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No Other Lovers

 

 

Matt 16:1-4 

 

1The Pharisees and Sadducees came to Jesus and tested him by asking him to show them a sign from heaven.

 2He replied,"When evening comes, you say, 'It will be fair weather, for the sky is red,' 3and in the morning, 'Today it will be stormy, for the sky is red and overcast.' You know how to interpret the appearance of the sky, but you cannot interpret the signs of the times. 4A wicked and adulterous generation looks for a miraculous sign, but none will be given it except the sign of Jonah." Jesus then left them and went away.

 

Jesus was telling them, you can look at the sky and tell what the weather is going to be but you can't look at my face and tell that I'm the Son of God. You can't look at me and tell who I am. You've prayed for me. You've believed for me. You've read stories about me. Your whole lives you have heard that I'm coming and still you can not see who I am.

 

Verse 4 is why they can't see Him for who He really is.

 

A wicked and adulterous generation looks for a miraculous sign, but none will be given it except the sign of Jonah."

 

What do you think of when you hear the word adultery or adulterous? Here Jesus is accusing the Pharisee's and the Sadducee's of being that "adulterous generation" because they are testing Him by asking for a sign from heaven to prove who He is. He is calling a bunch of people that history tells us lived holy adulterers. The Pharisee's and the Sadducee's had plenty of faults but that would not be one of them.

 

They were blind to who Jesus really was but you can not fault their morals. They had plenty of issues but sleeping with women that weren't their wives was not one of them so we have to look deeper to see what He really means. He was not accusing them of committing adultery with a woman but with the world. He was not really even accusing the Pharisee's and the Sadducee's specifically but more the entire nation of Israel. God the Father had done the same back in the old testament.

 

Ezekiel 6:9 

 

Then in the nations where they have been carried captive, those who escape will remember me—how I have been grieved by their adulterous hearts, which have turned away from me, and by their eyes, which have lusted after their idols. They will loathe themselves for the evil they have done and for all their detestable practices.

 

Throughout most of Ezekiel he is prophesying that God is going to destroy Israel because of their disobedience. They have become like the rest of the world. In Ezekiel God was punishing them for having idols. If you read these chapters you will see that God was extremely angry with Israel because of what He called adultery. It still had nothing to do with seeping around but it had everything to do with them being a bride with to many other husbands.

 

Let's look back at Matt 16:4 again...

 

A wicked and adulterous generation looks for a miraculous sign, but none will be given it except the sign of Jonah."

 

Jesus is telling them that the reason that they can't see Him is not because they don't possess intelligence or because that can't reason. It's not that they are not smart or because they haven't studied or followed the traditions. It's that they have to many husbands to see the one true groom standing right in front of them. He's telling them, you can't see me because to many other lovers have stolen your gaze. We are doing the same thing if we'll just stop and really think about it.

 

I'm not saying that we don't love God. I believe everyone in this room loves God but the problem is we love God and this and this and this and this...

 

To get to be that right bride we have to truly know God. He said he was the groom and we are the bride. We have to be in a relationship with Him like a bride and groom are supposed to have. We have to enter into intimate covenant with Him and take His name just like my wife took my name when I entered into covenant with her. I believe that is the true meaning of Jesus telling us to ask in His name.

 

In the beginning God established order in the world. Part of that order says that it is inappropriate for us to be intimate with one another outside of covenant. Basically God said that a man and a woman are not to sleep with one another until they are married. We must get rid of the other lovers before a covenant can be established between us that will allow us to be intimate with one another and after the covenant is made we must only be intimate with that person. As long as we had eyes for other lovers we could not be in covenant. The bible says God is a jealous God. Even His name is jealous and I think that God is jealous today over some of our other lovers.

