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Protected for a Purpose

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East New Hope, I am glad to be back with you tonight.
Last Night we started on this idea of what it looks like to be in the world.
We have to learn to connect without compromise. The first step that we have to do is no who we are and that is what we talked about. I know who I am.
I know what I have
I know what they want
I know who am in Christ Jesus
When you know who you are will also know who you are not.
You cant tell me I am statistic waiting to happen
You can tell me that I am a failure
You cant tell me that I am beneath
You cant tell what I can not do
You cant impose your broken thinking on the restored new person that I am
Just because you can see greatness in yourself does not mean it is not in me.

I know Who I am..........

When you know what you are not, you will not let anyone define you, distract you, deter you, or destroy you.
When you know what you have you will know what you are worth.
When you know what you are worth you will protect what you have.
Once you know who you are you will protect what you have for a Purpose

Sermon Title - I am Protected for a Purpose -

When I was a child I did not understand why my parents would not buy me what I wanted. I didn't understand why they would not buy the shoes that everybody else had. I didn't understand why they did not buy the expensive toys that my friends had.
I thought they either didn't like me or that we were just broke. The reality is that it was not until I got married and had children of my own that the revelation came to me.
See my children have taught me valuable lesson. When Wesley my 4 year old was born I wanted him to have the best of the best. Nice toys nice clothes and anything that I thought he needed. Toys were everywhere. It was his second Christmas that my heart was broken by something. On Christmas morning wesley comes down stairs and we are trying to coach him in the age old tradition of opening gifts. My wife is a big holiday person and at one point in time her life before she met me put the value on Christmas based on how full it looked under the tree. We still have to redeem those thoughts and behaviors from time to time but this year was an exception for Wesley. He had toys everywhere. Toys he didn't know existed that if he had not recieved them he would still be the happiest little boy in the world. Yet he started to open gifts and he would stop once he realized what it was and went to the next thing. What was amazing was that I was more excited about what he had then he was. He was over it and on to something else. It did not matter, what I paid for it. It didn't matter that I had stayed up all night trying to put it together. He didn't value it so he looked over it and on to the next thing.
Let me say this hear that I can imagine at times God watches us his children only to see us hear sermons on Joy, sing songs about peace, pray for his presence, fast for his blessings, all abut it does not take us long to be over it and on to the next thing. Regardless of what he paid for it, how he sacrificed for us to have it.
regardless
Let me get back to my story, later that day I say Wesley playing with one of his old toys. See some of us came to Jesus and he brought new things in our lives but we are still playing with old stuff. Wesley was playing with one of his old toys with a leap frog that we had gotten him for Christmas and he was sliding the old toy in the new leap frog down the steps into the wall.
Here is the revelation that my children taught me and that is they wont protect what they don’t value.
Here is the question that we want to deal with tonight.

If you know how valuable you are, are you protecting what you have?

How you treat you is based on how you see you!!!
I want to go back to the book of Daniel to see what God has to share with us tonight on how to not just know who you are but protect what you have!!!
So let me remind you of the context again.
The Children of Israel are captives as result of the Babylonian exile.
The King asks for the smartest, best looking, healthiest young men of the captives to come and learn from the Kings teachers and pretty much to what they do because these Young Men would be used as speakers to the rest of the people. Yet 4 of the young men that were chosen had another plan in mind.
Right after
(ESV)
5 The king assigned them a daily portion of the food that the king ate, and of the wine that he drank. They were to be educated for three years, and at the end of that time they were to stand before the king.
Daniel is told that he will have to eat of the food of the King. Now if you are like me you are saying somebody offers you Kings food you say yes. I mean Daniel don’t be rude or nothing like that . I mean really it’s Kings food. I am not even sure what the equivalent would be today.
(ESV)
5 The king assigned them a daily portion of the food that the king ate, and of the wine that he drank. They were to be educated for three years, and at the end of that time they were to stand before the king.
8 But Daniel resolved that he would not defile himself with the king’s food, or with the wine that he drank. Therefore he asked the chief of the eunuchs to allow him not to defile himself.

