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The Purpose of Surrender

Angeline David

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Angeline David

Health Ministries Director for the North American Divison of SDA

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Conference

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  • September 2, 2017
    7:00 AM
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Dear Heavenly Father Lord we come to you on your Sabbath day these holy hours in the very early morning Lord because we are seeking for bread Lord we want the sustenance from heaven I pray that you will energize us for this day and for this moment Lord as we open up your word give us a message for each one of us individually send us your Holy Spirit we know you were here Help us Lord to be changed as we study your word we pray in Jesus name. So our theme for this week is surrender moment by moment surrender you know as I. Took on the role of leadership for S.W. I see years ago it was a moment where I had absolutely surrender everything that was meaningful to me and by that I mean I had to surrender myself my desires my hopes my dreams because God had something different in mind I didn't know it at that time but what I have realized is that surrender is as important as the act of surrender is it is needing less if we don't know why so this morning we're going to look at a story in the Bible and learn maybe something a little surprising. About the purpose of surrender and if there's one thing that we fail to surrender it may actually set us up for failing in other areas is that something we want to know. Let's take our Bibles. And go to one of my absolute favorite books. Which is the Book of Daniel. Daniel Chapter one now for young people and for all if there's one book in the Bible that you need to study. You need to study all of them but if there's one I would recommend the book of Daniel. So let's look at the story it's a familiar story and you're probably already thinking Oh I know what you're going to say. Well maybe you do but that's OK We're going to review it again as we talk about surrendering for a purpose so Daniel chapter one and we're going to read much of this chapter together and verses one and two in the third year of the reign of Jehovah you're Kim king of Juda came never can as are king of Babylon on to Jerusalem and beseeched it and the Lord gave to haul your Kim king of Juda into his hand with part of the vessels of the house of God which he king never can as are carried into the land of Shine are to the house of his God and he brought the vessels into the treasure house of his god we're familiar with the background of the story Israel had been rebelling against God In fact we know King joy of him was actually a wicked king and though God had sent prophets and messages to them time and time yet they rebelled and finally God said there's only one way to get you back to me. And so he sent the Babylonians to the. Them to take them captive and not only that but to take the very precious. Vessels from the temple. Take them away and they were defiled by being put in the house of the patient God. And to Israel to the Jews this was probably one of the worst things that could ever happen because now their entire identity was destroyed it was a long march to the land of Sion are to Babylon in fact what the the. I guess archaeologists believe is that they would have traveled not directly straight from Jerusalem to Babylon because that would have taken them through the desert but they would have gone oser could circular to us route going along the river trying to stay closer to the land of. You know plush and so that it because there they were walking most of them right so this journey would have taken probably about six months so think about the Israelites who had been captured walking they were not allowed to ride at the horses I'm sure. They didn't have the carriages but they walked day after day for six months. Taken to a foreign land what do you think was going on through the mind of the Israelites at this time. What do you think it felt like what were the thoughts the emotions going through them they were the chosen people of God and yet they had been subjected and now treated as utter slaves carried away. With no hope. And they were brought to the city of Babylon Have you ever wondered what Babylon was like at this time have you seen pictures or have you seen what the archaeologists have found about Babylon Babylon was an immense city it was a square and each side was fourteen miles long. And in fact it even spanned across the Euphrates River. And a bridge from one side to the other was half a mile long how did they build a bridge half a mile across in those days. It was an immense immense city but not only that but it was famed for having Hanging Gardens think about the Euphrates River providing all the water to grow everything it was lush beautiful Now what were the Israelites thinking as they were leaving the travel paths. And coming and seeing Babylon open up for them with the lush beauty and garden would they have been in all of that side. We know that there were eight massive gate this is the replica of one of the gates from Babylon eight massive ones there were two walls you had to go through to get to the city the first wall was three hundred feet wide and twenty five feet. It was a highway the wall itself