Facts, Fantasy, and Truth – sermon by Pastor Don Moore

Friday, September 18, 2009

Facts, Fantasy, and Truth by Pastor Don

Here is the transcript of Say Amen Show 126, I made the closed captioning easier to read by dividing it into paragraphs, left the comments of the congregation in [brackets], three dots … means a pause, and I kept it in Pastor Don’s words.  Praying this blesses you.  What I especially like about having a transcript is that you really don’t miss one word. Lately I have been challenged in downloading the video onto Xanga, has anyone else had this problem?

Things are slowing down at the home front – my oldest is now in Edinburgh, Scotland for a semester and my other son is in his college – my daughter (who is like an only child now which she likes) is applying to colleges.  Hard to believe that this time next year all three will be in college – how time flies.

God bless you!!!!


Say Amen
Show 126
Facts, Fantasy, and Truth

In John, Chapter 14 beginning in verse 6.  The Lord Jesus Christ is having the Passover meal with the Apostles in the next few pages.  And He is going to give them the information that they need to get through life.  He begins this passage of Scripture talking to Thomas.  They call Thomas, Doubting Thomas, but I want you to know that that may be what they call him, but Thomas was the first one that said, when Jesus said He was going to Jerusalem to die, it was Doubting Thomas that said to the men, let us go with Him.  Let us go to Jerusalem and die with Him.  So I don’t think it was what he was doubting.  He wasn’t doubting Christ, he was doubting when Christ was said to have risen from the dead, he was questioning the fact of the other Apostles’ experience.

So Thomas speaks up in verse 5 and says, “…Lord, we do not know where you are going, and how can we know the way?”  And Jesus answers this most famous passage of scripture.  “Jesus said to him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life.  No one comes to the Father except through Me.”  … Let me read it again.  “…I am the way, the truth, and the life.  No one comes to the Father except through Me.”  In these three nouns of power, Jesus is saying that He is the way.

When you look that up in the translations in the Bible, here’s what it says.  He is basically saying that He is the highway upon which you must walk if you choose to go to the Father.  He isn’t saying anything except, if you wanted to get the fastest way from New York City to here, the fastest way is you’d have to go on Route 87, the New York State Thruway.  And so it’d be like Jesus was saying, if you want to get out of Sin City, and you want to get up to the mountains where it’s beautiful, and if you want to go to the place where the deer run and the antelope play, [laughter]  and if you want to get to a place where squirrels and chipmunks are eating your flowers, then you have to get on the New York State Thruway and go on that road and you will get there.

He is saying, that if you really want to get through life, if you want to get through the difficulty and the confusion of life, there are many paths that you could choose.  But He is saying, if you want the path that is going to lead you to the Father.  If you want the path that is a direct shot, that you can’t get lost on, that there’s no confusion, there is no deviation, He is saying, get on the Way.  The original Christians were called People of the Way.  [that’s right]

Oprah, she’s great, but she should stick to TV, cause spiritual stuff is, she’s a little lost here.  She’s giving this concept that there are many ways to get to God.  No, there are many ways to get to many gods.  [alright]  But there’s only one way to get to God.  [amen]  That He is the Way, the Path.

When it says, “the truth,”  it means that there is no lie.  That He is veracity.  It means that He is the ultimate ability to know right from wrong.  He is truth.  There is no lie in Him.  How many of us here would be honest and say, there’s some lie in us.  [yes, come on]  There’s some lie in us.  If you didn’t raise your hand you’re a liar.  [laughter]  Cause some of you have artificial foams in your shoes that make you look as tall as me.  [laughter]  Well, that’s a lie. Some of the blondes in here are really brunettes…  [hey, laughter]  And that’s a lie.  You know, some of us are wearing glasses and the glasses are a lie.  And some of us look all fancy on the outside but we’re in pain on the inside.  [alright]  And so, we put on a good face to go to church, we look good.  Got to look righteous and holy, all that.  You’re righteous and holy lookin’ folk.  But that’s a lie…. That was good, I delivered that with superlative timing.

And so we have to admit that unlike Christ, there was no lie in Him.  He didn’t even wear artificial Dacron… He didn’t even mix artificial petroleum clothes with natural fabrics and fibers.  Cause see, that was against the Law of Moses.  So even His clothes were the truth.  Lord have mercy.  Watch out.

