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Is God Really Gentle and Lowly?

Family Life Today / Dave & Ann Wilson, Bob Lepine
The Cross Radio
November 29, 2021 1:00 am

Is God Really Gentle and Lowly?

Family Life Today / Dave & Ann Wilson, Bob Lepine

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November 29, 2021 1:00 am

Dane speaks about how the theology of God being Gentle and Lowly and refers to Matthew 11:28-30 Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light. God is gentle and lowly, he is way down next to me at my worst and gentle in his heart. How can we translate the same gentleness and lowliness in our families, get in the word of God and spend time with him, get to truly know him and let him change you.

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Okay are you going to give you five seconds you give me three words to describe the heart of Jesus go perfect five seconds on Redeemer grace perfect Redeemer grace hard.

I just describing together that's that your heart as you think about Jesus you it's really interesting is a lot of us don't know this, Jesus actually describe his heart with two words that were to talk about today. Welcome to family life today where we want to help you pursue the relationship that matter most and will send it on Dave Wilson and you can find us@familylifetoday.com or on our family life. This is family life today. Jesus actually describe his heart with two words that were in talk about today. But before we get there we gotta talk about something else. It's critically important for family life right now is were rolling into December.

This is our December match is important yeah which means our ministry is funded by listeners like you that listen and appreciate what we do, that value what we do and share with others supporting us financially, we need your prayers. We love that. But we also are funded by you deciding God's leading you to give a gift financially. Family life and that's what makes this all happen and so were really depending on you, especially this Christmas season and asking you. Would you consider giving us a gift because we are changing families legacies marriages and really parenting, even though that gift, which is amazing is double because we've had some generous donors give up to $1.5 million is amazing yet so every dollar that is given is matched dollar for dollar. And so whatever you give is double today so if you want to do their go to family life.com. Or you could go dial us up on one 800 FL today and give your gift even as you're listening to this program so we've got Dana Cortlandt in the studio with us today. He wrote a book about the two words that define the heart of Jesus Dane. Welcome to family life today is going to be talk so you get the flight I know your pastor of Naperville Presbyterian up in the Chicago suburbs.

You flew down here with your wife Stacy to Orlando and I did know this to you get here and had lunch that you just left five kids at home. We did is because I feel it feels great to some terribly tonight, but for now, Morgan enjoyed 24 hours of call up all by ourselves. You can actually talk that interruption that's red and you know what I should bring this up, but you should submit that lunch that was precious gift for boys a little girl, do you remember what she wrote to send to give your card yesterday.

She does euros a card and she had about 30 little clipped.

I love you exclamation excavation tucked into a tape on gaudy tape on colored pocket. It was the backbone of their homework sheets. That was just her own little heart pouring out what you get from the boys. That's a very short because we had three boys. I knew at that answer is going to give us anything. Anyway, we're talking about a book that you wrote actually more than the book the whole idea of the heart of Jesus. I got your book from our son Austin when it came out and it was one of these books and you know as a pastor and even as an author, there's a lot of books written about a lot of things and you pick him up and read this was one of these. I don't think anybody's or felt this about our books.

I can't put this down this is a life-changing truth that I've got a reboot when I picked up Gen. moly as well as things I ran down to the kitchen set and you have to read and so days I pick up your book and I start underlining and I thought okay this is ridiculous, underlining every page. Every sentence is underlined.

I need I need to at least highlight it felt like all of it needed to be highlighted because I need it. I think we all needed in his listener year, love this because were really getting to the heart of who Jesus is and were getting to the heart of how he feels about us and tell you we are praying before we even began, and I was tearing because I need this and ending you even start the book and this this copy from the beginning you say this book is written for the discouraged, frustrated, the weary disenchanted the cynical empty those running on fumes.

Those whose Christian life feel like constantly running up and descending escalator and I just I read that I thought yes yes yes check to think so many of us feel like that and we want this overwhelming love for Jesus, but I I think certain personalities especially feel like were continually family and so this book is a breath of fresh air and a great reminder of who God is who Jesus is. Talk about how you started understanding that, and I Artie mentioned that there's two words that sort of Jesus you so tell us about the whole Genesis of this this concept well. I feel like, tolerant, Dave.

I'm still learning.