was a highway not only that there were two hundred fifty towers have you been to. See in any of the towers there is it not an impressive sight whether you like the city or not it's an impressive sight isn't it. Two hundred fifty towers four hundred fifty feet high not only that but Babylon was a place of worship Babylon was a spiritual. Place In fact it was so spiritual that it had fifty three temples to various gods and simply to the Goddess Ishtar one hundred and fifty altars it was a place of worship but it was the place of worship of many gods. In fact Babylon would accept just about any god. If you had a god he was welcome to join the club. And we would set up a tower of an altar and yes we'll include him or her in our worship. It was a place of spirituality but of pagan falls spirituality let's look at what the Bible says about the law this is King Nebuchadnezzar is words in Daniel Chapter four as he was gazing about on his beautiful building creation that he had built he says the king spake is not this great Babylon that I have built for the house of the kingdom by the might of my power and for the honor of my majesty and then not only that but I say A says this Babylon the glory of kingdoms the glory of kingdoms the prophet of God is calling this city the glory of kingdoms the beauty of the Chaldees excellence so life in Babylon rich luxurious anything and everything that could stimulate your senses. A mixture of cultures traditions and religions in fact the Babylons prided themselves in bringing in importing everyone so that they could share their knowledge their their learning their skills and their religion. But let's look and see what happens to the children of God who come in reading Now in verse three Verse three and the king King Nebuchadnezzar spake and to Ashton as the master of his you. Next that he should bring certain of the children of Israel and if the king seeds and of the Princess so here the king is isolating the royal blood from Israel verse for children in whom was no blemish well favored skillful in wisdom cunning in knowledge understanding science and such as had ability to stand in the king's palace and whom they might teach the learning and the tongue of the Calderon's. So the King is looking for the cream of the crop here from the nation and he wants to put them in his schools so that they will eventually become his servants in his court verse five here's the test. The king appointed them a daily provision of the king's meat and of the wine which he drank so nourishing them for three years that at the end there of they might stand before the king and now our heroes are introduced among these were of the children of Judah remember that Judah Daniel had an eye. On to whom the prince of the UNIX gave names for he gave one to Daniel the name of Delta Shah's R. and to Hammond I of Shadrack and to Michel me shock and to. Abednego So here's what the king was doing he laid out certain criteria he said these individuals these young men were to have no blemish in other words physically they were strong they were well favored they were skilful in wisdom cunning and knowledge understanding science they were teachable. They were able to learn the language and ability to IT ability to serve in the king's palace These were those who passed every single possible test you can take to get into that Ivy League college and they excelled. So let's look again at what the King did in summary you see what the king was doing is first he was changing their identity. Did you notice that he changed their names and especially in Israel your name was a representation of who your parents wanted you to be the characteristics that they desired for you so the king is changing their name to represent Babylonian god. Daniel the name of Daniel means. God is my judge his name is changed to the servant of Bale next the king gives them a specific task or a purpose or a reason for why they were there they were to be educated and trained to serve him in his court and he gave them a diet. A sustenance meet and wine from his own table from the king's table so what did these young men do in verse eight of Daniel one but Daniel what purposed in his heart that he would not defile himself with the portion of the king's meat nor with the wine which he drank therefore he requested of the prince of the Unix that he might not defile himself purposed that key word what does it mean as a verb it's used to mean you set yourself you make something you establish it you determine that this is what you're going to do. As a noun it means that it is the reason why you do something. So do you think that when Daniel as a verb purposed his his heart that he had a noun purpose in mind. He had to have a reason for making this decision now look again at what this young man these young men were living through they had been taken from their home they were captive they were slaves they were Unix. What was a unit a man who was castrated meaning he could no longer have children. To an Israelite What was the one heart's desire. To have. The Messiah come from their line and remember these young men are from the house of Judah so the Messiah could very well come from any one of them but they had to surrender whether willing or not they had to surrender that deepest desire of being the purge And it or the Messiah. How much more would they need to give up. But here they are now they have been