnant with all that God is. Man or woman, young, old, you become pregnant with everything that God is. Pregnant with hope, pregnant with joy, pregnant with faith, pregnant with peace.
And as the Holy Spirit works in you, you grow, and you begin to give birth to first this thing, and then another thing, and this freedom, and that freedom, and some other freedom. And that new creature that you are made by the grace of God at the moment of your new birth begins to be manifested through your life. And all of a sudden, people begin to say it and they start to say, "I think I'd like some of that."
See, God doesn't save us just so we can lay on the couch, and eat Doughnuts, and watch soap operas. He wants us to all be witnesses in a dark world. And that's not a scary thing, it just means get out in the world and be what you are. Just simple, just get out in the world and just be what you are. If you're here tonight and you say, "Joyce, I need a new beginning," do you need "If any man be in Christ, he's a new creature. Old things pass away. All things become new." Tonight, you can have a free, new beginning. Free! New beginning.
All your sins forgiven, peace with God, a belief and an understanding that you will go to heaven. But not only that, when you're born again, you receive eternal life. And eternal life is not just a ticket to heaven when you die, but listen to this. Here's what eternal life is. It means to have life as God has life while you're here on the earth. Life as God has it. Eternal life is a different quality of life. It's not a breathing life. Life as God has it. Overcoming life.
And all you have to do is say, "Can that be for me?" Yes, that's for you. Maybe you've tried to serve God and you've fallen back into sin, and so now the devil's really got you convinced God'll never have you back. Well, you know what? He's a liar and you're here in the right place. And it's your time to say, "You know what? Just like the prodigal son, I'm coming home. I'm tired of living in the pig pen of life. I'm coming home."