People Over Politics | Don’t Panic: Week 1

Despite what the news says, this is not the most important election of our lifetime. Here is what the bible has to say about navigating politics and winning no matter who gets elected.

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    TV: -- full day of the impeachment --
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    TOME: November is coming.
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    That means our news feeds and our family gatherings
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    are about to be hijacked by political pundits pushing their agendas.
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    Is your anxiety growing yet?
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    Do you find yourself asking the question:
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    Should I be as angry as everyone else seems?
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    Are you fed up with the rhetoric already?
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    TOME: Election season is coming, but don't panic, you've got this.
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    Together we've got this.
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    We can rise above the rhetoric, push through the pandemonium,
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    and clear out the noise to move forward together.
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    And some of you are going to hate this.
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    You can get through this year with less anxiety
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    and you can leave this election cycle with confidence
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    that the future is going to be good,
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    not because the issues aren't real,
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    but because there is a better way that always leads to life.
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    Yes, we're going there.
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    - Have you cried around the dinner table yet?
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    No. Just me.
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    OK, it might be coming for you.
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    As we enter this election year, we're starting
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    a brand new series today called Don't Panic: Take Heart 2020.
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    Whether you're on the far right, far left,
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    or somewhere in the exhausted middle,
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    we all feel like we might just explode at some point this year.
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    And I actually believe that Jesus has something good to say
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    on the topic of politics.
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    And we want to help you as a church, not just survive this year,
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    but actually find hope in the midst of this election year,
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    regardless of where you are on the political spectrum.
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    We're going to turn our attention towards God
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    and we're going to sing songs to God and about God.
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    And this is an opportunity for us to ask God for hope
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    through song right now.
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    So go full screen, turn up the volume and sing with us.
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    - That song that we sang Send Me
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    is actually a Crossroads music original song.
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    And there are all kinds of Crossroads music original songs
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    that you could find on Spotify, i-Tunes, YouTube,
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    wherever you normally listen to music
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    for you to connect with God all week long through song.
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    Now as we go into 2020, I have had the joy
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    of getting to meet some of you who join us online
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    week in and week out.
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    Last week I spent some time with Josh.
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    And Josh is leading an online group
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    and he was in an online group previous to that
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    where he traveled week in and week out for work.
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    His online group was his only place of stability in the week
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    where he made great friendships
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    and got to grow spiritually and his relationship with God
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    because of being in this group online consistently.
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    And I want you to have stability in the midst of a crazy year
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    where things are going to come at you from every angle.
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    And I know that our schedules are always wild.
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    But I want you to have friends that you can laugh with,
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    that you can grow with, and we'll help you go after God this year.
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    The way to do that is in the midst of a group at Crossroads.
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    There are groups meeting in over 20 states, 5 countries,
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    and online all week long.
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    And if you don't find a group that works for you,
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    you could sign up to be a leader
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    and gather people around you to join your group.
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    So Crossroads.net/groups
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    is the place to find that.
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    Another group that gathers regularly
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    is this group called the Masters of Disaster.
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    Now, I know, funny name, but go with me.
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    When a disaster happens in our country
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    or somewhere around the world, they rally together
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    and they go to that place to provide relief and support
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    and resources for people who are struggling and suffering.
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    And so this Crossroads group, Masters of Disaster,
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    headed to Puerto Rico last week and got to provide relief
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    and support to people in Puerto Rico after the earthquake.
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    And if you're a giver at Crossroads, I want you to know
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    that you helped make this happen.
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    As a church we supported the relief in Puerto Rico with $50,000.
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    And when I say as a church, I mean, you did that.
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    You were a hero as a giver to people in Puerto Rico
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    who are struggling to just figure out what life will look like now.
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    So you could give for the first time today
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    at Crossroads.net/give
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    and join the team
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    that is making a difference all over the world.
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    And today we start a brand new series
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    called Don't Panic: Take Heart 2020.
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    And we're going to be talking today
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    about what it looks like to have a healthy perspective.
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    - If you are experiencing a bit of heartburn
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    after consuming heavy dose of
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    polarizing political posts on social media
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    with a side of inflammatory national news for breakfast,
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    and you can feel your blood pressure rising
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    and your anxiety skyrocketing, you are not alone.
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    The good news is that we don't have to panic in 2020.
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    This is not the first time in human history
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    we faced a fractured and about to boil over political storm.
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    About 2000 years ago things were looking pretty bleak
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    for people who follow Jesus.
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    You could say they had just lived through
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    the most important election of their lives, and lost.
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    Okay. So there were no elections back then,
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    only hostile takeovers.
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    And Jesus wasn't running for President.
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    He was unjustly crucified.
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    But you get the idea, these people were freaked out.
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    The guy they thought was going to literally
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    overthrow the Romans and the religious Jews
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    and run the country was dead.
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    Taxes were high. There was no health care.
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    No one could agree about who should be in power.
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    Sound familiar?
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    Followers of Jesus were so scared they hid and huddled together.
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    Not knowing what else to do,
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    the women in their group went to the tomb.
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    And you know what happened next: He had risen, just as he said.
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    In Luke 24, it says two angels had to remind them
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    of what Jesus had said to them just a few days before.
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    They said, and I quote:
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    Remember how He told you this would happen?
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    It goes on to say: Then they remembered His words.
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    If the people closest to Jesus were so freaked out
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    by the political tension they ran that they panicked
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    and forgot what He said, then it begs the question:
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    did He say anything to us that would be helpful
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    to remember during this election?
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    Turns out, yes, yes, he did.
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    This is the message that He gave to His followers
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    about to venture out into a fractured political culture:
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    Anyone who loves their father or mother,
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    insert political party, more than me is not worthy of me.
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    And anyone who loves their son or daughter,
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    insert their beliefs about climate change or immigration,
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    more than me is not worthy of me.
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    Whoever does not take up their cross,
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    insert forgive their Facebook and Twitter foes,
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    and follow me is not worthy of me.
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    Whoever finds their life,
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    insert puts their faith in winning the election,
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    will lose it, and whoever loses their life,
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    insert puts their faith in the kingdom of God,
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    for my sake, will find it.
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    Jesus also said:
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    I have told you these things so that in me you may have peace.
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    In this world you will have trouble.
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    But take heart!
