TD Jakes - The Grace To Make Changes - Part 1
The second dispensation is called consciousness, and it is from the fall of man, when man fell in the garden, to the flood. Because all of that period didn't have laws, didn't have rules, all it had was conscious. It had conscious ruling the era. Now, this is important because this is from the fall of man to the flood, so what we are reading in Genesis 6 is coming to the end of the era of consciousness, okay, at the end of the era of doing according to whatever your head say do. So, when God says every imagination in the heart of man was evil, it showed that when we are left to ourselves, we only wax worse.
I was in Kiev, and I was on a tour while I was in Kiev years ago, and the lady told me that when communism became pervasive in their society and they got rid of all religion, they found out that depravity became so overwhelming that it almost destroyed the culture. That religion is some kind of barrier that stops the culture from becoming totally decadent. It's not that we're totally good, but it stops us from becoming totally bad, because it yanks you back into place. And in the absence of any type of theology, their culture began to wax worse, and worse, and worse, and she's telling me this standing in front of a church where churches had been outlawed. So, we are standing in a place now where there are no churches, and there is no real theology, and there are no preachers, and there is no law.
So, with the absence of all of that, the heart of man became more and more wicked until it repented God that he had ever made him, because God made you to be in his likeness and in his image, and yet you were trying to be in their likeness and their image. Y'all didn't get that. Here you are trying to fit in with the culture, and the culture didn't make you. If you would spend half as much energy trying to be like God instead of trying to be like them, you would achieve the purpose of God, and God would not regret you. I do not want my Father to regret me. He can chastise me, he can correct me, he can fix me, but I don't want him to look at me and say I'm sorry I ever had you. The power of that blow is more than my heart could bear, but that is the power of the text before us today. The Father is looking at the child and saying I'm sorry I had you. The vessel that was made of clay has become marred in the hand of the potter, and he has decided to totally disrupt what it is in the hopes that it may become a vessel with whom he can be well pleased.
Jeremiah 18, Jeremiah, what is, 18, is playing out in Genesis 6. This is the story of humanity, the potter and the clay, marred in the hands of the potter. The decision now has to be made do I totally destroy it, or do I make it again another vessel? And we're standing on the precipice of this decision in this text today, and we are feeling the angst of the Creator and the intense disappointment that God has when we fail to live up to his intention for our lives. I don't have to live up to your intention for my life. I don't have to live up to your intention. I don't have to live up to your intention for my life, but I must live up to his intention for my life. Noah will end the era of consciousness. He will sail from the shores of consciousness into the safety of Mount Ararat and begin human government, and then government emerges. So, human government is from the flood to Abram.
Can I finish this just a little bit? Just to put some contextualization to it, human government is from the flood to Abram. And during this period, you have patriarchal rules, and you begin to set up government, and order, and structure enters into the creative story, which originally was not there. When Abram comes along, we come into the dispensation of promise, because above everything else, Abram has a promise. Somebody says Abram has a promise. All he has is a promise. He doesn't have details, he doesn't have revelation, he doesn't have understanding, but God just says get thee out of thy country and away from thy kindred, and go to a place that I will show you, and I will make of you a great nation, and I will make your name great, and I will bless them that bless you, and I will curse them that curse you, and everywhere your feet trod, I will give you the land. I'm not gonna tell you how I'm gonna give it to you, I'm not gonna tell you, I don't know how. I'm not gonna tell you none of that stuff, all I'm gonna do is give you a promise.
There are people in this room, all you have is a promise. You don't know when, you don't know how, you don't know where, you don't know what it's gonna take, but like Abraham, you have moved on a promise, you have left on a promise, you have stood on a promise. And you don't have no details, and it gets on on your nerves when people ask you for details, because all you have is a promise. And you don't know how, and you don't know how God's gonna fix it, and you don't know when he's gonna do it, so stop asking me for questions that I don't have answers to. And if you're gonna walk with me, you gotta walk by faith. You can't walk by sight, you gotta walk by faith, or you can't walk with me. Make some noise if I'm talking to you.
