The Truth About Easter
God Never Panics; God Has a Plan
Philippians 1:6, NKJV being confident of this very thing, that He who has begun a good work in you will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ;
John 6:29, TLB Jesus told them, “This is the will of God, that you believe in the one he has sent.”
Romans 8:28, NKJV And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.
Ephesians 2:10, AMP For we are His workmanship [His own master work, a work of art], created in Christ Jesus [reborn from above—spiritually transformed, renewed, ready to be used] for good works, which God prepared [for us] beforehand [taking paths which He set], so that we would walk in them [living the good life which He prearranged and made ready for us].
Easter is all about going from tragedy to triumph.
God’s only son, yet He did not panic.
God has a plan and His plan is always bigger than our panic.
Easter reveals God has a plan for us and it is for our good.
Easter reveals even death and the devil can’t stop God’s plan for us.
Easter reveals His plan for me and you are victory in Jesus.
Jesus wants today to be a new day, new start, one of freedom and peace.
Matthew 28:1-10, TLB Now after the Sabbath, near dawn of the first day of the week, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary went to look at the tomb.
Matthew 28:2 And a great earthquake had occurred, for an angel of the Lord descended from heaven and came and rolled away the stone [from the opening of the tomb], and sat on it.
Matthew 28:3 The angel’s appearance was like lightning, and his clothes were as white as snow.
Matthew 28:4 The guards shook, paralyzed with fear [at the sight] of him and became like dead men [pale and immobile].
Matthew 28:5 But the angel said to the women, “Do not be afraid; for I know that you are looking for Jesus who has been crucified.
Matthew 28:6 He is not here, for He has risen, just as He said [He would]. Come! See the place where He was lying.
Matthew 28:7 Then go quickly and tell His disciples that He has risen from the dead; and behold, He is going ahead of you into Galilee [as He promised]. There you will see Him; behold, I have told you.”
Matthew 28:8 So the women left the tomb quickly with fear and great joy, and ran to tell [the good news to] the disciples.
Matthew 28:9 And as they went, suddenly, Jesus met them, saying, “Rejoice!” And they went to Him and took hold of His feet [in homage] and worshiped Him [as the Messiah].
Matthew 28:10 Then Jesus said to them, “Do not be afraid; go and tell My brothers to leave for Galilee, and there they will see Me [just as I promised].”
When we have a great need remember Jesus already has a plan, look to Him not for Him.
Matthew 28:2, NKJV And behold, there was a great earthquake; for an angel of the Lord descended from heaven, and came and rolled back the stone from the door, and sat on it.
What is Finished?
John 19:30, NKJV So when Jesus had received the sour wine, He said, “It is finished!” And bowing His head, He gave up His spirit.
The price is paid for our sins.
We no longer have to live in guilt, sin, unforgiveness, shame, fear, without hope, condemnation, or panic.
Salvation is not achieved, it’s received.
It is FINISHED!
Because it is finished — it is a new beginning for us.
Past is finished; our future is furnished!
When we allow Jesus to do His finished work in our life it is a new day coming.
What looks like a great tragedy, God turns around for the greatest Triumph!
Matthew 28:1-3, NKJV Now after the Sabbath, as the first day of the week began to dawn, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary came to see the tomb.
Matthew 28:2 And behold, there was a great earthquake; for an angel of the Lord descended from heaven, and came and rolled back the stone from the door, and sat on it.
Matthew 28:3 His countenance was like lightning, and his clothing as white as snow.
Light always overcomes darkness.
Jesus is the Light of the world, and when we are in the darkest times of our life He will bring Light!
Matthew 4:16, NKJV The people who sat in darkness have seen a great light,
And upon those who sat in the region and shadow of death
Light has dawned.”
Light + Peace = Joy
Luke 1:79, NKJV To give light to those who sit in darkness and the shadow of death,
To guide our feet into the way of peace.”
John 1:5, NKJV And the light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it.
John 8:12, NKJV Then Jesus spoke to them again, saying, “I am the light of the world. He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life.”
Matthew 28:3-6, NKJV His countenance was like lightning, and his clothing as white as snow.
Matthew 28:4 And the guards shook for fear of him, and became like dead men.
Matthew 28:5 But the angel answered and said to the women, “Do not be afraid, for I know that you seek Jesus who was crucified.
Matthew 28:6 He is not here; for He is risen, as He said. Come, see the place where the Lord lay.
