Hunger Games Series Part 1 – Something That Really Satisfies
This week I’m continuing the Hunger Games Series. Last week I discussed contentment and this week I’ll talk about what it is that really satisfies us.
I feel like the body of Christ is really yearning for some real meat…something that really satisfies. I can only speak for myself, but I know when I hear messages about the love of God it energizes me as opposed to hearing messages that leave me feeling a heavy burden.
In this post I’ll define what evil is in the Bible, what the root of evil is, the bread of life and more. My hope and prayer is that this will help you move away from defining yourself by your performance and allow you to enjoy your life right where you are at. Let’s get started.
What is Evil?
Something that you may find interesting and that is particularly relevant to this topic is what evil actually is. Typically we would think of evil being lying, cheating, stealing, etc. But the word for evil in the Bible is poneros. It’s all over the Bible and what it means is full of labors, annoyances, and hardships. Quite different than what most of us have believed evil is huh? When we look at scriptures with the word evil in it, this concept will really start to sink in. The one that comes to my mind first is 1 John 5:18. Here is what it says:
We know that anyone born of God does not continue to sin; the One who was born of God keeps them safe, and the evil one cannot harm them.
Now if you just read this on the surface level you would probably read the last part about the evil one and think it is referring to Satan. The word one is not in the original text and the word evil there is translated from poneros. So if you read it in context it’s basically saying that when one is a born again believer, they are kept free from the evil mindset of being full of labors and it cannot harm them.
This is just one example. For you nerds for the Word out there like me, if you want to really get blessed do some research on other scriptures with the word poneros in them and see how big of a difference it makes when you understand the definition of this word.
The Root of All Evil – 1 Tim. 6:6-10
Now that we know what evil actually is, let’s take a look at the root of it. The famous scripture that even a lot of the world knows about the root of evil is 1 Timothy 6:10. Many misquote it though and say that just money is the root of all evil, but it’s actually the love of money that is the root of all evil. Bertie Brits put this scripture in context and into his own words beautifully in his book I referenced in the series intro last week. There really isn’t much more that I feel needs to be added to it, so I have reference it below.
“Once the enemy law system has it’s foot in the door, with even the slightest thing you must do so that God will do for you, then it’s got you where it can bring all kinds of trouble your way.
If you are convinced you must do anything to be blessed by God, you will long for God and even begin to resent him for not honoring what you are giving for Him.
Because of Jesus we lack nothing. We are already one with the Father and seated in Heavenly places, blessed with every blessing imaginable. People who come to God with money to buy His acceptance and provision are missing it.
The idea that we lack is from Satan. It’s what he convinced Adam and Eve of.
We were never meant to pull our weight with God. He created us to be recipients of His life. God is pulling your wagon so just relax in His love and let Him give to you everything Jesus has already purchased through the cross. We are free from every obligation to muster up anything from ourselves and our resources to get what we feel we need from God.“ Bertie Brits Translation of 1 Tim. 6:6’10We were never meant to pull our weight with God. He created us to be recipients of His life. ~Bertie Brits Click To Tweet God is pulling your wagon so just relax in His love and let Him give to you everything. ~ Bertie Brits Click To Tweet
The Hand You’ve Been Dealt & Why
Bertie mentioned that we have been blessed with every blessing imaginable in his translation of 1 Tim. 6:6-10. I referenced Ephesians 1 in my series intro too, which basically says the same thing. So if you liken what God has given us to a hand you would play in cards, we’ve all been given the best hand you could possibly get (which is a Royal Flush in poker by the way, not a Full House).
I think many Christians have heard this type of teaching about what they have been given in Christ, however what I feel most don’t get is why we have been given this hand. I remember Greg Henry talking about this and describing a dream he had in one of his messages entitled God’s Perfect Will For Your Life which you can hear by going to this page of his website http://gospelrevolutionchurch.com/audio/ and searching in July of 2012. Greg said in his dream he was playing poker and got 4 aces. Then he became consumed with whether or not he would actually play the hand. He did end up playing it and then he got a bonus hand and that hand was the best hand you could possibly get. God told him that is what I’ve put in you son and it’s not because of anything you can do for me, it’s because that is what I put in you whether you did anything for me or not.
Greg went on to say that what God has put in you is not for you to go do something for Him. It’s simply because that was His good pleasure to do so. He wanted you to be equipped for whatever desire your heart has. He stressed the freedom in this and it definitely helped to set me free. It’s almost like I was in bondage to the benefits of the cross. The benefits of the cross are real and you will produce fruit as a natural consequence of being in union with God but He doesn’t want you to constantly be worrying about if you have been producing enough fruit or not. This is what I mean by being on the works treadmill. I understand that many believers have a burning desire to produce fruit for God but you have to be rooted in who you are in Christ. If you think God is more pleased with you when you do more works then what happens if you don’t produce the works? You’ll be full of guilt and condemnation on the bad days and full of pride on the good days. Just rest in who God says you are and whatever it is that He wants to bring forth in your life.God has given you the best hand possible & the reason why is because it was His good pleasure to do so. Click To Tweet
Who God Says You Are
We were designed to get our satisfaction in one thing, Jesus. Here are a list of things God has said and done in Jesus for us:
20 Things God Says About You
- I am a child of God.John 1:12
- I am a friend with God.John 15:15
- I am not condemned by God.Romans 8:1
- I am an heir with Christ.Romans 8:17
- I have wisdom, righteousness and redemption, in Christ Jesus.1 Corinthians 1:30
- I am a new creation.2 Corinthians 5:17
- I am the righteousness of God.2 Corinthians 5:21
- I have been set free.Galatians 5:1
- I have been blessed with every spiritual blessing.Ephesians 1:3
- I am chosen, holy, and blameless before God.Ephesians 1:4
- I am redeemed and forgiven by the grace of God.Ephesians 1:7
- I am seated in the heavenly places with Christ.Ephesians 2:10
- I have been brought near to God by the blood of Christ.Ephesians 2:13
- I am a member of Christ’s body and a partaker of His promise.Ephesians 3:6
- I have boldness and confident access to God through faith in Christ.Ephesians 3:12
- I have been made complete in Christ.Colossians 2:10
- I have been chosen by God, holy and dearly loved.Colossians 3:12
- I am an overcomer in Christ Jesus.1 John 5:4
- I am a citizen of Heaven. Philippians 3:20
- I Can Do All Things Through Christ.Philippians 4:13
The Blessing of God
Greg Henry preached an awesome message recently about the blessing of God that really helped me. I’ll summarize some of his point below, but I would highly recommend listening to the message here.