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    I have overcome the world.
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    So no matter who you are, your party affiliation.
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    or growing fear over the outcome of the election,
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    you can win no matter who gets elected.
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    Because this is the promise of Don't Panic 2020: Take heart.
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    [music: Break It Down Again, Tears for Fears]
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    - Ladies, gentlemen, citizens, countrymen, lend me your ears.
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    We as citizens of this nation are being force fed
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    polarizing narratives and radicalizing us
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    to the left or to the right.
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    These radical narratives are keeping you from knowing
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    the true freedom being offered to you by just King.
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    So what do we do with the story of doom and fear of the future?
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    I say let's meet radical with radical.
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    Let us radically refused to be pulled to the side.
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    Let us stand firm and sink deep root
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    into the eternal, unchanging kingdom of God
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    and refused to be moved to division, to fear, to hatred,
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    to placing all of our hope in the fleeting empire of this earth.
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    Let us band together in the radical middle.
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    [music: Break It Down Again, Tears for Fears]
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    - Now, today I'm going to break it down for us.
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    I'm going to break down exactly what's been happening
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    in our country,
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    what is going to be happening in our country politically,
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    I'm going to break it down spiritually for us.
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    So let's pray before we get into this topic today.
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    God, I thank You that You give us minds to use
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    and You give us hearts to protect,
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    and You give us forums like this in which we can be pushed.
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    I pray that we'd be pushed to you.
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    I pray that we'd be pushed deeper than others are willing to go.
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    I pray, God, You help us to Not Panic and to Take Heart
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    in Your presence in our country and Your presence in our life.
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    Help me to be clear and helpful, I pray
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    according to the character and identity of Jesus, Amen.
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    Well, I've called myself,
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    we call ourselves equal opportunity offenders.
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    And yes, it's going to happen.
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    You are going to get offended today.
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    Who's ready to be offended?
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    Yeah. Yeah, it is.
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    You know, talking politics is a pretty difficult thing.
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    It's one of the reasons why we've, for the most part,
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    have not talk politics over 23 years.
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    We did a single talk on it a while ago called the Radical Middle.
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    But we wanted Crossroads to be a political free zone.
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    We've done that pretty well for 23 years.
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    But we're looking at where we are this year
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    and what's happening in our culture, we're realizing
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    in the midst of all of the cacophony of sounds
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    and all of what's spiraling out of control,
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    we want to be a voice of hopefully spiritual reason for all of us.
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    But just to get us used to being offended,
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    because all of us are going to be offended at some point here,
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    let's just like in the next two minutes,
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    make sure we offend everybody just with some basic terms
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    that you might not know of,
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    but put it in the language that you understand,
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    like a dictatorship.
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    What is a dictatorship?
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    That's what dictatorship is.
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    So when we understand there are things,
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    some of these other things might say, I don't know what that is.
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    I'm gonna try to help you understand what it is.
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    What is socialism?
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    It's this
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    That's socialism.
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    Capitalism.
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    And you are surprised when she drops dead.
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    That's capitalism.
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    American democracy.
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    Democracy, Democrat-style.
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    or Katy Perry if you're younger or Katy Perry sings for you.
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    Democracy, Republican-style.
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    My, my, my, my.
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    There's so many things that we believe that are just not true.
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    And I'm not try to strip away some of those today.
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    And we have other speakers from different perspectives
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    that are going to try doing that over the next few weeks as well.
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    Let's talk about things that we believe
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    that actually are just myths.
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    It's things that are myths. Here's one.
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    It is not, specifically men wearing leggings
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    who have shorts over their leggings,
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    who are doing bench presses at L.A.
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    fitness.
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    There is no place for that at all.
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    That is a myth.
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    Let's take a look at another one here.
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    Not true. Not true.
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    One more. One more myth.
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    Not true. It's not true.
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    I've been hearing that every election since I was 18.
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    Every single one.
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    This is not the most important election your life
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    unless you're 4
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    or unless you're 18 and it's the first time you can vote.
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    It's the most divisive election of our life for sure.
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    And I'm not looking to minimize at all
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    the decisions that are facing our country at all.
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    I'm just looking to minimize the rhetoric
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    that's trying to hype us in the feverish stress mode pitch
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    and make us feel like unless our candidate
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    or our party gets the winning nod,
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    we're going to be going to hell in a handbasket.
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    6% of Americans are on the extreme left.
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    6% of Americans are on the extreme right.
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    When I say extreme, I don't mean extreme opinions
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    and views necessarily.
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    I mean extreme, utterly unwilling to listen
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    to anybody who isn't in their camp.
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    The rest of us, the rest of us
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    are in what David Brooks calls the exhausted majority.
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    61% of us look at ourselves someplace in the middle.
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    David Welsh from The New York Times says this:
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    Now you're going to spend most your time today,
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    to those of you who don't know me, or who do know me,
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    trying to figure out where am I.
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    Do you lean right?
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    Do you lean left?
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    Brian Tome, where is you?
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    Where are you at Crossroads?
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    And that's what we tend to do:
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    All we're looking for is somebody
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    to validate what we believe or somebody to hate
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    that doesn't believe what we believe.
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    And there are things that I feel strongly about
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    and I'm actually all over the map and that's a healthy thing.
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    And we'll talk about that in one of our weeks.
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    Those of us who are somewhere in what I've called before
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    the radical middle are there and we can't be categorized
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    because we're playing a different play,
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    we're following a different constitution.
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    We're in a different group.
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    And my hope here is not to change your perspective.
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    In fact, if you're somebody who doesn't want
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    to change your perspectives, you're probably
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    not going to enjoy today or this series at all.
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    I'm trying to speak and help those of us
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    who are frustrated with the narratives that are there
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    and wondering, is there a better way?
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    Is there a better way for our country to go to?
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    The problem is, whenever I talk about
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    something like politics I have to recognize
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    that I have virtually nothing to work from that's in the Bible,
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    which is important me because I'm a preacher.
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    Because the Bible knows nothing about democracy.
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    You know what I might not do, what I might not do?
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    I might not vote at all.
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    (gasps)
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    Man, I talked to some people in church, it's like,
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    "Oh, it's your American duty to vote."
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    It's not -- no,
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    "It's your Christian duty to vote."
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    It is not my Christian duty to vote.
