"You ever wonder why they put pictures of presidents on our coins? Well, I'm not sure but it didn't start with the United States of America. And when I look at one, I think of a picture of Caesar because of this parable that's been told thousands of times."

Family Discussion:

  1. What was Jesus's attitude towards authority?
  2. What's your attitude toward authority?
  3. What does it mean to bear the image of God?
  4. What does it mean to render to Caesar what Caesar's in your life today?
  5. What does it mean to render to God what belongs to God?

Transcription:

00:14          You ever wonder why they put pictures of presidents on our coins? Well, I'm not sure but it didn't start with the United States of America. And when I look at one, I think of a picture of Caesar because of this parable that's been told thousands of times. We're in Luke chapter 20, verse 21 and on. And it says this, "the question Jesus saying, teacher, we know that you speak and teach correctly and you're not partial to any but teach the way of God in truth. Is it lawful for us to pay taxes to Caesar or not? But he detected their trickery and he said to them, show me a denarius. Whose likeness and whose inscription does it have? They said, Caesars. And he said to them, then render to Caesar the things that are Caesar's and render to God the things that are God's."
 
01:09          You know what I think about when I think about that passage? I think about playing under a coach and I think if Jesus was on the football field or basketball quartered, or dance team, or in the French club you're in or whatever it is that you're in, in school. I believe he would say, give that coach everything you got. I think he would say in the classroom, give that teacher everything you've got. I'd say he would say to you in the home, you know, give your parents your allegiance, give them your obedience. I would think he would say to you in the marketplace, he would say to you, man, give that boss an honest day's work and then give him some more. I think he would say to you as a church member, I think he would say, man, your pastor deserves your loyalty. Give him your loyalty. But then I think he would say to you and me as followers of Christ, you know, give God your heart. Give him everything you have.
 
02:06          And you know, what's awesome? You know, what's awesome? Every great athlete I've ever seen, and every great scholar student I've ever seen. And certainly every great Patriot that I've ever seen. You know, they understand Jesus' principle. You know, first thing, give it all to God. Give it all to God. Give him everything you got. But then to the coach, to the pastor, to the, to the professor, to the boss, and the job giving everything you've got. And you know what, to me, it spells greatness in everything you do. So render under Caesar what is Caesar's, but render under God what is God's. You know, the questions I'd ask you today is this, what was Jesus's attitude towards authority? And what's your attitude toward authority? What does it mean to bear the image of God? And what does it mean to render to Caesar what Caesar's in your life today? And what does it mean to render to God what belongs to God?

"When you think of a big time Christian and who do you think about? You think about somebody who's on television and they get this incredible gift of speaking or teaching? Do you think about some gigantic political leader that also happens to be a Christian? Or do you think about somebody, you know, in Hollywood that's an absolute rockstar and also is a believer? You know what? I don't. I think about a very humble woman who I called 'Pardner" and I want to tell you in a minute why she's my hero."

Family Discussion:

  1. Talk to the person in your family today and find the spiritual gift in them and encourage them in that gift.

Transcription:

00:14          When you think of a big time Christian and who do you think about? You think about somebody who's on television and they get this incredible gift of speaking or teaching? Do you think about some gigantic political leader that also happens to be a Christian? Or do you think about somebody, you know, in Hollywood that's an absolute rockstar and also is a believer? You know what? I don't. I think about a very humble woman who I called 'Pardner" and I want to tell you in a minute why she's my hero.
 
00:51          First Peter Chapter Four, verses nine through 11. Watch out! If you start living this Bible verse, you're going to be somebody hero too. "Be hospitable." Scripture says "to one another without complaint. As each one of you has received a special gift. Employ it in serving one another as good stewards of the manifold grace of God. Whoever speaks, let him do so as one who utters the utterances of God. Whoever serves let him do so as one who is serving by the strength which God supplies. So that in all things, God may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom belongs the glory and the dominion forever and ever. Amen."
 
01:34          My Grandmother Pardner as she called, we called her because she said, don't call me grandma because I'm not old enough to be your grandma. I'm your partner. She lived to be a hundred. Pardner died the day she gave everything away. Pardner had the gift of giving and she was everybody's hero. And Pardner would have you over for a visit. She'd give you something. It would be something that was valuable. She could not let you leave her house without giving you something. I don't care if you are rich or poor or king or peasant. That woman would use her spiritual gift of giving and she would give you a smile, a hug, a big old Texas, you know, a howdy or she'd give you something out of her house. After she gave it all away, she went to heaven.
 
02:19          Another one of my heroes, my dad, he had the gift of encouragement. You know, he was the guy that said 'atta boy.' He was the guy that said, 'I'm proud of you.' He was the guy just before he died, just before he died, who gave me a thumbs up. Even when he couldn't speak at the end, he was muted by his stroke but he could do that. He's my hero.
 
