This is the “chief of sinners,” Daniel Whyte III, president of Gospel Light Society International, with the Gospel Light Minute X Podcast #386 titled, “Are You Drinking Yet Still Thirsty For More?” I’m here to remind you of what the Bible says, that “Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners” like you and me.
ARE YOU THIRSTY?
Have you ever been so thirsty that you can’t imagine going one more second without something to quench your thirst? All that you can think about is finding even one sip of cold, refreshing water. Our bodies crave water. In fact, the human body can only survive a few days without it.
This is the “chief of sinners,” Daniel Whyte III, president of Gospel Light Society International, with the Gospel Light Minute X Podcast #360 titled, “How to Quench Your Thirst in Life.” I’m here to remind you of what the Bible says, that “Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners” like you and me.
Happiness, contentment, and peace of mind are the most longed-for and sought after things in all the world, and few there are who ever really find them. All around us people are searching madly for these precious treasures without success. Psychiatrists tell us that an ever-increasing number of people are aware of an inner emptiness in their lives. Their problems — personal and social — seem to increase faster than solutions can be found to solve them.
Is this all simply evidence of the emptiness of those who try to live without God? Man’s struggle for wealth, fame, and pleasure will not bring him the contentment and happiness that he yearns for. Yet, with a restlessness that is pitiful to see, people are searching from one thing to another, always hoping to find rest and satisfaction in some future accomplishment or possession.Continue reading “How to Quench Your Thirst in Life (Gospel Light Minute X #360)”→
No doubt this past week, you were exposed to the media coverage regarding athlete and television personality William Bruce Jenner choosing to become a woman. Jenner, who won the gold medal in the decathlon at the 1975 Pan-American games and the 1976 Olympic Games, was featured on the cover of Vanity Fair magazine proclaiming that he is now to be called “Caitlyn.” Obviously many people are surprised that a man who has been married three times and is a father to six children would make such a shocking decision. No doubt, many people who know him and who are related to him are still trying to come to terms with this event.
A few weeks ago, Jon Stewart, who has hosted the popular Daily Show on Comedy Central for the past 16 years, announced that he was stepping down. In a recent interview with the Guardian, he revealed his reason why. He said, “It’s not like I thought the show wasn’t working any more, or that I didn’t know how to do it. It was more, ‘Yup, it’s working. But I’m not getting the same satisfaction.’” He went on to say that in his type of work, “You have moments of dissatisfaction, and then you come out of it and it’s OK. But the cycles [of dissatisfaction] become longer and maybe more entrenched.”
Stewart also commented on the 24-hour news cycle saying, “Watching these channels all day is incredibly depressing. I live in a constant state of depression.”
Jon Stewart’s reasoning is not foreign to the vast majority of people today. Many — including some of the most wealthy, most famous, and most successful individuals — will admit that they experience dissatisfaction with their jobs, their home life, their families, or their lack of success. Many of us will also readily agree that the constant stream of (mostly) negative news about what is happening in the world can indeed be depressing.
The truth of the matter is: true satisfaction cannot be found in our jobs, in other people, or even in engaging in activities that are fun and entertaining. All of these are temporal and there will eventually come a time when they fail to fulfill what we desire for them to fulfill in our lives. You cannot find complete peace or satisfaction through your accomplishments or even through things that you find pleasurable and enjoyable.That will only come when you give your life to Jesus Christ. Many accomplished and successful people have stated that their greatest satisfaction comes in life from knowing Jesus Christ as their Savior and being loved unconditionally by God.
God wants to have a relationship with you. He wants to fill the empty place in your heart that you have sought so long to fill. He will do this today if you accept His Son, Jesus Christ, as your Lord and Saviour. When you become a follower of Jesus Christ, the Bible tells us that Christ comes to live inside of us. With Christ living inside of you, you will have the peace, love, joy, happiness, and fulfillment that you desire. On top of that, you will have eternal life, and you will go to Heaven to be with God after you die.
One of America’s greatest heroes is a man named Louis Zamperini. He was an Olympic distance runner, a World War II prisoner of war survivor, and an inspirational speaker. He died this past year on July 2nd at the age of 97. His life story has been told in a new film titled Unbroken, which was directed by Angelina Jolie and is set to be released in December 2014.
While the movie focuses on Louis’ life as an Olympic track star, a soldier, and a prisoner of war, it does not focus on a very important part of Louis’ life — how he came to believe in Jesus Christ as his Savior and how he found peace and satisfaction in his life. Back in 2003, Louis told his story on CBN.
As the son of Italian immigrants, he said he was constantly teased in school, and his “whole life became a life of getting even.” He was quite a trouble-maker as a young man — stealing beer, cheating in school, and constantly getting into fights. One day, his brother, who was the chief of police, and his school’s principal got together and convinced Louis to take up track, and that is how he became a world famous distance runner.