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    My Christian duty is to do what Christ tells me to do.
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    And democracy wasn't invented when He was around.
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    He knows nothing about voting or democracy.
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    There is not -- There's only one election in the entire Bible.
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    Only one and it's even one
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    that God wasn't all that excited about.
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    It happened when there were 12 guys
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    who were the early followers of Jesus.
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    And one of them killed himself, his name was Judas.
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    And the rest of these guys had the idea of, "Hey,
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    we need to get back to 12.
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    Let's elect somebody to come in and be the twelfth."
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    And so down to two people, they weren't sure who to do
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    so they actually did a game of chance.
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    They drew straws.
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    They gambled, basically, and Matthias won.
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    It records what's in the Bible.
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    It doesn't say that God wanted them to do this
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    or they should have done this.
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    So if you think that democracy is God's way,
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    you're going to have to say well it has to be that way,
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    then I better go to Vegas before I cast my vote,
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    because gambling is the only form of democracy God understands.
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    There is neither party nor neither candidate,
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    nor neither extreme that I believe is one that
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    God has said, "You're the one who I want to win."
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    Think about this. Last week in the Super Bowl,
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    were people in the San Francisco 49ers locker room
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    praying that God would make them win?
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    Maybe there were, but that's a stupid thing
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    because there was people praying over in
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    the Chief's locker room that God would make them win.
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    This idea of thinking that it always goes this way
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    is like thinking that God is on my side.
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    He's actually for my party.
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    Now, I recognize that there are real consequences
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    in this election, and I don't want to minimize those at all.
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    I recognize that there are better choices than other choices.
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    And I recognize that not all beliefs are equal.
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    I recognize that not all political viewpoints
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    are equally true before God.
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    I'm not trying to minimize that at all.
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    I want to speak to the culture that's in our country
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    right now as relates to politics.
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    I want to speak to you and ask you to identify
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    exactly what camp you want to be in.
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    And there's more than two camps.
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    The Book of Joshua Chapter 5, we see how Joshua
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    is dividing people up between those who are with me
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    and those who are against me.
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    That's what Republicans and Democrats are always doing,
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    those who are with us and those who are against us.
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    Those on our side, those on your side.
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    And Joshua is in a similar way.
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    He has brought the Nation of Israel out of slavery,
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    or least the next leg of slavery after Moses has died.
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    They have crossed the Jordan River
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    and now they're on the eve of their first major battle.
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    And he's getting a little nervous.
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    He goes off to be by himself.
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    And there's this huge guy who comes to be around him.
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    And let's take a look at what happens in Joshua 5:13:
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    Joshua encounters an angel and he doesn't know it.
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    It's very possible that you've seen an angel
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    and you haven't known it.
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    He sees this guy that's huge and he's got this sword.
  • 00:30:18
    Joshua in his paradigm it's us/they, good guys/bad guys.
  • 00:30:23
    those on God's side/those on the other side.
  • 00:30:26
    He says, "Who are you with?
  • 00:30:27
    Are you with us or them?
  • 00:30:29
    And if anybody could have asked this question,
  • 00:30:31
    it would have been Joshua,
  • 00:30:33
    because he was on the side of God it appeared.
  • 00:30:38
    God had given him the vision to come out of slavery.
  • 00:30:40
    God had enabled them to cross the Jordan River.
  • 00:30:44
    God had cast a vision for them
  • 00:30:46
    to get into the Promised Land
  • 00:30:48
    and are trying to win through victor right now.
  • 00:30:50
    God had told them to defeat the Canaanites
  • 00:30:52
    that are in the Promised Land.
  • 00:30:55
    So if anybody could have had more clarity than Joshua
  • 00:30:59
    that the question was God was on their side,
  • 00:31:01
    it would have been Joshua.
  • 00:31:02
    No one else would've.
  • 00:31:04
    Yet even here, the Angel of the Lord takes offense at this,
  • 00:31:09
    and he says, "I'm not on your side.
  • 00:31:11
    I'm not on the other side.
  • 00:31:12
    I'm on the side of God, that's who's side I'm on."
  • 00:31:14
    As soon as you start to co-op your agenda, your goals,
  • 00:31:19
    your purposes, and you start to co-op God,
  • 00:31:21
    to wedge Him into things that you want to have happen immediately,
  • 00:31:26
    you're outside the side of God.
  • 00:31:28
    It says right here, "What does my lord say to his servant?"
  • 00:31:32
    There was a turning point for Joshua.
  • 00:31:34
    I'll tell you a turning point for you.
  • 00:31:36
    A turning point for you is when you stop trying
  • 00:31:38
    to judge and evaluate whether people on the right side
  • 00:31:41
    or the wrong side.
  • 00:31:42
    A turning point for you will be when you go before God
  • 00:31:44
    and you say to Him, "What do you want from me, your servant?
  • 00:31:48
    What do you want from me, your servant?
  • 00:31:49
    Instead of me evaluating and judging other people
  • 00:31:52
    based on their votes or their party affiliations,
  • 00:31:54
    what do you want from me?"
  • 00:31:57
    Not all people are equally right.
  • 00:31:59
    Not all people are going to be equally
  • 00:32:02
    as productive as a President.
  • 00:32:04
    Not all views on a political platform are equally right before God.
  • 00:32:09
    But we need to be able to see other people in a different way
  • 00:32:14
    and interact in a way that people around our world
  • 00:32:17
    or our country are not acting right now.
  • 00:32:20
    Jesus interacted with a politician once.
  • 00:32:22
    His name was Pilot.
  • 00:32:25
    Pilot became a politician or he got his position,
  • 00:32:28
    which was overseeing the trial of Jesus,
  • 00:32:30
    which led to his execution.
  • 00:32:32
    You get to that way, that position in ancient Rome,
  • 00:32:35
    or modern America by pandering to people,
  • 00:32:38
    by catering to people, by doing things that get you noticed.
  • 00:32:43
    And this is how Pontius Pilot got his position.
  • 00:32:45
    He was catering and pandering to whoever his peers were.
  • 00:32:48
    He got this position as a result of his political influence.
  • 00:32:51
    And now Jesus is going before this politician.
  • 00:32:55
    Here's what they what the interaction says:
  • 00:33:29
    Pilot doesn't understand the level Jesus talking about.