I asked my wife the other day, I said, "Baby, do you trust me"? She said, "Yeah, I trust you". I said, "Good, I'm getting ready to take you somewhere, but I'm not gonna tell you where, and I want to be able to pack your stuff, to celebrate you, without you asking any questions," and she never asked me another word. That comes from trust. She still don't know where I'm gonna take her. I pulled her clothes together and said, "You like that? Is that okay? Change anything you want to change, do whatever you want to". She said, "It's fine". She packed to go somewhere, she don't even know where it is, but she has a promise.
Y'all don't hear what I'm saying. Sometimes God will pack your bag to go somewhere, and you don't even know where it is, and you gotta be obedient enough to trust that whatever he has in store for you is gonna work out for your good. So, stop asking him questions, and step out on the promises of God, and start moving where God wants you to go. Abraham had a promise. Shout, "I got a promise". I don't have a job, but I got a promise. I don't have a spouse, but I got a promise. I don't have a house, but I got a promise. I don't have the money, but I got a promise. I don't have no friends, but I got a promise, and I'm gonna stand on the promises of Christ my King. Through eternal ages, let his praises ring. Glory in the highest, I will shout and sing. I'm standing on the promises. I'm standing on the promises of Christ my Savior. I'm standing on the promises of Christ my King.
Is there anybody in here that's standing? Let me hurry, I gotta move, I got a long ways to go. These are accounting columns that we put truth in. It doesn't add to it nor diminish it, it's just an overview of how to organize your thoughts about the linear view of God's plan for man. So from Abraham to Moses, we had promised. When Moses comes to Sinai, we have the dispensation of law. Thou shall not kill, thou shalt not have no other god before me, thou shalt honor thy father and mother. All the law of God begins to play, because the law of God is... I don't have time to get deep into it, but the law of God is the beginning of theocracy. Not democracy, theocracy. A God-ruled nation, a called-out group of people, must have a law system. A legal system creates civilization. Without a legal system, we have the problem that Noah is dealing with where all we're left up to is if it feels good, do it. And this fluidity of truth that happened in the flood is happening around you today.
So, God brought law through Moses, because God is setting up a nation. Not an organization, he's setting up a nation. This would be true even in an organization. You can't have an organization that don't have laws, and ethics, and rules, and everybody does however you want to do. That doesn't work, and it doesn't work in a country, and so he gave them laws. He gave them three things, for those who want this stuff, he gave them laws, he gave them judgments. Judgments is how you settle strife between each other. Laws deal with the sovereign relationship you have with God. And he gave them ordinances, which is how you worship. Three different aspects. I'm going further. Are you with me?
From Mount Sinai to Mount Cavalry is law. When Jesus went to the cross, he completed the law, he fulfilled the law, he did the thing that I couldn't do. He obeyed the law, that's why he is my righteousness, and I am complete in him. And the curses that were chasing me because I kept breaking the law were nailed to the cross with him, and I am free from the curse of the law, and from sin and death. "For he whom the Son has set free is free indeed". Jesus is my Juneteenth. Jesus is my Fourth of July. Jesus is my moment of independence. Jesus is my Emancipation Proclamation. Jesus is my liberty. Jesus is my loosing. Jesus is my deliverance. Jesus is my breakthrough. He declared me free. Death has no power. Death has no sting. The grave cannot hold me. Hell cannot curse me. Satan cannot bind me, because every curse was nailed to the cross, and I'm free indeed. That's a good shouting moment right there.
Slap somebody and say, "I found grace". I found grace. I'm a sinner, but I found grace. I'm a freak, but I found grace. I'm wild, but I found grace. I'm unmanageable, but I found grace. I've been fluid in my thinking, but I found grace. Grace is my stabilizer. Grace is my anchor. Grace is my strength. Grace is my power. Grace is my stability. Grace is my foundation. Grace is the concretization of every promise in the Scriptures. I got it when I got grace. If you got grace to live, give God a praise. Somebody's getting some bread from God today. The manna is falling from heaven. The true bread is coming down from above. Reach up and grab some of this bread. The last of the seven dispensations is the millennial reign of Christ. Grace is from the cross to the return, and the millennial reign of Christ takes us into the seventh dispensation. But what I want you to see is grace is five dispensations, four dispensations from conscious.