In 1941, Louis enlisted in the U.S. Army and was shortly thereafter sent to the Pacific theater during World War II. During a search-and-rescue mission, Louis and his fellow crew members crashed into the ocean. After 27 days on a lifeboat at sea, they were attacked by a Japanese plane. Miraculously, none of the three men was hit by a single bullet. On day 47, the three survivors landed on the Marshall Islands and were captured by Japanese forces. Louis was moved around to several prisoner-of-war camps until the end of the war when he came home to a hero’s welcome.
Back in the United States, Louis fell in love with Cynthia Applewhite and proposed to her only ten days after their first meeting. They married, and the couple had a little girl. However, Louis started having nightmares about his time as a prisoner of the Japanese. He often woke up thinking he was strangling one of the prison camp captains who was especially cruel to him. One night, he nearly strangled his wife in his sleep. During this time, he had also begun drinking heavily again.
One day, someone talked Louis’ wife, Cynthia, into going to hear evangelist Billy Graham. Cynthia went to the event and gave her life to Jesus Christ. However, when she came home to share the good news with her husband, he refused to attend a meeting with her.
Louis admitted that with his drinking and his mental anguish, his wife had every right to divorce him. However, she told him, “Because of my conversion, I’m not gonna get a divorce.” Louis was happy about that and eventually decided to go to a Billy Graham meeting with his wife.
Louis said Billy Graham “talked about one person only, the person of Jesus Christ, for 30 minutes. He read the Scriptures. ‘For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.’ ‘The wages of sin is death but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.’ Well, I knew I was a sinner but I didn’t like the idea of someone else reminding me. If anyone had ever asked me if I believed that Christ was the Son of God, I would have said yes. My whole life I believed it, but [in] the heart [I didn’t]. I knew somehow if I’d believed it in my heart, my life would have been different. So I knew I didn’t possess the Savior but I still didn’t want to do it. I think the best description to that is the Bible says that men prefer darkness rather than light. Here I was preferring my rotten life to the light. Then I started having a flashback to the life raft and prison camp, all those thousands and thousands of prayers — ‘God spare my life through the war, and I’ll seek You and serve You.’ I kept thinking I came back from the war alive, and I never even thought about those prayers. I never tried to keep one prayer.”
That night, Louis gave his life to Christ. He said, “I got off my knees and somehow I knew I was through getting drunk. I knew it. I also knew that I forgave all my guards. I think proof of that is I had nightmares every night about [them] since the war. The night I made my decision for Christ, I haven’t had a nightmare since — 1949 till now! That is some kind of a miracle.”
Louis eventually went back to Japan and spoke with many of his former captors. Some of them even gave their lives to Christ as well. Louis said, “I believe with all of my heart that all things work together for good for those who love the Lord and who are called according to His purpose. Christ told us in the Scripture, ‘I am the way, I am the truth, and I am the life.’ Christ is the way to God. People are always seeking truth; the truth is Christ, and He’s the life. I think our eternal life starts now by faith in Jesus Christ. That is the strength we live by, and death no longer has a sting…not to the Christian.”
Dear friend, Louis Zamperini’s story is indeed an inspirational one. But, I want you to notice that Louis did not find complete peace or satisfaction through his great accomplishments as a distance runner or as a war hero. He found his greatest peace and satisfaction when he gave his life to Jesus Christ. Louis is not alone in that experience. Many accomplished and successful people have stated that their greatest satisfaction comes from knowing Jesus Christ as their Savior and being loved unconditionally by God.
You can have the same peace and satisfaction in your heart and life today if you will simply do as Louis Zam-pe-ri-ni did and give your life to Jesus Christ. God wants to have a relationship with you. He wants to fill the empty place in your heart that you have sought so long to fill. He can do this today if you accept His Son, Jesus Christ, as your Lord and Saviour. When you become a follower of Jesus Christ, the Bible tells us that Christ comes to live inside of us. With Christ living inside of you, you will have the peace, love, joy, happiness, and fulfillment that you desire. On top of that, you will have eternal life, and you will go to Heaven to be with God after you die.
Jesus Christ said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.” Are you willing to make the simple decision to trust Jesus Christ as your Saviour today? The Bible says, “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved.”
The Bible also tells us in Romans 10:9 and 13: “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised Him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.” “For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”
If you want to be saved right now, you can pray a short prayer to let God know that you are making this all-important decision. Just repeat after me and mean it from your heart.
Holy Father God, I realize that I am a sinner and that I have done some bad things in my life. For Jesus Christ sake, please forgive me of my sins. I believe with all of my heart that Jesus Christ died for me, was buried, and rose again. Lord Jesus, please come into my heart and save my soul and change my life today and forever so that I can have your peace and assurance about my life today and my eternal future. Amen.
If you just trusted Jesus Christ as your Saviour, and you prayed that prayer and meant it from your heart, I declare to you that based upon the Word of God, you are now saved and you are on your way to Heaven. Welcome to the family of God! Congratulations on doing the most important thing in life and that is receiving Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour. For more information to help you grow in your newfound faith in Christ, go to Gospel Light Society.com and read “What To Do After You Enter Through the Door.”