  • 00:33:31
    Pilot is only concerned about this political realm
  • 00:33:34
    with his position, Rome,
  • 00:33:35
    are the Jews going to do what's right?
  • 00:33:37
    Us Rome, you Jews, are you, Jesus, going to subvert the peace?
  • 00:33:41
    And he says, "Are you a king then?"
  • 00:33:42
    He's not understanding Jesus saying,
  • 00:33:44
    "My kingdom isn't in this political realm
  • 00:33:46
    that you're interested in.
  • 00:33:48
    My kingdom isn't even this landmass where Israel is and Rome.
  • 00:33:52
    My kingdom is the kingdom of God.
  • 00:33:54
    It's a kingdom that exists before Rome and after Rome.
  • 00:33:59
    It's a kingdom that exists right now here in our country.
  • 00:34:02
    It's a realm that you can tap into.
  • 00:34:04
    It's a kingdom it's ever expanding
  • 00:34:06
    and its citizens have a peace.
  • 00:34:09
    Its citizens have a perspective.
  • 00:34:10
    It's citizens have a walk with God.
  • 00:34:13
    The people who are looking for power out of politics
  • 00:34:16
    will never be able to have.
  • 00:34:17
    This is the thing that Jesus was having wit Pilot.
  • 00:34:21
    Pilot kept being here and Jesus was here.
  • 00:34:24
    And you should feel that, the closer you come to God
  • 00:34:26
    and the more you understand the kingdom,
  • 00:34:28
    the more this level.
  • 00:34:29
    When people want to do this to you,
  • 00:34:31
    you're going to be doing this
  • 00:34:32
    because you're gonna be seeing things
  • 00:34:34
    and you're gonna have a different passion for a different realm.
  • 00:34:38
    Don't Panic 2020 isn't saying,
  • 00:34:40
    "Hey, don't worry, everything's gonna work out OK."
  • 00:34:43
    It's saying Take Heart.
  • 00:34:45
    Take heart. Where do we want our heart to be?
  • 00:34:47
    Do we want our heart to be in the political systems of our day
  • 00:34:50
    and of a President or of a Congress or a Senate?
  • 00:34:54
    Or do we want our heart to be in and understand that
  • 00:34:57
    God in His kingdom is working in and through
  • 00:35:00
    all of our political frailties
  • 00:35:01
    and all of the problems that we have here in America.
  • 00:35:05
    This is why Jesus says and John 16:33:
  • 00:35:19
    Take heart; I've ever come the world.
  • 00:35:20
    In me you will have peace.
  • 00:35:22
    Are we to believe that the person --
  • 00:35:25
    do you really believe,
  • 00:35:26
    unless the person that you want to be President
  • 00:35:28
    gets elected, you can't have peace?
  • 00:35:32
    That doesn't make any sense.
  • 00:35:34
    Are we to believe that no followers of Christ
  • 00:35:37
    had any peace at all until their President came in?
  • 00:35:40
    What about the followers of Christ who had no President,
  • 00:35:42
    who lived under a dictator?
  • 00:35:44
    Jesus saying Take heart,
  • 00:35:46
    we can operate on a different level
  • 00:35:48
    while we try to improve our country at the same time.
  • 00:35:53
    See this different thing I'm talking about.
  • 00:35:56
    There's a way that those in the right see America.
  • 00:36:01
    There's a way that those on the left see America.
  • 00:36:05
    And then there's a whole different way
  • 00:36:06
    that those who are in the kingdom of God
  • 00:36:08
    that Jesus talks about sees America.
  • 00:36:11
    Let me give you a couple examples of this.
  • 00:36:13
    We'll share more of these later on,
  • 00:36:16
    but just three of them today.
  • 00:36:17
    Let's talk, for example, what is it to be an American?
  • 00:36:21
    What is the identity of America?
  • 00:36:23
    The American identity?
  • 00:36:25
    Well, if you're on the right,
  • 00:36:26
    if you're a bit more conservative, you'd say:
  • 00:36:36
    If you're on the left,
  • 00:36:37
    if you're a bit more liberal, you may say,
  • 00:36:48
    If you're the Kingdom of God, you would say:
  • 00:37:01
    Followers of Christ are to be
  • 00:37:02
    a shining example to the world.
  • 00:37:04
    Now, I'm not saying which one of these three
  • 00:37:07
    you want to adhere to.
  • 00:37:09
    I am saying that these are three
  • 00:37:11
    distinct ways to view the world,
  • 00:37:14
    three distinct ways for you to filter information
  • 00:37:17
    during this political system,
  • 00:37:18
    three distinct ways for you to interact with God on.
  • 00:37:22
    Let's look at another example.
  • 00:37:24
    Another example would be not the most important election of your life
  • 00:37:28
    Would be government.
  • 00:37:30
    What is the role of government?
  • 00:37:31
    If you're on the right:
  • 00:37:38
    If you're on the left, you may say:
  • 00:37:45
    And the kingdom of God, we say:
  • 00:37:55
    Government is not the source of power and the source of peace.
  • 00:38:01
    One more example.
  • 00:38:02
    There's others we'll share later on in the series.
  • 00:38:04
    The problem. What is the problem we have right here?
  • 00:38:06
    If you're conservative:
  • 00:38:19
    If you're on the left:
  • 00:38:30
    Can you see how we're at odds with one another
  • 00:38:32
    when we see the world and our country so differently?
  • 00:38:35
    And finally, in the Kingdom of God:
  • 00:38:52
    I choose to be part of the Kingdom of God.
  • 00:38:55
    I choose as my king to be Jesus.
  • 00:38:58
    I found that there's things that He tells me
  • 00:39:02
    that are very, very clear.
  • 00:39:04
    He tells us that make our political process
  • 00:39:08
    and how we function politically, emotionally
  • 00:39:10
    and spiritually during this time
  • 00:39:12
    when everybody else is losing their mayonnaise,
  • 00:39:14
    everyone else is just stressed out and freaked out.
  • 00:39:17
    It enables me and us to be a bit different.
  • 00:39:20
    Let me just articulate three of those things.
  • 00:39:22
    One is this: People over politics.
  • 00:39:27
    God didn't come to die for Republicans.
  • 00:39:29
    God didn't come to die for Democrats.
