Why Grace is More Liberating Than You Believe with John Lindell

Why Grace is More Liberating Than You Believe with John Lindell

Grace is one word that sums up what God has done for us. Listen as Pastor John Lindell shares why Christians are not fully understanding God's Grace from his new book "Soul Set Free." He explains how grace covers our past, present and future. When you hear Pastor Lindell you will take away "Nothing provides more freedom than the Gospel of Jesus Christ."

34 Minutes • 21 days ago

Episode Notes

Greenelines with

Dr. Steve Greene

Guest: John Lindell

Grace is one word that sums up what God has done for us. Listen as Pastor John Lindell shares why Christians are not fully understanding God's Grace from his new book "Soul Set Free." He explains how grace covers our past, present and future. When you hear Pastor Lindell you will take away "Nothing provides more freedom than the Gospel of Jesus Christ."

Introduction

Dr. Steve Greene: This is the Greenelines podcast. I'm Steve Greene on the Charisma Podcast Network. This show is brought to you by my book, Love Leads. I am so excited to talk with you about my book. I haven't done this. I feel a little funny about it. But at the same time, I believe the Lord gave me this book. It is inspired. I hope you would say that after you've read it. It's filled with Scripture, and concepts about leadership that really begin in the home. I've always felt that if we can't lead at home, we're surely not going to be able to lead in any business environment. So, I think it's a carry over. I'm trying to debunk that myth that you got to be strong and tough to be a good leader. I just believe you've got to do what Jesus did and love. If we can't love one another, if we can't demonstrate love at work, what are we doing leading? If God is love, and we don't love, how then are we supposed to lead? Are we supposed to lead by opinion or by the size of my biceps, or how loud I can yell? No, I think we're supposed to lead based on biblical principles. I've tried to identify those throughout this book. In fact, this book is a spiritual connection between all of our relationships and our productivity, that if we work together, we love one another, we treat each other with respect and honor and accountability … if we do that, we're going to be more productive, we're going to get more done and I teach a complete sermon on the productive home. I believe that we've got to learn to be more productive at home. This book of fine will help you with that.

I want to read you something John Bevere said about my book. Is this vain? I hope you don't think so. I hope it isn't because listen to what John Bevere says about my book. Love Leads is a must read for all those in a position of leadership. Now, before you say to me, I'm not in a position of leadership, may I say to you that yes, you are. You are to lead others to Christ, you are to lead your home. You are to lead your friends out of the valleys that they get into. You spend a lot of your day leading, whether you know it or not. I think Love Leads will help you. It's an important book. I have many good reviews on it on Amazon. I'd like to send you though, to Charisma to get you a good price and free shipping. It's loveleads.charismamag.com; love leads.charismamag.com. Now let's get to the show, and thanks for enduring me.

 

Subscribe to the Greenelines podcast and newsletter

 

Dr. Steve Greene: I'm real honored to welcome my guest today, someone I've known for many years. Only from afar, as they say, from the cheap seats. I've seen his career. I've seen his fireworks. I've known so many things about the great work at James River Assembly, now just the James River Church. The pastor of that church has written an amazing book called Soul Set Free. Pastor John Lindell is devoted to seeing the local church thrive. His local church is thriving, such a major part of the community of Springfield, Missouri. We should really broaden that out to say the entire Ozark area. His heart for God and people is evident, and his example in his leadership at James River Church in Springfield. From week to week, he speaks life-giving messages that are changing the landscape of ministry and church because he challenges generations to rise up and live life fully in Christ. And that just puts it mildly. Those are not just words. I feel that with my heart. I've witnessed it. I've seen it as a resident of the community as raised my children in that community for many years, and I've been a part of it. I've been away for a long time. But I’ve stay close because my kids are still there, still in the area. And so, I watched James River with a lot of fondness in my heart. I know so many members, and I recommend this pastor to you and this book very strongly.

