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God's Not Mad at You
Who do you want to please?

Who do you want to please?

JUNE 3, 2021

/ Programs / Key Life / Who do you want to please?

Steve Brown:
Who do you want to please? Let’s talk about it on this edition of Key Life.

Matthew Porter:
It’s for freedom that Christ set us free and Key Life is here to bring you Biblical teaching that encourages you to never give into slavery, again. Our teacher on Key Life is Steve Brown. He’s an author, broadcaster and seminary professor who is sick of phony religion.

Steve Brown:
Thank you Matthew. What we’re doing is we’re ending this study and Galatians by extrapolating some questions from the final words of the apostle Paul. And the questions are ones that are not meant to measure your salvation, but to measure your growth. And you have to keep grace in mind as you deal with these things, they’re helpful, but don’t go crazy with them. Or you’ll become a legalist, and you’ll die. Cause you just can’t do all of this perfectly, but they’re good questions and they should be placed. Yesterday, we saw the first question from Galatians 6:11. Where’s the emphasis of your life? There’s another question. Who do you want to please? Galatians 6:12.

It is those who want to make a good showing in the flesh that they compel you to be circumcised.

In other words, they were looking around and saying, I’ve got to look good in front of certain people. And if I don’t look good in front of certain people, I’m in trouble. I one time heard Gloria Gaither, Bill and Gloria were talking. And Gloria said this, and it was very wise.

It is very dangerous to want to be a part of the cool kids.

Yeah, it is. You’ve heard the, who do you want? Who do you want to please, in social media? Who do you want to please, when you’re with your friends? Who do you want to please, when you’re at church? Who do you want to please, when you’re by yourself? And Paul says, listen, I work for Jesus. I have often said to congregations, you scare me to death. I want to be loved. And, it’s important to me that you love me. I want you to think highly of me. I want you to like what I say and what I do, but let me tell you something else. You scare me, but God scares me a lot more than you do. So, I’m going to tell you the truth. So listen, who do you want to please? You’ve heard the old illustration about a young man in high school, a football player who was on the third string, and very rarely got to play, because he just wasn’t that good. And during one particular game, the young man asked the coach over and over again. Let me play, just for a little while. Finally, the coach allowed him in the last five minutes of the last quarter of the game. The young man was a veritable explosion on the field. He was nothing less than phenomenal. After the game, the coach came to him and said, son, I didn’t know you could play that well, what happened? Young man explained that his father was blind and that his father had died that morning. And he said, coach, this is the first time he’s ever seen me play. Who do you want to please? That’s a good question to ask. And, it’s a good question for me to ask. Sometimes I want to please the wrong people. And I don’t want to be that way, so I talked to Jesus about it a lot. Let me give you another question. What are you professing that you aren’t possessing? Galatians 6:13.

For even those who receive circumcision don’t themselves keep the law.

He was talking about a phenomenon that happens often in the church, and it happens with me. You know, the problem with being a Bible teacher is you got to say some pretty strong things. And I’ve been a Bible teacher longer than most of you have been alive, but the text comes up and you can’t skip it or pretend it’s not there or rip the page out of the Bible. You’ve got it, teach it. But what do you do, if you’re under a conviction, more than the people who listen to you teach are under conviction. How do you handle that? I have a pastor friend, and I love him a lot, man, he read a hard text. And he was, I sounded like Jonathan Edwards on steroids, and in the middle of the sermon, and I was there, he stopped and started crying and I thought good night, what’s going on? And he said, God just spoke to me. And he told me I was more guilty of this stuff, than anybody in this congregation. And I made it a practice, when I was a pastor, to sometimes say, listen, if you know me, you know that I struggle with this, just the way you struggle with it, and probably fail more than you do. I’m not here as your example, I’m here as your teacher. And I place the same emphasis on the teaching in my life, that I expect you to place an emphasis. And so, I want you to know, if you’ll pray for me, I’ll pray for you and we’ll both get better. Be authentic about that. What are you professing that you aren’t possessing? One of the best things that would happen in the church, is if we all had to have plaques that listed our 10 greatest sins, we were called to wear them, when we went to church. Oh man, we would have revival. And you say, I wouldn’t do that. Cause everybody would be shocked. No, they wouldn’t, they’d be trying to hide their own plaques, because we, we don’t possess everything that God says we can possess. We’re not as good as he said, we could be. We’re not as loving as we should be loving, but it’s a good question. And you ought to apply it and think about it. And then, let me give you another question. On what do you glory? Galatians 6:14.

