Matt Hagee - What God Can Do With A Warrior
Today we hear the words that describe four people that others would consider to be very different, but the truth is they have a lot in common. When it comes to warriors, winners, whiners, and wimps, I know that each and every one of us know people who fit the description. If they're near you, don't point. Don't even look: just stay focused on me. We celebrate warriors. We enjoy the winner. We're irritated and frustrated with the whiner. And who can use a wimp?
Each of them have earned the title. But each of them have this thing in common: they earned the title based upon how they responded to struggle. How can we crown someone a champion unless we've seen them struggle and overcome to be a winner? How would we know the valor and courage of a warrior unless he's endured the adversity of the battle? How will we know who the whiner is unless trouble breaks out and all they do is complain? How do you know what the wimp is until you see them put their faith in fear and ignore a problem, hoping somebody else is going to solve it?
The reason that I choose these four characters is because I believe that they all have something in common with each and every one of us: and that is, in this life, you will have struggle. Job said it, "As surely as sparks fly upward, so is a man born to trouble". There is no shortage of struggle in this life. Turn on the news and all you're going to hear them report on is struggle. There's the global conflict, the economic conflict, the political conflict. There's all kinds of struggles, great and small, in this world.
Some of you in this place today are struggling with questions that you need an answer to and you don't know where to turn. Others of you are struggling with needs and you're not sure how they're going to be provided for. Others of you are struggling with problems that you're certain are too big for you to solve. In this life, there is going to be struggle. And when they come, what will you do? What role will you play? Will you engage like the warrior? Will you complain like the whiner? Will you ignore it like the wimp? Or will you be what God created you to be, which is the winner?
You were bought with the blood of Jesus Christ so that you could stand in this sanctuary today and declare, "I am more than a conqueror through Christ, who gives me strength". This morning, we're going to look at what God can do with a warrior. Let's read Hebrews 11:32 together. If you're there, say amen. "And what more shall I say: for time would fail me to tell of Gideon, and Barak, and Samson, and Jephthah, also of David, and Samuel, and the prophets, who, through faith, subdued kingdoms, worked righteousness, obtained promises, and stopped the mouths of lions".
Heavenly Father, let the Word of God in this sanctuary today, encourage and inspire those who are here and those who are watching: that the battle therein belongs to the Lord. And if they are willing to take him at his word, they will be crowned conquerors, in Jesus' name. All of God's children said, praise the Lord.
You may be seated. You were born to win. When you came to Christ Jesus in faith, the Bible says, "Old things have passed away: behold, all things have become new". So regardless of what you came from prior to the knowledge of Jesus Christ in your life, the day you received him through faith, by faith, you were born to win. This is what Jesus said in the Bible. He said, "Have faith in God". What we just read in Hebrews 11:32, it says, "What more shall I say of these men, who by faith, subdued kingdoms, stopped the mouths of lions, and obtained great victories for God"? Judges is a great book for us to turn to see the topic of "Warriors, winners, whiners, and wimps". Why? Because they're all there. Not only is judges a great place for us to turn and look: it happens to be the place that Hebrews 11:32 is referring us to.
Gideon was a judge. Barak was a judge. Samson was a judge. We're familiar with Samson. But Gideon was a judge, who defeated the Amalekites when God introduces us to Gideon, the angel of the Lord goes to Gideon, and says, "Behold, mighty man of valor, the Lord is with you". And Gideon goes, "Well if God's with me, then how come he's not moving"? But if an angel's standing in front of you, calling you a mighty man of valor, and telling you "God is with you," what are you whining about? Hebrews 11, it tells us, and what about Barak? What about the guy? He was a wimp. God told him, "Barak, go fight general Sisera".
Now Sisera had the largest army of chariots in the Old Testament. But God told Barak, "Go fight Sisera and you will win". His dad didn't tell him, go fight him. His uncle didn't tell him, go fight him. His preacher didn't tell him, go fight him. The Bible says, "God told him, 'go fight him'". Now if God told you to do something, and you knew it was God who was telling you, how many of you would pretty much believe it was going to happen? But you know what Barak did? He wimped out. He waited until Deborah, the prophetess, showed up, and she looks at him, and says, "God has already told you to do this". She called him out. And you know what he did? He said, "I'll go if you go with me". Wimp.
So Deborah looks at Barak and she says, let's go. He was a winner but he started out as a wimp. Samson, he's a warrior, but he forgot where his strength came from. And every warrior, who forgets where their strength comes from, I assure you will not win. But we look at the book of judges, not only because we see the parallels impersonalized: we look at the book of judges because we see the parallel in the world we live in today. You see judges was a bad rut that the children of Israel were in. And if you look at the world that we live in today, in many ways, we are in a pretty bad rut. So what do you do when you're in a rut? First, let's consider what happened whenever it came to the time of judges.
Judges 2 gives us some insight. Chapter 2 and verse 10, it says, "Now when that generation had been gathered to their fathers". What generation was the Bible speaking of? It was speaking of Joshua and Caleb, the young men who spied out the land, who endured the wilderness, who conquered the Promised Land. These two men were warriors for God. Joshua told his generation, "If it seems right to you to serve other Gods, go do it. But as for me and my house, we serve the Lord". He was a warrior. And when that warrior died, the Bible says that another generation arose after him that did not know God, nor the work that God had done in Israel.