 

John Lindell on Charisma

·         Megachurch Pastor: What Believers Misunderstand About Grace vs. Hypergrace

·         How Sin uses the Law to Deceive You

·         Pastor John Lindell: How God Changes Us from the Inside Out

·         How God Used a ‘Failure’ to Build One of the Largest AG Megachurches

·         AG Megachurch Pastor Warns Yoga Will Open You Up to Demonic Power

 

Your book is Soul Set Free. I love the title and the subtitle as much as the title, Why Grace is More Liberating Than You Believe. So, let's just start right off with, how is grace liberating?

Pastor John Lindell: Grace is really the summation in one word what God has done for us in not only loving us, saving us, but planning for a future with us. I think unfortunately, a lot of Christians don't understand the work of grace in their life and the extent to which God has lavished his riches on them. So, I think when a person understands the incredible love of God, and the lengths to which God has gone to reach out to us, to transform us, and the plan that He has for us, it really does liberate a person's soul in the sense of understanding God and the walk that you can share with God. And honestly, just a joy in Him that I think a lot of Christians live without unfortunately.

 

John and Debbie Lindell Books

·         Soul Set Free

·         She Believes: Embracing the Life You Were Created to Live

 

Dr. Steve Greene: That’s exactly right. So, why do you think it is that believers have such difficulty in accepting this unconditional gift of grace? How is it that we still don't feel that we have it?

Pastor John Lindell: I think for a lot of people it's not taught. I think there's an assumption not just in the pews, but in the pulpits of America that everybody understands what grace is. Just because we can sing “Amazing Grace” that we understand grace or because we can offer a definition of grace, that we understand the extent of grace. So, what happens is if you ask people, what did God do for you, and what is grace, essentially people give a definition of God's riches at Christ's expense, which, unless you understand what those riches are, that definition falls short or people will invariably say, Jesus died for my sins. And that is good as far as it goes and I wouldn't in any way want to diminish that part of God's work of grace. But it is so much more. It is so much bigger than that. Even when it comes to His forgiveness of our sin, so much greater than that. I think a lot of times people have a tendency, for example, when it comes to the forgiveness of sin, to think only in terms of past sins; the sins up I’ve committed up to this point, not recognizing that grace covers all of our sin, past, present, and future. Some of the listeners may even have a struggle with saying, what do you mean future sin? People have to be reminded that when Jesus died on the cross for us and God laid our sin on Him and punished Him for our sin, He bore our punishment, that all of our sin at that point was future. So, when a person comes to Christ, God is absolutely forgiven them of all of their sin. That is an unbelievable reality when you stop and think about it. But that's just part of what He did in grace. So, there's just so many aspects and components that I think when people really understand it, and when people really thoughtfully process what the apostle Paul wrote about in that great book of Romans, it will absolutely set their soul free.

Dr. Steve Greene: So, why start with Romans? How did you find this great takeaway, this lesson, this book, this message, may be a movement to really help us understand grace through the book of Romans?

Pastor John Lindell: For my 28 years at James River, I’ve preached expositorily. I’ve made my way through the entire New Testament, verse by verse, and have done large portions of the Old Testament. So, it was like, OK, what am I going to do next? I really wanted to preach Romans. Probably 25 years ago, I preached it in 16 messages, which isn't bad. But as I’ve grown in my knowledge of the Word of God, there was just a lot of things I wanted to do with the book of Romans and really take a much deeper look. In fact, I was a little concerned that when you dive that deep on a Sunday morning with people, will they really stay with you. The people at James River, they're gracious. I wondered, at times, I'm interested in this, but is it fair to do it to the people on a Sunday morning? But people stayed with it and so just in looking at Romans in a way I had never looked at Romans. I'd had the classes in my training, my ministerial training; I had taken Romans, taken Galatians. So, it wasn't like I'd never read about it or read commentaries, but in really doing more of an in-depth look, honestly, as I was making my way through it, I was aware of how God was transforming my life and my understanding of what grace is. In fact, at one point, by the time I got to chapter five, I can remember studying and beginning to weep and just to say, I really cried out the Lord, why hasn't anybody ever told me this? This is the best news I had never heard. And you know the gospel is called the Good News. I think sometimes what happens is, we call it the Good News, but really what Paul intended is, it's the best news. It is the very best news. But I don't think most Christians, while we're thankful for His forgiveness, we don't understand the enormity of what He's done for us. And when we don't understand it, then the best news really becomes OK news. That is such a tragedy. So, what I wrote the book for was simply to give people a sense of the magnitude of what God has done for them, and the amazing length to which God has gone to love us and to reach out and to call us. That gives people value, that gives people a sense of freedom when they understand what He's done, not only in forgiving sin, but in making us righteous in His sight. It takes the burden off of the believer from trying to live this life where you're trying to do certain things so that God will view you favorably. I think a lot of Christians live there.

