Pastor Shane Ham : A Vision In The Making

VISION · 56:40 · Recorded August 6, 2023

A Vision In The Making

Hebrews 11:1-2, 8, 10-12, 12:2 (NIV)1Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see. 2This is what the ancients were commended for. 8By faith Abraham, when called to go to a place he would later receive as his inheritance, obeyed and went, even though he did not know where he was going. 10For he was looking forward to the city with foundations, whose architect and builder is God. 11And by faith even Sarah, who was past childbearing age, was enabled to bear children because she considered him faithful who had made the promise. 12And so from this one man, and he as good as dead, came descendants as numerous as the stars in the sky and as countless as the sand on the seashore. 12:2…fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.

Together, we confess:

Jesus really is the savior of the world.

Romans 6:23 (ESV) For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.

2 Corinthians 5:21 (NTE) …but God made him to be sin on our behalf, so that in him we might embody God’s faithfulness to the covenant.

Jesus is king, now and forever!

Matthew 4:17 (BBE) From that time Jesus went about preaching and saying, Let your hearts be turned from sin, for the kingdom of heaven is near.

The life we live is a response of gratitude, expressed through obedience.

It is through us that God is accomplishing his unique purposes in the world.

Ephesians 3:10 (ESV) …so that through the church the manifold wisdom of God might now be made known to the rulers and authorities in the heavenly places.

Ephesians 2:10 (NIV) For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.

What it means:

1. Security – With God, there are no accidents!

John 15:16 (GNB) You did not choose me; I chose you and appointed you to go and bear much fruit, the kind of fruit that endures.

Hebrews 11:36-38 (GNB) Some were mocked and whipped, and others were put in chains and taken off to prison. They were stoned, they were sawn in two, they were killed by the sword. They went round clothed in skins of sheep or goats—poor, persecuted, and ill-treated. The world was not good enough for them! They wandered like refugees in the deserts and hills, living in caves and holes in the ground.

2. Hope – God will use everything for his glory. Even the bad stuff.

Hebrews 11:13, 15-16 (GNB) They did not receive the things God had promised, but from a long way off they saw them and welcomed them, and admitted openly that they were foreigners and refugees on earth. …They did not keep thinking about the country they had left; if they had, they would have had the chance to return. Instead, it was a better country they longed for, the heavenly country. And so God is not ashamed for them to call him their God, because he has prepared a city for them.

3. Purpose – There’s always more to do.

What I do:

I must resist the things that hold me back.

Hebrews 12:1 (NIV) …let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us.

When my faith loses its fire.

Leviticus 6:12 (NIV) The fire on the altar must be kept burning; it must not go out. Every morning the priest is to add firewood…

2 Timothy 1:6 (NIV) For this reason I remind you to fan into flame the gift of God, which is in you through the laying on of my hands…

When my heart is turned toward other gods.

Luke 21:34 (NIV) “Be careful, or your hearts will be weighed down with carousing, drunkenness and the anxieties of life, and that day will close on you suddenly like a trap.”

When my heart turns angry or bitter toward others.

Hebrews 12:15 (HCSB) Make sure that no one falls short of the grace of God and that on root of bitterness springs up, causing trouble and by it, defiling many.

I’ve got to get moving.

Growing Deeper Together

Use these points throughout the week as part of your quiet time, in your small group, or over coffee with a friend to help you apply what you learned in today’s message.

  • Where do you see God working out “grateful obedience” in your life? As you learn to trust him more and more, does your life demonstrate a response of gratitude lived out through obedience to him? Are you continuing to “learn to hear God’s voice and walk in obedience”? Pray this week that God will show you what that looks like in your life and ask for his help in moving in that direction.
  • Reread John 15:16. Is accepting these words of Christ a challenge for you? HE chose YOU! He has a plan for you, a purpose for you! Have you seen yourself or your life as an “accident”? Meditate on this verse to remind yourself of the great love of God that he would choose you!
  • Has your faith lost some of its fire? What are you doing to “fan it into flame”? (2 Timothy 1:6) Spend time in prayer asking God to “restore the joy of your salvation” (Psalm 51) and take action in growth and connection. Check out opportunities at northpointe.org/events.

Pastoral study references & attributions:Jonathan Edwards