We have some churches that tell you if you worship the way that we worship, you do what we do, the way we do it, we’ll get you to heaven.  And it’s not scriptural.  The scripture says that Jesus is the way, the truth, and the life.  By the life He means the zoe, the God kind of life.  Meaning that this is the way to live and this is the way that if God was on earth, which He was in Jesus Christ, this is the way to live your life.  This is the God kind of life.

In the God kind of life, there is no sorrow.  In the God kind of life there is joy and there is the presence of the Lord, in all things that you do.  There is no part of your life where God is in the closet and you’re out.  No, there isn’t.  In the God kind of life, it’s walking every day in the presence of the Lord.

Getting up and looking in the mirror.  How many of you have started doing it?  I do it every day, I look in the mirror when I’m brushing my teeth and I say, “God lives inside this man.”  See, cause during the night, I might have been sleeping, thinking some wrong thought, dreaming some wrong dream.  So I want to remind myself, that I’m the man of God.  I look and I say, “God lives inside this man.”  And then I’m concerned about my physical body and my mental, so I say to myself, Lord have mercy.  “God lives inside this man and He walks in divine health.”  [amen]  Divine health means I may have a symptom but it can’t stay.  [amen]  Lord have mercy.

So Jesus said to us, “I am the way, the truth, and the life.”  When He says, “No man comes to the Father except by me.”  We can get very confused.  He didn’t say no one can come to the Father except by the Living Word Chapel… [amen]  He didn’t say no one can come except by the Baptist Church.  No one can come to the Father except by the Catholic Church.  No one can come to the Father except by the little storefront.  I love the little storefronts have the biggest names.  [laughter]  Deliverance Redeeming Church of the Power of the Anointed One and the Blood of the Lord which Cleanses.  [laughter]  You know this big name.  And you look at the name of the guy and it says, it says, Leo Smith, Apostle, Prophet, Bishop, Pastor, Teacher, World Evangelist.  And I go, give me a break.

Nobody has a lock on this thing but Jesus Christ.  [amen]  Nobody has the formula but Jesus Christ.  Run up on the mountain there and find baba whootsie, whootsie, and he’s only telling you what he thinks.  [amen]  But sit down with Jesus Christ and He tells you what He knows.  [amen]  And He knows everything.  [clapping, amen]  Praise God.  Boy, when I grow up I’m gonna be a preacher, I tell you that.

So let’s look at this other scripture that is our keynote scripture.  And it’s in verse 17, the same place, but in verse 17…  In verse 17 it’s the first four words right there.  “…the Spirit of truth…”  and then He goes on, “…whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees Him nor knows Him; but you know Him,…”  How do you know Him?  “…for He dwells with you and will be in you.”  [amen]  Isn’t it good to know God has not left us as orphans.  [amen, hallelujah]  The Spirit of what?  [truth]  The Spirit of what?  [truth]  The Spirit of what?  [truth]  The Spirit of truth… Now I want you to look at some definitions.  Can you listen up here?  Definitions.  I love the dictionary as you know.  I believe that words are important and we need to know what they are saying, what they mean.

The word “fact”, well, what is a fact?  We say something is a fact.  What’s a fact?  You ready?  [ready]  A thing that is known to have occurred and to exist.  Stay with me now.  Please stay with me in Jesus’ Name.  A fact is something that is known or to have occurred to exist.  A fact is something that is verified information or a piece of evidence.  I’m gonna run that to you real quick here.  A fact is something that is known.  We’re not going to deny that it exists.  It is something that we know has occurred to exist.  It does exist.  It is true in the sense that it is verified information.  We know that it’s verified information.  It does exist.  And it is a piece of evidence.  Everybody got that?  [yes]

Well, what is fantasy then?  Fantasy is the inventing of images… a fanciful mental image…a daydream, a whimsical speculation.  I like that.  Whimsical speculation.  An invention or a fabrication, something that is …make believe.  Fantasy.  Inventing images, a fanciful mental image, a daydream, whimsical speculation, an invention, a fabrication, something that is make believe.  Our world just thrives on fantasy. [yes it does] Our world thrives on fantasy.  Television has unfortunately captured the minds of the mentality of our culture.  And most everything that we see is fantasy.  It’s whimsical fantasy.  It’s inventions.  And unfortunately what happens is if you fantasize long and deep you will cross over and cause your fantasy to become your truth.  [that’s right]