  • 00:39:32
    God didn't come to die for the United States of America.
  • 00:39:35
    God came to die for people.
  • 00:39:38
    God lays down His life for people.
  • 00:39:39
    And every person who has an opposite view of me
  • 00:39:44
    is as equally loved by God
  • 00:39:46
    as somebody who has an equal view of me.
  • 00:39:49
    Those of us in the Kingdom of God, we're always
  • 00:39:51
    for people more than we are for positions and politics.
  • 00:39:56
    God's not interested in us trying to figure out
  • 00:39:58
    how to take sides and how to prove that somebody else is wrong.
  • 00:40:01
    God is much more interested in us figuring out
  • 00:40:04
    how to come together with other people,
  • 00:40:06
    how to link with other people.
  • 00:40:10
    The book of 1 Peter 5:6 says this:
  • 00:40:26
    Why does He care for you?
  • 00:40:28
    He doesn't care for you because you're political pundit.
  • 00:40:30
    He doesn't care for you because
  • 00:40:31
    you're of potential voter of what could be right.
  • 00:40:35
    He cares for you because you're a person.
  • 00:40:37
    He cares for you because you're created
  • 00:40:39
    in the image of God and Jesus died for you.
  • 00:40:44
    And he dies for the person who thinks
  • 00:40:46
    100% different from you as well, that's His person as well.
  • 00:40:52
    And what this verse tells us is to humble ourselves.
  • 00:40:58
    The Republican Party will never tell you
  • 00:40:59
    to humble yourself.
  • 00:41:01
    The Democratic Party will never tell you to humble --
  • 00:41:03
    I can never recall a single time
  • 00:41:05
    where I've heard that from either party.
  • 00:41:07
    They'll never tell you to go to somebody in
  • 00:41:09
    the other party and love them and to listen to them.
  • 00:41:15
    That would take humility.
  • 00:41:16
    Humility isn't thinking less of yourself
  • 00:41:20
    and convincing yourself to have low self-esteem.
  • 00:41:22
    Humility isn't thinking less of yourself.
  • 00:41:24
    It's thinking of yourself less.
  • 00:41:27
    It's thinking of God more.
  • 00:41:29
    It's thinking of others more.
  • 00:41:30
    That's why humble people,
  • 00:41:31
    they're not thinking about themselves that much.
  • 00:41:33
    They're thinking about other people.
  • 00:41:34
    They're thinking about God.
  • 00:41:36
    Now, let's take a look at our current
  • 00:41:39
    political culture right here just to help us see
  • 00:41:43
    we don't have much humility there, friends.
  • 00:41:45
    And we're being unduly influenced by either party,
  • 00:41:50
    people on the extremes who are trying to
  • 00:41:51
    extremely divide us and extremely take our joy.
  • 00:41:55
    I'll just just give a couple examples just from this last week.
  • 00:41:59
    Let's talk about the State of the Union Address.
  • 00:42:03
    It starts off with Nancy Pelosi offering Donald Trump her hand
  • 00:42:08
    and Donald Trump refuses to shake her hand.
  • 00:42:12
    It ends Donald Trump, President Trump being done
  • 00:42:15
    and Nancy Pelosi ripping up his speech
  • 00:42:18
    right behind his back in front of people.
  • 00:42:20
    Now, I just ask you, what kind of man
  • 00:42:25
    denies a woman's hand when she wants to shake it?
  • 00:42:28
    A man who isn't humble, that's who.
  • 00:42:30
    What kind of woman rips up a guy's words behind his back?
  • 00:42:37
    The kind of woman who isn't humble, that's who.
  • 00:42:43
    we have the National Prayer Breakfast.
  • 00:42:45
    I went to that a few years ago.
  • 00:42:46
    It's actually a very, very cool thing.
  • 00:42:47
    I was actually touched a number of years ago when I went,
  • 00:42:49
    I saw people in the right, people on the left
  • 00:42:51
    praying and come together in unity.
  • 00:42:52
    It's really, really awesome.
  • 00:42:54
    It was awesome when I was there.
  • 00:42:56
    That didn't happen this year.
  • 00:42:59
    That didn't happen this year.
  • 00:43:00
    At the National Prayer Breakfast we had
  • 00:43:03
    the opportunity hear from, again,
  • 00:43:06
    President Trump and Speaker Pelosi.
  • 00:43:08
    And here's how the USA Today reports it:
  • 00:43:32
    Man, whatever happened to praying for your enemies?
  • 00:43:36
    Loving your enemies?
  • 00:43:38
    That's Kingdom values.
  • 00:43:40
    Let me just say this: If your hope for peace,
  • 00:43:45
    if your hope for prosperity is in either one of these two people
  • 00:43:51
    and the parties they represent,
  • 00:43:54
    you have no hope because they're miserable.
  • 00:43:57
    They're both miserable people.
  • 00:43:59
    They are.
  • 00:44:00
    God loves them, and they're miserable.
  • 00:44:03
    They do not have the ability to take you
  • 00:44:07
    or anybody else to place to find heart,
  • 00:44:10
    to place to find peace.
  • 00:44:12
    Because they're playing in a kingdom where God doesn't reside.
  • 00:44:16
    God resides in the kingdom of God.
  • 00:44:18
    He's got a different constitution,
  • 00:44:19
    a constitution of humility.
  • 00:44:21
    Matthew 5:16 Jesus says this:
  • 00:44:31
    This includes those of us who in our church
  • 00:44:33
    who are politicians, who God needs
  • 00:44:35
    God-honoring humble politicians, it includes us.
  • 00:44:39
    Every one of us, no matter what job you're in,
  • 00:44:40
    no matter what you're doing we have the ability,
  • 00:44:44
    opportunity and responsibility to be humble,
  • 00:44:49
    to get underneath people and to let our light shine bright.
  • 00:44:54
    Not be miserable when we're not --
  • 00:44:56
    way. Not be unable to hear and to listen.
  • 00:45:01
    No.
  • 00:45:03
    I know I'm asking for it.
  • 00:45:05
    I know the emails are coming.
  • 00:45:07
    I know I'm playing all sides of the fence.
  • 00:45:09
    I am.
  • 00:45:10
    I'm trying to equally poke at those
  • 00:45:11
    on the left and right and poke them, I am.
