Knowing Who You Are In God

June 11, 2002 PM
Pastor Chris Abernathy
Columbus, Georgia

If you would, turn with me in your Bibles to the book of Judges chapter six. The book of Judges chapter six. When you reach the book of Judges chapter six, please signify by saying amen. Where are my intercessor at tonight?

Would you please stand for the reading of the Word?

Judges chapter six. We’re going to look at verse eleven through verse sixteen. That’s verse eleven through verse sixteen.

11. And there came an angel of the LORD, and sat under an oak which was in Ophrah, that pertained unto Joash the Abiezrite: and his son Gideon threshed wheat by the winepress, to hide it from the Midianites.

12. And the angel of the LORD appeared unto him, and said unto him, The LORD is with thee, thou mighty man of valour.

13. And Gideon said unto him, Oh my Lord, if the LORD be with us, why then is all this befallen us? and where be all his miracles which our fathers told us of, saying, Did not the LORD bring us up from Egypt? but now the LORD hath forsaken us, and delivered us into the hands of the Midianites.

14. And the LORD looked upon him, and said, Go in this thy might, and thou shalt save Israel from the hand of the Midianites: have not I sent thee?

15. And he said unto him, Oh my Lord, wherewith shall I save Israel? behold, my family is poor in Manasseh, and I am the least in my father's house.

16. And the LORD said unto him, Surely I will be with thee, and thou shalt smite the Midianites as one man. 

Let us pray.

Most holy and gracious heavenly Father, we thank You for who You are and for what You do. Father, hide Your son behind the cross, that Your people would see You and not me. And Father, as I decrease tonight I ask that You would increase. I thank You for the Anointing that removes every burden and destroys every yoke. Father, in the Name of Jesus, let us hear Your Word. And let us obey. In Jesus’ holy and blessed Name.

And the people of God said amen. You may be seated in the house of God tonight.

Most of us want to know God’s plan for our lives. But we don’t understand how to find out what God’s plan is for our lives. One common misunderstanding is that God’s guidance will just all of a sudden come to us out of a blue. And it has nothing to do with where we are and what we’re doing right now.

But God’s plan for our lives has everything to do with where we are and everything to do with what we’re doing right now. You see, you may not see the plan of God where you are. And you may not see the plan of God in what you’re doing. But God is waiting to call you by name and say, “Mighty man of valor, mighty woman of valor, I’ve got a job for you to do.” Oh, who am I preaching to in this house?

You see, the misunderstanding and the misconception is that it’s going to come to us (glory to God) just out of the blue. But see, even that job you’re on right now has something to do with where you’re going. You may not like where you are. But it’s molding you and making you and shaping you to be able to do the mission that God is calling you to.

But when we’re constantly, constantly looking for God’s next assignment, we run the risk of ruining whatever we’re working on right now.

You see, you and I are working on something right now. You see, you may not be in the place where you want to be. You may not be in the place that was prophesied to you. You may not be in the place where it was spoken into your life right now. But everything that you’re going through has something to do with the end results.

When we look at the callings of God, many people in the Bible, they were immersed in what they were doing at that moment. They were immersed in the challenge at hand.

Let me tell you something. You see, there’s a challenge at hand that you have right now. But see, I’ve got to get to the place where I can meet the challenge head on. Glory to God. And I’ll have a challenge, but the challenge won’t have me.

When we look at Gideon, the Bible said that he was in a place (glory to God) where he was trying to hide the wheat from the Midianites in chapter six. He was trying to hide it from them, because they were trying to make it impossible to harvest and to bring food forth (glory to God) for his family. Because they were stealing everything.

But see, he was able, because of who he was and what was in him, to meet the challenge right where he was.

Don’t tell me that I be able to meet my divine challenge if I can’t meet my natural... Oh, my God. My natural challenge.

You see, many of us want to go into that divine place. And we want to hide. Glory to God. And we want to shake off the things in the natural. But if I’m scared of the bill collector, what makes me think I won’t be scared of the witch doctor? You don’t want to talk to me tonight.