This is like an ocean I'm ankle-deep in waiting out into Christ himself in the one place where he tells us what his heart is when she is setting the terms is not one of the apostles talking about him. This is not one of the letters in the New Testament. He says the most astonishing thing. Who would've guessed that in the one place where he opens up his heart.

He doesn't say I'm joyful and exalted and harder any hundred other true things he says I am way down low and extremely accessible. I'm gentle and lowly in heart, Savior, we can enjoy being disciples to what unit testing when I the name of the book.

I don't think we set everything that's the name of the book. I mean, it's interesting when I read that in your first chapter.

I like how many times have I read Matthew 11 read these words and miss that.

I mean, it's something you shouldn't miss and I preached on that passage, and I've missed it.

So we know what that means that that's the next question is, is explained gentle low. What was his gentle heart what he saying guys is he is the most tender and non-manipulative, nonabrasive, approachable person in the universe the high and holy Christ. The resurrected Christ, the one who in Revelation 1, the apostle John sees and falls down as if dead, the one who the impenitent Revelation 6 want the mountains to fall on them so they don't have to face his wrath that Christ most deeply by his own testimony is gentle and he says he's lowly. This is almost more wonderful.

You have to go through security to get to them. You don't have a ticket and got in line. He's looking to put you on hold. You don't have to raise your voice that divine and holy, eternally existing son of God is way down low next to me in my worst not waiting for me to get my act together and then he'll open the door to me this is so profound and wonderful guys because we deeply resist this, we do not believe this, we hold it at arms length. I very much resonate with what you said earlier and we stiff arm this reflexively so the three of us and our listeners are taking a lifetime to unlearn bad theology. Jesus is not gentle and lowly in heart, yeah. And why do we resist it because you are so right. Like that isn't who I've always believed Jesus to be and I'm not send my beliefs are right there actually inaccurate.

But we've carried out our lives and in some ways we even resist hearing this, we do.

I do, I do I'm wrong, but tomorrow morning and I will not believe that I melt a believer on paper, but the Christ that I believe I'm approaching when I roll out of bed in the morning is not gentle and lowly in heart, he is looking at his watch, tapping his foot loves me and likes me but Dane doofus. How long is it going to take your 42 you're a pastor why are you so weird, selfish and proud and sinful. I don't know why we resist today for answer question I don't know the answer, except that we are sinners and I believe that what we do without realizing it is we project Christ. We think the Christ to is there is a bigger better :-) or version of us.

We are not gentle and lowly in our deepest heart heart is your motivation headquarters. What pours out of you were not that way so we we think that Jesus is just a better version of us and of the Scripture is defying us at that point correcting us what prompted you to write this like that. This has to meet I can tell, is this from a fire within you. So what made you think this is this is what we need is not the Jesus that I've been walking with most of my life I was raised in a great family night and great churches I've been surrounded by great books, godly people, but I was confronted with the writings of an old dead theologian named Thomas Goodwin to look for hundred years ago in England and he put my face in the Scriptures, Old Testament and new. Matthew 1129 is the tip of the iceberg. But the whole is just consistent with the whole testimony of Scripture and is it hitting. I want you to see what Christ heart as he wrote a book called the heart of Christ, who is in heaven for sinners who were on earth, in which he is trying to say you think you Disciples of Christ you think in this modern time to because Jesus is way up high know he's a little more distant, cool, calculating, and removed and he stresses.

Don't you dare go through life believing that so it was Goodwin, along with a few others yeah who said you can actually believe the whole Bible and be I'm pretty conservative in my theology guys and you can talk about the effusive flood like love of God that soaks irrigates us at our worst more strongly than any other place in my life that's too good to draw almost how it's so compelling. Love that description of what you just painted of our Savior. That makes us run to him day yeah I remember I grew up in a single-parent home with my mom and how you can talk about your yeah I have mentioned this in your phone Damon. Your tongue is remembering this picture.

My mom used to have over our fireplace and this is the 50s 60s. Jesus image of a praying hands Jesus.