Now the thing that you have to understand about this verse is that it wasn't that they were ignorant of God. It wasn't that these children of Israel didn't know how great grandfather got out of Egypt and they didn't know how Joshua got across the Jordan. They had all of the reminders they needed. There were twelve stones set in the Jordan river to remind them that God rolled the waters back to the right and left. There was a pile of rubble at a place called Jericho that reminded them that God had brought those walls down with a shout. This generation knew who God was: they just acted like God didn't exist. We live in a society who knows who God is. We just choose to act like God doesn't exist. We know how God brought our great grandparents through a time of financial struggle in the great depression into an era of prosperity. But we've used the prosperity that he gave to them to almost destroy ourselves.
We know how the great generation fought for our freedom, but now we've taken the liberty that they defended, and we've used it to almost destroy the country we live in. How? Not because we don't know who God is. We've just behaved as if God doesn't exist. We've forgotten where our blessings come from. We've forgotten that we are the sheep of his pasture and that he is the Lord our. We have forgotten all things great and small, all things good come from him. The food you eat, God did that. The house you live in, God gave that. The strength you have to go to work, God poured it out on you. The breath you breathe, God gives it to you. The way your heart beats, God designed that. The time of the judges was not only a time when people forgot God, but men were a law unto themselves: and therefore, there was no law.
Whenever people cast off the truth of God's word, lawlessness abounds. And you look in the world we live in today, and we live in a lawless society. The children of Israel, not only suffered in social chaos, but there was a tremendous political struggle. Does that sound familiar? Why was there political struggle? Because of the disobedience of the righteous. Why is there political struggle in the United States today? Not because we've got a two-party system. There is political struggle in the United States today because of the disobedience of the righteous. You say, how have we disobeyed? If you vote your Bible convictions, there's no way you have a judge that supports abortion.
Of Israel were given one command when they went into the Promised Land, and that was, "Drive out all of the inhabitants". How many were they supposed to drive out? All. And so the angel of the Lord comes to them, and says, "Because you have not done this, God says, 'i will not drive them out before you, but they shall be thorns in your side. And their God shall be a snare unto you'". And so for hundreds of years, Israel is caught in this rut. I'm convinced that the dates at the top of the newspapers change, but the headlines really don't. Because the Bible said this thousands of years ago and it's very true today, "Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a reproach to many people". "When the righteous are in authority, the people rejoice. When the wicked rule, the people groan".
Thousands of years ago, Israel was in a rut. And today, we in many ways, are in the same. They had social chaos. We have social chaos. Their enemies and adversaries led their children into captivity. And believe me: there are people in this nation who want to control everything your children will ever do. We're shocked whenever we send our kids to a Godless educational system, and then they have a Godless culture in their adulthood. It's a rut. It's not going to change until you engage and make it change. We're stunned when the next generation doesn't value family. But then we look back, and for the last 50 years, we've destroyed the family with selfishness and divorce. We're shocked when our children don't want to go to work: they just want to borrow and buy. But that's what we've taught them to do. It's a rut.
How do you get out of a rut? First, you have to stop acting like God doesn't exist. You have to remember that this book is not filled with free advice. This book is filled with truth, and the truth will set you free. You've got to stop whining about what you wish would change. And you've got to stop ignoring what you're too afraid to change. And you've got to decide that you're going to be a warrior and you're going to make a change. And you've heard Pastor Hagee say this. It was something that should have been etched in the wall at my house as a child, "You cannot change what you will not confront".
Ignoring the problem doesn't solve the problem. It doesn't matter if you've got big problems or small problems: you can't ignore them, which means you've got to make up your mind to be a warrior, because warriors who have the ability to use God's strength, become winners, but whiners and wimps never do. Warriors have an attitude that is not concerned about the number of the enemy. They don't say, "How many are they"? They say, "Where are they"? You have to make up your mind to be a warrior. You're not going to feel your way into being a warrior: you'll choose to be a warrior. "Choose you this day," that's what the Bible says. And there's three things that every warrior needs. First, every warrior must remember what he's fighting for.
In our text today, it says, "What more shall I say"? And on the list of warriors is king David. But when we first meet king David, he's just a boy. And in 1 Samuel 17:29, he's standing on the hillside overlooking the valley of Elah. And there is Goliath down in the bottom of the valley. And Goliath is mocking God. And Goliath is taunting Israel. And Goliath has an offer. He says, "Send a man down to face me. And if he beats me, we'll be your slaves. But if I beat him, you will be our slaves". With this threat, David knows that the future of his life is in Goliath's hands: that Goliath wants to enslave him. Goliath wants to take him off and use him for his own purpose rather than leave him home and let him live out God's purpose. And suddenly David is filled with courage. Why? Because he remembered what he was fighting for.