selected carefully to become leaders in the government. And the first test that they are given is to eat from the king's table why in the world would they take this opportunity to potentially lose all the influence that they could have on this government why would they risk their very lives by saying we won't eat that food it's just food god can purify it while you put it in your mouth. Why would they refuse to give in on this little test. So what was his purpose. I have to believe that Daniel realized that there was a great as per greater purpose for him he could no longer be the projector of the Messiah but that's OK because maybe God has some other reason. I would argue that Daniel knew his Scriptures and that he knew that if you were to look in Genesis that he knew that there was another Israelite who was taken away from his home and family and made a slave and a captive and he would have known the scriptures that said from Joseph fear not for am I in the place of God but asked for you he says to his brothers who put him in captivity as for you you thought evil against me but God meant it for good to bring to pass for this purpose as it is this day to save much people alive you see Daniel knew that there was a greater purpose than his own heart's desires in prophets and kings in the land of their captivity these men were to carry out. God's purpose by giving to heathen nations the blessings that come through a knowledge of God of Jehovah they were to be his representatives. You see they were not there to be the King's servants they were to be servants of the King of Kings. Let's look again at the King's plan his identity was changed the King changed their identity he gave them a specific task and he changed their diet. Did you notice that Daniel did not. Object to his name change. Did you notice that now he calls himself Daniel every time he writes in this book but he doesn't really object to changing the name did you notice that he does not object to the education itself he knows he's learning pagan philosophy he knows he's learning all the evils of the world. He doesn't necessarily object to that but he objects to. The diet. What was it about the diet that was so important to him. Prophets and kings again page forty six in acquiring the wisdom of the Babylonians Daniel and his companions were far more successful than their fellow students but their learning did not come by chance they obtain their knowledge by the faithful use of their powers under the guidance of the Holy Spirit they placed themselves in connection with who the source of all wisdom making what the knowledge of God the foundation of their education you see as long as you do that you make God the foundation of our knowledge it doesn't matter what anyone else pads. Because you are grounded in God. In faith they prayed for wisdom they lived their prayers they placed themselves here's the key word God could bless them and then. Then they are voided that Woods would we given their powers and they improved every opportunity to become intelligent so you avoid those that would weaken you. And you take hold of the things that would help you. So. Their task their education gave these individuals these young man the opportunity to identify themselves not as the servants of the King but as the servants of God So even though the king gave them appointed them and identity and appointed them a task they utilize those. To identify themselves as servants of God. By excelling in their studies they could honor God showing that he is the one true God but if they were to give up their religion and their practice then what would make them different what would make them stand out in order to achieve this purpose they had to overcome the temptation to compromise there. So let's look quickly why is the diet so important by the way I'm a dietician so I can tell you scientifically why the diet is so important but we want to see from the Word of God Why is the diet so important let's look again the King's plan. Right just as a reminder what was God's plan. Well in order to see this we need to go to Genesis chapter one. Genesis Chapter one versus twenty six through twenty nine. The story of creation as God creates human beings Genesis one verse twenty six And God said Let Us make man in what our image what is the identity to God gave humanity his image his image after our likeness and let them have don't many an over the fish of the sea over the fowl of the air over the cattle and over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creep it upon the earth what is the task that he gave them. In. Verse twenty seven So God created man in his own image in the image of God created he him male and female created He them and God bless them and God said to them this is what you're going to do be fruitful multiply replenish the earth subdue it have done many in and verse twenty nine and God said Behold I have to. Even you what every herb bearing seed which is upon the face of all the earth and every tree in the which is the fruit of the tree yielding seed to you it shall be for meat so. Let's look at the King's plan. And God's plan the king had given them an identity and identity based on the Babylonian gods but what was God's plan his original plan was. In the age of God His very like PNAS the king gave them a purpose or a task this is what you were going to do what was that educate so that you will serve me what