1) Don’t deny the Power of Purity

Now I know it is a word that has left the church in so many ways, it has been removed from the hallways of churches, pulpits, sanctuaries. It has also left the the conversations in living rooms, dinner time at Kitchen tables and even bed rooms.
Yet it is a word that is not to be thrown around to shame anyone, divide but to usher us closer to God.
I have to say it that there is Power in Purity
There is a very strong word that Daniel uses in this text. He says that he does not want to Defile himself. You may be saying what is the big deal. If you go back and read you will see that Israelites did not eat meat, or animals that were sacrificed to God. It was dishonorable to do so. Actually the bible says in that day if you are meat you had to be cut off from your people. It was especially for people who were temple worked that they could not eat because it would prevent
The word defile means to pollute, to make unclean, the one i struggled with myself was to violate ones self.
We say we are followers of Christ until it’s uncomfortable.
What the boys were doing was to prevent violation.
To violate to do harm to, to commit violence, to fail to show proper respect.

Purity is not about you being perfect, but about you being protected.

Here is the issue with the absence of protection. You don’t get to control how what you participate in affects you.
You can choose the sin but you cant choose the consequences.
You can choose what you do but you can not choose how it affects you.
Daniel is saying I am not about to risk what have with what you’ve got.
I know who I am and whose I am. I know what God wants for me to do and the way he wants me to do it and I dont want anything to prevent me from having what I have for God so you can keep wha you have because what you have will defile me.
(ESV) asks a very important question?
9 How can a young man keep his way pure? By guarding it according to your word. 10 With my whole heart I seek you; let me not wander from your commandments!
See staying pure is about protecting what is valuable. Yet if you don’t know that you are valuable you wont protect what you have.
We live in a culture that says that if it feels good then do it. The more people doing it the better it must actually.
We allow what is common to be what is right as oppose to what God says as being what is right.
The danger is we want God to bless our disobedience. We want God to be with us when clearly don’t want to be with God based on the actions that have.
Watch what the text says happens when
(ESV)
9 And God gave Daniel favor and compassion in the sight of the chief of the eunuchs,

The one that was over him was still under God

God honors purity. His obedience to God gave him favor with others.
See the problem that we have is not just with our desire but with our taste.
Sin taste goodIt’s not temptation unless you enjoy it. If you don’t enjoy your sin you are not doing it right.
We are consumed with taste while neglecting its impact on us.
NIV12 “Though evil is sweet in his mouth and he hides it under his tongue, 13 though he cannot bear to let it go and lets it linger in his mouth, 14 yet his food will turn sour in his stomach; it will become the venom of serpents within him.
Zophar is speaking to Job of the dangers of evil
He says that it taste good going in but turns to poisonI never get full on healthy food because I dont eat for nurishment I eat for taste
We have to be careful of the sin in our lives because of the taste.
We don’t know what it will do to usWe can choose our sins but we can not choose our consequences.
I wish food would not just show us the ingredients but the affects
The problem with taste is that it is temporary
You don’t eat desert because you are hungry.
that is why you keep taking bites
We were given taste buds to protect us

2) Don’t forsake the process of Proof

(ESV)

3) Don’t Dismiss the Design

11 Then Daniel said to the steward whom the chief of the eunuchs had assigned over Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah, 12 “Test your servants for ten days; let us be given vegetables to eat and water to drink. 13 Then let our appearance and the appearance of the youths who eat the king’s food be observed by you, and deal with your servants according to what you see.”
The fruit of purity will not always be seen immediatly but it will be seen.
Every Test is not for you to prove you are but for them to know who you are

3) Don’t Dismiss the Design

(ESV)
God’s Way is always over our way
18 At the end of the time, when the king had commanded that they should be brought in, the chief of the eunuchs brought them in before Nebuchadnezzar. 19 And the king spoke with them, and among all of them none was found like Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah. Therefore they stood before the king. 20 And in every matter of wisdom and understanding about which the king inquired of them, he found them ten times better than all the magicians and enchanters that were in all his kingdom. God’s Way is always over our way
Left Out but with a Purpose
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