Dr. Steve Greene: Pastor, I know a lot about your church. I know you're different in a lot of ways. Most people would be surprised to know that the core of your church are heavy prayers on Wednesday night. Since I've known you and of your church, you had a testimony of prayer in midweek. So, does that help you get there quicker? Did that help your journey to His grace understanding?

Pastor John Lindell: I really appreciate you mentioning that because I think sometimes people look at James River, they can look at certain things and draw some conclusions that maybe aren't quite the reality. With James River, God raised that church up for his own sovereign willing good pleasure, and did it in a way that really defies quantification and qualification. It's something He's done. It doesn't make sense to have a church the size of James River in a city the size of Springfield. And yet part of what we saw God really do is in 1998, we began the Wednesday night prayer meeting and, really based on the sense that, you know what? Jesus said my house is to be called a house of prayer, Jesus calls us to pray. He says ask and you'll receive. And we have not, James says, because we ask not. So, I just told the people, listen, we're doing this not because it's a fad. We're not doing it to copy somebody, emulate somebody. We're doing it because it's the heart of God. We’re doing it because anybody who knows anything about prayer knows that as we pray, there's an accumulating weight of grace and power and the spirits work that will eventually breach the dam of our problems and will bring solutions that wouldn't come any other way. So, I just said, hey, we're going to start praying because there's no way after we prayed 300 prayer meetings, there's no way that God can't look down from heaven without saying these people have prayed when it's hot, they prayed when it's cold. They prayed when they didn't feel like coming. They've come out, they've called on my name. I'm going to hear from heaven and answer. What happened was, as soon as the church started praying, honestly, we began to see an exponential increase in salvations, an exponential increase in water baptisms, an exponential increase in Holy Spirit baptisms. Every metric you'd want to use to measure church health, we were seeing God work in an exceptionally powerful way. So, the prayer meeting is the engine that really drives James River. It's not the preaching. It's not anything else. It's the meeting on Wednesday night. And because the people have prayed, we've seen God do some amazing things.

 

Connect with Pastor John Lindell

·         At jamesriver.church

·         On Facebook

·         At johnlindell.com

·         On Twitter

 

Subscribe to the Greenelines podcast and newsletter

 

Greenelines Takeaways

So, here are some takeaways from my interview with Pastor John. He's done such a great job of helping us understand grace and our quest to know what God wants us to know from the book of Romans about grace. So here are three takeaways for you to consider in the way that grace is liberating:

1.      Grace covers our past, present and future. A lot of us don't put enough emphasis on our future. Think about the fact that God will be there for us well into the future that we know now, in part, but we'll know in full.

2.      Nothing provides more freedom than the gospel. I love pastor John's line. It's not just good news. It's great news. That's the grace that we understand.

3.      The point for you is that understanding grace will bring us to a place where we want to serve God more. We'll just want to be closer to Him. We will want to spend more time with him. That's the effect of grace, we want more of God. And it'll leave us in a place of seeking holiness.

 

Greenelines Host Information

Dr. Steve Greene is the Publisher and Executive Vice President of Charisma Media. Dr. Greene received his Ph.D. in marketing from Memphis State University. He has worked in television station management and worked directly with over 80 stations throughout the United States. He has worked in marketing capacities with McDonald’s, Jiffy Lube, and Stanley Steemer. He has owned restaurants, a national advertising agency and a syndicated marketing research firm. Dr. Greene has served as the Dean of the College of Business and professor of marketing at Oral Roberts University. He is also the author of Love Leads, which dispels the myths and misconceptions many have come to accept about leadership.