02:41          I think about another hero of mine. I've never met her. Hopefully we'll meet her in heaven one day. Mother Teresa, I was talking to when a president, Reagan's right hand advisers and I said, who's your favorite? He met everybody in the, you know, the world leaders. And he said, Mother Teresa's my favorite back in Reagan's Day. And I said, so special about Mother Teresa. He said, oh, those eyes, he said those little steely blue eyes. You said she could look a hole right through you. I said, tell me a mother Theresa Story. He said, we were sitting there, President Reagan, myself and the secretary of state and the secretary of state said, mother Theresa, how many children down the streets of India a year. And said she looked at that man with those steely blue eyes and she said, none. I hold him in my arms before they die. And then she looked at President Reagan and she said, and you could do something about that too if you wanted to. Mother Theresa became famous because of her gift of mercy.
 
03:38          Do you know what? You've got a spiritual gift inside of you. And you may think that you'll never be super famous and you know what? You probably don't even care to be, but to somebody, you need to be their hero. And it may be your father and maybe your wife, or it may be you know, the guy who's working in the cubicle next to you in that company. But when you take the spiritual gifts that God's given you and you employ that gift to serving one another, scripture says you employ the gift God's given you to make Jesus look good - to make Jesus the hero. And you know what's cool is your days past, somebody will look back over their shoulder and they'll think fondly of you the way I do of Pardner and my dad and Mother Teresa. Everybody's got a spiritual gift. And you've got one too.
 
04:28          So my question for you today is talk to the person that gets in your family today and find the spiritual gift in them and encourage them in that gift. And you know what? As you encourage each other in the home and your spiritual gifts, that gift is going to come into full bloom. So how can you do that today? And by the way, be sure to hug somebody today.

"When society's role models laugh and practice evil, they don't just reflect society, they affect the values and morals of its people."

Family Discussion:

  • Using the "what would Jesus do" slogan, name two or three shows that you believe he and his disciples might watch if they were walking this planet today instead of 2000 years ago
  • What are some of the shows they certainly wouldn't watch? And besides those, what other examples of destructive and fine-sounding arguments are being promoted on television? And what about those that are being promoted in other forms of media?
  • What are the best ways to guard your heart and to guard your mind, and as Paul says, to have a stable faith in Christ?

Transcription:

00:14 The other day in my house, we were talking about these little animals that the advertisers will spend millions of dollars to get into your mind so that you never forget the product. Remember the pink bunny, the energizer? What about the big bull, the big elk? What's that? The Hartford, the big whale, the big, you know, whale that dives in and out of the ocean. Insurance company, Pacific life and the little lizard, who's the little lizard, the little cute green lizard that sits on the desk? That's right, Geico. And then probably the most famous of all is the little white duck. Who's that? Aflac, that's right. How do they get that stuff in your mind and why do they spend so much money on that? Well, this verse today has a great counter for that and some strong advice about what gets into your mind.

01:11 In Colossians 2:5 Paul says: "for even though I'm absent in body, nevertheless, I'm with you in spirit, rejoicing to see your good discipline and the stability of your faith in Christ, the stability of your faith in Christ." The apostle Paul realized that people, even Christians, could be easily swayed to believe all manner of strange ideas if they failed to aggressively keep their minds from being polluted. That's why he said in verse five that he didn't want anyone to deceive you with fine sounding arguments. The entertainment industry is notorious for offering a number of fine-sounding arguments that are deceptive, dishonest, and destructive. I mean, here's just a few a that we've reviewed recently. They'll tell you that sex outside of marriage is no big deal. It's acceptable. The television will tell you over and over again, and in the movies, that Christians are wimps, they're hypocrites. They're dangerous. The movies nowadays will tell you that Jesus is weak and uncaring. On-screen violence and nudity have no negative effect, I'll tell you, on anyone, even the youngest children, they'll try to say, and they'll say that that sex outside of marriage, whether it's with the same sex or with opposite sex, is a perfectly legitimate lifestyle.

03:07 But you know what, when society's role models laugh and practice evil, when they literally scoff God's word, they don't just reflect society, they affect the values and morals of its people. Isn't it bizarre that the same television executives who will charge $1.3 million, I mean they'll pay it, in fact, sometimes even close to $2 million for a super bowl spot to influence purchasing can adamantly state their programming can't sway another behavior, doesn't make sense. Logic demands, they can't have it both ways. The psalmist says this in Psalms 101:3 and this is a favorite in our teenage sports camp. He says: "I will set nothing unclean before my eyes." David didn't have MTV and the slew of offensive programs on cable and network television. But he knew how important it was to guard his heart and to guard his eyes. He had fallen once, he wasn't going to fall again. Deceptive messages packaged in fine-sounding arguments are the best rejected when when you or I refuses to allow our mind to be bombarded in the first place. The best approach when considering a certain entertainment thing is to ask the question, "hey, what would Jesus do? If he had that remote control in his hand what would he do? If he was in the line at the theater and there were eight different movies to watch, what would he do?