was God's plan. Be fruitful multiply replenish the earth subdue it and have doen many and you see God did say I want you to be my servant like the king he said I want you to be. Someone who leads I want you to have dominion and the diet. The king gave them meat and wine from his table but God gave them. Of the garden it's interesting that what God had originally intended in our identity in our purpose and in our diet the same three things are what King the book and as or had changed for his. But there's more to this story isn't there we know that the first the very first battle on the planet Earth was lost why. Just take one bite. Just one bite we also know that even though there were men and women who were called righteous by God Noah who saved the planet from utter destruction because his family obeyed and yet it mediately following the flood he gave in to. Liquor and his shame brought sin on his children as well. We also know that Esau who was to receive the birthright from his father but at a moment of utter hunger he says to his brother give me the food that you're making and his brother Jacob says no I will sell it to you give me your birthright and Jacob and Esau the words he says Behold I am at the point of death and what profit will this birthright be to me if I die give me the food you can have the blessing of God. We know about the Israelites as they traveled from out of Egypt. Murmured and they complained and they cried out and they said to Moses we remember the fish we remember that we did eat in Egypt the queue Cumbers the melons the leeks the onions and the garlic but now our soul is dried away there is nothing at all beside this manna this angel food is all we have and we want the food of Egypt we would rather have slavery than eat the food of heaven but we have an example that we can follow because as Christ began his ministry in the on the earth as he was led by the Spirit into the wilderness and suffered hunger for forty days and then was tempted and the devil came to him and said turn these bread to the stone to bread. So that you can eat God doesn't want you to die. Just eat this and Christ said. Mansion to live by the Word of God and not by the physical sustenance. Daniel and his friends knew that the food being offered by the king would by partaking of it would actually be. A symbol of worship because the food had been sacrificed to their gods and if you ate that food everybody believed that you were then worshipping those gods so prophets and kings even a mere pretense even just pretending to eat the food or drink the wine would be a denial of their free. They also knew that they could not risk the effect of luxury and dissipation on physical mental and spiritual development do you see that this one step in eating that food they knew would lead could lead to a life of dissipation. Daniel and his associates have been trained by their parents to habits of strict temperance what are we training our children at home. They had been taught that God would hold them accountable for their capabilities and that they must never dwarf or in feeble their powers this education was to Daniel and his companions the means of their preservation you see when they knew the purpose of God for their lives they made the decisions that no matter what we will avoid evil we will not let one temptation overcome us. Stronger the temptation surrounding them in the court luxury US court but they remained contaminated how. No power no influence could sway them from the principles they had learned in early life by what. Of the words and works of God. Now for anyone who may be thinking well it's too late for me I can get that education as a child. Behold all things are made new. God is able to renew us at every moment at every stage moment by moment he is desiring to renew us and to fill us with that power and he says study the Word and works that I do. And you will have power. There's another interesting perspective about why the diet was such an important position important question for them and this actually has been talked about in psychology the field of psychology if you've heard about mass laws hierarchy of needs Abraham Maslow was a psychologist I believe and he has established he described why it is that people do what they do and he felt he figured out that there was a pattern of this motivation and what we see what he says is that at the very bottom. Of what drives you is your fellow physiological needs these are the things that just make you survive what do you need to survive food water OK and sleep very important just your very basic physiological needs and unless you get those fulfilled you really don't start working on the other things such as safety the next thing that individuals want is safety am I safe in my secure Next we look for love and belonging Next we look for a steam that I have abilities and skills that are worth why. I'll and that others can see that in me as well and then finally at the very top of our motivation is self actualization you are living to your highest potential what I like to say is that you are living to your God given potential you are living for God's purpose in your life but if you look at society today. If a nation or a person is struggling with anything at the bottom they do not even try to get the other things. You can look at our refugees you can look at those who are devastated by our hurricanes they are just