 

Ex 34:14  

 

14 Do not worship any other god, for the LORD, whose name is Jealous, is a jealous God.

 

Do not worship any other God because God is a jealous God named jealous. That is pretty plain. To truly know God we need to be intimate with Him just like we need to be intimate with our spouses to truly know them. To be intimate with God we must enter into covenant with Him. We can not do that as long as we have some other lovers hanging around. We are going to have to give up the other lovers to be where God wants us to be. God is not willing to share the deep things He wants to share with an adulterous bride. He's only going to be willing to share those secret things with a bride that He doesn't have to share. A bride that doesn't have those other lovers He is jealous over.

 

My wife knows me better than any person in the world. You all know about me but she truly knows me. I share things with my wife that I would never share with any other human. I do that because I can trust her. She has paid the price, and I promise you it's a big price, to get the experience of being that close to me. She has gained that knowledge by interacting with me on an intimate level. She only knows everything about me because she is in intimate covenant with me. When she entered into that covenant she took my name.

 

Now, If she goes down to the bank because she wants to access what I have, as long as she uses my name she can get whatever money is in there. But if she goes to the bank and uses her old name they won't let her have it. If she uses the identity that she had before we entered into covenant she won't be able to get a dime. If she uses my name it's our money. If she uses her old name it's my money.

 

John 14:13

 

13And I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Son may bring glory to the Father.

 

John 15:16 

 

16You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you to go and bear fruit—fruit that will last. Then the Father will give you whatever you ask in my name.

 

John 16:23 

 

23In that day you will no longer ask me anything. I tell you the truth, my Father will give you whatever you ask in my name.

 

In Jesus Name. What does that mean to you?

 

"In my name". Jesus tells us over and over again that anything that we ask in His name either He or the Father will give us. Then why do we ask and ask for things in His name that we don't get? Perhaps we have to may husbands to be the bride truly worthy of having His name.

 

That's what Jesus is talking about when He says anything that you ask in my name I'll give you. In Jesus name is not a magical phrase that if added to the end of a prayer produces results. If that were the case then everything that we prayed for would happen and since most of the stuff we pray for doesn't happen I have to think that we haven't entered into a close enough relationship with Him to have the use of His name. We try to use in Jesus name like it's abracadabra. In Jesus name deals with our position relative to Him. We have to get out of our name and into His name before in Jesus name means anything to Jesus no matter what we think it means to us. We have to give up the other lovers and truly become the bride He intended us to be in order to have the use of His name.

 

If we would divorce all our other lovers we could get His name and then we can have access to what is His. Only then will us saying in Jesus name have any true meaning to Him. Then we will be eligible to get His power but the first thing is we are going to have to divorce those other lovers.

 

We have been trying to be intimate with God without being willing to do what it takes to be in covenant with Him. We are not willing to go past dating Him. You can not have that intimate touch that He desires that you have with Him when you are just dating Him. When you are just dating you can enjoy time spent together. You can hold hands and even kiss once in a while but you can not enjoy true intimacy until you decide to stop dating and get serious. There can be no exchange of intimacy until you establish covenant with Him. We've tried to be married to God and married to the world at the same time and that is not going to work.

 

Today is the day for us to divorce those other lovers and commit to being His bride and His bride alone. We all have those other lovers hanging around and if you'll divorce one then God will show you the next one. And then another and another. Ever since I heard about this He keeps showing them to me and I keep saying "I didn't even know that was one". I'm not necessarily even talking about sin here just things that have stolen my gaze. Things that have just taken my attention.

 

Is there anything that you see in your life that might make God a little jealous? You can not do this in your own power. Pray that He will show you the other lovers and pray that He'll pour out His grace on you to be able to divorce them permanently.

 

I truly believe that there are things that God is withholding waiting on us to get right with Him. Waiting on His bride to be pure not adulterous. There are things that Cheryl and I talk about behind closed doors that we would never talk about anywhere else. God is waiting on us to get to that same place with Him. If we'll divorce the other lovers and be married just to God we will be able to hear from Him in ways that we have never dreamed of. It is the privilege of that intimate covenant. It is the privilege of being in His name.

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