Heaven Yes! Hell no! The Truths and Tricks of the Devil. Man’s Greatest Treat
Genesis 1:21-23, NKJV
Man’s Greatest Gift. (Genesis 1:21-23, NKJV; Genesis 1:26-28, NKJV)
God has given humans a certain kind of awareness that animals, birds, and fish were not given. In other words, humans possess the capacity for reason, morality, language, personality, and purpose. In particular, the ability to use morality and spirituality are unique to humans only.
Like God, we can possess the capacity to experience and understand love, truth, and beauty. Everything in and on the earth belongs to God. However, in the moment of creation, God gives mankind the responsibility to rule over all other life He has made on earth.
Truth is that it’s His will and plan for us to subdue the earth and have a victorious life while we are living here! (Genesis 2:7, NKJV)
Everyone has a God-given desire to know the God who breathed life into them. The Truth is that breath can only live on in Heaven when connected by Jesus Christ. The Truth is the desire is there, but the connection is not until Jesus is in your life.
Truth of the knowledge of Good and Evil. (Genesis 2:8-9, NKJV; Genesis 2:18-25, NKJV)
Why did God plant the tree of good and evil in the garden? Why not just good? The Truth is because we were created in God’s image, God gave us freedom of choice and the creative ability to dream and create. Like God, we are creative and have creative abilities!
Truth is God is the creative One! (Genesis 2:23-25, NKJV)
God created a woman out of man’s rib. The truth is that God’s greatest gift to man, next to Jesus, is his wife.
We are created in God’s image that gives us a God-given desire to be creative and want to multiply His kingdom. (Matthew 6:33-34, NKJV) You don’t have a need in your life that God has not already given you the creative ability to meet that need. (Philippians 4:19-20, NKJV)
God might use your creative ability to meet those needs
God created us and gave us the ability to live a victorious life! (Genesis 1:28, NKJV; Romans 8:37, NKJV; 2 Corinthians 2:14, NKJV) God has given each one of us a desire to know Him personally. (Genesis 2:7, Webster’s Bible; John 14:6, NKJV; Luke 10:22, NKJV; 2 Peter 3:9, Webster’s Bible)
We have a living soul in us that has a God-given desire to connect with its Creator and the only way the soul can connect with God is through Jesus.
God created married couples in a way they have to depend on each other to become one. (Genesis 2:23-24, NKJV)
If you are married, you cannot have unity-completeness without depending on each other.
Sermon Video Transcription
James Greer: 00:00 Morning Journey Church. Man, we continue our series on Heaven, Yes and Hell, No. Amen? Hey, we’re going to look at some things that really, before the tricks of the devil, that God intended for us to have. And we’re going to go back and read some things in Genesis.
James Greer: 00:20 There’s at least five yes’s that are found in the message today, and we’ll go over them at the end of the message, but I want to talk about them in the beginning of the message.
James Greer: 00:30 And first of all, yes, you are creative. You may not feel like you’re creative, but you have a God-given creative ability. Matter of fact, I believe in most people it’s way underused. But you’ll see, I mean, I can’t believe, can you imagine you’re going to find out later, Adam getting to name every single animal? That’s pretty creative. Amen? Yes, you can have every need in your life met. And yes, you can have a victorious life. You’re going to see over and over again in the beginning, God said to subdue, have dominion, and that’s the way God wanted us to live. And you’ll see in the New Testament, he uses words like victorious and conquering.
James Greer: 01:18 I want you to know that I believe every single person has a God-given desire to know God. You’ll see when God created man, it said he breathed life into them. And so, as we read in the message and we go through Genesis, I want you to know that I believe every single person you talk to, for a certain amount of time in their life has a God-given desire to come to know God. Now next Sunday, I’m going to teach you that there can come a point in time in their life, that God turns them over to a darkness and maybe they don’t have that. but most people that you meet right now have that God-given desire. And I believe it’s our responsibility, if they haven’t accepted the gospel, to give it to them.
