Leon Fontaine - A New Creation
You know, the devil wants to tempt you to quit. He wants to tempt you in to certain beliefs 'cause he knows if he can get you to believe a certain way, you're defeated. If he can get you to believe something, he can turn the power of Jesus. If you'd given your life to Jesus, the power of God is within you. Okay, but he wants to shut that down. So he'll tempt you to believe what is a lie. He'll tempt you to believe what is wrong. Now, in Philippians 2:13, look at this incredible verse. It says, "For it is God which works in you both to will and to do".
Now, I was brought up and I shared this in the second service in a denomination where many of the speakers that came to us would talk like this, "Oh, you're not gonna like. You're not gonna enjoy God's will but you have to do it. You gotta die to self. You've gotta-,". And there's some truth that we'll unpack this. But they made it look as if whatever God wants Leon to do he's not gonna like it. "Oh, well, so just suck it up Leon and just gonna do what God wants you to do even though you don't enjoy it". But that's not what this verse says. The Bible says here that He wants you to will and to do. So He is working in you and His will is your will. And so, understand this when you gave your life to Jesus, the spirit man inside of you it desires what God desires.
So if I say to you, "Well, Leon, you know I wanna serve God but that's not me". You're wrong, your problem is you've got your mind set and locked on this the desire of your flesh which is just fleshly desires. Now, here's another really important verse that we're gonna look at. It says in Philippians 2 verse on, verse 12 and on, it says, "So then, my beloved, just as you have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling for it is God who is at work in you, both to will and to do". If you are not desiring God's Word. If you're desiring to live right, then there's something that you have allowed to take place in your life and I'll show you how to shut it down. Because you are to desire to be honorable. You desire to be integrous. You desire to be a great husband, a faithful husband, a faithful wife. You desire to treat people right.
All of these desires are in you because Jesus is in you. But now the flesh, so anytime you read in the Bible the flesh, the carnal mind that's always talking about when your mind is on your own abilities and your own desires. God never tempts. Satan tempts you, and he tempts you from your own desires. You see your physical body has desires. You've got desires for food, desires for sex, desires to be love, desires to be important, to be special. You take any of those and you meet those needs outside of the way God's design you to meet your sexual needs, to meet your need to be love, food. I mean, you can kill yourself really young not handling food. Every desire you've got in your physical body, God's got a way for, to look after it and to control it. But if you don't look after it there, it can kill you and destroy your life.
Now, a lot of people think because they found out they can do some pretty mess up things they must not be a Christian. But let me read you a shocking surprising portion of Scripture. You ready? We're gonna go to Galatians 5:16 which was written to Christians. Listen to this, "But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you won't carry out the desires of the flesh. For the flesh," You know whenever you use the word flesh it just means this natural body and in this natural world. Alright? So the flesh sets its desire against the Spirit and the Spirit against the flesh, for they are in opposition to one another, so that you may not do the things that you please".
So the real you is your spirit, that's where the presence of God is. You desire they put in you to be healthy and strong and alive and loving and caring and patient and good and all these. But there are some desires that are still in the world that come at you through your flesh. And here's what it says, "Now the deeds of the flesh are evident, immorality, impurity, sensuality, idolatry, sorcery, enmities, strife, jealousy, outbursts of anger, disputes, dissensions, factions, envying, drunkenness, carousing, and things like these, of which I forewarn you, just as I have forewarned you, that those who practice these things". Look at the next phrase. "Will not inherit the kingdom of God". It doesn't say you're not going to heaven. It says you won't inherent the kingdom of God. The Bible says the kingdom of God is not meet and drink but righteousness, peace, and joy. When you give your life to Jesus Christ, the old you is dead and this new you is alive with God's life.
The kingdom of God is here now and if you wanna live a life filled with the beautiful things everybody here desires. You know, every guy, every gal, you want family, home, someone to love you, romance, adventure, excitement. If you're married a great sex life and kids and family and all, just all. God's got all that for you. But meanwhile if you don't learn to make your body and just tell it to shut up. It will take you on a path where you'll do things you never thought you could do. It even says here, look at this, one of the things that says that your flesh will take you into is sorcery, idolatry. There's a little kind of wohoo when you can start getting into, you know, Satanism and sorcery and witchcraft and play with things you shouldn't be.
Yet, the enemy will try to give this little, uhmn this is kind of exciting. But the Bible says that's your flesh. And that, it's going to take you in a place that destroys your joy, destroys your peace, destroys your relationships, your life. And so you, in the first session today we talk about you can set your mind on the flesh where you kind of like. There are people who are hostile against the things of God and they're Christians. They're Christians. They'll just be, they don't, they don't like anybody looking good. He's on the platform come against Pastor Leon, comes against Worship and Praise, come against-, They're just this hostile. It's the flesh side. It's just this little thing, the jealousy and envy and strife that's in the flesh side. That's not who you are. But when you give in to this junk, you start living in this junk and it's not even you. Who are you if you're born-again? You're a brand-new creation. Old things are passed away. Behold, all things become new.
