Listen in on William Jessup University’s chapel series every Wednesday and Friday to hear speakers from across the globe, bringing messages from God’s word to our students, faculty, and staff.
How many of you this is your first semester at Jessup? brand new Jessup. I mean, brand new Jessup. Yeah. We celebrate you here. How many of you are seniors this you hope and pray is your last semester? Oh, that’s great. That’s so great. Can you believe it’s 2020? I mean, just oh my goodness. It’s just amazing. Now, how many of you would say either during the Christmas experience, or in the first couple of days already back in the in the first semester of 2020, that you’ve experienced some measure of stress in your life? Does anybody have any stress? Okay, so
I felt like for the first chapel, we should start with a nursery rhyme All in favor of nursery rhymes, that’d be good. Okay, here we go. Humpty Dumpty. We’re gonna put it up on the screen. And we’re just going to do a little exercise here. You can read along with me if you’d like. Humpty Dumpty sat on a wall. Humpty Dumpty had a great fall. All the king’s horses and all the king’s men could not put Humpty Dumpty back together again. Now, that is an amazing time. How many of you heard that as a kid? You heard that nursery rhyme? Okay. So maybe you just heard it and sort of in a collection of Mother Goose stories or something. I was doing some research, they don’t even know who Mother Goose was. So these these are the tough issues of life. Let’s keep that up on the screen because I was thinking about it as a child. I know I heard that nursery rhyme over and over again. I know it’s simple. I know the messages are playing, but I have some questions. I have some questions about this rhyme. First of all, it’s never been completely clear to me and and don’t jump to the answer you think but it’s never been completely clear to me. Who is Humpty Dumpty? I just I don’t know who that is. Second of all, why was they sitting on the wall? Like, why did Humpty Dumpty go to the wall? Who is he and why did he fall? How do you sit on a wall and then fall and then the immediately sort of national enquirer thing I want to know if he was pushed, was Humpty Dumpty pushed from the wall? And then it got really intense for me because the Ryan says that All the king’s horses and all the king’s men, like I want to know, before I figured out about putting back together, why were they concerned? Why were All the king’s horses and all the king’s men concerned? And then I want to know what’s Humpty Dumpty? The king. It never really says this, but if Humpty Dumpty was the king, how could it have been that somebody let him alone on the wall and let him fall? Was there anybody who would gain by the death of Humpty Dumpty? I wonder about these things. And then I started thinking about these King’s horses and King’s Men, that they couldn’t put Humpty Dumpty back together again. Is that because he was really an egg? That’s the way it shows it in most of these things. I mean, what kind of egg is a king? It just seems very odd to me.
Well, I don’t know if you’re feeling less stress or more, but as I was thinking about it, I was thinking, oh, gosh, you can make simple things really complex. Or you can make complex things really simple, but for whatever reason, I was thinking about Humpty Dumpty. And I think one of the reasons I think about Humpty Dumpty is I had an experience this Christmas I thought I’d tell you about that might be of interest to you. I got to visit some friends. They’re older friends, but I’ve known them for almost 25 years. And we don’t pretend Nevada for a day and back where we used to live. And so I took a little trip from Reno went down to to Carson Valley area and visited with these friends. And he’s 84.