But far be it from me to glory

and parenthetically in anything

except the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ.

The NIV of the Bible translates that verse this way.

May I never boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ.

Paul has mentioned this before, I Corinthians 2:1-2, he says.

When I come to you, brothers, I did not come proclaiming to you the testimony of God and lofty words or wisdom. For I decided to know nothing among you, except Jesus Christ.

A number of years ago. I had an opportunity to hear Johnny Cash. I was speaking at a convention for youth ministry, their staff, and he came and gave his whole show, as a thank you to them for what they had done. And they had an award called A Man of the Year, and they awarded that to Johnny Cash at that particular conference, it was an amazing thing. It was then that I found out that Johnny Cash couldn’t sing, but nobody knew it, because they were shouting so loud. Actually, he’s one of my heroes. And if you could see this studio right now, right behind me, there’s a poster that my son in-law gave me of Johnny Cash. So, that’ll let you see how much I think of Johnny Cash, but the thing that was so good about it, other than my wife, a classical musician, who was standing on the table and whistling. It’s an effective, powerful show and it was fun. And I loved it. And then at the end, they gave this award to Johnny Cash. And when he, when he got the award, tears were in his eyes and he said, all I can say is all praise belongs to Jesus. And what do you glory? Then let me give you another question. If I can turn this page, where I’ve written these notes and I’m going to do this, I got it. Question number five. How’s your death coming along? Well, that’s a pleasant question, it’s Galatians 6:14.

But far from me to glory except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by which the world has been crucified to me, and I tell the world.

What Paul is saying here, is that he has died to all things that are attractive in the world. And it is the reason he could say, I have learned in whatever state I am to be content. That’s a beautiful thing. Let me tell you something, you’re going to die. You knew that, the statistic is one out of one. They often in newspapers, publish deaths statistics that happen, because of a particular problem. And, I want to say, when I read those articles, it’s 100%, we’re all going to die. And you will die as you have lived. And so, how’s your death coming along? Well, I’m not there yet, but there’s some of me that’s dying. And then a final question. What brand do you wear? Galatians 6:17.

Henceforth let no man trouble me, for I bear on my body the marks of Jesus Christ.

Talk about tattoos. That would be a good one to have, the marks of Jesus Christ, Contrary to some statements were made about this verse, Paul is talking about not the stigmata, the marks of the nails on his hands and feet, but the whip marks for standing for Jesus. Okay. That’s it. You think about that. Amen.

Matthew Porter:
And thank you Steve. An incredible wrap-up to this amazing journey through Galatians. Of course, if you missed any episodes of our study from Galatians, you can access them anytime you want. 24 seven, for free. Just go to KeyLife.org for that. On Monday, we’ll start a brand new adventure in Acts, but first tomorrow, our friend Pete Alwinson will swing by for Friday Q&A. Some good questions on tap for that. Make sure you join us. Well, I think you would agree that while we, as Christians may be right on issues of salvation and theology, a lot of times we miss the less articulated truths of humility and love and forgiveness. Well, that premise was actually the basis of Steve’s most recent book Talk the Walk. We took a portion of that book and created a booklet that we would love to send you for free. Just call 1-800-KEY-LIFE. That’s 1-800-539-5433. You can also e-mail Steve@keylife.org and ask for the booklet. If you’d like to mail your request, send it to

Key Life Network
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If you’re in Canada, send your request to

Key Life Canada
P.O. Box 28060
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