So some of our listeners will remember this. It was pretty popular was picture server oil paintings got the handsome guys got sort of a halo effect on his long hair and I remember you know I didn't go to church much but when I did. I never saw a Jesus like your tongue, but then I was so judging, holy, wrathful God, which he's holy jihad. There is a rapid abscess and so I would walk I remember as a teenager and I'm not making very good life choices as a teenager and I know what I know I'm not doing my mom wants. I'm sort a copy in the sins of my father who was an alcoholic and womanizer and here I am 17 years I would walk through the living room by myself, especially as it was, like twilight, six, 7 o'clock at night and look over and I swear the eyes were just following me through the living room and I remember feeling fear. I look up it's like and here's what I thought. He's watching me and he's really disappointed just like you said like you know better dude what are you doing and that was my view of Jesus and God it was like that's who he is also described him as the game whack a mole likable though sure that's what I just thought guy just sits up there anyways for you to enjoy life and and say stop it.

So this image and is so beautiful because then you said Jesus uses these words about his own heart in somebody else talk about himself. He uses these words. I'm guessing because he's like this is what you need to know about me. Of all the things I could tell you you need to understand this.

If nothing else, everything is footnotes that I believe that Jesus Christ is holy, the wrath of the Lamb will be experienced one day by all the impenitent P is all seeing. He is the ruler of the cosmos and 100 other crews in that direction and is that Christ 20 what we are hardwired to be whack a mole theologians for short including me Dave. I mean we have Matthew 11 there where he says that with them all on every page Matthew Mark Luke and John right we don't see that kind of Jesus on your living room wall going up to it. Someone who actually he apparently is drawn like a magnet to the distressed the kind of people you recorded earlier and the, the frustrated, the disenchanted, i.e. all of us in some degree, that's not the periphery of believers will navigating what you say when you come to Christ for mercy and love and help you are cooperating with his deepest heart's desire and yes brings him joy doesn't bother him or drain or irritate him. He wants us to come to him. He lives for this.

The joy of seeing his people, given their different picture. Oh, it's so different is and I'm in the Puritans and others. They would talk like this is Jesus Christ alone deepest comfort when you draw from the riches of his atoning blood. In other words, when I sin I'm feeling guilty I'm feeling ashamed and I'm cowering my I'm lurking and withdrawing or hiding hiding week and then you know if I have a good week that all approach of yeah actually that is what saddens Christ heart what he wants the whole reason he came is so that we could come to him when we are at our deepest point of need. Not once were all cleaned up asking me this gets into a practical question how is this change your parenting. How do you relay this on tier kids old man I want it to change my parenting more than it is. We have five little ones are just 15 to 5 in the home. I wrote this book to me as I'm Taipei need to mental, opinionated, harsh, impatient, get your act together and I'm unlearning this myself. So what I long to do is to gently give my kids a picture of Jesus and of the heavenly father such that when they leave the home at age 18.

They can't ever believe that Jesus is going to hold them at arms length when they are in sin. I want them to never be able to believe that.

Finally, when they're really young.

I want to give them a picture of the father's heart as their debt when the kids are in the crib, we are God to them. They had no category abstractly forgot we are shaping what they believe God is like, and then as they grow through my words and through my actions and I'm failing all the time.

One reason I need a gentle and lowly Savior is my bad father and what I want them to do is to my words and through my actions.

I want them to know that Jesus is holy but he's not that framed picture on Dave's wall knowing about as a husband you know as you think about this. I'm immediately thinking okay how I treat and based on this theology proper of who Jesus we can bring Stacy and Aaron and ask her but she was wondering if claim is something you don't what here's my prayer and longing, Dave. I can speak at that level more easily. Perhaps our marriage will flourish for 20 years and so I'm just learning our marriage will flourish.

I believe, not as either of us seeks to crowbar changing the other person for ourselves as as we deal gently and tenderly with one another they not try to crowbar doesn't work doesn't does she still try to actually comes very naturally seem so simple. Cover before so if you don't do the crowbar will what if, as dads and husband. What if we were making a pattern by the grace of God in the power of the Holy Spirit to constantly surprise our kids and our wives with non-combating non-locking horns ways of dealing with them. The chessboard got sprayed all over the floor seven yesterday and it's not picked up did you do it, no did you do it.

Oh, did you do it all right what if I surprise them with patient gentleness.

This doesn't mean we don't discipline our kids actually Proverbs teaches that's to hate them. If we don't discipline them but I want them to be constantly melted and lifted into an experience of what the love of God is like not be rated in pep talk to get this You know natural gamete to tell us how we get the inside of us that you know we have a couple minutes later.