And she’s 77. And what’s cool about these friends, even though I’ve known them for about 25 years, I got to marry them 10 years ago. And 10 years ago, I’m standing up with what was then a 74 year old man and a 67 year old woman and I did their wedding. And it was cool. It was a outdoor wedding. It was a lot of fun. adult children were there from there with their kids. And I was just kind of a cool thing of sort of an extended family gathering. So I’m marrying this 67 year old lady to the 74 year old man, it was a glorious service. But before it started, I go to my wife and by that time, I think we’d been married maybe 40 years or 30 years. And I said to her Hey, during the wedding ceremony today, I’m going to tell the Humpty Dumpty story. Now, most of you in this room have been married more than 2030 years. You don’t know what that feels like, but she just looked at me with that kind of look like you better not mess this up. Because you know 6774 You better get this wedding ceremony thing right and telling the Humpty Dumpty story doesn’t seem appropriate, but trust me, I got this. It’s good. So I told the Humpty Dumpty story, and as I did the bride and the groom were looking each other like, Where is he going with this? Like I’ve already known them for 15 years this time, but now I’m marrying them together and they’re looking at me like, what are you doing? And then out of the corner of my eye, I saw the adult children, the adult children were on the edge of freaking out because the pastor that they’ve heard so many really wonderful things about, that’s me, the pastor they’ve heard so many wonderful things about is performing a ceremony for their 67 and 74 year old dad, mom, and I’m telling a nursery rhyme. And it was all kind of freaky, unless you knew the backstory, because you see, I wasn’t just marrying them. I was re marrying them. I was re marrying them, because about 35 years earlier, they had gotten divorced. And husband had gotten remarried, been married for 20 years. And his second wife died. So when his second wife died after a number of years, and I was the pastor of the husband, who I didn’t know, back prior to when they had first been married the first wife when when the second wife died, and I did her service. And we spent the next few years with him saying, I don’t want to live. I have no reason to live. And when he said that, we kept praying into his life and kept believing that God had a purpose for him. And he kept being involved with his kids. And he kept being involved with his grandkids. And God kept giving him a purpose to live every day when when all that began to happen. It was a number of years, I think, maybe seven. But in the process of that, what happened was he not only fell back in love with the mother of his children, his first wife, but what God began to do is he began to piece back together, the broken, shattered reality of their family picture. So it had been broken for a lot of years and about a lot of pain and they’ve kind of worked through a lot of that but for the adult children and for the grandkids. And for Dad, Mom, this was a Humpty Dumpty story. And the nursery rhyme says, you know, Humpty Dumpty is great fall was such that All the king’s horses and all the king’s men Couldn’t put Humpty back together again. But part of what I got to participate in about a number of years ago, 10 years ago was a miracle. It’s the favorite wedding I’ve ever done in my entire life. And I’ve done some really cool weddings, but it was my favorite wedding. Because it testified to the power of God to bring that which was broken, that which was shattered that which was stress filled that which was dead and bring it back to life.
So the first chapter of 2020, and I know you got a big huge Involvement Fair out there. So I’m just going to share maybe three verses with you. And then I’m going to tell you a couple things. I’m gonna let you go. So it’s gonna be kind of simple. But I want you to know when Humpty Dumpty sits on the wall and Humpty Dumpty has a great fall. And there’s nobody on planet earth that can put Humpty back together again. That that is never your story. It is never your story. Because the God of heaven and earth specializes in fixing broken people. In Romans chapter five, verse one, it says, Therefore now we have peace with God, through our Lord Jesus, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus. Over the years, I’ve come to think about it this way that no, Jesus means no peace. And oh, no, Jesus means no peace. And by the way, we, we can simulate peace, we’re pretty good at simulating stuff in our lives, right? We can simulate peace. We can sort of imagine that we have peace, we get peace for a period of time. But how many of you know that when the Bible talks about peace, it’s talking about lasting peace. When the Bible describes peace, it’s not just describing something you get Tuesday afternoon, and you get to hold on to it for four hours, or it’s not something you experience for a week and some of us have had that we’ve had like, days or weeks, maybe a few months where it’s been peaceful. But how many of you know that most of life kind of feels like a series of waves the I lived in Southern California for many years, and there’s a Riptide and the Riptide is constantly sort of pulling you from the safety of the shore out into sort of the fury of the ocean. It’s part of what makes the amazing waves and So Cal I grew up a lot around Huntington Beach, and those waves are great for body surfing and great for professional surf boarding. But the truth is that Riptide can be kind of dangerous. And we live in a world where there’s always the presence of rip tides that threatened to take the piece that lasts for an afternoon or a day or a week or, or a month or a few months and just keeps taking it out and the turbulence of our lives and so no Jesus means no peace and particularly no lasting peace. But if you know Jesus kn o w, if you really have a deep abiding connection with him. If when we sing songs, you’re not all about like, hey, it’s hot or cold in here, if you’re not all about, Hey, I like that song didn’t like that song. But if you realize that when we’re singing a song, and we’re praying, we’re actually connecting our hearts to the heart of God. We’re connecting our hearts to the one who made us. If when you enter into an experience of worship, and you’re reading your Bible, and when you’re talking with a friend, and when you’re engaging in conversation about the Word of God, you’re thinking about his presence in your life. If you enter into worship, and You know, God, then you can know a piece that the Bible describes as passing all understanding. I’ve had the privilege over the years to be with people in the midst of great tragedy and tears fall and pain exists. And even just before the Christmas holidays, one of our former board members, aged 60, which is getting younger every year, by age 60, this board member ended up dying and asleep. And although that’s a horrifying tragedy, and a lot of tears are shed and I cried, and I bet you feel the burden of that and the loss of that. What we know if we know Jesus, is that we know the peace that passes all understanding.