To learn more about Dr. Steve Greene, connect with him on social media!

Facebook: https://facebook.com/drsgreene/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/DrSteveGreene

 

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/dr.stevegreene/

Episode Notes

Greenelines with

Dr. Steve Greene

Guest: John Lindell

Grace is one word that sums up what God has done for us. Listen as Pastor John Lindell shares why Christians are not fully understanding God's Grace from his new book "Soul Set Free." He explains how grace covers our past, present and future. When you hear Pastor Lindell you will take away "Nothing provides more freedom than the Gospel of Jesus Christ."

Introduction

Dr. Steve Greene: This is the Greenelines podcast. I'm Steve Greene on the Charisma Podcast Network. This show is brought to you by my book, Love Leads. I am so excited to talk with you about my book. I haven't done this. I feel a little funny about it. But at the same time, I believe the Lord gave me this book. It is inspired. I hope you would say that after you've read it. It's filled with Scripture, and concepts about leadership that really begin in the home. I've always felt that if we can't lead at home, we're surely not going to be able to lead in any business environment. So, I think it's a carry over. I'm trying to debunk that myth that you got to be strong and tough to be a good leader. I just believe you've got to do what Jesus did and love. If we can't love one another, if we can't demonstrate love at work, what are we doing leading? If God is love, and we don't love, how then are we supposed to lead? Are we supposed to lead by opinion or by the size of my biceps, or how loud I can yell? No, I think we're supposed to lead based on biblical principles. I've tried to identify those throughout this book. In fact, this book is a spiritual connection between all of our relationships and our productivity, that if we work together, we love one another, we treat each other with respect and honor and accountability … if we do that, we're going to be more productive, we're going to get more done and I teach a complete sermon on the productive home. I believe that we've got to learn to be more productive at home. This book of fine will help you with that.

I want to read you something John Bevere said about my book. Is this vain? I hope you don't think so. I hope it isn't because listen to what John Bevere says about my book. Love Leads is a must read for all those in a position of leadership. Now, before you say to me, I'm not in a position of leadership, may I say to you that yes, you are. You are to lead others to Christ, you are to lead your home. You are to lead your friends out of the valleys that they get into. You spend a lot of your day leading, whether you know it or not. I think Love Leads will help you. It's an important book. I have many good reviews on it on Amazon. I'd like to send you though, to Charisma to get you a good price and free shipping. It's loveleads.charismamag.com; love leads.charismamag.com. Now let's get to the show, and thanks for enduring me.

 

Subscribe to the Greenelines podcast and newsletter

 

Dr. Steve Greene: I'm real honored to welcome my guest today, someone I've known for many years. Only from afar, as they say, from the cheap seats. I've seen his career. I've seen his fireworks. I've known so many things about the great work at James River Assembly, now just the James River Church. The pastor of that church has written an amazing book called Soul Set Free. Pastor John Lindell is devoted to seeing the local church thrive. His local church is thriving, such a major part of the community of Springfield, Missouri. We should really broaden that out to say the entire Ozark area. His heart for God and people is evident, and his example in his leadership at James River Church in Springfield. From week to week, he speaks life-giving messages that are changing the landscape of ministry and church because he challenges generations to rise up and live life fully in Christ. And that just puts it mildly. Those are not just words. I feel that with my heart. I've witnessed it. I've seen it as a resident of the community as raised my children in that community for many years, and I've been a part of it. I've been away for a long time. But I’ve stay close because my kids are still there, still in the area. And so, I watched James River with a lot of fondness in my heart. I know so many members, and I recommend this pastor to you and this book very strongly.

 

John Lindell on Charisma

·         Megachurch Pastor: What Believers Misunderstand About Grace vs. Hypergrace

·         How Sin uses the Law to Deceive You

·         Pastor John Lindell: How God Changes Us from the Inside Out

·         How God Used a ‘Failure’ to Build One of the Largest AG Megachurches

·         AG Megachurch Pastor Warns Yoga Will Open You Up to Demonic Power

 

Your book is Soul Set Free. I love the title and the subtitle as much as the title, Why Grace is More Liberating Than You Believe. So, let's just start right off with, how is grace liberating?