“It is Finished” means Jesus will now furnish every need we will ever need.
Jesus died not only to save us from something but to something.
Matthew 28:7, NKJV And go quickly and tell His disciples that He is risen from the dead, and indeed He is going before you into Galilee; there you will see Him. Behold, I have told you.”
God wants us to experience the mess in our life turned into the greatest miracle.
Jesus saved us from hell to heaven; from bondage to freedom; from being dead to giving us life.
It is Finished, Future is furnished, Jesus goes in Front of us bringing favor and freedom.
Jesus is always in front of you wanting to give you a new day, new future, new hope, new happiness, and new joy!
Sermon Video Transcription
James Greer: 00:00 Amen? You know what’s wonderful? What’s wonderful Easter, that’s what Easter is, it’s all about new beginnings. It’s about brand new starts. In fact, come here Trey, come here Brittany. I mean, you know, back in December, Trey stood up here and he said, man, I got some news to tell you all and he said, Brittany’s pregnant and we’re with our second. And everybody cheered. What you all don’t know, is about a week or two later that she had a miscarriage and lost a child. And then now what you don’t know the last few months, you all been saying, it looks like Brittany’s gained a little weight. And I said, yeah she ism she getting bigger. Everybody saying do you all think Brittany’s getting bigger? I said, yes, she’s getting bigger, and I loved harassing her. But the real truth is, hey, like I said, God is the God of a second chance. God is the God of a new birth, and she is pregnant. Amen? Woo. So congratulations, and now can stop teasing you.
James Greer: 00:50 But God is like that. Amen? See, when you think life is over, God just begins. When he talks about he was in drugs, and he was in jail, and he thought it was finished. It’s not finished until God says it is finished. Amen? And so listen, first of all let’s welcome the Alexandria campus. Whoo! And our own line people.
James Greer: 01:10 I want you know, to me this is the most exciting Sunday of the year. I think it’s the greatest story ever told. But it also tells you this, that God, he never panics in his life. God always has a plan. God didn’t even panic when Jesus was on the cross because he had a plan. And the truth is, because God never panics, we don’t really have to panic either because God has a plan for me and you. There’s at least three types of people in here today, and God has a plan for two of them for sure. There’s those people that God will say, your past is finished. There was things in your past that maybe sin, guilt, shame, things you did, and God wants to tell you in a little while that it is finished. He wants you to come to the altar at the end, put it behind you, and have a brand new start. Amen? It is finished. Can you say that? It is finished. And then God, because it’s finished, he can furnish a future like never before. So some of you all need say it’s finished. Some of you all have a need a brand new start. Some of you all need to a new future. Some of you all have lost hope. Some of you all don’t have the dreams that you had. Some of you all , your marriage needs a new future. Your job needs a new future. Your family needs of new future. You just need a new future. Can I tell you something? Jesus can furnish the future that you need. Amen? So there’s those people that need their past to be finished, those people that need a new hope for their future.
James Greer: 02:36 And then there’s some people you just want to stay where they’re at, I don’t understand those. But some of you came today, and you’re going to go home the same way you came, but you don’t have to. I mean, this is the greatest time of year, and you can make a choice right of the bat, when he gives the invitation today, I’m going to cross the line. I want to put my pass in the past, and I’m going accept a wonderful future that God has for me. But you will have to make the choice. Amen?
James Greer: 03:06 I mean, God has a plan. He tells us in Philippians 1:6 he said, “You can be very confident of this very thing that he, God, who began a good work in you is going to complete it to the day of Christ.” He said, listen, God has a plan for good works in your life, and if you will allow him, he will complete it. Listen to this plan, in John 6:29 it says, Jesus told them, would you like to know the will of God for your life? Say Amen? And “Jesus said, this is the will of God that you believe in him in the one he sent.” Did you know if you’re here today, it’s God’s will for you to go home a different way. Do you know if you’re here today, it’s God’s will for you to accept Jesus Christ. Do you know if you’re here today, it’s God’s will for you to believe that Jesus died and rose for your sins. Amen? It’s God’s will for you not to go home the same way that you can. It’s God’s will for you to be saved today. It’s God’s will for you, not just to come to church, but it’s God’s will for you to become the church. And the way that you do that. The Bible says, I sin, you sin, and I know that people at Journey Church have sinned. Amen? Matter of fact, our essence of our church is, I mess up, you mess up, we all mess up. In fact, if you come to Journey Church and you’re not a mess up, you won’t fit in.