I talked to young man one time and his, "Leon," He said, "I just stopped going to church". He said, "I came, I gave my life to Christ at Springs". But he says, he said this, "It didn't take or something". I said, "How do you know what didn't take"? He says, "'Cause I gotta tell you. I know I'm supposed to quit some things". But he says, "On the weekend man". He says like, "I like". And he started listing the sins that he was involved in. And I said, "So, what's your point"? "Oh, what do you mean"? I said, "The Bible says every born-again person, if you don't shut the flesh down and its easy do, just shut it down, start sac-, just shut it down. If you don't do that, it will take you to arrogance. It will take you to drunkenness. It will take you to witchcraft. It will take you into immorality. It will take you into all sorts of crazy stuff". "Oh, I thought that you couldn't do them when you're a Christian". No, you shouldn't do them because it destroys you. Okay? But you've been given the power to shut it down now.
Whereas before you didn't have the power to shut it down. Because your nature was lost, your nature was a nature of fear. And so what comes out of you was, you know, you can get-, my dad always said this story. Sally and I grew up listening to him tell this one story all the time. You can take the pig out of the mud, wash him down, clean him up, put some perfume on and put a bow on his hair. And the seconds you let him go, where is he going? Right back to the mud. Why? 'Cause the pigs nature is a pig. When you don't know Jesus Christ as savior, there are things that this fear nature and this lost nature will always go to. But when you give your life to Jesus Christ, the old you is dead and this new you is alive with God's life. Which means my friend listen to me, don't listen to the lies of the enemy because you've had a failure.
You're struggling with alcohol, immorality, pornography. Something that makes you just feel like, "You know, I can't get victory Leon, so I must not be a Christian". No, you are Christian. You need to just follow what I'm gonna show you. There is a way to shut the flesh down. If you don't shut it down, I'm not saying you won't make heaven. In fact, if you give your life to Jesus Christ but you still, or I had a lady one time she came to me and she said, "You know, my son died. I'm pretty sure he went to hell". I said, "Why is that"? "Well, he died drunken. He died. He was doing drugs and some things you shouldn't be doing". I said, "So okay. So, you're telling me that the only people who get to heaven are the people who cleaned up all the sin in their life"? "Well, well". I said, "Now, those are wrong and those are what caused this death".
So drugs, alcohol, the things he was doing brought his life to an abrupt end. That's not cool. But as if you look here in the Galatians 5, and I showed her this. It's talking to Christians and it's saying, to the Christians walking in the Spirit. And you're gonna begin to shut down the flesh. If you don't walk in the Spirit, the flesh, your flesh will just rise up and you start doing what you want. Your emotions will rise up and you'll be as angry and you'll be hostile towards the things of God, even though deep inside you believe in Jesus. You've given Him your life. You've never learned to get control over the desires that are in your flesh and until you die and go to heaven those desires will be there. Like truthfully there's sometimes I walked through the hallways, I wanna slaps some people. But I don't do it my flesh wants to do.
I'm sure there's sometimes you hear me preached and I say something you want to come and punch me. But you're good you got the flesh under control. Everybody here got your flesh under control to a certain degree. There's people you probably wanna kill. It didn't happen. If people probably wouldn't mind just running your key down their car, but you didn't do it. You just maintain some control. You've got control over your flesh to a certain degree. Why didn't you just use the power of God and go the rest of the way and clean out the addiction, clean out the things that you just feel. Like people tell me, "This is who I am". Who is that? "I just give people a piece of my mind who I am". That's not who you are. You giving the people a piece of your unrenewed mind is not who you are.
So, let's look at this verse again and I think it's gonna sets some people free here. Every believer here can get into any of these things of the flesh as a Christian. And it's gonna destroy your marriage, your home, your family, your health, your life. You can die young. You get disease, sickness, your brain starts shutting down. These things are gonna mess you up. But Christians can get into them and it doesn't mean if you're caught by one of these, that you're not a believer of Jesus Christ. It's just mean you haven't developed some of the incredible abilities that are yours to use. It says, but, love the word but. But the fruit of the Spirit is love. You know, a lot of the things the flesh does, is just looking for love. Looking for love in all the wrong places. That old song, trying to find love in sex, trying to find love with other guys, trying to find love with other girls, trying to find love with sensuality, trying to find love with impurity. It's never there. But the fruit of the Spirit first thing, you're gonna be into feel love. Then it says, joy.