Pastor John Lindell: Grace is really the summation in one word what God has done for us in not only loving us, saving us, but planning for a future with us. I think unfortunately, a lot of Christians don't understand the work of grace in their life and the extent to which God has lavished his riches on them. So, I think when a person understands the incredible love of God, and the lengths to which God has gone to reach out to us, to transform us, and the plan that He has for us, it really does liberate a person's soul in the sense of understanding God and the walk that you can share with God. And honestly, just a joy in Him that I think a lot of Christians live without unfortunately.

 

John and Debbie Lindell Books

·         Soul Set Free

·         She Believes: Embracing the Life You Were Created to Live

 

Dr. Steve Greene: That’s exactly right. So, why do you think it is that believers have such difficulty in accepting this unconditional gift of grace? How is it that we still don't feel that we have it?

Pastor John Lindell: I think for a lot of people it's not taught. I think there's an assumption not just in the pews, but in the pulpits of America that everybody understands what grace is. Just because we can sing “Amazing Grace” that we understand grace or because we can offer a definition of grace, that we understand the extent of grace. So, what happens is if you ask people, what did God do for you, and what is grace, essentially people give a definition of God's riches at Christ's expense, which, unless you understand what those riches are, that definition falls short or people will invariably say, Jesus died for my sins. And that is good as far as it goes and I wouldn't in any way want to diminish that part of God's work of grace. But it is so much more. It is so much bigger than that. Even when it comes to His forgiveness of our sin, so much greater than that. I think a lot of times people have a tendency, for example, when it comes to the forgiveness of sin, to think only in terms of past sins; the sins up I’ve committed up to this point, not recognizing that grace covers all of our sin, past, present, and future. Some of the listeners may even have a struggle with saying, what do you mean future sin? People have to be reminded that when Jesus died on the cross for us and God laid our sin on Him and punished Him for our sin, He bore our punishment, that all of our sin at that point was future. So, when a person comes to Christ, God is absolutely forgiven them of all of their sin. That is an unbelievable reality when you stop and think about it. But that's just part of what He did in grace. So, there's just so many aspects and components that I think when people really understand it, and when people really thoughtfully process what the apostle Paul wrote about in that great book of Romans, it will absolutely set their soul free.

Dr. Steve Greene: So, why start with Romans? How did you find this great takeaway, this lesson, this book, this message, may be a movement to really help us understand grace through the book of Romans?

Pastor John Lindell: For my 28 years at James River, I’ve preached expositorily. I’ve made my way through the entire New Testament, verse by verse, and have done large portions of the Old Testament. So, it was like, OK, what am I going to do next? I really wanted to preach Romans. Probably 25 years ago, I preached it in 16 messages, which isn't bad. But as I’ve grown in my knowledge of the Word of God, there was just a lot of things I wanted to do with the book of Romans and really take a much deeper look. In fact, I was a little concerned that when you dive that deep on a Sunday morning with people, will they really stay with you. The people at James River, they're gracious. I wondered, at times, I'm interested in this, but is it fair to do it to the people on a Sunday morning? But people stayed with it and so just in looking at Romans in a way I had never looked at Romans. I'd had the classes in my training, my ministerial training; I had taken Romans, taken Galatians. So, it wasn't like I'd never read about it or read commentaries, but in really doing more of an in-depth look, honestly, as I was making my way through it, I was aware of how God was transforming my life and my understanding of what grace is. In fact, at one point, by the time I got to chapter five, I can remember studying and beginning to weep and just to say, I really cried out the Lord, why hasn't anybody ever told me this? This is the best news I had never heard. And you know the gospel is called the Good News. I think sometimes what happens is, we call it the Good News, but really what Paul intended is, it's the best news. It is the very best news. But I don't think most Christians, while we're thankful for His forgiveness, we don't understand the enormity of what He's done for us. And when we don't understand it, then the best news really becomes OK news. That is such a tragedy. So, what I wrote the book for was simply to give people a sense of the magnitude of what God has done for them, and the amazing length to which God has gone to love us and to reach out and to call us. That gives people value, that gives people a sense of freedom when they understand what He's done, not only in forgiving sin, but in making us righteous in His sight. It takes the burden off of the believer from trying to live this life where you're trying to do certain things so that God will view you favorably. I think a lot of Christians live there.