  • 00:45:13
    And I know no matter how I'm trying to caveat things,
  • 00:45:17
    I know that bad emails are coming because
  • 00:45:20
    I'm treading on your Wheaties and you're not happy.
  • 00:45:22
    I know they're coming. Send me anything you want,
  • 00:45:25
    anthing you want btome@Crossroads.net.
  • 00:45:28
    Send me anything you want.
  • 00:45:29
    It's fine.
  • 00:45:30
    Just on the p.s.
  • 00:45:31
    you must put:
  • 00:45:33
    and I don't care about the words of Jesus.
  • 00:45:37
    So as long as you put that in the bottom --
  • 00:45:38
    Let me make sure you get that right.
  • 00:45:40
    As you criticize what I'm saying,
  • 00:45:42
    "And I don't care about the words of Jesus."
  • 00:45:45
    Okay, good. I understand where you're coming from, good, fine.
  • 00:45:49
    This is not even debatable.
  • 00:45:50
    Friends, I'm not even getting into anything that's,
  • 00:45:54
    This is basic historic Bible stuff.
  • 00:45:57
    This is basic historic Jesus stuff and it works.
  • 00:46:02
    Second thing to think about if you're on the Kingdom of God
  • 00:46:07
    is that we want personal impact over the power of parties.
  • 00:46:12
    Personal impact over the power of parties.
  • 00:46:18
    The political parties are corporations.
  • 00:46:22
    They're set up to get resources and get power.
  • 00:46:24
    That's what they're there for.
  • 00:46:25
    They pick what they pick opposite of the others
  • 00:46:29
    because they're on opposite then they can't get resources.
  • 00:46:32
    They're not going to start a party that's the same,
  • 00:46:33
    so they intentionally look to be opposite each other.
  • 00:46:36
    That's why they're so different.
  • 00:46:38
    If they're not, then they don't need it.
  • 00:46:39
    Everyone's looking for their own power,
  • 00:46:40
    their own slice of pie.
  • 00:46:44
    So what those of us in the Kingdom choose
  • 00:46:47
    is we choose over political power,
  • 00:46:49
    over the power of parties, personal impact,
  • 00:46:51
    my ability to impact people,
  • 00:46:52
    my ability to impact the world.
  • 00:46:56
    I know it really bothers people when I say
  • 00:47:01
    that I might not vote this year at all.
  • 00:47:03
    I know it really bothers you.
  • 00:47:05
    Part of why I might not vote is because
  • 00:47:09
    it just doesn't matter much.
  • 00:47:10
    I know you democracy people, you're real, "What!?!
  • 00:47:12
    Every vote counts!"
  • 00:47:16
    Yes, I know. I know, I know.
  • 00:47:18
    But here's thing,
  • 00:47:19
    whatever you vote for, it's not even going to be
  • 00:47:21
    in your top 100 most important decisions.
  • 00:47:25
    It's not.
  • 00:47:26
    Your top 100 most important decisions
  • 00:47:28
    are going to be things like: am I gonna stop drinking too much?
  • 00:47:32
    Am I going to turn to - insert vice -
  • 00:47:36
    to comfort me instead of God?
  • 00:47:38
    Am I going to actually pray?
  • 00:47:41
    Am I going to tithe this year?
  • 00:47:44
    Am I going to stay with my spouse?
  • 00:47:47
    Am I going to have a child?
  • 00:47:50
    Am I going to love my neighbor?
  • 00:47:52
    Not like metaphorically, sort of.
  • 00:47:55
    No, literally love my neighbor who has a sign in their yard
  • 00:48:00
    that's one that I wouldn't put in my yard.
  • 00:48:03
    Am I going -- I can go on and on.
  • 00:48:05
    Those are the choices, those are decisions
  • 00:48:07
    for personal impact that you get to make
  • 00:48:09
    that will really change your life.
  • 00:48:11
    Who you vote for will not change your life.
  • 00:48:13
    I'm not saying that there isn't serious consequences
  • 00:48:16
    over who is or who isn't in the P
  • 00:48:19
    residency, but I'm saying the consequences to your life
  • 00:48:22
    will be far greater and greater impacted
  • 00:48:26
    on any number of other fronts that.
  • 00:48:28
    Do not feel, do not be deluded thinking
  • 00:48:31
    that if one party gets in, your life is going to change.
  • 00:48:34
    It's not. (indiscernible)
  • 00:48:36
    One party gets in you're all of a sudden going to feel great.
  • 00:48:40
    You'll feel good that night.
  • 00:48:42
    Now, I recognize that I'm in a unique position
  • 00:48:47
    because the stakes are --
  • 00:48:48
    There are some high stakes on the election.
  • 00:48:49
    There are some significant issues
  • 00:48:51
    that we're at odds with one another.
  • 00:48:52
    I don't want to belittle that.
  • 00:48:54
    And I also want to say,
  • 00:48:55
    I recognize that I'm a 54 year old white guy
  • 00:48:59
    who is at his prime income earning years,
  • 00:49:02
    who is an empty nester.
  • 00:49:03
    My life is pretty darn good right now.
  • 00:49:06
    Mmm, Mmm, Mmm, it's wonderful.
  • 00:49:07
    Empty nest thing is awesome.
  • 00:49:10
    And I understand that I'm concerned about poverty,
  • 00:49:13
    but for some of you, poverty is personal to you.
  • 00:49:15
    It's not philosophical.
  • 00:49:17
    I understand that I'm concerned about racism,
  • 00:49:21
    but I'm not the object of racism.
  • 00:49:24
    I understand that country of origin is a significant issue,
  • 00:49:28
    but I'm not of a country of origin
  • 00:49:32
    other than America and our country.
  • 00:49:33
    I understand that sexism is a problem,
  • 00:49:36
    but I'm not victimized by my sex.
  • 00:49:42
    I just know this is much more personal
  • 00:49:45
    for some of us than it is for me.
  • 00:49:48
    But I still have to make the choice of whether or not
  • 00:49:52
    I'm going to look for peace someplace else.
  • 00:49:55
    Whether or not I'm going to put my energy
  • 00:49:59
    into changing people's lives or changing politics.
  • 00:50:03
    The Book of Colossians 1:28 says this:
  • 00:50:05
    him we proclaim warning everyone
  • 00:50:07
    and teaching everyone with all wisdom
  • 00:50:10
    that we may present.
