If you don’t aim at anything, you won’t hit anything.
NOVEMBER 16, 2022
If you don’t aim at anything, you won’t hit anything. Let’s talk, on Key Life.
If you’re sick of guilt and manipulation, and if you’re looking for an honest and thoughtful presentation of Biblical truth, you’ve come to the right place. This is Key Life with the founder of Key Life Network, Steve Brown. Keep listening for teaching that will make you free.
Thank you Matthew. We’re looking at the 18th chapter of Acts. We’re, and we’re looking, we’re doing an analysis, if you will, of the success of Paul at the city of Corinth when he had just come from his greatest failure at the city of Athens. And we’re looking at some of the reasons of that. Of course, he went to the marginalized, he did that in every city. And that explains part of it, but it doesn’t explain most of it. And so, we’ve taken some time to look at that text and to find out why Paul was successful. And we saw that he was first successful because he didn’t come alone. You can’t do this by yourself. And he had, he had Silas, and he had Timothy, he had Priscilla and Aquila. We’ve seen secondly, that he was successful cause he wasn’t just passing through, he stayed. I mean, there was great fruit in his ministry, but he didn’t, he didn’t just say, well, I’ve done my job, I’m going somewhere else. He stayed and he became the one who taught, who matured, who helped young believers begin to see and put it together and understand, Acts 18:3, Acts 18:11. Then thirdly was successful cause there was so much opposition. Acts 18:5 through 6, Acts 18:12. Listen, if everybody likes you, you’re doing it wrong. If it doesn’t hurt some, you’re doing it wrong. That great theologian, Mary Tyler Moore taught me that. If you don’t find that people reject you when they hear your message, they haven’t clearly understood what you’re saying. That’s not everybody, of course. When awakening happens, people come running to Jesus, but that’s when they’re at the very end, the bottom, and there’s nowhere else to go. We’re getting that way in the U.S. and in Canada. We’re getting so the answers that have been provided by the twits, we’re beginning to see just don’t work. And now maybe in the dark place, we’ll run to Jesus. And I believe that we’re facing what maybe another great awakening. And then there’s another reason Paul was successful because he had a strategy. He didn’t just go wandering down the street saying anybody want to hear about Jesus? I mean, look at Acts 18:7 through 8.
And he left there and went to the house of a man named Titius Justus, a worshiper of God.
Now, worshiper of God, that’s a phrase that means this person was a Gentile, not a Jew. But he understood there was one God who had created everything and he worshiped that one God. His house was next door to the synagogue. Do you think that was an accident? He believed in the Lord and together with all his household and many of the Corinthians hearing Paul believed and were baptized. Now, that’s a man with plan. The apostle Paul knew exactly what he was doing. He first went to the synagogue and they were like Presbyterians, they didn’t want to hear it. I mean, they didn’t, they were fine just the way they were. So he said, I’m going somewhere else, and he went next door. Now, Paul was doing what he said we ought to do with Jews in the book of Romans. We ought to make them jealous. And so far, most of the time we’ve made them afraid and we need to repent of that and say we’re so sorry that the apostle Paul knew exactly what he was doing. He went next door and he went to Titius, Goyam, a Gentile and began to talk to him about Christ. And Titius then became the cause for part of the success of the apostle Paul. I hate meetings, and I hate planning meetings worse than any other meetings. I remember one time going to an ecclesiastical meeting that had been called, a committee appointed for the future of that particular religious organization. And I remember sitting there and thinking, I can’t stand this anymore. I’ve got to leave. But as I’ve gotten older, I’ve come to the point where I rise up and call blessed those people who like meetings, who are willing to do the hard work, who are willing to do the planning, who are willing to put it together. Every Monday morning here at Key Life, the program staff of this ministry meet together and you lead it, right? No, I’ve never been to that meeting, not one time. They love me enough to say, if we make him go to a meeting, he’s going to be hard to live with for the rest of the day. So, they have their meetings and I don’t oversee it, I don’t make sure that they’re choosing the right strategy, I trust them because they are working on a strategy. Nothing happens at Key Life that is an accident. Or very few things happen to Key Life that are accidental. They are planned by people who are willing to spend the time to plan. They decide what’s going to go in our magazine, they decide what we’re going to put on the air, they decide what books we’re going to publish, they decide what’s going to be on the broadcast, and they do it for a reason. And Paul did that too. So, if you don’t meet with a leadership of your church, pray for them. Tell them that you appreciate all the work they do in planning, and then you can smile like me and say, Just don’t invite me. You think about that. Amen.
And that was Steve Brown teaching us from Acts 18:7 through 8 about the importance of teamwork and strategy, that we weren’t meant to do this thing alone. Thank you Steve. Well, for good or bad, the meanings of some words have evolved over time. Some fall out of use, others take on a completely different connotation. One of those words is evangelical, which raises the question, should that label be discarded or defended? Well, that’s what we discussed with author Michael Reeves on Steve Brown Etc. Take a listen to part of that conversation, then I’ll be back to tell you about a special free offer.
Michael Reeves: I understand people’s dismay at evangelicalism and disaffection with evangelicalism, in part due to its success. And so, the broad co-opting of the label, meaning that there are so many people who maybe once would’ve wanted to self identify as evangelical, but now see so much out there that goes under the name evangelical and think, I’m not that. And what that’s revealing I think, is that today we’re facing not so much a crisis of identity, but a crisis of integrity. This situation we find ourselves in, there is a need for clarity so that we can know what exactly it means to be evangelical, where we need to define evangelicalism, not by what we see out in the culture, by what the word itself means. To be evangelical means to be people of the gospel. That’s where we need the clarity today, what the gospel is, and therefore what it means to have integrity to the gospel.
You think sometimes we let pagans define who we are, and it’s time that we do it ourselves?
Michael Reeves: We don’t allow so many Christian traditions to be defined by what’s seen in society. We don’t allow so many Christian traditions to be defined by what’s simply out there on the ground, but with evangelicalism somehow we’ve caved to that. To be evangelical isn’t simply to follow that crowd, to be evangelical, to be a person of the gospel must mean we are the people who go to the Scriptures where the gospel is found. And in the Scriptures, Jesus very clearly lays out his view of Scripture and that should be determinative for evangelicals. And Jesus, whether he’s debating with the Pharisees saying.
Have you not read, have you not seen what the Scriptures say?
In Matthew 15 and Mark 7, he has a debate with the Pharisees where he says.
Scripture clearly is the commandments of God, whereas traditions are the words of men.
And you must not confuse the two. So, to be evangelical must mean to share Jesus’ view of Scripture, which is first that Scripture is of God. and secondly, if Scripture is of God, then the words of God must be supreme above all the words of men. Now, that doesn’t mean we don’t listen to the words of men. And here’s an evangelical confusion, I think, there are some evangelicals who’ve taken this to mean that evangelical faith is simply a me and my Bible faith. And so, there’s no listening to the great history of the church, to the theologians of the church. That’s not a robust, mature, evangelical way, rather we are able to listen to the great teachers of the church. We’ll read commentaries, we’ll read the great theologians, we’ll seek to learn from them, from those who are more mature than us and be able to say, yet they are men, scripture is of God. And so, being men, these heroes of the faith in the past, people will error, they’ll make mistakes. God’s word doesn’t. And so, it reigns supreme.
And such a great show and such a great conversation. And if it’s okay with you, we would love to send you that whole show on a CD for free. Just give us a call at 1-800-KEY-LIFE. That’s 1-800-539-5433. You can also e-mail [email protected] to ask for that CD. If you’d like to mail your request, send it to
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