So how do we take that view. This is who he is now are learning starting sinking, how do we begin living it.

I have absolutely nothing to for us or for anyone listening. And guys, the answer is you get up in the morning you set your alarm to get up in the morning your coffee favorite chair you open up this book that we call the Bible and open up your heart and then you do that the rest of your life. You inhale the Scripture you exhale. It doesn't go prayer so your breathing and your communing with God and you you won't notice changes day-to-day, week to week, but actually God himself is shaping you into the likeness of Christ reading the Scripture and praying and then here's one other piece of counsel. What if we all had one person in our lives, of the same gender who could ask us anything, and who we didn't filter, but knew what was really going on behind all of our painted smiles. That's what the Bible called walking in the light first John one that kills these perverse, bizarre, lawful, harsh, berating judgmental ways that we will all because the flesh naturally work. Otherwise Scripture prayer a friend be part of a good local church that preaches the gospel. There is nothing secret or clever here is just the basic disciplines of the Christian life.

So you get that guy. I do what they look like. It looks like phone calls and texts we no longer live in the same town, but he knows my weak spots. Actually we get together for a fire two or three times a year and just enjoy fellowship and brotherhood for about eight hours and open our hearts to one another and I don't do this with every man actually that would be unhealthy. I want to be honest, but in varying levels of depth rights with the men in my life and I don't want to go through my life preening and parading and pretending my whole life long miserable oil just to get our listener. If there's anything you take home. That's it.

If you want to understand the general lowly heart of God. You've got to be in his word to see it.

That's right because every time I open it. It's almost like oh I forgot me to there it is again.

Unlike some forgot to look at Jesus and to watch his interactions with people all different people but then I know and I can't wait that I mean I agree the longer I'm in the word and you think I'm just renewing now. It changes at Sycamore were in prayer, like exhaling when prayer were talking to God continually throughout the day, it changes up in his day and said you need a brother you need a sister that you can take out the covering and be real with and they will remind you who you are and who is. It is interesting as we enter into a season where we are to reflect on the coming of Christ.

His birth is fascinating how many things will distract us from focusing on the coming of Christ. Over the next several weeks, and what Dane Ortman has been talking with Dave and Ann Wilson about today is the importance of what theologians often referred to as the ordinary means of grace. The regular way that we can meet with God and connect with him and understand his heart for us and draw strength from that Dane's book on the subject is called gentle and lowly. It's a book we got in our family life today resource Center. You can go to family life to do.com to request your copy or call one 800 FL today.

Again, the title of the book is gentle and lowly by Dane Ortman, you'll find the book online@familyliketo.com or call one 803 586-329-1800 F as in family L as in life, and then the word today and you can order Dane's book from us by phone, by the way, Dane has written a devotional of on the book of Psalms called in the Lord. I take refuge, and we will make that book available to you as a special year-end gift. In fact were coming to family like today listers here as we approach the end of 20, 21, and asking you to consider making a year-end contribution to help support the ongoing work of this ministry in the year ahead. The mission of family life to effectively develop godly marriages and families. That mission isn't going to go away. The need is greater today than it has ever been family life. Our goal is to effectively develop godly marriages and families you help make that happen with your donations right now. If you make a donation. Whatever donation you make is gonna be matched dollar for dollar up to a total of $1.5 million. We are so excited about this opportunity, but women need all of our family like today friends to join us so that we can take full advantage of this $1.5 million matching gift when you make a donation. Not only will be matched dollar for dollar will send you a copy of Dane Ortman's book in the Lord. I take refuge, a devotional from the book of Psalms and will send you a deck of playing cards each one has a conversation starter question on it so that as you play games you can have some meaningful interaction as a family as well. Make a donation online@familylifeto.com or call one 800 FL today to donate by phone. Please pray for us between now and year-end that will be able to meet this matching gift and whatever you can do to help us do that. We are so grateful we look forward to hearing from you and we hope you can join us again tomorrow when were to talk about how we are called to be ambassadors for Christ, which means we have to be gentle and lowly of heart. What is that mean for us. Dane Ortman will be here to talk about that with us tomorrow.

Hope you can be here as well on behalf of our hosts Dave and Ann Wilson and Bob Lapine will see you back next time for another edition of family life to family life to the production of family life accrue ministry helping you pursue the relationships that matter most