James Greer: 02:12 And then I also believe that God created married couples in a way, that they have to depend upon each other, that the two, before they can become one, that he created them that way. And so when we talk about heaven, yes and hell, no, we’re going to talk about more of the beginning of creation, how God intended it to be before the devil came in. And we’re going to talk about God’s greatest gifts to man. In the beginning, one of the God’s greatest gifts was woman. Amen? And all the men said…But you know, after the fall, the devil many times can use women to be the greatest fall for men. It can be the greatest asset, and the devil can use it to be the greatest fall.
James Greer: 03:09 One of the other greatest gifts that God gives, us men and women, is the gift of creativity, you could call it imagination. And we have an unbelievable creativity, and unbelievable imagination. But if you’re not careful, the devil will cause your imagination to run away with you. And you can have a good imagination, or bad imagination, you can start having worry and fear and doubt, and the devil just unbelievable runaway with that same imagination that God created for your good.
James Greer: 03:42 The other greatest gift God gave you, you were created in God’s image. And it’s fantastic, and we’re going to talk about what it means to be created in God’s image and that how we can love, and we can enjoy beauty and truth. But when it’s turned around, if you’re not careful, what’s happened today, people worship themselves and what they have.
James Greer: 04:07 And so God’s greatest gifts, we’re going to talk about the day, but Satan has tried to take them and turn around to something evil instead of something good. And that’s the trick of the devil, so what I want you to begin to understand, is God wanted us to use those for something good. In Genesis chapter 1 verse 21, he talks about how that, “God, he created the great sea creatures, and every living thing that moves, with which the waters abound, according to their kind, and every winged bird according to its kind, and God saw that it was good. And God blessed them, saying, “Be fruitful and…” What? You’re going to see that over and over again, when God created something, even man and woman, he would say, be fruitful and what? “Multiply, and he said, fill the seas and, let the birds multiply on the earth. In the evening and the morning of the fifth day.”
James Greer: 05:08 But what I want you to know, one of the first commandments that God gave me and you, one of the first commandments that God gave in the Bible, was to be fruitful and what? Multiply. Now see, I don’t believe that that just means physical multiplication, but I believe in our church, they believe it is. I mean, sometimes I believe people can come in and drink the water and begin to multiply. But I believe it means way more than physical multiplication, I believe it means spiritual multiplication. We’re going to talk about at the end, that I believe that every single person once you’re saved, you should have a God-given desire to have other people come to know Jesus Christ. See, I believe that everybody, this side of heaven, is obligated to give the gospel to everybody, this side of hell. And I believe that when he said be and multiply, when you’re saved, you may not use it, I might not use it, but you do have a God-given desire for other people to come to know the Lord and to further God’s kingdom.
James Greer: 06:09 And then in Genesis chapter 1:26, let me give you an insight, anytime you’re reading the Bible and God uses a word one time, it’s very important, but when God repeats the same word, it’s very important. And he’s trying to get us to do something, nd then God said, “Let us make man in our image.” He will begin to use our image, and he’ll use create. When he says us, who do you think he’s talking about? He’s talking about God the Father, God, the Son, and God the Holy Spirit. See Jesus has always been and always will be. When he came to earth, when we celebrate Christmas, that was just the incarnation of Christ. But he was with God the Father, God, the Son, and God the Holy Spirit, when he made Adam. He said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth. So, God created…” He’s talking about creating in the beginning, he’s talking about created now. “He created man in his own image, in the image of God. He created him.” Do you see what he’s saying? He’s talking about creating. Now he’s talking about, “He created him in the image of God. He created male and female. He created them.”