We know the peace that tells us for sure that no matter what’s going on in the turbulence of life, that he is the one on whom all things rest. So I’ll share with you quickly Colossians chapter one, I want to talk about Jesus and Humpty Dumpty a little bit Colossians 121 to 22 the Apostle Paul says this word to the believers in Colossi who were kind of struggling with whether Jesus was not only supernatural but But was he really different than everyone else. And here’s what he says, once you were alienated from God, and you were enemies in your minds because of your evil behavior. But now he has reconciled you by Christ’s physical body through death, to present you holy in His sight without blemish and free from accusation. Well just quickly say some words to you that hopefully encourage you. If you have a relationship with Jesus Christ, you didn’t know that what happened is that when Jesus came to this earth, God come in the flesh. That’s what the word incarnation means God makes himself flesh when Jesus comes out of the halls of heaven as it were using human words. And as one translation said, when he comes and pitches his tent, in our neighborhood, when Jesus comes in the flesh, the part of the fundamental reason he comes is not only to reveal the character and nature of God, but to literally die on the cross. We just celebrated Christmas and in a few months, we’ll celebrate Easter, when we celebrate Easter know that the man who hangs on the cross was the reason why the baby comes in the manger. The baby in the manger grows up to be the man on the cross when Jesus hangs on the cross. And he says these words, it is finished. He’s not just announcing his death. He’s announcing the completion of the work for which the father sent him. So Jesus comes he hangs on the cross, and it’s through his death, that your sins can be forgiven. In some ways, think about this, if I could, I don’t want you to be crass. But think about this, like Humpty Dumpty, when you have that great fall, and all the pieces of your life are, are shattered and held in your broken hands and just say, I’m done. I can’t ever fix this. You know what, that’s the point at which you’re absolutely seeking speaking truth. When your life is shattered and broken, you cannot fix this. The Bible says that our sins, our behavior, create this separation between us and God, he’s holy and perfect. And we’re not say to the person that night next to you, you’re not perfect. Go and say that just really quick. You’re not perfect, say it. You can be a little mad when you say it. Okay, now say it back to that person. You’re not perfect either. Go ahead, say it. Come on. So here’s the truth. There’s nobody in this room. There’s nobody in this room who’s perfect. And some of you took great joy at saying that to the person seated next to you. There’s nobody in this room is perfect. There’s nobody ever wants us to be perfect. We are not perfect, but God is. And when you become aware of your imperfection, when you become aware of your sinfulness. When you become aware of the fact that you’ve fallen from holiness and perfection, you become aware of the stuff in your life, and it’s sort of held in all the broken pieces, as at that moment when you can know this. When Jesus died on the cross, He paid the penalty. He was a substitution for you. He died on that cross, so that you could have your sins forgiven. And when he was laid in the tomb, a lot of people thought that was in the story. But when Jesus rose again on the third day, he conquered death, sin and the grave he conquered hell literally, and made it possible for all that broken stuff of our life to be put back together. So when he died on the cross and said it is finished, he was saying it’s finished. You can be forgiven. You can be made whole again. And you can be free. The end of that passage says that we’re without blemish. And we’re free from accusation, free from accusation. So you know what you are not who you were. You are not who you were. You are not what you’ve done. But if you have a relationship with Jesus Christ, you are what he says you are. If you will grab hold of that, that will be the taproot of your life that will weather any storm. And I promise you, by the way, there will be all kinds of stressful things happen this semester, it will, the first week, they’re just suckering. You in, they’re reviewing the syllabus. They’re talking about the class and the professors nice, and they are, but they’re suckering you in. By the fourth or fifth week, you’re going to be going, I can’t keep up with a reading. I can’t do the writing. How do they expect me to memorize all this stuff? And whatever particular discipline you’re in, it’s gonna be stressful. And you know, what? If your college degree wasn’t stressful, it’s not worth it.