James Greer: 04:25 But because you sin, you’ve got to understand we’re celebrating the resurrection. You’ve got to understand, you’ve got to understand that Jesus shed his blood for me and for you for our sins. See, not that there just is a Christ, but you’ve got to accept what he did for you. And then when you know you’ve sinned, and you believe Jesus died for your sin, you have to invite him in. Salvation is given, but it’s activated when you receive it, and he washes away all our sins. And then one day, then one day, you can know that you’d go to heaven. Now, see, some of you need to do that today. Some of you need to say, Hey, I’m going to settle that, I’m going to cross the line, I’m going to be born again, I’m going to be re-gened. You got your parents’ genes. Amen? You had a physical birthday. Amen? But today you need to have a spiritual birthday.
James Greer: 05:15 Alright, God has another plan for you. Romans 8:28 and it says this, “That we know that all things work together for good to those that love God, and are called according to his purpose.” He says, I want you to know, when you’re saved and you love God. He says, I’ll take every single thing in your life, and I’ll turn it around to something good. So what’s the problem? The problem is God still gives us free choice. And so starting right now till the end of the service God said, hey, you got some choices you have to make.
James Greer: 05:47 But Jesus tells us in Ephesians, how has your life planned out? I want to read you Ephesians 10 in the amplified version, and then we’ll get to the Easter story. Because it’s because of the Easter story, that you can have the life that he tells about in Ephesians. In Ephesians chapter two verse ten it says, “For we are God’s own handiwork.” Stop, first of all, you’re God’s masterpiece. Way too many people, young, old in between are still wanting to be looking like somebody they’re not. They want to act like somebody they’re not. Look, God made you the way you are. You’re fearfully and wonderfully made, and in God’s eyes, you’re actually a masterpiece. He said, you are his workmanship. You were created in Christ. Jesus. Say, born anew, born anew says you need to be reborn, born again. If you’re here today, you know that you had a physical birthday. Amen? The first step to having a good life, to have God’s plan is to be born again. You have to have a spiritual birthday. Why? That we may do the good works which God predestined. It just means, I told you God had a plan for your life. He planned it beforehand. Remember that God has already gone ahead of you, and he’s already made plans for every single thing that you’ll ever need in your life. For us, taking the path which he prepared ahead of time. In other words, God said, listen, I prepared it, I planned it ahead of time. What Lord? That you should walk in them. Why? That you can live a good life, which he prearranged and he made ready for us to live in. God said, listen, I’ve already prepared, I’ve already gone ahead of you, and I made a way for you to live, and it is to have a good life. So see, God says, listen, I want you to have the life. I want you to have the abundant life. I’m already prepared it for you. You have to make a choice.
James Greer: 07:41 Alright, let’s look at the Easter story in Matthew 28, starting at verse one. I love it because it says, “Early Sunday morning as a new day was (What?) dawning.” Don’t you know you can go home today with a new day dawning in your life? A brand new beginning, a brand new start. “A new day was dawning, and Mary Magdalene and the other Mary, they went to the tomb, but suddenly there was a great earthquake, and an angel of the Lord came down from heaven, and rolled the stone away and sat on it.” Hang on just a second, the Angel didn’t roll it away where Jesus could get out. Jesus was already out. Amen? The Angel rolled it away where they could get in, and when they would know that it is finished. Say, it’s finished. In other words, it is finished. Jesus defeated the devil, he defeated death, and he says, it is finished. He rolled it away where we can know that Jesus is not dead, but he is alive. Amen? Verse three, “His face shone like lightning and his clothes were brilliant and white. The guardsman, they shook with fear and they saw him and they fell over dead like fainting, and the angels spoke unto the women. Don’t be afraid, he said, I know you’re looking for Jesus who was crucified”
James Greer: 09:04 Stop right there for a minute. Jesus has a word for me, and he has a word for you. First of all, don’t be afraid. Second of all, Jesus knows what you’re looking for, Jesus knows what you need. I hear people, a lot of times that say that people just don’t understand what I need. No, no, no, I might not understand, your mate might not understand, and your parents might not understand, Jesus understands. And he said the angel sent a message and said, hey, don’t be afraid, I know what you’re looking for. And Jesus really knows what you need, and he knows what you’re looking for, and if you came today, you can have it. But he’s not here, it’s not in the emptiness of life. “He’s come back to life again. Okay, just as he said he would.” Jesus came back to life what? Just as he what? He said he would. You’ve got to remember that because it’s one of the most important things you can learn. When you go to panic in life. What you got to remember, it’s just what did Jesus say about the matter. And whatever he said about the matter, that’s what’s going to happen. “Just like he said, he said, come in and see his body where it was laying.” This is so important because listen, once you remember what Jesus said, listen, then you begin to see what’s really going on in life. They came expecting to find a dead, crucified, Jesus Christ. Instead, he was gone, he had been risen. And he said, come and see where he was laying, and then he said, remember what he said. And then you begin to understand.