In 1 Samuel 17:29, he looks at his older brother, and he asks the question, "Is there not a cause"? Is there not a cause for us to stand up against this giant? Has God brought us out of Egypt just to hand us over to this jerk? Has he used all of the mighty men of the past and all of the miracles that we've seen happen? Did he bring us across the Red Sea and feed us with manna, and send down the fire, and bring water from the rock just so he could hand us to Goliath? "Is there not a cause"?
Dad, when it comes time to fight for your family, remember what you're fighting for. Is there not a cause to see your children grow up in the fear and the admonition of the Lord? When it comes to your wife and your marriage, remember what you're fighting for. You're not fighting for the victory in your argument. You can't stay married winning arguments. You stay married learning to love the way that Jesus said. I know people say, "I'm going to go home and win the fight". You're going to lose the war. And the war is not with your spouse: the war is with heavenly places that want to destroy your family.
The second thing every warrior needs is a battle plan. Don't go to war without a battle plan. Warriors without battle plans are casualties. But a battle plan is how you become a winner. When you read the story of David and Goliath, the Bible says that David went to the creek and he picked five smooth stones. Now nothing is in the Bible without a reason. So why five smooth stones? Was this just in case he missed? Bible scholars will tell you that Goliath had four brothers. So five stones was one for Goliath and then enough ammo for the rest of the family. David was sending a message. I'm not coming down there to start a fight: I'm coming down there to finish a fight. You're not going to solve your marriage problem without a battle plan. Turn that marriage over to the Lord. Use God's word to decide how you're going to run and rule your home, because that's an effective battle plan.
I want to give you another thought on David and his smooth stones. I've often thought, how could a king trust a kid with the kingdom? Was Saul so upset about Goliath that he was willing to say, hey, what have we got to lose? Just see what you can do, son. And when you look in history, it makes more sense what was happening in the battle in the Valley of Elah.
You see, in ancient times, warring armies would fight duals. It was more efficient. Better to have two men, one from each army, fight each other: and the winner determine the outcome, than to lose thousands of men who you needed to go home and plant crops, build houses, and be fathers. So in this situation, the Philistines put up their champion, Goliath. And the Israelites don't have anyone who can match him. And David was in the artillery brigade. He wasn't in the infantry brigade. He had a slingshot. And he went to king Saul with a battle plan. He said, hey, all these guys are terrified to go stand next to old buzzard breath. But rather than go toe to toe with that guy, let me come up with a plan that he can't beat. I'm going to stand way back and I'm going to let these rocks go. And I'm going to hit him in the head before he can get a hold of me. And then when I knock him out, we'll win.
Only then, when king Saul heard a better battle plan, did the king turn the kingdom over to the kid. It wasn't just dumb luck. The story of David and Goliath is not the weak versus the strong. The story of David and Goliath is the intelligence of God being poured out on his children to go face an ignorant giant that needs to go away. So how does that apply to our life? The Bible tells us that we have an enemy. He is the serpent of old. The Bible calls him "The devil". And he's real regardless of what you hear people saying today. In your own strength, you're no match for him. You cannot go toe to toe with that giant. He's been around since Genesis. But you have a battle plan that could help you overcome, because you have an opportunity to use the name that is above every name that has already crushed the head of the serpent.
The third thing every warrior needs is to remember whose strength you're fighting in. Goliath saw David coming. And the first thing he said is, "Come near to me". Why? Because he knew if that kid stayed out there, there was no way he can harm him. So just like every enemy, who wants to destroy you, he's tempting you. "Come near to me". When Goliath looked at David and said, "Come near to me," David said, "You come to me with spear and sword, but I come to you in the name of the Lord". Did he do his part? Yes! But he did it in Jesus' name, and you have to do the same. No matter the conflict, you have a choice to make: be a warrior and a winner, or a whiner and a wimp. But God can do great things with a warrior.
With every head bowed and every eye closed, you're in this place, and you say, pastor, there's a conflict in my life. A conflict I've been ignoring, a conflict I've been struggling in, a situation that I need God's help to get out of. And today, rather than whine or wimp out, I am going to make the choice to be a warrior. If you know what that conflict is and you know you want God's help, I want you to raise your hand right where you are. Now I want everyone in this room to repeat this prayer with me:
Lord Jesus Christ, today I thank you for your word, because it is alive, it is powerful, and it can set me free. Today I choose to be a warrior for the King of kings, believing that the battle I'm in belongs to him, and the victory is mine through Christ the Lord.
Now I want you to take a moment and tell the Lord about the battle you're in. If it's in your finances, say, Lord, I release this problem into your hands. If it's in your physical body, say, father, today I'm receiving healing in my physical body. If it's in your family, if it's an unsaved loved one, you give God their name, and say they're on the wanted list because I want them in the house of God to be part of the family of faith. No matter what it is, you need to know God already knows it. God already has solved it. And he's waiting for you to execute your battle plan, in Jesus' name.
So today, in Jesus' name, receive the victory. In Jesus' name, here comes your breakthrough. In Jesus' name, your house, your children, your business, your heart, your body, your soul, your mind, in Jesus' name, receives blessings beyond your ability to contain them. (I want you to continue in prayer with me) Lord Jesus Christ, thank you. Because I have asked in faith, I will receive, in Jesus' name.