04:47 So here's the question: Using the "what would Jesus do" slogan, name two or three shows that you believe he and his disciples might watch if they were walking this planet today instead of 2000 years ago. And then what are some of the shows they certainly wouldn't watch? And besides those, what other examples of destructive and fine-sounding arguments are being promoted on television? And what about those that are being promoted in other forms of media? And then lastly: What are the best ways to guard your heart and to guard your mind, and as Paul says, to have a stable faith in Christ? And here's the thought for the day. At K-2, at the teenage camp, we put a red rubber band around our wrist and we write with a pen Psalms 101:3, so that it's always there sitting on our wrist as reminder. Do that. If not, put it on a little sticky piece of paper and put it on the television set, or put it on your computer and see what begins to change in your mind and in your home.

"For Paul, his desire was to be as sinless as possible, and it didn't stop at the prison door."

Family Discussion:

  • What entertainment choices have you made recently that are especially God-honoring?
  • If you're struggling in the area of making wise entertainment choices, describe why. Talk about it. If you don't, why not? What's going on inside there?
  • What practical things will you do in the future, to labor and struggle and strive with his energy to help present everyone complete in Christ?

Transcription:

00:06 Well, you can check out the latest beauty magazine; "17" in this case, a teen magazine, and you can get your little heart really confused. 525 fashion and beauty tricks. 525... you try all those, no wonder everybody is so confused about what to do with our mind and our body and our heart. That's the message of the world today. Paul's got a different message today that I think might be a little bit better. It's in Colossians 1 verse 28 and 29 and Paul says this in that verse: "And we proclaim him, admonishing every man and teaching every man with all wisdom so that we might present every man complete in Christ. For this purpose, also, I labor striving according to his power, which mightily works within me."

01:03 In Colossians 4:10, Paul the apostle informs us as he writes that he is serving prison time in Rome. Can you picture yourself in his shoes when he writes these great letters? No electric lights, no flush toilets, no fashion and beauty tricks and no gas furnace, no queen sized mattress. Instead a dingy cell, drury, smelly, bug infested, cold; and to pass the time, there's no telephone, there's no radio, no personal little bookshelf, no prison library. And no television! Could have been the biggest blessing of all. And worst of all, absent are the voices, the smiles, and the touch of most of his closest friends. Sounds pretty miserable, doesn't it? You might expect that someone who could find themselves in a similar situation would maybe drop their guard regarding your personal holiness, the condition of your heart. Aa little sin now and then after all, who's going to notice? Who's going to care? But for Paul, his desire was to be as sinless as possible, and it didn't stop at the prison door. It wasn't motivated by what situation he found himself in, or who might or might not notice. He knew that God's eyes were on his heart. His result, Paul went to great effort to honor the Lord with his decisions and his life choices. In addition, he declared a desire to present everyone complete in Christ. I love that goal. What a fantastic goal. He added this, he said: "to this end, I labor," struggling, striving with all his energy, which so powerfully worked in the life of any believer. Notice that it wasn't a casual pursuit. It was a struggle. It was work.

02:59 Let's apply this to our entertainment and our selections of what we listened to and what we watch. Do you realize that God cares deeply about what you watch and listen to, your choices in movies, your choices in television programs, the iPod, the iPhone, etc. Did they honor him? Are you careful to labor, to struggle with all your energy, to keep your mind free from the media messages that Satan has a foothold in your thought life? Special concern for you and I are those things that are done in secret. The computer screen when you're all alone, do you let your guard down when you're alone? You know, is there a website out there that's that you are addicted to, or sliding a compact disc in your CD player that champions, despair, perversity or rebellion? When Paul was alone in secret, not only was he concerned with his own walk of faith, but he considered how you might present everyone, everyone, complete in Christ. How bout you? Are you equally concerned? When you are, everything changes inside here because you've got to goal that trumps every decision that you make.

04:21 And here's the question today. What entertainment choices have you made recently that are especially God-honoring? And then secondly: If you're struggling in the area of making wise entertainment choices, describe why. Talk about it. If you don't, why not? What's going on inside there? And then: What practical things will you do in the future, to labor and struggle and strive with his energy to help present everyone complete in Christ? And that starts with you and me. And here's the lifeline for today. The win is identify a particular Christian friend or somebody who does not honor Christ with his entertainment choices and begin to pray how you might influence that person to make positive changes, especially if it's in your home.

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