James Greer: 10:33 See, do you understand this is the climax of how to handle panic and pressure and stress in your life? You come to the point, there was never greater pressure, never greater stress. Mary and the other Mary, they thought they were going to find somebody at crucified dead. They came in, and he was gone. They could’ve panicked, they could have missed. The angel, said, remember what he said? And then you’ll begin to understand when you panic, begin to remember what Jesus said about the matter, and it starts becoming clear what you’re supposed to do about the matter. Got It. Amen?
James Greer: 11:02 So the woman ran to quickly tell his disciples that he has risen from the dead, and he’s going to Galilee to meet them. That is the message for them. See, God saves us from something, for something. And then the women, they ran from the tomb badly frightened, and also they were filled with joy. And they rushed to the disciples to give them the angels’ message. Unbelievable. And as they were running, suddenly Jesus was where? Where was he? Hey, I love it that Jesus was in front of them, because I don’t know what you’re going through in your life, but Jesus is already in front of you. He was ahead of Mary, they had already rolled it away. He’s in front of you, whatever’s going on in your life. He’s already made arrangements. But then he said, in front of you, he says, good morning, he said. And they fell on the ground before him, holding his feet, and worshiped him.
James Greer: 12:06 Hey, Jesus will say, good morning Journey Church. Amen? God has already gone before you, he’s already made plans for every single need in your life. He wants you to not fear. He doesn’t want you to panic. He just simply want you to remember what he says about a matter. If there was ever a time that looked like somebody should panic, it would have been this time.
James Greer: 12:23 Easter number one, you ready? Easter is all about going from tragedy to triumph. That’s what it’s about. It looked like the greatest tragedy that ever happened, God turned it into the greatest triumph. You’re going to go through tragedy, I’m going to go through tragedy, God wants to learn to teach us how to go from tragedy to triumph. Can I tell you something? God has a plan. God’s plan is always bigger than the greatest panic that you’ll ever go through. In fact, when you began to panic, just remember God has a plan, and remember his plan is bigger than your panic. I mean that’s what Easter’s about. Easter’s about, hey, it’s a new day for miracles in your life. It’s about God has a plan. It’s about the revelation of God’s plan. It’s why we never have to panic. Easter reveals that death and devil couldn’t hold Jesus. It reveals that nothing can stop God’s plan. Jesus wants today, he wants it to be a new day, a new start, a new beginning in your life. In fact, that’s what it says in Matthew 28:1, it says, “And a new day was dawning.” Why were they going? They were going there expecting him to be crucified, and the women were the first ones that…Do you all understand, thank God for women in ministry. One person was glad. You do understand the women were the last ones to leave, and the women were the first ones there.
James Greer: 13:44 Do you understand in May, after the first Sunday, the rest of May, will be all about the women in the ministry? It’ll be about daughters of the king. Some days in May, ladies, you want to be here because you’re daughters of the most high, you’re daughters of the king. If women, if you could ever understand that you’re really daughters of the king, you’d no longer have to get your self-confidence and self-assurance from your husband, from your jobs or anybody else, you’d go straight to the king. When you’re having problems with your husband, tell your daddy, Huh? You’ve got a real need in your life, you’re so worried. My husband is not meeting my needs, my father is not meeting my needs, go tell your daddy. Man, ladies, when you ever get this, you’ll have a new assurance, a new confidence like never before. So I want you to come in May. Amen? No, I want to come next Sunday, but ladies, I especially want you to come then. Okay?