James Greer: 07:39 This was before woman was ever created. He was telling you that I created man, I created woman, I created them in my image. He was saying, listen, I want you to know that man and woman are different than all the other creatures in the world. Amen? Now my dog doesn’t know that, my wife does not know that. I’m the only person in the world that says to my wife treat me like a dog. That’s not a bad thing at my house, if you knew how my dogs were treated, you’d say, hey, that’s pretty good. But when God’s talking about he wanted humans created in our image, God gave humans a certain kind of awareness that animals, and birds, and fish don’t have. Humans possess the capacity to have a moral morality, and a language, and a personality, and a purpose, particularly the ability to use morality and spirituality in a uniqueness that only humans have. Now I know that some humans live like animals. Now, when you have the animal morality, you miss out on your God-given ability to have the joy and the peace that God has for you. I understand that only God can create something out of nothing. I understand that God can take a nothing marriage, and make something out of it. I think you can have a nothing job, and God can create something. But God did give you a creative ability, But like, God, we possess the capacity, you ready? To love. Animals can’t love like we love, they don’t understand that type of love. They don’t understand the truth like we do, and they can’t comprehend the beauty like we can, only humans can do that.
James Greer: 09:39 And it’s a shame sometimes that we waste the immorality that God has given us the ability to understand, the love that God has given us as humans to understand, I’ve never seen so much hatred in my whole life as I do right now. And God created us with the ability to love one another. Do you understand, as a Christian, that’s what sets us apart from the rest of the world? You ought to know that we’re Christians, that we what? Love one another. When the world is as crazy as is right now, it does not matter whether you’re black or white, it doesn’t matter what your race, it doesn’t matter what your economic status is. If you’re a Christian, you can come in a woman, doesn’t matter what you did Friday night or Saturday night, if you’re a member Journey Church, we love one another. Amen? That sets us apart. That’s why we’re different. That’s why we’re humans. That’s why we’re not animals. That’s why we don’t act that way, and everybody said… Amen.
James Greer: 10:52 Not only do we have love, we have truth. The Bible is the ultimate authority. We can argue about certain things, but if we don’t have an authority, we don’t have any authority and we have chaos. So we have, God says, I am the truth, I am the way and the truth. And God’s way is the truth, and it is the only way. So we have love, we have truth. We can have disagreements, we can have arguments, but we can settle it because we have the truth. Animals don’t have a truth, birds don’t have a truth, and so fish don’t have a truth, but we as humans, we can have love, we have a truth.
James Greer: 11:32 Man, we can enjoy beauty. We can enjoy the beauty of humans. We can enjoy the beauty of nature. Man, we can enjoy the beauty of animals. I mean, we are set apart. And so many people, including Christians today, are not enjoying what God has given you. You’re not enjoying the love that God’s given you, you’re not enjoying the truth that’ll set you free, and you’re not enjoying the beauty. I can honestly say that, I guess it’s because of my age, I’m enjoying beauty more than I ever have in my life. I’m enjoying the beauty of nature. I’m enjoying the beauty of animals. And I used to hear people say that, and I thought, oh, you’ve got to be crazy. I think I was so busy, I never stopped to enjoy God’s beauty, it’s everywhere.
James Greer: 12:27 God is the maker of all creation, do you understand that? And it belongs to him, and he’s still Lord over it. But however, the moment of creation, God gives mankind the responsibility to rule over it. Verse 28, he picks up, “God blessed them, man and woman, and God said to them…Uh oh, “…be fruitful and…” Do what? “Be fruitful and…” Do what? Multiply. So God has a commandment right off the bat for we as Christian, and we’re to be fruitful, we’re to have love and joy and peace. We’re to multiply, as Christians, to fill the earth. There it is again, to subdue it, to overcome it, have dominion, have victory over the fish of the sea, the birds of the air, over every living thing that moves on the earth. I mean, do you understand that God has given you an insight here. Do you understand the second truth that God has trying to tell you? Do you not understand that it was God’s plan for me and you to live a victorious life, and a married life, and a victorious life on a day to day basis? Amen? The question is, how do you do it? That’s how you were created. I can tell you in the New Testament, he tells us over and over. He tells us in Romans 8:37, that we’re more than conquerors through Christ, and he created us to live that way. And if you’re not careful, you’re a believer in the lie of the devil, and you’re not.