  • 00:50:11
    Every everyone mature in Christ.
  • 00:50:13
    For this, I toil, struggling with all his energy
  • 00:50:17
    that powerfully works within me,
  • 00:50:19
    toiling, struggling,
  • 00:50:20
    What kind of toil, struggle, and energy
  • 00:50:23
    do you have towards bringing people into the Kingdom of God?
  • 00:50:26
    What kind of toil and energy do you have
  • 00:50:29
    into growing your faith in Christ
  • 00:50:30
    versus the toil and energy that's going into
  • 00:50:34
    an election to get somebody into a position of power?
  • 00:50:37
    Your personal impact, friends, is going to be defined
  • 00:50:40
    by all the other choices you make,
  • 00:50:43
    not necessary by the one this made in November.
  • 00:50:45
    Last one.
  • 00:50:46
    Last issue of the Kingdom of God is
  • 00:50:49
    we get to have peace, no matter who the President is.
  • 00:50:54
    Yes, peace, no matter who the president is.
  • 00:50:56
    Are we to believe that no followers of Christ
  • 00:50:58
    were able to find peace before democracy came along?
  • 00:51:02
    Are we to believe that no citizens of the Kingdom of God
  • 00:51:05
    ever found peace until there was a P
  • 00:51:07
    resident that believed all the right things
  • 00:51:09
    and did the right things?
  • 00:51:10
    Are we to believe that? No, of course not.
  • 00:51:12
    Followers of Christ have been finding amazing peace
  • 00:51:15
    when they've been under dictators being burned at the stake.
  • 00:51:18
    And we should not want that to happen.
  • 00:51:20
    We should fight to not have that happen.
  • 00:51:22
    I'm just saying you can have a peace
  • 00:51:26
    that is not influenced one iota
  • 00:51:30
    by what happens in America politically.
  • 00:51:32
    This is actually a biblical promise.
  • 00:51:35
    And for you to think that you can't have peace
  • 00:51:37
    unless things go politically the way you want
  • 00:51:39
    shows how shallow your world is,
  • 00:51:42
    shows how shallow your depth of understanding of God
  • 00:51:48
    and how needing you are for a fresh filling of His grace.
  • 00:51:53
    Book of John 14:27, Jesus says this:
  • 00:52:06
    Don't let your heart be afraid.
  • 00:52:07
    Don't let it be afraid.
  • 00:52:08
    How does the world give us peace?
  • 00:52:10
    The world gives us peace the way
  • 00:52:12
    the Republicans and the Democrats give us peace:
  • 00:52:13
    If we get this done, then you will have peace.
  • 00:52:17
    If this election happens, then you will have peace.
  • 00:52:20
    If we can fix this -- If Social Security -- then you'll --
  • 00:52:24
    That's how the world gives.
  • 00:52:25
    Jesus says, "I don't give as the world gives."
  • 00:52:27
    That's what world gives, if these things one work out
  • 00:52:30
    the way they should, then you can have peace.
  • 00:52:31
    He says, no, things don't have to work out
  • 00:52:34
    for me to give you peace. I can just give you peace.
  • 00:52:37
    I can enable you to have your eyes set on me
  • 00:52:40
    and your eyes to be set on a Savior who loves you
  • 00:52:43
    and transcends every problem in your life
  • 00:52:46
    and give you a spiritual power that you can't comprehend
  • 00:52:50
    and can fill you with His very presence, the Holy Spirit.
  • 00:52:53
    And that is what brings us peace.
  • 00:52:55
    And it doesn't matter what happens any place else in life,
  • 00:52:58
    that peace is only forfeited when we choose to forfeit it,
  • 00:53:03
    not somebody else taking it.
  • 00:53:05
    Nobody can take my peace.
  • 00:53:08
    No President, no political party can take my peace.
  • 00:53:11
    It's not possible.
  • 00:53:13
    In fact, I want to be one who gives peace.
  • 00:53:16
    Jesus says:
  • 00:53:22
    Blessed are the peacemakers.
  • 00:53:24
    I'm trying to make peace here, friends.
  • 00:53:25
    Because someone can call me the son of God.
  • 00:53:28
    If you're not trying to make peace,
  • 00:53:30
    you can't be called a child of God.
  • 00:53:32
    Jesus says blessed are the peacemakers.
  • 00:53:34
    Blessed are those who try to bring people together on the extremes.
  • 00:53:37
    Blessed are the people who step over the aisle
  • 00:53:40
    to understand why somebody thinks this way and feels this way.
  • 00:53:44
    Blessed is the person that will shake the hand
  • 00:53:46
    of somebody who votes differently than them.
  • 00:53:49
    Blessed, Jesus says, are the peace --
  • 00:53:51
    Where are the peacemakers?
  • 00:53:53
    Where are they?
  • 00:53:54
    I expect atheists to not be peaceful.
  • 00:53:57
    Actually atheists sometimes are very, very peaceful.
  • 00:53:59
    I would accept them, but why in the world
  • 00:54:02
    can we not get this inside the church?
  • 00:54:05
    Why the world is this difficult for us?
  • 00:54:07
    No, I can't, no.
  • 00:54:08
    I can view you, you're like,
  • 00:54:09
    "No, but Brian, you're not talking about the real issues."
  • 00:54:11
    I am talking about the real issues.
  • 00:54:13
    Why are you so cranky? That's the real issue.
  • 00:54:17
    I'm talking about the real issues.
  • 00:54:18
    Why is your heart set on different kingdom
  • 00:54:20
    than the kingdom of God?
  • 00:54:22
    I am talking about the real issues.
  • 00:54:23
    Why are you more excited about a president than you are Jesus?
  • 00:54:27
    I am talking about the real issues.
  • 00:54:31
    It's critical.
  • 00:54:33
    Hebrews 12:14 says: "Strive for peace with everyone."
  • 00:54:38
    That means people on the opposite side.
  • 00:54:54
    The roots of bitterness have sprung up in our political system,
  • 00:54:57
    they've sprung up in our country and we're being defiled.
  • 00:55:01
    And where are the peacemakers?
  • 00:55:06
    You have to be commissioned.