James Greer: 14:36 See, you don’t have to panic. Most people miss the miracle because they begin to panic, and they forget to look to Jesus, not just for Jesus. They were looking for Jesus, he’s gone. They looked to Jesus, and to what Jesus said. See, because if you’re not careful, you’ve missed the focus. I hate to say it, but do you know you cannot have a miracle, without having a problem? You can’t have a miracle unless you have a problem, and sometimes that problem needs to look like it’s impossible. So man, see, if you’re here today and you have a problem, you’re a candidate for a miracle. Amen? So what do I do? I’ve got a problem. So I changed my focus. I changed my focus on my faith to God, and I changed my focus on my faith. Then I changed that my faith is built on what God said, not what I feel. So in other words, I have a problem, I change my focus, I change my focus to faith. My faith is based on what Jesus said, and my faith then can lead to a miracle. Most people have a problem, they changed their focus to their problem, they live in their problem, and they forfeit the miracle.
James Greer: 15:43 That was not what Easter was all about. Easter is all about when they got to the tomb, the angel rolled the stone aside, and he sat on it. Some people said, well, the angel must have been tired from rolling the stone. That is not what’s wrong, he didn’t roll the stone and sit on it because he was tired, he rolled the stone on the side because he said, it is finished. In John 19:30 when Jesus received the sour wine, he said, it is finished. And he bowed, and he gave up the spirit.
James Greer: 16:12 I want us to look at “It is finished” for a while. What does it mean to be finished? It means a couple things. It means if you’re here today, that God has the power to say it is finished with your past, and your sins. It is finished, means God can now furnish you with the power that you need to have a great future in your life. So see, it’s finished, he paid the price. I’ve never seen a time where so many Christians are still living in shame about something they did. And if you came in today. and you’re just living in shame. God said, listen, you asked for forgiveness, and I shed my blood and your shame is on the cross. And I want you to know that your shame, you can now say, it is finished. Yeah, that’s, that’s the right answer. When I say, it is. Then you say, finished. Amen? And so some people say, well, you know, I committed adultery. I’m not condoning adultery. Amen? But did you know there was a time that Jesus caught a woman, i mean the religious people caught a woman, and she had committed adultery. And they brought her to Jesus and they said, Jesus, don’t you think we should stone her? And later on he said, who condemns you? Not I, not them. He said, go and sin no more. So if you committed adultery, don’t do it anymore. But Jesus said, it is finished. You all got it, man. You made a B.
James Greer: 17:33 Some people, it’s fornication. But God said, listen, I want you to confess it, but I want you to go today saying it is finished. Amen? You all getting it now? You’re getting it. Hey, homosexuality. Hey, we got somebody to give a testimony about four weeks, four months ago, she stood up here, gave her testimony. She said, man, I’d been in a homosexual gay relationship for six months, I came to Journey Church, you all loved me into and I changed my life. I gave my life to Jesus Christ, I broke it off, and I’m now a good new Christian in Christ. Amen? It is finished. It is finished. Amen? Got a new life, a new start, a new beginning, a new dream. Touchy subject, maybe you came and you’ve had an abortion. I don’t agree with that, but I do know this, that God loves you, and if you will confess that sin, he will forgive you. And it is finished. David said that when his baby died, he said, I can’t bring the baby back, but I can go and be with my baby. It is finished.
James Greer: 18:51 Do you understand that, I think one of the worst sins for Christians is guilt. Conviction is different, God convicts us where we confess it. But guilt is after we’ve tried to deal with the sin, and we’ve tried to make things right. And we confessed it to God, and we went to the other people, and we continue to live in guilt. And God does not want you to live that way. So for you all that are living in guilt today, it is finished.
James Greer: 19:20 This is a real serious issue with me. It’s because of this, the whole Easter story is the climax of Jesus coming and dying and suffering on the cross, and being put in the tomb, and being risen on the third day. I want you to get rid of your guilt today because listen, real close. If you come and confess your sin, and you’ve tried to make things right, and you still say, I’m still guilty. I’m not making light of sin, but I’m not going to make light of the price that Christ paid for your sins. You’re almost saying that Jesus dying on the cross, was not enough to pay the price for your sin. So I don’t want anybody going home guilty today, I want you to go home free today. That comes from the devil in John 10:10 said the devil’s one that came to steal, kill and destroy. But he said, Jesus came that you could have life, and you could have it more abundantly.