Believe by faith. Share the faith. And keep the faith! God Bless You!
MUSICAL SELECTION: “Broken” by Lecrae (ft. Kari Jobe)
Just a few days ago, I was listening to a song from the 1990s titled “The River of Dreams”. It was written and sung by American composer Billy Joel. Billy Joel’s song is a reflection of the heart cry of every human being. Listen to these lyrics:
In the middle of the night
I go walking in my sleep
From the mountains of faith
To the river so deep
I must be lookin’ for something
Something sacred I lost
But the river is wide
And it’s too hard to cross
I’ve been searching for something
Taken out of my soul
Something I’d never lose
Something somebody stole
I don’t know why I go walking at night
But now I’m tired and I don’t want to walk anymore
I hope it doesn’t take the rest of my life
Until I find what it is I’ve been looking for
Billy Joel’s song expresses a desire that many people have testified to. Many people go through life feeling as though something in their life is missing — that something that should be there is gone. Like Joel, these people go through life searching for what is missing in their life. Have you ever felt this way — as though there is something missing in your life? Have you ever felt as though there were a hole in your soul? The French philosopher Blaise Pascal said that “There is a God shaped vacuum in the heart of every man which cannot be filled by any created thing, but only by God, the Creator, made known through Jesus.”
The thing that Billy Joel said he was missing in his life, and the thing that many people feel as though they are missing in their lives is a relationship with God. Long ago, in the Garden of Eden, this relationship with God was broken because of the sin of Adam and Eve, the first humans. Adam and Eve had the privilege and blessing of a direct, wonderful, peaceful relationship with God. Everything they ever needed or wanted was supplied, and they lived a life of perfect bliss. However, when they were tempted by Satan, they decided to disobey God, and because of their disobedience, their relationship with God was severed.
Because of Adam and Eve’s sin, all of us, their descendants, are born into this world with a figurative hole in our hearts. That hole is representative of the relationship that we should have with God. However, because all of us are born sinners, we are born in a state of enmity with God. There is a dividing wall between us and God because God is holy and we are sinful. Thus, we go throughout our lives searching for the unity with God that we so desire.
Billy Joel writes in his song, “I’m tired and I don’t want to walk anymore. I hope it doesn’t take the rest of my life until I find what it is I’ve been looking for.” My friend, you don’t have to keep on searching for what you have lost. You don’t have to spend the rest of your life searching for a real relationship with God. You can have one today.
100 Days of Preaching the Gospel #38 | with Daniel Whyte III
TEXT — Ecclesiastes 2:1-11
There are so many people who go through life searching for satisfaction, fulfillment, happiness, and contentment. People pursue more money, more success, more education, and better relationships, all in an attempt to fill an emptiness that they feel inside their hearts and souls. These people are searching for meaning and purpose in life. Almost three thousand years ago, a man who we often refer to as ‘the wisest man who ever lived’, struggled with this same pursuit. His name is King Solomon, and he wrote the book of Ecclesiastes in which he documents his search for meaning in life.
Some people have said that the Book of Ecclesiastes is a very pessimistic book. But we must understand that Solomon wrote Ecclesiastes from the perspective of someone who was living under the sun, S-U-N. Anybody who lives only for this life will come to the same conclusions as Solomon did. However, if you live above the sun, S-U-N, in the Son, S-O-N (that is Jesus Christ), then you will come to the conclusion that life is very much worthwhile. In fact, Solomon gives us a glimpse of this kind of life at the end of his book when he states the following: “Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God, and keep his commandments: for this is the whole duty of man.”
Chuck Swindoll said, “Ecclesiastes presents us a naturalistic vision of life—one that sees life through distinctively human eyes—but ultimately recognizes the rule and reign of God in the world. This more humanistic quality has made the book especially popular among younger audiences today, men and women who have seen more than their fair share of pain and instability in life but who still cling to their hope in God.”
The passage we just read is a summary of the various ways in which King Solomon attempted to find that meaning in life. From this and other passages in the Bible, we can identify six paths which Solomon pursued to find what he was searching for. After searching out all of these various paths, Solomon came to the same conclusion repeatedly — they all were “vanity and vexation of spirit, and there was no profit under the sun.”
The word “vanity” is a very interesting word. The original Hebrew word is “hebel” and it means “vapour or breath”. Therefore, something that is a vanity is something that is passing or short lived.
Today, let’s look at three of the ways Solomon searched for meaning in life, and how each of these ways failed to provide what he was searching for. Many people today search for meaning in the things we will discuss as well, and sadly find that these things do not provide meaning at all.
1. First of all, Solomon found that pleasure does not bring meaning or satisfaction in life and people today find the same.
2. Secondly, Solomon found that much accomplishments and achievements did not bring meaning or satisfaction in life without God, and people today find the same.
3. Third, Solomon found that wealth and material possessions did not bring meaning or satisfaction in life and people today find the same.
+ Plus, listen to the Walter Hawkins and Family singing “Jesus Christ is the Way” and Deitrick Haddon singing “Sinner’s Prayer”