Now, a lot of you going, No, I want no stress. I wanted to punch the easy ticket, where’s that little button? But that’s not the way it works, folks, anything worth having is worth working for, and you’re going to face stress, you’re going to face challenges, you’re going to go I can’t do this. And when all that happens, I just want you to hear this. You are without blemish. And you are free from accusation if you’re in Jesus. So you know what, when all that stuff comes at you, and all those accusations from your past and who you were and what you’ve done, you just absolutely declare if you are in Jesus, I am not who I was. I’m not what I did. I am who Jesus says I am. One of the little section I’m done. First 26 through 20. That’s pastor talk for about five more minutes, don’t you dare think it’s gone less than that. 26 through 29 the mystery that’s been kept hidden for ages and generations, but is now disclosed to the saints. To them God has given to make known among the Gentiles, the glorious riches of this mystery, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory, I’m gonna pause there Christ in you the hope of glory. If you come to know Jesus, what happens is is that Jesus comes to live inside of you in the presence of it in the, in the, in the experience of the Holy Spirit. And when Jesus lives inside of you, that is the hope of glory. Another passage in Scripture says, The Holy Spirit is given into us as a deposit as a guarantee of what you’re going to inherit. I call you tomorrow and say, Hey, here’s the deal. Zuckerberg just called This is amazing. You’re gonna want to come to my office, you come to my office tomorrow, and I tell you this, Zuckerberg just called and here’s the deal. He’s got too much money. So what he’s gonna do is he’s negotiated a legal document when you finished your degree at Jessup, if you successfully finished your degree, he’s going to give you $100 million in the bank account of your choosing your liking coming to the president’s office, right. At that point of going, this is a good deal. And then I go one step further, I say as an incentive to ensure that you complete your college degree at William Jessup and receive the 100 million dollars that Zuckerberg has promised. He’s putting a down payment of a million dollars in your account today. By the way, this has never happened and likely never will. But I was just imagining it. So you’re in my office. I’ve told you you’re getting a million dollars from Zuckerberg today as a down payment. And he’s actually signed a contract a legal contract that upon completion of your degree at William Jessup University, you will receive $100 million. Now I got a couple questions just like the Humpty Dumpty thing, how many of you are motivated to finish your college degree? If you get 100 mil when you finish? Is that like a good thing? Right? Yeah. And how many of you going like a million dollars in my account today changes my life, right? But how many of you would be more motivated thinking about what is at the end of the the process, the end of the journey, because you know how amazing that is? Well, if this crass example of money is of any motivation or sense to you, let me say this, when you ask Jesus to come into your heart and say, God, I just want to take my brokenness and all the broken stuff and I want to hand it to you, I want to say Jesus, all my hopes, all my dreams, my future, I want to put that in front of you and live my life with open palms. The Bible says that God places Jesus in your heart, that the Holy Spirit comes into your life. And that he is the hope of glory, because what you’re getting now is an infinitesimally larger comparison than a million to 100 million. It’s the down payment. It’s the deposit of the presence of God, but someday, we will be fully present with him. And the Apostle Paul is declaring that that’s the hope of glory. He goes on to say this in verse 28. We proclaim him admonishing and teaching everyone with all Wisdom so that we may present everyone perfect in Christ. That word perfect means complete, it means the end of of the of the of the process, it means literally without blemish. And I want you to know that every single one of you will be made perfect. Because of time, I’m going to quickly say this, I’ve broken things before. And I’ve used silly glue or, or Krazy, glue or other kinds of glue to piece them back together. And can I tell you that when I’ve used something like Krazy Glue to piece things back together, that even if I’ve done a good job with that craftsmanship, and I’m not very good at that kind of stuff, even if I do a good job. It’s never better than the unbroken original. But I want you to hear this, in your relationship with Jesus, when you come into right relationship with Jesus Christ, the King of kings in the Lord of lords, the Prince of Peace, Almighty God, when you come into relationship with him. As you grow to maturity, as you go to wisdom, when you get remade in Christ, you are better than the original.
You were never going to be able to be all that you can be until you are in Christ. And when you are in Christ, he makes you perfect and complete. One of the reasons I so love the body of Christ and all of its different manifestations, and churches big and small and loud and soft, and steveland, stained glass and warehouse. The reason I love all those kind of churches is that in those churches are all kinds of beautiful people. They’re not beautiful, because they’re perfect. They’re beautiful, because they’re in process of becoming all that Jesus intends them to be. Verse 29, To this end, the apostle Paul says, I labor just want to stop. And every once in a while people think that being a Christian is easy. Like I don’t know where we got that. That’s not in the Bible. I’ve had the privilege to be able to watch five childbirth with my wife and be in a couple situations with my daughters. childbirth is not easy. Oh my goodness, if men had to give birth to children, we’d have the end of the population. This generation, man could not handle it. I I’m not like kidding, I’m dead serious. I have watched the childbirth experience. There’s no way men could do that. But when I watch women give childbirth and I know the labor and the intensity. And then you see what happens with a miracle of God. When I say to myself is this is a hard work. And the prize is also worth it. To this end, I labor struggling with all his energy, which so powerfully works in me.
