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Watch 2022 online sermons » Leon Fontaine » Leon Fontaine - What is a Christian?

Leon Fontaine - What is a Christian?

Leon Fontaine - What is a Christian?

One of the things I struggled with as a young Christian was, what is a Christian? Do you ever ask yourself that question? What is a Christian? Because there's some pretty crazy answers out there. Like I'd meet people who were so religious and they were sure they were the church cops. If you went to that church, they would tell you where you were wrong, and what you should do, and they had a word from God for you to correct you. They get their bony finger in your face, and that's just religion. I hate religion. How can other, there's different kinds of Christians, I guess. They called them, one group are passivists. That they believe that anything that happens is God's will because it happened.

So if happened, it's God's will. I can think of a lot of sick things on this planet that happened that I would never leave at the feet of God. And then why would God give us an armor in Ephesians 6, if we're supposed to just give in to say, "If it happens, we're not going to do anything about it. It's God". No, you've got an armor, the Bible. It's a spiritual armor, a shield of faith, a helmet of salvation, a sword of the spirit. I mean, breastplate of righteousness. So that doesn't even make sense at all. And there's so many different people who claim to be Christians and, to tell you the truth most of them just turn me off. What is a follower of Jesus Christ? What is a born again believer? Because Jesus Himself made that comment. He said, "You must be born again". And I love that term. People will make fun of it but it's a brand new start. God made people.

And there is a part of you that was designed to move in His power, to move in God's anointing, God's presence. And if we do not do that, then we live on this planet and there's not much difference between us and people who refuse, or don't know about this Jesus. What do you believe about yourself? Because the beliefs that you have, and I don't mean little shallow beliefs of the head. I'm talking about deep consuming powerful beliefs of the heart, the Bible says. The Bible teaches us in Mark 11:22 and on, that if you will believe from the heart, and that word heart doesn't mean your physical heart. It's talking about the very centre of your being. If you will believe from there, that you can cause storms to calm down, problems and mountains to move.

When you begin to believe at the heart level, there is this cascade from the spirit, is what you are, into your mind, your emotions. It brings such peace and stability, into your body, 3 John 2 says that brings health and healing. This thing about believing is so crucial. But we've got to understand that it is a heart faith. What do you believe about being meek? Ever hear somebody say, "Well, you know, we're just going to be meek". As though, you know, we're like rabbits. You know, there's no power, no strength. No one's afraid of a rabbit. There's just, there's nothing there as far as... and you kind of go, "No, we're not this people of God who walk around the planet. We're meek"? And anytime the Word uses the word, the Bible uses the word meek. It literally means the response of your heart to God.

In fact, when the Greeks would train their warhorses 2000 years ago. When they had them completely trained, where they would be instantly obedient to the rider and fearless in battle. They would call them "praus," which is the Greek Word for meek. So it doesn't mean pathetic or wimpy or hide your head in the sand when any problems rise up. And there's a lot of different beliefs about what a Christian is, but the Bible is very clear that we are to be the head and not the tail. That means leadership. That when a believer is born again and knows Christ, that what goes on in his heart and his belief should be so astounding. That we are the salt of the earth. Meaning, we bring favor and longevity. It means that we are the light. This light of Jesus should illuminate through us to those around us. So that we know what truth is. It says in Romans 8 that He searches your heart. Yeah, I know in case He can find any sin. That's actually not what He's doing.

Did you know that as you begin to read the Word, that there are beliefs deep in your heart that completely control your ability to live. They control what you reach for. They control what you will attempt. They literally these beliefs are so powerful that they will control even your perception of events around you. Your ability to understand things is controlled by your beliefs. And our beliefs come from our upbringing religion, parents, grandparents, traumas that have happened to you. And so Holy Spirit's job, when you give your life to Him, is He begins to search your hearts. And what is He doing? As you begin to study God's Word come out to church, He will direct in the most amazing way the Word of God to push out wrong beliefs and to put in correct beliefs.