James Greer: 20:23 Some of you all struggle with anger and jealousy, and said things and done things that you shouldn’t and let today should it be finished. Some of you all been married and divorced. God hates divorce. But Jesus met, true story, Jesus met this woman in the Bible. He was at a well and this woman came to him, she had been married and divorced five times, she was living in with number six. I wouldn’t want to be dating her. Amen? So Jesus said, I can’t believe you’ve been divorced five times, I can’t believe your living with someone. No, no, do you know what he said? Man, if you knew the water that I had, you would take it. In other words, Jesus said, what I want to do is I want to give you something, you weren’t having your needs met with five men. But she came to know Jesus Christ, her life was so radically changed, she went back and told the whole city to come back and see what Jesus said. So if you’ve been divorced, hey, restart your life because it is finished. Amen? So Jesus wants you to leave here in a whole new way then you came. So one way it means, it is finished.
James Greer: 21:29 But listen to this salvation is not achieved, salvation is received. It’s not achieved, it’s received. That’s one of the reasons I was talking about some of the sins, because some people say, well, when I get to be good enough, I’m going to get saved. Good luck. Some people say, when I stopped doing this, then I’m going to come to church. Good luck. Why don’t you do this, why don’t you give your life to Jesus Christ, and then let him radically help change your life? Amen? Salvation, listen, salvation is not achieved it’s received. Grace, grace, is what Jesus came to them. Grace, grace, is not earned, grace is accepted. God wants you to say, man, I want you to receive, and I want you to accept what I have for you today. Because what I’m trying to tell you, once it’s finished, then you got a future that’s furnished. The future is furnished. He said back in Ephesians, he said, I’ve got a good life for you, I’ve already got a plan for you. You don’t have to panic, I’ve already paid the price for you. I want you to learn two things today, it is finished in your past, and your future is furnished. Amen?
James Greer: 22:38 When I say is furnished, I want to talk about it. We have a couple of our church, that I love. They were telling me the story the other day. They said, you know, we’d told each other that as soon as our kids got grown, our marriage was finished. We’d both just agreed, we were just kind of living at the house, and we were going through our marriage. And soon as our oldest got through, it’s just going to be finished, we’re going to move on, we’d already kind of started making plans. So the oldest left and the wife said, kind of to their surprise, I don’t think I want to do that right now, I think I want to try it God’s way. Now they’d already said, it’s finished, but they decided to do it God’s way. Now they’re starting doing it God’s way, now it’s anything but finished. Now, God furnished them best marriage they ever had. I talked to them the other day, and they said their marriage is better than it’s ever been in their life. See, the only thing finished in their life is their past and their disappointments and their sorrow. But see their marriage is now furnished through God, they have the best marriage they ever had. Some things are finished, they’re past sin. Amen? But now God has furnished them a great marriage. Amen? It’s not finished until God says it’s finished. Amen?
James Greer: 23:55 Man, I know somebody this week. I know somebody that called me this week, and their brother had had brain cancer, so some people thought maybe it’s finished, didn’t know. But I got a call, he was screaming and hollering and praising God. And he said, they told him the cancer was gone. See, the only thing finished and that young man’s life was the cancer, it is finished. Now God has furnished him an opportunity to have a wonderful future. Amen? Some things are finished, but God is not finished until he says, it’s finished.
James Greer: 24:31 There was a thief on the cross, there was two of them. One of them, they were criminals, they were about to die. Their life looked like it was finished. One of them said, Jesus, forgive me and remember me. And instead of his life being finished, instead he said, hey, today you’ll be with me in paradise. His life was not finished, when he woke up he had a better life than he had ever had in this life, and this time he would never die again. Listen, when God says it’s not finished, until he said it’s finished. His past was finished, his sorrow was finished, his death was finished, but he was more alive than he’d ever been in his life. It isn’t finished until God says, it is finished. Amen?
James Greer: 25:02 I’ve got a couple more stories, then we’ll close. We have two ladies in our church, both of their sons died from drugs related at an early age. I was with them both, their lives looked like they were finished. Though they will never be the same, God’s given them both a ministry to help other people, until they can go sit with their sons again one day in heaven. You can’t live in the past, but you can learn from the past. Jesus has now furnished them a future. They have great ministries, and they’re helping other people. One thing is finished, and he has now furnished them. I tell you that story because some of you are going through things, and you’re saying, well Brother James just does not understand what I’m going through. What I’m telling you, I see stories every single day, every single week, every single year of things that are unbelievable. It looked like they’re finished, like they’re over. Some of them are marriage, some of them are financial, some of them are things you did, some of the things you wish you didn’t. Sometimes God says, I just want you to put that in the past, I want you to finish that, but I want to give you a brand new future.