Very quickly, I’ll close with this. Three things we proclaim him. It’s all about Jesus, folks. If you get turned around the axle, somehow, Jessup for some of you this is your first semester. for others of you, this is your last if you get turned around the axle somehow and you get focused on something other than Jesus. And somehow, some way Jessup has any part of that I’m sorry. Because I want you to know, Matthew 633, Seek ye first the kingdom of God and His righteousness. And all these things to be added to the core of the core of William Jessup University is the person and work of Jesus Christ. That is what everything is all about. So in your study of the sciences, and the arts, and the humanities, and Bible, theology, and leadership, and when you think about all the different things that you’re studying, those are all awesome ways in which you can bring glory and honor to God. Jesus Christ is the core of everything we proclaim him, we don’t lift up us, we lift up Jesus. Number two, we’re completed in him. It is the hope of glory in us. He is making us like Jesus. And then number three, we labor in him. I love the fact that it says, we struggle with all his energy. Christian life is not meant to be lived on your own strength. That’s insane. The Christian life is all about Jesus. So Humpty Dumpty had a fatal fall. But I want you to know that no such thing half exists for human beings. if they’ll put their trust in Jesus, would you close your eyes for just a moment, as you close your eyes, we’re going to pray. And as we pray out, I want you to know I’m going to pray over you. I’m going to pray for great success. I’m going to pray for joy, I’m gonna have great peace, I know you’re gonna go out and there’s gonna be all kinds of things you’d be involved in, but I want you to know this, we’re gonna do something a little new. We have a prayer team and with your eyes closed up here towards the front and to the side. And then in the back with David, Harpreet and others. We’re gonna have prayer folks available. There’s the students, their staff, the faculty, they just want to pray for you. This is the body of Christ, folks. We don’t we don’t have to put on airs with one another. We don’t have to like have our stuff all together. To be honest, this is a room full of Humpty Dumpty. We’ve all had Great Falls. And the truth is, nobody can really put us all back together again, except for Jesus. So with your eyes closed, when I finished my prayer, you’re welcome to come up and pray with somebody. Maybe just share a little bit of your story and they’ll pray over you. Make it very personal Spirit of the Living God. Ask that you’d move in this place. There’s somebody in this room right now who would say, Look, I don’t even know what he’s talking about. I do not know who Jesus is. If that’s your condition today, where you do not know who Jesus is, you do not have a relationship with Jesus Christ. You do not know what all this stuff about the Bible and dying on the cross and our sins and forgiveness if you don’t understand that, you come up to one of these people, the Spirit of the Living God is touching you right now and telling you today’s the day, I got to get my life anchored. I get to get my life settled on the foundation of the personal work of Jesus Christ. There’s somebody in this room who said, Look, I’ve known about Jesus a long time I grew up in church, I went to Christian school, I have maybe been a longtime church person, but the truth is, man. It’s just not every day for me. It’s just not a reality. I don’t really experience and know God, like you’re describing. I know what you’re talking about. Holy Spirit, would you move right now. And I pray that today would be the day that men and women who feel like they’ve just been kind of going through the motions and doing the Jews Jesus deal at a distance, that today would be the day where they would know you and experience you and connect their heart with you in ways that would transform them forever, both for now and for all eternity. And Lord, there’s somebody in this room who says, Look, man, I love Jesus. And I believe in the power of God. But to be honest, I’m Humpty Dumpty right now. My life feels broken and shattered. I got stuff going on in my family and I have stuff going on in my life and financial pressures and relationship pressures and maybe something’s going on medically and just there’s this stress. Holy Spirit, would you minister now across this auditorium, as people are prepared to pray, as our prayer team is ready to go? Ask Holy Spirit that you administer and that we’d have great freedom in this place. We ask all these things in the precious awesome, wonderful, glorious matchless name of Jesus, Jesus, Jesus, Jesus, amen.