James Greer: 14:00 Skip down to Genesis chapter 2 verse 7, “And the Lord…” The capital Lord, he’s the creator, he’s the one in authority, he’s the one in charge. See, when you’re a Christian, you’ve got the L O R D on your side. He is the Lord of all armies, you don’t have to worry about anybody else. It’s the same Lord that was with David when he killed Goliath, is on your side. “And he formed man out of the dust of the ground.” I mean, you don’t think God is creative. Can you imagine? And from the dust we were formed, but guess what, from the dust we were returned. And God created, and he breathed into our nostrils the breath of what? Life. and man became a living being.
James Greer: 14:42 I’m telling you, I believe every man, woman, boy, and girl has a desire to come to know God, they have the breath of life in them, but they can’t connect with God. They have a desire for God, but they can only connect through Jesus Christ. And God has always wanted to connect with you. He’s wanted to connect since Adam and Eve, when Adam and Eve sinned and they got thrown out of the garden of Eden, Adam and Eve didn’t run to God, God ran to them. From the very beginning God has always wanted to connect, the very minute they sinned, he ran to them, and he killed an animal, and he clothed them. The very minute that Jesus Christ died on the cross, he split the temple because he said, now I can go straight to you.
James Greer: 15:31 You can see that every person has had an opportunity to know God, and I’ll talk to you about it next Sunday, and I’ll talk to you about why they don’t. And I’ll talked to you about what’s going on in America today, and I’ll talk to you about what people don’t want to talk about, but we’ll talk about the truth of what’s going on. You can only connect through Jesus Christ.
James Greer: 15:56 After that God said, listen, I breathed, now you’re living being and I’m going to put you in the garden. But I’m going to put another tree there, and it’s the knowledge of good and evil. See, I believe once God breathed in you, and you connect with God, I believe every single person has the knowledge of good and evil. I think once you go, God breathed in you, and you come to know Christ, and you connect with God. I didn’t say we did good, I said, we know the difference between good and evil. See, “God planted a garden eastward in Eden, in there put the man had been formed. And out of the ground, the Lord, he made every tree grow that is pleasant to the sight and is good for food. And the tree of life was also in the midst of the garden, and the tree of knowledge of (What?) good and evil.” When I first read that the first time I said, God, why didn’t you just put a good tree there? Amen? Why’d you put a good and evil? If you’ve just been a good tree, man, Adam and Eve, they’d been rocking the house. Amen? And we would have still been doing good. There’s just a problem with that, we were made in the image of God and we’re not robots. And because we’re in the image of God, God said, hey, they have to have a creative ability and they have to be able to make choices. Uh oh, and today you still have to make choices. And so he put the tree in there, and it was because we’re in the image of God, and that we have to make choices, and we have that creative ability.
James Greer: 17:49 And now here you go, you’ve got a garden, which is beautiful, by the way. You’ve got animals, it’s unbelievable. Adam has a relationship with God. Man, that had to be something. Amen? Can you imagine men, you would think you have everything you want, there’s no sin. But there’s a problem, man’s not happy. Even though he talks with God, he has the most beautiful garden, he has the best job. If you could pick any job you want, you’d have that job, just imagine that. But the Lord God, the one in charge, he said, “It’s not good for man to be alone. He said, you know, I’m going to make him a helper comparable to him.” You know, there’s two things that I say when I read that. I think, man, God, you’re so creative, but I also say that doesn’t matter if you’re man, woman, boy, or girl here today, that God knows your need. Isn’t that something?
James Greer: 19:06 At first I thought, Adam, you’ve got to be the most unthankful person in the world. Man, because sometimes I look and I say, God, you have blessed me so much, I can’t imagine that I need anything. But yet, God still knows the greatest needs of my life, and he can still meet him. And there’s people in this room right now that you know, God’s blessed you in so many areas. Amen? But you still have a need, and God is the only God that can meet that need. Some of you are alone, and you need a friend. Some of you are not married, and you need a companion. And God said, I’m the one that can give you the right person. Amen? “And out the ground the Lord formed every beast of the field and every bird the air, and he brought them to Adam to see what he would…” What? He would do what? You don’t think he had to be a creative dude, “And whatever Adam called them, each living creature, that was its name.” That had to be cool, he had to be the most creative thing in the world.