When you look at some of things of the flesh, you know this party, factions, envy, drunkenness, carousing. What's going on? I just, just trying to be happy. "Leon, I had one hell of a week. I know where to get drunk and stone, man. You'll have a good time. Yeah"! I go, "Do you remember what happens"? "Well, no. But they tell me I had a good time". Oh, so you can't remember the time you had. You wake up hugging the toilet bowl kissing the toilet seat, not knowing who's been on it. But that's your morning. Yeah, but they told you, you had a good time because you made an idiot out of yourself. "Yeah"! I said, "You're just looking for joy, for fun". "Yeah, yeah". I said, "Did you know that you can have it deep inside of you? That whatever you do". What does that mean? I said, "You can have so much joy in you that everything you do is fun". He goes, "You mean, you don't have to do it to have joy"? No, you have joy so everything you do is joy. "I never thought of that". And this joy is a fruit of the Spirit. Then, it goes on to say peace. No, some of the guys who get drunk and do drugs. They're just trying to find peace from a crazy mind full of doubt and heartache and hurt.
There's people here who have been abused. You've done things you're so embarrassed to have, things have happened to you that haunt you. The only way you get sleep at night is to get enough dope or alcohol in your system to shut you down. The only way you can stop, literally accusing yourself and feeling bad about yourself is to get some kind of a substance in you that shuts your brain down. But did you know that peace is a guarantee. It's in your spirit and you could just let it begin to flow out. Now, the joy you are looking through with partying. The peace that you needed, that you're trying to get drunk or stoned from, now it's just yours all the time. It goes on and it talks about patience.
Well, patience is this incredible ability to wait and it doesn't bother you. Patience is not winding. Patience is how you wait. As you go through this list of the fruit of the Spirit. It says faithfulness. Nobody wants to be unfaithful to the people they love. No one wants to be a derelict dad, leave their kids, and one day when you come back you see the brokenness and the heartache and the hurt in that little boy's eyes, because he's never had a daddy hugged him.
Now, that was never your intention. But faithfulness is not a part of the flesh. Faithfulness is a part of the recreated spirit. You want the gentleness. There was time the way you talk to people especially the one you love. People you love is the first group you feel like you can talk to any way you want. Ever see this? I told you right now, I'm sick and tired and the phone rings. Hello? Alright. So you're talking that way to the people you love with grit and anger and shout because you thought you have the right to do that. And then a complete stranger that you don't even know, "Hi, there". How can you be gentle and kind to a stranger and not gentle and kind to the people you love? Because the flesh won't but the spirit will.
Who are you hooking up to? You can be kind loving, caring, even when you have to be strong and bring correction. You don't have to do it with an anger, with anger and stupidness. It's showing us that there is a way to live that is so full of laughter and joy and you talk about partying. The desire in all of us for the joy, the peace, the beauty that you Christian teenagers and kids have who are here right now. There's nothing out there. When they brag about the great sex. We know through stats that people who are faithful to one's spouse have the greatest sex life and they have it more often than all these braggarts in the single world.
So when we understand the power of the Spirit of God within you. Then you are filled with love. You're filled with joy. You're filled with patience. You're filled with kindness and goodness and faithfulness and gentleness and self-control. It's all within you. The world doesn't have anything. So what is the Bible tell us to do? Now, listen to this incredible verse. It says, "Now those who belong to Christ have crucified the flesh". It's not about to happen. It has happened when Jesus died on the cross, He died for your pain, your suffering, your heartache, your addictions, your sickness, your disease.
So it says, "Now those who belong to Jesus Christ have crucified the flesh with its passions and its desires". Anytime a desire rises up in me that I know is wrong. I don't go, "Oh, my God. Oh, no. It's taking. Oh, no. No, no, no". And I hear you out. I just can't help myself. Well, once you're a believer, you've been empowered. And you just go, "No. That's not me". That's the person that rises up. No, that's not me. That's not me. This who I am. Your identity is so crucial that you are a born-again believer. Old things pass away. Behold, everything becomes new. If you fall and get into sin. Is Jesus gonna walk away from you? No, 'cause it's Jesus that qualifies you for salvation.
Now, everybody else will. Let's say that you get drunk and you like punching people out. Well, how long do you think they're gonna hang with you? Let's say you get high and you love to drive into cars and accidents. So you love stealing or cheating. Well, who wants to marry you? So we're not talking about God rejecting you. Jesus won your salvation, qualified you to be in the family of God. But if you want the rest of your life to begin to go on the right direction. You must begin to believe that my flesh has been crucified. The devil wants you to believe that you, you are drunk. You're an alcoholic. You're an adulterer. You're a fornicator. You're a liar. And you can't stop it, your desires are so strong for that. That you're never gonna quit. You tried Christianity. You can't break any of these habits, so you're screwed. No. That's a lie. The old you died on the cross with Jesus. But until you believe that, you won't be able to receive the power to live that.