These correct beliefs according to God's Word, they literally cause health, prosperity. They cause the ability of God to flow through you. You were not designed to be just another animal on the planet like everyone wants to think. Well, there's monkeys and there's horses and we're just another animal. We're going to share the planet with them. No, we should treat the planet good. Don't get me wrong. But we were made in the likeness and the image of God. And I have found that as I begin to dive into God's Word, that Holy Spirit begin to work inside of me and my beliefs. And all of a sudden things would change. I'd find a peace that I could never hang on to before but it was mine now and it wasn't tied to the events of my life. It was tied to the beliefs of my heart.

I found a joy that would flow in my life even when there's a lot of things going wrong. But days over, I'm going home to my wife and my kids, laugh and loving and enjoying life. I wasn't sitting there just freaking out. There was a joy that didn't come from my ability to create it around me. It came from deep in the inside. And so the Bible teaches us that as, when you give your life to Christ, as you begin to get into God's Word, you begin to persuade your own heart in the truths of God's Word. And only then will you see supernatural results.

We've really got to begin to understand how to make this work. This thing called faith. This thing that says this is the victory that overcomes the world even our faith. Now, people have questions like they'll know somebody and they just seem to have so many things go good in their life. It's just like how come things, every opportunity comes that person's way and I run into them, and they make great friends, their jobs, their careers, opportunities. They just, it's just like their life is filled with luck. Bible calls that God's favor. And me is like maybe one a month. I don't understand why God does that, they'll say. Like why am I so less? What's wrong with me that God would look after that person so well and not me? And because of the teaching of the Bible, people think that God is in control of how blessed you are, how many miracles you get, how many answers to prayer. He decides that.

But I'm sorry to say it's not true. What He does in your heart because you are a freewill being. You've been given freedom. He'll never manipulate you, force you, make you. You have been given this life. And because Jesus died on the cross for you, went to hell in your place, and He literally wants to show you that you are a new creation. You're qualified for every blessing. So it's no longer like the Old Testament where you would pray and then God would answer and make a decision. That's old covenant prayer. New covenant prayer is where you have to begin to renew your mind. You get God's Word on the inside. And you can have as many answers to prayer as you will believe for. In Mark 11, it tells us why prayers don't get answered. It says there that whosoever shall say to this mountain, this problem in your life. Be removed, cast into the sea and shall not doubt in his heart, not his head, his heart. But believe that what He says shall come to pass. He shall have what he says.

Now this shocks people when they read this because it's a teaching from Jesus, showing us one of the teachings on prayer. That prayer is not, it doesn't say there that you believe God will see if the graph is raised up on the bar enough. Okay, that's enough faith, give it to him. No. It says in Peter, He's already given you all things that pertain to life and Godliness. God has already said, "Yes, they're yours". All that is required is for you to believe who you are. And this believing, okay. It's not the fact that you know more Bible than somebody else. I have so many people I meet as I speak around the world and in conferences who have so many doctorates. They can speak languages in the Bible. You know, Greek and Hebrew and Aramaic. And they just, and they don't see a single miracle in their life. I don't even see any peace and joy in their lives. Because it's not what goes on in the head, it's what goes on in the heart. The heart were, it's so unknown today.

In the garden of Eden, Adam and Eve, they had an ability to believe and to have authority over the planet. I mean, elephants had their strength and skunks had their stink and tigers had their claws, and you know. But man was, you know, weak nails and blunt teeth and nowhere near as strong as many animals in the water, in the air. Why was man an authority? Because in the likeness and the image of God, he had an ability to declare and he had an ability to dominate the world. You say, "What"? That's exactly what Genesis says. He said, "Go in to world and you are to have dominion. You are to multiply". And today, I simply want to challenge you with something. I want to show you something about the new covenant prayer. And that is that you have been designed from love. You've been designed in love. God is in love with you and His plan for your life is spectacular. It's amazing. And He will never hold back anything from you.