  • 00:55:07
    You have to feel the commission of God
  • 00:55:09
    on your life to be a peacemaker.
  • 00:55:12
    And we're doing four weeks on this and then we're done,
  • 00:55:15
    then we're done.
  • 00:55:16
    There's not Crossroads politics all the time.
  • 00:55:19
    And we're not going to be having on
  • 00:55:20
    our social media feeds, Crossroads social feeds,
  • 00:55:22
    politics from now until November.
  • 00:55:24
    We do have a separate social media account
  • 00:55:27
    we're gonna set up that's gonna give us perspective
  • 00:55:30
    now all the way through to November if you want it.
  • 00:55:32
    It's about the radical middle.
  • 00:55:34
    What is the radical middle?
  • 00:55:35
    Radical means roots.
  • 00:55:37
    It means there's something that's root --
  • 00:55:39
    You have roots in something that's deep beyond opinions.
  • 00:55:42
    And those roots can spring forth to see things
  • 00:55:45
    on either side of the
  • 00:55:47
    perspective and bring people together.
  • 00:55:48
    I'm part of the radical middle.
  • 00:55:50
    That's where I am.
  • 00:55:52
    And I would love for you to join the radical middle.
  • 00:55:53
    You can go to one of our accounts called the Radical Middle
  • 00:55:56
    if you'd like more encouragement with this kind
  • 00:55:58
    of thinking for the next several months running on.
  • 00:56:01
    Joshua 5:14.
  • 00:56:02
    Let's figure out where Joshua,
  • 00:56:04
    where he finishes out after this angel
  • 00:56:08
    basically calls him a tack saying, "No, I 'm not on your side,
  • 00:56:11
    I'm not on their side, I'm on God's side."
  • 00:56:14
    Here's what happens.
  • 00:56:28
    The place where you're standing is holy.
  • 00:56:30
    What's going on there?
  • 00:56:32
    Take off your shoes, the place you're standing is holy.
  • 00:56:35
    This idea is still present in the Middle East
  • 00:56:37
    where your shoes are something that is unclean.
  • 00:56:40
    Unclean is what keeps you from being close to God.
  • 00:56:44
    This is why it's an insult the Middle East.
  • 00:56:46
    You might remember when Saddam Hussein's statue was torn down,
  • 00:56:49
    people took off their shoes
  • 00:56:51
    and were smacking the face with their shoes.
  • 00:56:52
    It was this idea of shoes are unclean and I'm insulting you.
  • 00:56:55
    So when you want to --
  • 00:56:57
    when you're getting to a different place,
  • 00:56:59
    a place of holiness, you take your shoes off.
  • 00:57:02
    So he takes it -- why is this?
  • 00:57:03
    Well, what what what why is this is is the place where stank has this little piece of real estate is kind of God real estate.
  • 00:57:09
    So it's holy ground is a holy ground because I is an angel.
  • 00:57:13
    I'm here commander of the Lord, eight armies.
  • 00:57:15
    And Priam, it's holy ground or.
  • 00:57:18
    Or is it?
  • 00:57:21
    Joshua may have just made this holy ground, holy ground means something.
  • 00:57:25
    It is distinct. It's other it's set apart.
  • 00:57:29
    Doesn't mean to be holy, is it?
  • 00:57:31
    Now that Joshua sees these been dividing us and we, we and they and he now gets on the God page only and now becomes holy ground to what?
  • 00:57:42
    Whenever there's a person who takes his eyes off a poly part PA party politics and puts it on the kingdom of God, the seat where you're sitting right now, it's holy ground.
  • 00:57:54
    The CVR enough because there's a change.
  • 00:57:55
    There's a turn for you to operate on a different level under a different king, with different peace and for different heart.
  • 00:58:04
    That is holy ground because spiritual change has taken place and we're spiritual change takes place, true lasting change takes place.
  • 00:58:15
    God, I thank you for giving us perspective.
  • 00:58:19
    That's in your scriptures. That's timeless, as relevant now as it has been for ever.
  • 00:58:25
    I pray for our political process here in our country that things would calm down, that we would be able to listen, that the peacemakers would come up before us, the peacemakers in Congress and Senate and city councils, the peacemakers would do their job and that more of us would join the ranks of the peacemakers.
  • 00:58:47
    Jesus, I just say to you, you're my king.
  • 00:58:50
    I'm thankful for you. And so are many of us in this place right now.
  • 00:58:53
    I pray these things according to the character identity and according to your name, Jesus.
  • 00:58:58
    And.
  • 00:59:01
    I know for me to take heart this year, I have to change my perspective in some places.
  • 00:59:07
    And if you want to experience some more hope, this week ditched the news and download the Crossroads app.
  • 00:59:13
    And in the midst of that app, you'll actually get to connect with God, connect with other people and have some hopeful content in the midst of it.
  • 00:59:21
    It'll be a great thing to add to your week this week.
  • 00:59:24
    And if you participated in the Bigfoot Yeti challenge from last series.
  • 00:59:29
    Follow us on social media to see who the winner is and just stay connected throughout the week.
  • 00:59:35
    You can follow us on all of the major social platforms and hopefully you get a little more hope in your feed through our posts on social media as well.
  • 00:59:44
    We hope you have a great week. We'll see you back next week for week 2 of Don't Panic.
  • 00:59:49
    Take heart. Twenty.
Process, journal or discuss the themes of this article - here's a few questions to get the ball rolling...

Welcome to the Weekend Follow Up.

  1. Didn’t someone say we shouldn’t talk politics or religion at the dinner table? Well we’re doing both. In 2 mins or less go around and share how much or little politics plays a role in your day to day.

  2. Jesus invites us to trust him. Read John 16:33. You may be in great trouble or suffering today or can recall a time when you were. Discuss how you could or did “take heart” during this time of trials.

  3. Our personal impact will be made by the decisions we make every day, not necessarily with one vote on a single day, in an election year. Read Colossians 1:29. What rhythms do you have or could you introduce that allow Jesus to work powerfully within you?

  4. The Bible shows us there is a distinct and specific way to live—to live in peace. Read Hebrews 12:14-15. Do you strive for peace? How?

  5. Jesus promises a life of peace, not a life of anxiety. Declare where you need God to bring you peace and a focus on people. Then pray for one another.

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Feb 8, 2020

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