James Greer: 20:02 I mean, it wasn’t a year or two ago, me and my wife were so blessed, we got to go on a Safari. And I was thinking about Adam, can you imagine seeing all these animals in the field and in the air? And they brought them to Adam, and Adam would get to see him, and whatever he called them, that’s what they were. And Adam called each living creature by his name. He’d see a giraffe. How can you see a giraffe and say, that’s a giraffe. Then you see a lion, and say, man, that must be a lion. That’s a bird, that’s a tiger, that’s a lion, that had to be some cool sighting. Amen? Now, when I was there, they said, don’t get out of the truck. There’s an elephant, there’s a wild dog, but man, that had to be cool. You don’t think Adam creative, all these animals, and Adam was getting to name them.
James Greer: 20:52 What I’m trying to tell you is you have a creative ability, it may be the most unused God-given ability that you have. You need to make extra money, can I tell you, you’ve got a creative ability to do it. You might not be using it, but you’ve got an ability. You want to surprise somebody? Use your creative ability. You need to meet somebody? Oh, guess what, be creative. Don’t be stupid now, be creative. You need to enjoy something, enjoy your hobby? Be creative. What I’m telling you is you have an unused creative ability that’s given to you by God, you ready, to help meet any need in your life.
James Greer: 21:36 Verse 20 says, “Adam gave names to all the cattle, to all the birds in the air, to every beast of the field. But for Adam, there was not found a helper comparable to him. And so the Lord God, he caused a deep sleep to fall on Adam, and Adam slept and he took one of his ribs. (Can you imagine?) And it closed up the flesh in that place. And then he took the rib, which the Lord God had taken from the man, and he made it into a woman, and he brought it to him.” And ever since then women have been a pain in the side. Not really, that’s not true, that’s not. I mean, God was, you think man was creative, God had to be creative, because then he said, “Now this is bone of my bone, and flesh of my flesh; She shall be called woman because she was taking out of man.” I don’t really believe that’s the right translation. I believe Adam woke up and he said, wow man, God, you’re the man. That is what I needed more than anything else, I love the way she looks, I mean, the way she’s shaped. I mean, God, you’ve met my need and then some. And what God wants you to know is he can meet your need and then some. Amen?
James Greer: 22:51 “Man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and they shall become (What?) one flesh. And they were both naked, the man and his wife, and they were not ashamed.” I’ll give you a couple of truths about that. When you’re married, God created you to depend upon each other emotionally, and sexually, and financially to become one. Number two, I don’t think you should marry until you can be financially independent from your in-laws and out-laws. I really don’t.
James Greer: 23:24 Let me close with giving you five quick insights. Okay? Number one, God gave you a desire to be fruitful and multiply, spiritually. And so I think you need to say, God, what can I do, creatively, to further your kingdom. Matthew 6:33, “Seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.” In fact, I don’t believe that God will meet all your other needs until you start using what he’s given you to further his kingdom. So you need to say today, God, how can I be creative? How can I be creative to further your kingdom? Can I invite somebody to church? What can I do? You ask God, because if you’re not careful, one of the devil’s greatest tricks is get you to come to church instead of be the church. Amen, Brother James, that’s good. Woo. So what does He want you to do? I don’t want you to come to church, I want you to what? Be the church. Be creative, see how you can further God’s kingdom.
James Greer: 24:27 Number two, I want you to know that God’s already given you whatever you need to meet every need in your life. Philippians 4:19 says, “And my God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus.” Now God says he’s going to supply all your needs, not all your wants. Now you might need your creative ability to do it, but don’t go out of here and believe the lie of the devil and say, my needs can’t be met because God has already said that he’ll supply all your need. So guess what? You already have whatever you need to have your needs met. Amen?