James Greer: 26:20 I could tell you about things in my life. I could tell you about when one of the ladies embezzled all our money, and the company’s money, and it looked like we were finished. And financially and physically looked like we were finished, and God’s supernatural provides us to take care of that, and then some. I think one of the worst times is when I quit the ministry. I’d been preaching God had blessed, and things happened, that was part of it. We’d had a death in our family, and I was finished. I was finished with God, I was finished with preaching, and then I was just finished. The thing was, God wasn’t finished. God began to salt in my heart, God began to put a new fire back in my life. And then I stopped, I wanted to preach, and I thought it was finished, and I thought I’d never preach again. God begin open doors, and reclaim the years that the locusts had eaten, and put me back where I started 35 years ago. And now I’m preaching to more people than I’d ever dreamed in my life, and get to see more people saved. I mean we’re baptizing seven people today, there’s times that I’d go months and years. God’s not finished until he says he’s finished.
James Greer: 27:42 Can I tell you something? God not only saves us from something, but he saves us for something as well. See, he saves us from our past, it’s finished, he saves us for our future. But God’s got a plan for your life, it’s so hard to imagine. Just imagine there was a special occasion in your life, and a friend or your mate made special plans for you, they took you out to the favorite place. First of all, they said, hey, I want you to go. You’d have to accept, wouldn’t you? And you say, okay, I accept, and I got there. Then you ordered the best thing you wanted. Then they said, okay, I’m finished. Then it was time to pay, and your mate or your friends said, no, it’s furnished. See, they’d made the plans, you accepted it, you got to experience it, you got to finish, and the price was paid. Can I tell you something? That’s what Jesus did for me, and he did for you. Jesus has a plan for your life, he’s already made it ready, he’s paid the price, and he wants to give an invitation. I cannot imagine why anybody would not accept the invitation that Jesus has for you, to finish your past. Listen, everybody in here has a past, I have one and you have one. I want you to leave it here this morning, I don’t want you to take it with you. Everybody in here maybe needs a future. I thought mine was over several times. It’s not finished until God says it’s finished. Maybe some of your life, you feel like you’re crushed, and you just don’t have dreams you don’t have…I want you to come and say, God, would you furnish my future?
James Greer: 29:38 See, God not only not only saves you from hell, but he saves you to heaven. He not only saves you from bondage, but he saves you to freedom. He not only saves you from death, he saves you to life. See, he not only saves you from something, but he gives something. Some of you all, he’s got a greater ministry for you than you could ever imagine in your life. Some of you all have been visiting, you know this where God wants you in this morning, it’s the morning that you want to come and join. Some of you all maybe never been biblically publicly baptized, maybe you want to join those seven. Maybe you want to join today, maybe you want to follow through and get baptized, whatever God’s called you to do.
James Greer: 30:19 Three people, three types of people here today, I’m give every one of you an opportunity. You got something in your past, put it in the past, let it be finished as of today. Don’t go home in guilt and shame. Amen? Some of you need a better future, God can furnish your future, it’s not finished until he says. And you just say, hey God, I need a future. And then there’s those who are going to go home the same way that you came, and I pray, I pray that nobody here today does that very thing.
James Greer: 30:48 Would you stand and let me pray with you, and pray for you? God, you’re an awesome, God. I thank you for your son who is a risen savior. Which means you can deliver us, God, you can free us. God, everybody here today, they’re not here by accident. I don’t care if you’re a member, or you’re a first time visitor, you’re here by divine appointment. And God has a message for you. God has a peace and a power and a freedom. Leave your past here, leave your guilt, leave your shame, leave your sorrow. Leave it here as an act of obedience, just put it on the altar, and don’t take it home with you. For those that need a future, and man you just feel like your future is crud, oh no, God’s not finished with you. When God is finished, he’ll take you home. If you’re not dead, God’s not done. And you come and say, God, show me, begin to open the door, help me find that good life, help me to walk in that path. If you have somebody, you need somebody to pray with you, there’ll be people here in the front, they want to pray with you. If you want to follow through in public baptism, hey, we will make arrangements. Maybe you’ve been visiting, and today’s the day for you to join the church. Some of you need to cross the line today, you’ve just been stepping out, and stepped across the line. Whatever it is, recommitment rededication, maybe it’s just a commitment to God, and maybe you hadn’t been on fire for God, maybe you’ve been going backwards, and today you want to go forward. Whatever God’s called you to do, today you step out, and you let God have his will and his way in your life. It’s in Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.
Recorded in Pineville, Louisiana.