Can I give you an example?  It is a fantasy to believe that wealth will make you happy.  [yeah]  It is a fantasy, but our culture tells us it’s a fact that if you get rich you will fulfill your fantasies and you will be happy.  That’s what it tells.  You know, what does it tell?  You watch TV and a commercial comes on.  And a commercial shows you what?  A lady riding a bicycle, and she’s just so happy.  And she’s riding her bicycle and she looks over at her husband and he’s riding his bicycle.  And they’re so happy and they get off of their bicycle and they’re playing tennis and they’re having a great time.  And then in the evening, they have a candlelight dinner and they’re looking lovingly into each other’s eyes.  And the fantasy is if you take that drug.  The fact is you will have a sick stomach, you will puke, you will have undefined symptoms, and if you take that drug… it will mess you up.  It has so many bad side effects that the person that tells you about the side effects is a professional reader.  [laughter] …  You know a professional reader, somebody that can read it very fast and say it so fast so that you don’t understand what you said and you can stay in your fantasy.  [laughter] … Fantasy.  Fantasy.

Want to sell a car?  Give me a foxy blonde, put her next to the car, and we can sell that car. Why is America in the mess that it’s in?  Happiness is not owning a home… That is a fantasy. Happiness is not owning, happiness is owning a home that you can afford.  [amen]  … Glory to God.  [hallelujah]  Happiness is not having a man.  He could be your worst nightmare.  You might be better off without him.  [amen]  Glory be to God.  If I only had a man.  [laughter]  You’ll later be, “Please get rid of this man.”  [laughter]  Pastor Don, please, please help me get rid of this man.  I think the saddest thing I have to tell the people is that I don’t do divorce.  [amen]  You know.  I don’t do divorce.  Cause they really want you to approve the fact that they want to get rid of this guy.  Well, hey, you picked him.  [laughter]  Fantasy.  Inventing images.  Fanciful mental images.

You want to hear one of the saddest of all?  [yes]  We really think, the fantasy is I want to be a star.  If I could just get on MTV and win the talent show. If I could win, you know, if I could have my moment of fame, what’s it called?  Idol.  What’s that thing called?  What’s that show? [American Idol]  American Idol, and why do you want to be the American Idol?  So you can become a rock or a pop star.  I’m thinking to myself, has anybody looked at what happens to rock and pop stars?  [come on] … Have we examined the outcome?  The end game?  What about the end game of rock and pop stars?  Elvis was the king of rock.  Michael’s the king of pop.  How about Bette Midler?  She’s still cranking along.  Hope she’s healthy and hope she’ll live a long time.  Hope she’s doing good.  But guess what?  Her predecessor didn’t make it.  [that’s right]  Most of you all don’t remember the 1960’s.  But the one at the top of the heap was who?  Janice Joplin.  Ah, some of you all old folks.  [laughter]  Janice Joplin.  Top of the heap.  Look what happened to her.  And we can go on and on and on and on. But fantasy.  Our fantasies can become our facts.  [that’s right]  But our fantasies should never become our truth.  [amen]

Well, what is truth then?  What does the dictionary say truth is?  Truth.  A quality or state of being true.  In accordance with facts.  So, you don’t throw out the facts when you’re dealing with the truth.  You look at them, you bring them together, and you say, truth or reality, genuine.  But then, here’s the part that truth is.  Not spurious or counterfeit… [right]  Not spurious or counterfeit.  Meaning, there’s no sham.  There’s no phoniness, there’s no faking in it.  And then it says what?  It says, conforming to a standard, and I love this, or expectation… Truth conforms to a standard, and truth has with it an expectation of what?  Correctly positioned, balanced, upright, honest, and without variation… That’s truth.

What is this Bible?  This is the grandest book that has survived all attacks.  [yeah]  It’s a best seller.  It has always been a best seller since it hit the shelves.  Since it hit the shelves, it has been the best seller.  [amen]  Now, let me ask you a simple question.  If it was filled with lies, as Islam says, that it’s a corrupted book, if it was filled with lies and all like that, how long would this last?  It wouldn’t last long at all.  Then why is it still around?  Because it is the truth.  [amen]  Come on, say “amen” like you mean it.  [amen]  It’s true historically, it’s true scientifically.  Anyone that challenges it will fall on this rock…and get busted up.  [amen]  Because it cannot be disproved or argued with.  It always works.