Dr. Steve Greene: Pastor, I know a lot about your church. I know you're different in a lot of ways. Most people would be surprised to know that the core of your church are heavy prayers on Wednesday night. Since I've known you and of your church, you had a testimony of prayer in midweek. So, does that help you get there quicker? Did that help your journey to His grace understanding?

Pastor John Lindell: I really appreciate you mentioning that because I think sometimes people look at James River, they can look at certain things and draw some conclusions that maybe aren't quite the reality. With James River, God raised that church up for his own sovereign willing good pleasure, and did it in a way that really defies quantification and qualification. It's something He's done. It doesn't make sense to have a church the size of James River in a city the size of Springfield. And yet part of what we saw God really do is in 1998, we began the Wednesday night prayer meeting and, really based on the sense that, you know what? Jesus said my house is to be called a house of prayer, Jesus calls us to pray. He says ask and you'll receive. And we have not, James says, because we ask not. So, I just told the people, listen, we're doing this not because it's a fad. We're not doing it to copy somebody, emulate somebody. We're doing it because it's the heart of God. We’re doing it because anybody who knows anything about prayer knows that as we pray, there's an accumulating weight of grace and power and the spirits work that will eventually breach the dam of our problems and will bring solutions that wouldn't come any other way. So, I just said, hey, we're going to start praying because there's no way after we prayed 300 prayer meetings, there's no way that God can't look down from heaven without saying these people have prayed when it's hot, they prayed when it's cold. They prayed when they didn't feel like coming. They've come out, they've called on my name. I'm going to hear from heaven and answer. What happened was, as soon as the church started praying, honestly, we began to see an exponential increase in salvations, an exponential increase in water baptisms, an exponential increase in Holy Spirit baptisms. Every metric you'd want to use to measure church health, we were seeing God work in an exceptionally powerful way. So, the prayer meeting is the engine that really drives James River. It's not the preaching. It's not anything else. It's the meeting on Wednesday night. And because the people have prayed, we've seen God do some amazing things.

 

Connect with Pastor John Lindell

·         At jamesriver.church

·         On Facebook

·         At johnlindell.com

·         On Twitter

 

Subscribe to the Greenelines podcast and newsletter

 

Greenelines Takeaways

So, here are some takeaways from my interview with Pastor John. He's done such a great job of helping us understand grace and our quest to know what God wants us to know from the book of Romans about grace. So here are three takeaways for you to consider in the way that grace is liberating:

1.      Grace covers our past, present and future. A lot of us don't put enough emphasis on our future. Think about the fact that God will be there for us well into the future that we know now, in part, but we'll know in full.

2.      Nothing provides more freedom than the gospel. I love pastor John's line. It's not just good news. It's great news. That's the grace that we understand.

3.      The point for you is that understanding grace will bring us to a place where we want to serve God more. We'll just want to be closer to Him. We will want to spend more time with him. That's the effect of grace, we want more of God. And it'll leave us in a place of seeking holiness.

 

Greenelines Host Information

Dr. Steve Greene is the Publisher and Executive Vice President of Charisma Media. Dr. Greene received his Ph.D. in marketing from Memphis State University. He has worked in television station management and worked directly with over 80 stations throughout the United States. He has worked in marketing capacities with McDonald’s, Jiffy Lube, and Stanley Steemer. He has owned restaurants, a national advertising agency and a syndicated marketing research firm. Dr. Greene has served as the Dean of the College of Business and professor of marketing at Oral Roberts University. He is also the author of Love Leads, which dispels the myths and misconceptions many have come to accept about leadership.

To learn more about Dr. Steve Greene, connect with him on social media!

Facebook: https://facebook.com/drsgreene/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/DrSteveGreene

 

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/dr.stevegreene/

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Why Grace is More Liberating Than You Believe with John Lindell