– Our idea of the blessed life has been wrong. We’ve been trained to think the blessed life is found in money, accomplishments, etc. Jesus said the kingdom of God is found within.
– Your ability to experience heaven on earth is found in you looking to Jesus for your life.
– The blessing of God is the promise of the Spirit. What is the promise of the Spirit? The spirit that can bring forth the fruit of His life. The spirit of truth. The spirit that clothes you with glory and honor.
– There is nothing in this world that can satisfy you. We were designed to find our satisfaction in the word of Christ about us. That may seem bad but it causes us to only look to Jesus for life.
– When you know that you don’t lack you can’t be tossed to and fro with every wind of doctrine telling you how you can get the blessing of God.Your ability to experience heaven on earth is found in you looking to Jesus for your life. ~ Greg Henry Click To Tweet
The Bread of Life
Since this series is called Hunger Games, I thought this would be a good place to talk about the Bread of Life. In John 6:35 Jesus said:
“I am the Bread of Life. The person who aligns with me hungers no more and thirsts no more, ever.” MSG Version.“I am the Bread of Life. The person who aligns with me hungers no more and thirsts no more, ever.” John 6:35 MSG Click To Tweet
When Jesus said that many of his disciples left him. They could not understand what he meant and thought he was talking about cannibalism. Earlier in this same chapter, Jesus told his disciples the works of God are to believe. The way to feed on Jesus is by believing on everything He did. Feeding is not a one-time event though. This is where many Christians go astray, many of them not knowing any better. They start by believing in Jesus, but then get sucked into the works treadmill. The message of Jesus and what He has done for us is not just for the beginner/immature Christian. This what we should all be feeding on all the time. There is nothing else to preach.
Jesus was born in a manger, but contrary but what we typically think a manger is not a little wooden crib. Manger’s in Jesus’ day were big stone structures that animals would feed in. They were feeding troughs. This is God telling mankind that Jesus is what we will feed on and this is to be a continuous ongoing event.
The Rest of God
Once you find out what God says about you, then it becomes a deal of us staying in that rest. This is what Paul was talking about when he mentioned laboring to rest. We labor to remain in the rest already provided for us, not that we have to labor to get into. I’ve provided a word study on the root word of agape below and some quotes from Greg Henry to encourage you about the rest of God.
– Word study on apapoo – means shepherd who leads us into rest
“The Greek word for love “agape” is thought by some scholars to be made up of two roots “ago”, which means “to lead” as a shepherd leads his sheep, and “pauo” (or “pao”), which is a root meaning “to cease”, used for example with another prefix “ana” (in the midst) in the word “anapauo” meaning to rest or cease from effort. So it could be said “to love” in the New Testament means “to lead another into rest or ceasing from effort”
~ Vanessa, from Francois Du Toit’s ACTS TEAM
– “We are perfect and complete in our design and all his desires, we satisfy every desire he had to create a being like that. We are perfect and complete is His eyes. He has declared in Jesus that you lack nothing and He is at rest with the type of life you can experience.” Greg Henry
– “There is a certain kind of righteousness, glory and honor that mankind was made for and was made to receive. It is the only kind of righteousness that will satisfy our soul. Apart from it, we will always feel lack.” Greg Henry
– “What is the rest of God? God is at rest in who you are. Why is it laborious to enter into that rest? Because the world keeps telling us how unsatisfactory we are. The man who enters into the rest of what God thinks about him, his rest is sweet.” Greg Henry
So hopefully this blog has given you some good meat to chew on. Go back and read it a few times if you can. Let it really sink in. When you are persuaded of what God thinks of you and His ability to provide your mind will go off of your problems and unto the One who is solving them for you. You will then find rest and something that really satisfies. Your story can then be a Jesus story and not a you story.Let your story be a Jesus story, not a you story. ~ Bertie Brits Click To Tweet
Song of the Week (You Are Perfect)
It was really cool to see Bertie’s sermon topic this week was about the perfect Christian in light of grace because I had been planning to include this song as part of my blog for a while now. It’s one that Greg Henry has mentioned a few times in his messages that God has spoken to me through as well.
In this song Pink is telling somebody to not ever think they are less than perfect. If you are a believer in Jesus you are perfect. In the midst of all your mistakes you can be perfect by simply believing in Jesus. If you’re not a believer, you can believe on Jesus today and find the life of God born in you. Being a perfect person/believer is completely separate from anything you do or don’t do. It’s all about what you believe. One who relies upon the Lord is perfect.A perfect Christian is one who believes in and relies upon the Lord for life. Click To Tweet