Anyone says to you, I’ve read the Bible, it’s been tampered with and translated and all that, you ask them the next question.  How much of it have you read?  [alright]  And you will always find, I have never had a person say the Bible is not the truth, that it’s filled with lies and confusion, I’ve never had a person like that say to me, and I’ve read the whole thing.  Or that I even have understanding of it… How many of you have read the whole thing?  At least once.  Good.  The rest of you get busy because you need the whole thing.  You need from Genesis to Revelation to really get this thing.  Buy one of those Bibles that says, the Bible in 365 days.  Personally, I think you should do it in a month.  You know.  I mean, it’s not as long as The Tale of Two Cities.  It’s only 1500 pages.  It’s as long as a book I read, Shogun.  You know, about Japanese history and stuff like that.  Get you a Bible and read it.  It won’t take you that long.

Now, let’s go to another passage.  John, Chapter 18.  John, Chapter 18. Right past this one… Jesus has been arrested and He’s on trial.  John, Chapter 18…  Are you there?  [yes]  John, Chapter 18.  I’m going to begin at verse 28.  “Then they led Jesus from Caiaphas to the Praetorium, and it was early morning.  But they themselves did not go into the Praetorium, lest they should be defiled, but that they might eat the Passover.  Pilate then went out to them…”  Pilate is the Roman Praetorium.  He’s the head governor there.  “…What accusation do you bring against this Man?”  They answered and said to him, “If He were not an evildoer, we would not have delivered Him up to you.”  Is that a fact?  Is that their fantasy?  Or is that the truth?

Obviously it’s not the truth for they could not find a sin that they accused Him of that could be verified by what?  By an honest witness.  [that’s right]  So, this verse here, “If He were not an evildoer, we would not have delivered Him up to you.”  is their fantasy.  [right]  But what did they do?  They took their fantasy and they called it a fact.  And they are presenting it to Pilate as the truth.  In other words, they’re acting like a politician.  I’d better move on.  [laughter]  Cause there’s still some people in the Body of Christ that are still political and they really need to grow up.

Verse 31.  “Then Pilate said to them, “You take Him and judge Him according to your law.”  Therefore the Jews said to him, “It is not lawful for us to put anyone to death,”  that the saying of Jesus might be fulfilled which He spoke, signifying by what death He would die.”  In other words, they want Him to be crucified.  “Then Pilate entered the Praetorium again…”  and he said to Jesus, watch this.  “…Are You the King of the Jews?”  Jesus answered him, “Are you speaking for yourself about this, or did others tell you this concerning Me?”  In other words, Jesus is saying, is this your fantasy, is this your fact, or are you telling the truth? …

You see, after I get through with you today, the stuff that you let slide, you’re not going to be able to let it slide anymore.  The stuff that runs through your brain, you’re going to have a way and a system of bringing it into the reality of your mind, and examining by these three concerns and be able to get honest with yourself, for out of anything but honesty change is not possible.  [yes]  You cannot walk the Way if you are lost in the confusion of  your mind, calling facts “fantasies” and fantasies “truth”.  That’s just an epilogue to the end of the surlog to the prelude, to the conclusion of the whole thing.  [laughter]

Verse 34.  “…Are you speaking for yourself about this, or did others tell you this concerning me?”  Pilate answered, “Am I a Jew?  Your own nation and the chief priests have delivered You to me.  What have you done?”  Jesus answered…”  Now is He going to tell him His fantasy, His facts, or is He going to give Him the truth?  “…My kingdom is not of this world…”  What is that?  Is that’s Jesus’ fantasy?  [no]  That is His truth.  And He says, “…If My kingdom were of his world…If My kingdom were of this world, My servants would fight…”  That’s a fact.  “…so that I should not be delivered to the Jews; but now My kingdom is not from here.”  Lord have mercy.

The Truth is telling the truth.  He is saying, you’re looking at Me, I’m not giving you something of fanciful fact here.  He says, I am telling you the truth.  My Kingdom is not of this earth…Then, can you go on a little further with me?  [yes]  Yes, maybe?  [yes]  Good.  “Pilate therefore said to Him, “Are You a king then?”  Jesus answered, “You say rightly that I am a king...”  In other words, He’s saying you got that fact right.  That’s a fact and you got it right.  Then He says, “…For this cause I was born, and for this cause I have come into the world, that I should bear witness to the truth. Everyone who is of the truth hears My voice.