But God saw what was in Gideon. It said the Lord came to him and said, “Oh, mighty man of valor.” But see, Gideon didn’t know who he was yet. It took some convincing.

You see, when we first come to God, and God begins to tell us things that He has for us, at first it’s hard to conceive. Like, “Lord, how can You be choosing me?” He said, “I’m the least in my family.” In other words, “I’m concerned about my family.”

But God was saying, “Don’t even worry about your family. When you’re taking care of My...” Oh, my God. “When you’re taking care of My business I’m going to take care of your business.”

He said, “Mighty man.” Another verse it says, “Mighty warrior.” Gideon didn’t recognize that he was a warrior on the inside. But his things in the natural, there was a tenacity about him with the things in the natural. So God was like, “Wait a minute. I see what he’s doing in the natural. But let me take over that natural and add some supernatural to it.”

Let me tell you something. If you can be tenacious about the natural things, surely when you come to God and the things of God, you’ll be tenacious about the things of God also.

He said, he said, “Mighty man of valor.” He said, “I got work for you to do.”

And then Gideon went on to say, he said, “Now, you know, how is the Lord still for us when we have all of this coming against us?”

But see, Gideon didn’t recognize that they were in the position that they were in not because of God, but because of them. They were worshiping Baal. They were worshiping idols. Glory to God. And God told Gideon to go knock that idol down.

See, many times we blame God. But we’re in the position that we’re in because we caused the position that we’re in. You see, it’s one thing to suffer for Christ. But it’s another thing to suffer because I’m not serving God with all of my heart and soul and mind and strength.

He had to have confirmation. He said, “Wait a minute here. If all that you’re saying is true, let me go get this burnt offering.”

And then God told him, “Okay. Go do it. And bring it back.” He said, “I’ll be waiting right here.”

See, while I’m looking for a confirmation, God is saying, “You go get your confirmation. And when you get back, I’ll be right here. You won’t have to worry about thinking that, ‘Was this really God?’ Because when you come back, I’m going to be waiting right here for you.”

When God has a work for you to do, I don’t care where you are. I don’t care what you try to do to get away from it. He’s going to sit there and wait on you to come back. You don’t hear me tonight. He said, “Gideon, I’m waiting on you. And I’ll be here.”

But once Gideon got his confirmation that he needed...

There’s nothing wrong with wanting a confirmation when your heart is right and you’re saying, “God, I need a confirmation about this. Because I don’t want to step into nothing. When I look at me I don’t see what You see. But God, if You say it’s in me, then it must be in me.”

But as soon as he got the confirmation that he needed, he acted expediently. And not only did he act expediently. He acted resourcefully.

See, once I know that I know that I know that I know, once I know that I... Oh, you don’t hear me tonight. When I know (hallelujah), come hell or high water. The mission shall be accomplished.

In chapter seven, the Bible says that God told him that the men that are with you... I believe it’s in verse two and verse three. “The men that are with you are still too many.”

Then God began to say... He began to say, “You know... Because if I allow you to go forth in the battle with all of these, then you’re going to say you’ve done it by your own strength.” He said, “My glory will I not give to another.” He’ll take a remnant. You don’t hear me tonight.

So God had a plan. He told Gideon to tell them all that were afraid, go on back. You see, he gave them an opportunity to go back. You see, God will give you an opportunity to go back. He said if you’re afraid, go on back.

But then when those men went back, God looked. And He said, “Wait a minute. The numbers are still too great. I want you to know that it was Me that got this victory for you.” So the numbers was still too great.

So then God said, “Wait a minute. Call them down by the water.”

It’s something about the water, isn’t it? You don’t hear me tonight. See, the water is going to show you who you really are. You see, even the Holy Spirit is a symbol of water. Do you hear what I’m saying? Out of your belly shall flow what? Rivers of living water.

You see, something about the water’s going to tell you about you. The Holy Spirit will grab you up when you don’t know anything, what you think is not about you. The Holy Spirit will begin to show you you. He won’t just show you everybody else. He’ll show you you.