trying to survive food. Water. So if King never Knesset or is prescribing the food and the drink for your physiological needs. Is that gonna set. For how they feed to fulfill every other. Prophets and kings again the body physical body is a most important medium through which what the mind and the soul are developed so if the physical needs of your body are not being met your mind and your soul. May be having challenges in developing and developed for the upbuilding of character hence Here it is that the adversary of souls directs his temptations to the influence and enfeeble ing and degrading of the physical powers his success here where. In physical. His success in the physical temptations the lusting of the physical powers his success here often means the surrender of the whole being to evil This was the first point where humanity fell physical lust. But this was the first point in which Christ succeeded. The tendencies of the physical nature unless under the dominion of a higher power will surely work ruin and death the body is what to be brought into subjection to the higher powers of the being the passions are to be controlled by the will which itself is to be under the control of God the kingly power the king power of reason. Sanctified by Divine Grace is to bear sway in the life. This afternoon I'm going to be talking about addiction. And you will learn that fifty percent of you are suffering from an addiction and the other fifty percent of you are prone to an addiction and God is saying to was use your reason sanctified by my power. For preservation. Intellectual power physical stamina and the length of life depend upon immutable laws through obedience to these laws man made a stand conqueror of who himself conquer of his own inclinations conqueror of principalities and powers of the rulers of the darkness of this world and of spiritual wickedness in high places do you want to surrender. Who do you want to surrender to do you want to surrender to the principalities and powers. God says we can conquer we can conquer by His Divine Grace some keys to conquering as we wrap up Daniel knew. He knew the Scriptures. He knew that appetite is a doorway that could potentially lead to compromise in other areas he knew the effect of our diet on our mental physical and spiritual health he knew what God's commandments were and he knew the health laws he knew what God had said is good to eat by the way he lived a holistic life it wasn't just about food. It was holistic he also knew that there was a purpose for his life within God's overall plan. And in all things no matter how trying no matter how devastating no matter how much they may break our hearts no matter how many of our hopes and dreams are crushed God has a purpose even in. In the land of their captivity these men were to carry out what. God's purpose by giving to he the nations the blessings that come through a knowledge of Jehovah never were they to compromise with all idolaters their faith and their name as worshippers of the Living God they were to bear as a high honor and this they did. In prosperity and in adversity they honored God and God honored them so I leave you with the question why. Why do you want to surrender. Why is this important to you is it because you're tired of the struggles in your life your tired of failing again and again you're tired of of just doing those things that you know you're not supposed to do. Certainly is important. Because when we come to a place where we realize our inability our weakness our desperation. When we come to that place if we do not turn our eyes to Jesus and see that he has a greater purpose for us. And that he can even take our inability our weaknesses and make them our strengths. When we come to that place then we realize that the surrender. Is for a greater purpose. We can surrender day after day for our own sake maybe for the sake of our family but in the long term it is when we surrender for the sake of God's purposes then we have a sting reason then we have any turn out look. Then we are able. To purpose in our hearts that we. Not defile ourselves and then God can say I will do the work in you. Is that what you want. Is that your prayer. I pray that as you bend time this weekend praying asking God Lord what am I not surrendering What have I not given up to you. Help me to see that life and dreams and desires are minuscule compared to what you have planned for me. And then tell him work your purpose in my life. Do what you need to do so that I am living for you. Let's pray. Father. It just boggles our mind it's amazing to think that you the God of heaven you the creator and sustainer of all things looks down here and you sees each of us individually and you say to us I have a purpose for you. I have a reason for why you are existing I even have a reason for the difficulty you are going through. Lord we want to take your promises we want to take your word and cling to them knowing that you will work out your good in your timing and your way and we surrender. We give it to you Lord. And we praise you. Because we. In what you have done. We pray this in. This media was brought to you by. A website dedicated to spreading God's word through sermon audio and much more if you would like to know more about audio verse if you would like to listen to more sermons lead to visit W.W.W. audio verse or.

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