Now I want to show you something.  In Verse 37, Pilate goes from the fantasies that the Jews had told him, and He now has given a fact.  He has described the fact that Jesus rightly is a king.  He’s got his fact right.  But does he know the truth?  Well, let’s find out.  Let’s find out.  “Pilate said to Him, “What is truth?””  Pilate’s got a fact, he’s standing in front of the Truth, and he doesn’t have a clue… But, look what he comes to the conclusion.  “…I find no fault in Him at all.”

In Chapter 19.  Go to verse 6 because the matter isn’t done yet.  “Therefore when the chief priests and officers saw Him,…”  saw Jesus  “…theycried out, saying, “Crucify Him, crucify Him!”  Pilate said to them, “You take Him and crucify Him, for I find no fault in Him.”  The Jews answered him, “We have a law, and according to our law He ought to die, because He made Himself the Son of God.” …

That’s of their fantasy.  Jesus didn’t make Himself anything.  It is a fact that Jesus is who He says He was.  Therefore it is the truth.  “Therefore, when Pilate hard that saying, he was the more afraid, and went again into the Praetorium, and said to Jesus, “Where are you from?”  But Jesus gave him no answer.  Then Pilate said to Him, “Are you not speaking to me?  Do You not know that I have power to crucify You, and power to release You?”  (chuckles)  The boy’s having a fantasy here.  And look what Jesus says.  “…You could have no power at all against Me unless it had been given to you from above.  Therefore the one who delivered Me to you has the greater sin.”  [amen]  I got one “amen” there in the back.  [amen]

Let’s break this down so we can get some understanding here.  Pilate believes that he has spoken truth, but he has actually only touched the truth in identifying that Jesus is a king.  And the rest of it is fantasy.  Even his position of power is an idea fantasy, a whimsical fantasy, in that he believes that he has the facts right, that he has authority and power over Jesus.  But the truth is … the truth is, he doesn’t.  The only truth that exists there is that what Pilate is about to do has been prophesied before the dawn of time, and he is acting out a scenario and his fantasy isn’t the truth.  We have to be discerning and recognize that there is much confusion between our fanciful, whimsical thinking and our truth and what we see as true.

About Heather Marsten

Welcome to Heather's Blog. I'm looking forward to meeting you and checking out your sites. I just moved about nine years of material over from another blog site, Xanga, who may close down mid-July. At first I was disappointed to make the move because I had a lifetime membership at Xanga and had to spend weeks transferring posts. But now I'm thrilled. Already I've met new bloggers and read many new websites. Blogging is a wonderful way to expand my horizons and garner new ideas. I'm a happily married mom of three young adults. My husband and I are proud to watch our children grow and venture out into the world. My daughter is still in college but my two sons have graduated. One has a job and the other just graduated and is in the process of finding a job in his field, physics. Anyone know of any jobs out there? I'm proud of our children and love watching them grow and mature. They've become fine, compassionate, and loving people. Empty nest? Nah, I'm too busy to let an empty nest bother me. Not enough hours in the day. My husband and I enjoy quiet time together and I have many interests to pursue - one of which is blogging :D I am a born-again believer and love God. As you read this blog, you will discover that Bible studies thrill me. There is so much wisdom contained between the covers of the Bible and I am fortunate to sit under the teachings of a remarkable pastor, Pastor Don Moore. Members of our church (Living Word Chapel in West Hurley, New York) are encouraged to teach and there are visiting pastors who stop by our church, I also study the Bible on my own and love sharing what I learn. One other passion is writing. My current work in process is a memoir. A scene from my memoir was published in a book called: Heavenly Company: Entertaining Angels Unaware - an anthology of angelic encounters compiled by Cecil Murphy. I'm hoping my memoir will encourage other survivors of abuse. I grew up in a home filled with abuse, including incest. For most of my life I was searching for something that would fill the void of not being loved by my parents. I tried many ways to find that love -- therapy, relationships, occult studies, and keeping my life so filled I had no way to think about my past. It was only when I discovered God that I was able to put the pieces of my life back together and walk forward in a joyous life. My nickname - wondering has changed from wondering where the heck God was in my life, to wondering what incredible adventure is going to happen next. I hope you enjoy my site. Please say hi, share some thoughts, and ask questions. I look forward to meeting you and checking out your sites. Have a blessed day. Heather
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