So he told him to take them down by the water.

Look at your Bibles in chapter seven and verse five. It says,

5. So he brought down the people unto the water: and the LORD said unto Gideon, Every one that lappeth of the water with his tongue, as a dog lappeth, him shalt thou set by himself; likewise every one that boweth down upon his knees to drink.

6. And the number of them that lapped, putting their hand to their mouth, were three hundred men: but all the rest of the people bowed down upon their knees to drink water.

7. And the LORD said unto Gideon, By the three hundred men that lapped will I save you, and deliver the Midianites into thine hand: and let all the other people go every man unto his place.

I’m sure Gideon had some friends in the bunch. You don’t hear me tonight. But see, when you got a purpose, you can’t let family... You can’t let friends... Oh, you don’t want to talk to me tonight. You can’t let nothing get in your way for the purpose and the plan that God has for your life.

You see, those are the hardest ones that been with you for years, to tell them that they got to go home. See, sometimes you going to have to cut some folks away from you. It may hurt you. But His will is going to be done. You can do it willingly. You don’t hear me. But if you let God do it, it’s going to hurt even the more.

See, anything that becomes a roadblock and a mountain and a hindrance in your way, you’ve got to release that thing. God said, “Wait a minute. There’s still too many of them.”

I’m sure they knew who Gideon was. They’re like, “Gideon, I’m with you. I’m with you, Gideon, to the end of the battle.”

But Gideon had to tell them, “Wait a minute. You didn’t do what God expected you to do. And therefore since you’re not doing what God expects, then you got to go home.” It’s tight but it’s right.

You see, you’ve got to have people in your life (feel the Holy Ghost in here) that are going to pour into you. See, you can’t just have people that are just going to receive from you.

Because if they constantly are taking from you, they will deplete the supply that’s in you. They will begin to drain everything out of you. You will start to be confused. You’ll start to doubt God. You’ll start... Oh, my God. You won’t know who you are from day to day.

But if you ask somebody and some folks that are with you that it’s like (glory to God) you pouring into them, they pouring into them, you giving them, and they giving you... Oh, you don’t want to talk to me. Then we can all stay on full.

See, we can’t do the work of the Lord half full. And we definitely cannot do the work of the Lord on empty. And every now and then you and I are going to need somebody, somewhere, to just to begin to pour into us. Not because we’ve asked them. Not because we look pitiful. But just because. Just because.

So Gideon, this farmer, this one that was the least in the family... See, it’s something about the ones that are least. David was the least, wasn’t he? It’s something about those that are, they call, so to speak, quote, unquote, the underdogs. The last shall be first, and the first shall be last.

So this farmer that didn’t know what was in him delivered Israel from the hands of the Midianites.

“What are you saying tonight, pastor?” You don’t know what’s really in you. See, we speculate about what we think we got in us. But we got treasure in earthen vessels. God has placed great treasures in us. Treasures in darkness. Why? Because we don’t know about it. It’s the unknown.

But when we begin to tap into that well, devil, you better look out. When I begin to really know who I am in God, I don’t need a thousand folk with me. You don’t hear me. Because I understand that I’m not going to the battle in my own strength. God told Gideon, “I’m going to be with you.” And I will realize that it’s a divine power that’s working on my side.

You’ve got something great in you. And we think we know what it is. But until we start really seeking His face, we have not really tapped into it. We begin to stay on the surface.

But once I become really committed, really faithful to the cost of Christ, and the advancement of the Kingdom, God will begin to show me what’s in me. And everything I begin to see will line up with the character of God. Oh, you don’t hear me tonight.

You see, what He’s going to show me about me is really not about me. He’s going to start showing me things about Him. It’s going to cause me to realize that it’s not me doing this thing. It’s not me working these miracles. It’s not me laying hands on the sick and them recovering. But it’s the Anointed One and His Anointing.

Mighty men of valor, and mighty women of valor, you’ve got work to do. I say you’ve got work to do. I say we’ve got work to do. And we must get busy.

Come on, give God a handclap of praise tonight.

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