So, when the Bible says Noah found grace, you got it, he found something that wasn't even in his era. He tapped into something that hadn't been freely dispensed yet. I prophesy to somebody in this room, you're getting ready to tap into something that is not even common to where you are right now. It don't fit into your family. It don't fit into your age group. It defies imagination, but you're just gonna find it. You're just gonna stumble into it. Be careful to get it right. It was not that grace found Noah. Had grace had found Noah, that would be invincible. That would express God finding Noah, but it wasn't that grace found Noah, Noah found grace. Push two or three people and say, "I'm looking for grace". I'm looking for grace. Give me my next phase. Come on, I'm looking for grace. I'm looking for grace.
Can I go deeper? What I'm trying to get you to is today our text ends at an era of self-willed. Human consciousness is self-willed. Because there was no law yet given, morality was totally dependent on a fallen species having self-will. In politics, it somewhat mirrors democracy. We the people. What does that even mean today? We the people. America is actually more of a republic than it is a democracy, but it has a democratic posture, and when we look at a democratic posture, to this day that is really self-rule. Democracy is self-rule, theocracy is God-rule. The further we get into self-will, the more we are discovering how wicked self is. Y'all don't hear what I'm saying. We are right in the middle of Genesis 6, because the more we try to run things, the worse it gets, because the human will is corrupt. The Bible said the heart of man is continually wicked, and every imagination is evil.
Now I have to submit to your evil. I'm already wrestling with my evil, and now I got to submit to your evil. I got a big enough job trying to manage my evil, and now I got to watch out for your evil, defensive driving. I'm driving through the world trying to make sure that I can get me through, and also anticipating what is the next crazy thing you're getting ready to do. That's where we are. So, I gotta hurry. I gotta hurry to my close. In the Scripture, self-rule leads to an annihilation of most of we the people, because it did not consider God as the sovereign that he is. God is sovereign, and while they knew him as God, they glorified him not as God.
And we are so full of self-will, we step into Genesis in the era of self-rule and encounter the judgment of God. We had better take notes from history and consider God over self. We talk about the flood, we talk about the what, but we don't talk about the why. And we better figure out the why, so we can stop the what. The why was, number one, they were lascivious. No boundaries, anything goes, lust was on the loose, eating and drinking was on the loose, no real propensity toward worship. This created mutations in the earth, giants in the earth. I won't spend a lot of time on this, but there's debates about when the sons of God saw the daughters of men, some people say that the sons of God were the sons of Seth, and the daughters of men were the daughters of Cain. And that when the two sides got together, that created giants.
But then there are others who recognized that the sons of God in the Old Testament is often referred to as angels, as it was in the Book of Job when it said the the sons of God came around the throne, and among them were Satan. The angels were also called the sons of God, and so it makes more sense that when celestial beings start sleeping with terrestrial beings, a mutated species would come into the earth. I don't know, I wasn't there, you weren't either, but let's guess about it a minute. You cannot mix natures between that which is divine and that which is human, and cohabitate together, and come out natural. So, they came out with giants who had some angel likeness, and yet were human. Noah's conscious led him to escape the vortex of human depravity as his conscious found grace. The vortex of human depravity.
Let me give you this visual, so you understand what I mean, the vortex of human depravity. I was studying on when the, I wanna say the Atlantis, the Titanic, when the Titanic was going down in the water. It was not that the people didn't escape, most of the people got out of the boat, and made it to rafts, and were trying to get away, but when the Titanic sunk, it created such a vortex that even those who escaped got sucked into the vortex, and they died as well as the people on the boat, because they were still too close to what was going down. I know it's old-timey, I know it's old-fashioned, I know it's out of school, but are you too close to what's going down? I know you got your own raft, and you're doing your own thing, and you're moving away, but have you gotten far enough away that the vortex of your so-called friends are not pulling you? It is time for you to do like Noah. If Noah found grace while he was still in the era of consciousness. His conscious, not his money, not his intellect, not his frame, not his fortune, his conscious brought him to grace.