I remember hearing teaching when I was a young guy that, you know, if you're hanging on by your fingernails on the side of a cliff, God's going to wait till the last possible minute before He saves you. Just so. You go, "What"? Yeah, and you know what, He'll just allow things, messes and storms and heartache and hurt into your life to teach you something. I've heard more crazy messages. Man, if I had a nickel for every crazy message from the "Bible" that is not in the Bible. It's just people trying to understand and trying to teach people. God is in love with you and He's not such a lousy teacher that's He's got to make you sick, take your kid, bankrupt your business, in order to get your attention. He's not going to do stuff like that. He's not evil. You'd lock me up if I say, "I wanted my kid to not touch the fireplace glass on our gas fire. So I took their hand, just so they can". You'd lock me up. Yet we're sure that's the way God is.

And I want to challenge you today. That what you believe about God causes you to draw close to Him, or causes you to back away from Him. And some religious person has probably fed you a line of goods that has nothing to do with the God that we know. And so you've got to change these beliefs, or you'll back away from God. You won't trust God. You'll blame God for everything that's going on when it's not His fault. We have to understand that what you believe, okay, right or wrong controls your entire life. It is the auto pilot of your life. And if you can't seem to get results in an area, let's say that you got a great marriage, great friends, but finances are just a mess. Let's say that you can make a lot of money but you could never get a marriage to work.

Let's say that, you know, you got a great marriage. You got great finances but you're always sick, or really emotionally messed with, and you can't seem to find peace. Wherever there are no results in your life, it is not the area that God is saying no to. It is an area that you have misbeliefs. A doubt is a belief. But it's a belief in the opposite. And so when you want to see things change in your life, the Bible says do not doubt in your heart, or do not let an opposing belief in your heart that is against what God's Word says. So when you give your life to Christ and you say, "I tried Christianity". And usually people mean, "Well, I tried. I prayed. I did stuff, nothing changed, nothing happened". That's because prayer isn't bugging or begging or pleading with God to do something.

And when He doesn't, He doesn't love you. And when He does, He loves you more than somebody else. No, it comes down to this ability to retrain, to retrain the heart. Because this autopilot is so powerful. That if you ignore it, it will keep you on a trajectory that somebody else wired into you. If I was sitting in the front of the plane and, you know, the pilot went for coffee or he's in the bathroom. And some little 12-year old kid goes running in there, and goes right over the autopilot and starts just playing with the coordinates and everything. I'm going to freak out because I'm on that plane. And I don't want that kid putting some autopilot directions on there, into a mountain, or into the middle of the ocean.

So why would you live your life out of a belief system, out of an autopilot that somebody else put into you. Your parents, your grandparents, friends, teachers, school, culture. All of us come from different cultures. And these beliefs have formed in our heart to such a degree that the Bible says that a good man out of the good deposits in his heart brings forth good things. But an evil man out of evil deposits in his heart brings forth evil things. Another words, if you believe that you are unlucky and stupid to boot whoever wired that into your thinking. You'll just have it confirmed because everywhere you go bad luck follows you. Everywhere you go, everyone just seems to be smarter than you. When you believe that, you have a trajectory for the rest of your life of never ever measuring up. You'll walk into a room and go, "I don't even fit here, all the people look so smart and together. And I'm, I'm stupid".

I was reading an article about a missionary in China and he walk into a tattoo parlor. He's looking at all the tattoos. And he saw this tattoo and it just said, "Born to lose". So he asked the proprietary. He says, "Who in the world would place that tattoo on their body"? And he was said in halting English, "Oh, only him who already have tattoo in mind". He meant he believes that and he's putting it on. We live in a world where people through movies, through talking, will inundate you with beliefs. That if you accept them into your heart, you will live out the harvest of that seed. So the Bible says, Jesus said to His disciples, "I'm leaving, and Holy Spirit's going to come and He is going to search your hearts. He's going to lead you into truth".