James Greer: 25:02 Third God’s creative in a way that we can have a more victorious life. In the Old Testament in Genesis, he said, I want you to subdue, I want you to have dominion. In the New Testament it’s like Romans 8:37, “Yet in all things, not some things, in all things we are more than conquerors through him. Where do you need victory? What do I need to learn to be more than a conqueror. To be a conquer means you got battles, I have battles, you have battle, we all have battles. He didn’t say we’re not going to have battles, he wants you to learn how to have victory in the battle. He doesn’t want you to believe the lie of the devil, that you got to continue to live a defeated and discouraged life. Amen? Second Corinthians 2:14 says, “Now thanks be to God who always leads us in triumph in Christ.”
James Greer: 25:57 Fourth, God’s given us a desire to know him personally. First to know him as our Savior, and the only way you connect with God is through his son, Jesus Christ. Because Jesus said, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life, no man comes to the Father, but by me.” But I also believe that breath of life, that God wants us to have a better relationship. Maybe your relationship is lacking with Go, maybe it’s not fruitful. Fruitful can mean a couple of things. Fruitful can be personally that you don’t have the love and joy and peace that God intended for you. Fruitful can be, you’re not seeing other people influenced for the Lord. And you would like to ask God, today God, I want to make a commitment to begin to have a better relationship with you, take the next step.
James Greer: 26:55 And then of course, last, I believe if you’re married, you need to understand that God created you to depend upon each other. You can be independent, but yet still dependent. There are certain things you can be different independent, and there’s certain things you have to depend on. And that reminds me of one more time, we’re going to have a retreat, January 29th, and so you need to key in on that pretty soon. There’s some things you have to be, the two have to be one. I think that couples need to depend on each other emotionally, not somebody else. Men and women, men don’t go to another woman to meet your emotional needs, women, don’t go to another man to have your emotional needs met, go to your husband and wife. That’s why God puts you together, that’s where the two become one. I could share my hurts, I can share my sorrows, I can weep, and I can joy with her, like I can with nobody else. The two become one sexually, it’s okay, the bed is undefiled and the two become one there. It’s okay, and we’ll talk about that in the retreat. Spiritually, there’s nobody knows you like your mate, and nobody can help you grow like your mate. Financially, where do most couples fight? Financially. Where can you both grow together? Financially. The two need depend upon each other to become one.
James Greer: 28:37 See, I don’t know which area you need to grow in. I don’t know what need that needs to be met. There’s something I do know, I know a savior, His name is Jesus, and he can do that and he can do it today. I’m going to ask you to stand, and I’m going to ask brother Darrell and Mike to come to the front, and I’ll pray for you.
James Greer: 29:01 God, you’re an awesome God, you are the creator. You created man, created woman, you take nothing and make something out of it. And God, there’s a lot of nothings in here that you want to make something out of. There is those that have needs and, God, you said that you can meet every need in our life. God, those are personal needs, financial needs, emotional needs, marriage needs. God, I pray today, that they would surrender to you and through faith, believe that you’ll do what you said you would do. God, those need to come closer to you, whether it’s the first time that they need to connect to you through Jesus Christ. If they’re not sure that they’d go to heaven, aw today is the day, just walk down and tell one of these guys, hey, I want to make sure I’m going to heaven, they will explain to you how to have Jesus as your savior. Maybe you want to join the church, maybe you want to follow through in baptism, maybe you want to come closer together as a married couple, you can come down and talk to one of these guys. Or in just a moment, you can take your next step card and do it then. But you know, don’t come to church and leave the same way you came. It’s my prayer that you come to church, and that you leave being the church. And ask all this in the precious name of Jesus. Amen.
Darrell Ingram: 30:31 On behalf of pastor James, we’re so glad you joined us today. If you still want to pray with someone, we have people on standby. Guess what’s fixing to happen, October 31st, we’re fixing to have our first ever Halloween drive through event. And everyone’s invited, and it’s good fun for the whole family, so y’all come and join us. Join us next Sunday, as pastor James continues the series Heaven, Yes, Hell, No; Tricks And Truths Of The Devil.
Recorded in Pineville, Louisiana.