What's He going to do? He is going to work with you to find the wrong beliefs that are hurting you. That are killing you. That are, that are getting you in directions that make you so unhappy. And as He helps you, you begin to discover who you really are. You begin to discover what God really is like. And as these new truths begin to be formed in your heart, your heart begins to produce. And it doesn't just stop at a little bit. It produces, the Bible says, thirty-fold, sixty-fold, a hundred-fold. Meaning, it just keeps producing. This stunning phenomenal ability, your heart can produce in every area of life. Any place you can find promises in the Bible.

When you begin to meditate on them, and they renew your mind, but then you begin to see it, own it, believe it, till it gets in deep into the depths of your heart. Your subconscious if you want to call it that. You literally you begin to change. You begin to rise up with such courage. You begin to rise up with such faith. Whether it's a financial career issue, whether it's a health issue, whether it's standing strong in the midst of storms that goes on. But you begin to change because out of the deepest, deepest, deepest parts of you. You know who you are and you begin to rise up and go, "No, I'm not a quitter. I'm an overcomer. No, I'm not stupid. I've got the mind of Christ". And these things begin to get dealt with in your own heart. And the world changes for you because you were designed to win. You were designed to be more than an overcomer. This is the victory that overcomes the world even our faith.

You see, faith cannot be generated by the mind. Faith cannot be generated by the body. Faith comes from the Word of God. And as you spend time in the Word, meditating and seeing yourself the way God sees you, you literally begin to rise up and your life becomes one that is miraculous. Your life becomes one that everywhere you turn, there's favor and blessing. And one of my friends we hired him in one of the organizations that we run. He even come to our church for years, wonderful man of God. As he begin to work on this organization with me, we would go places whether it was into London or Australia. And we'd be just reaching out and building this thing for God.

And one day he just looks at me and he says, "Everywhere we go". He says, "We find incredible blessings. Things are handed to you, contacts that we need to build channels and things that are going on". He said, "I've just never been involved in something where it doesn't matter where we go. Good stuff just happens". He said, "Isn't that cool"? I said, "That's not me. That's God's favor". But you see, I believe it. I believe I'm going to get up tomorrow morning, something's good going to happen to me.

Now, you can say it. But you've got to believe that. And as you begin to believe at the heart level, the Bible teaches us that this victory begins to happen in your world. The topic of faith has been something that a lot of people kind of, "Yeah, yeah, right. I've tried that. I believe and nothing happened". Not possible because there's a believing in the head. Like you're sitting on a chair right now and you believe it's going to hold your weight. I mean, it's got steel tubes. It could fracture. You could fall unto the ground and that little tube could drive a sliver straight into your butt and it could hurt. But you believe the chair is going to hold you up.

Now, we're sitting in a crazy four-story high building. You don't know who designed the roof. You don't know if it's going to come down, all these great big hunking beams everywhere. But you trust that an architect designed it. That the city checked it. That somebody built it and then the city checked it again. That it passed all inspections and you're safe to sit here. You believe. You trust in that. But see those are earthly beliefs. That's just human belief. There's a belief that I'm trying to get people understand that is far greater. It comes from the heart and it only comes from the Word of God. As you begin to see who Jesus is, as you begin to see what He did for you because you're so special. You're so crucial. You're so important to Him.

Religion will say, "You're a dirty rotten good for nothing sinner. Why would God do anything for you? You just be happy. He's saving you, sucker". Like all the dumb messages I've heard over the years. No. He is so in love with you that He sent His only Son. And if He give His Son for you, is there anything else He'd withhold from you? The greatest battle going on in every one of our lives is our real identity versus our perceived identity. And my challenge to you, let God's Word and His Spirit begin to do some incredible work on you. So that your real identity, you begin to believe it because you're perceived identity can't touch your real identity.
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