Finding the Favor of God | Receive the Favor of God

Understanding How To Receive God's Favor And Salvation

James Greer
Jan 29, 2023    24m
In today's message, we explore how we can all receive God's favor and salvation and the gifts we receive when we do. You must place your trust and faith in Jesus Christ. God has already prepared a path for you to follow that leads to the good life, the favored life; you just need to decide whether or not to follow it. Video recorded at Pineville, Louisiana.

messageRegarding Grammar:

This is a transcription of the sermon. People speak differently than they write, and there are common colloquialisms in this transcript that sound good when spoken, and look like bad grammar when written.

James Greer: [00:00:00] Well, we're going to continue our series on the favor of God. But let me tell you, next week we start a brand-new series on relationships. And man, relationships, you know, when your relationships are right, everything is right. In fact, I often say everything rises and falls on relationships and fellowship. When your relationships and fellowships are right, it seems like everything else goes better in your life. But anyway, what I want to do today is I'm going to tell you a little bit about the favor of God and how to activate the favor of God. Because when you have the favor of God and you activate the favor of God, you'll have the best year you've ever had. Don't you want to have the best year you ever had? So that's what we've got to do. So let me read Psalm 90:16. It says, Let your work be manifested to your servants. Boy, is God doing that today? And your glorious power to their children. Let the favor of the Lord our God be upon us. And it is. And prosper for us the work of your hands, O prosper the work of our hands. And then it says this. Another translation. I love it. It says, Lord our God, may your blessings or favor be with us and give us success in all we do. Wouldn't you like to be successful in all you do? Wouldn't you like to have a more successful marriage? Amen. Wouldn't you like to have more success on your job? Wouldn't you like to be more successful in just every single thing that you do?

James Greer: [00:01:33] Well, to do that, I want to tell you about three things about favor. And then we'll get in on how to have favor and how to activate faith. Number one, you've got to know what favor is. Favor is when God takes a natural and does the supernatural, but also favor's when God takes the ordinary and does the extraordinary. And I love that because I always say we have the favor of God, because we have so many ordinary people, God can surely do the extraordinary. You can have an ordinary marriage, but when you have the favor of God, you start having extraordinary. You can have an ordinary job, and then it becomes an extraordinary job. I mean, man, you got an ordinary preacher. But when you have the favor of God, it can be extraordinary. I know what the favor of God is. I'm telling you I got dyslexia so bad. You know, sometimes instead of saying Psalms 90:17, I might say 17:90. So y'all just flip the numbers around, and you'll find it. That's just the way it is. I mean, you know, I was so bad in the fourth grade. My teachers liked me so much, they kept me for a couple of years. Back then they called instead of failing, they said, Well, we think it's best for you to stay back. Best for who? Them? You know. And so I know what the favor of God is. I mean, I got out of high school, and man, I thought, am I ever going to be able to read? And now I'm here preaching to a packed house. I never thought it.

James Greer: [00:02:57] I know what God's like taking the ordinary and doing the extraordinary, man. And so God is just doing that. And that's part of the favor of God. And that's what God wants to do in my life, and that's what I want God to do in your life. I want you to have the favor of God. I can tell you how you can speed up the favor of God. I can tell you how you can have the favor of God faster and greater. Deuteronomy 30:199 says, I'll call upon Heaven and earth as a witness today. I mean, Heaven and earth, that's a pretty good-sized witness. That I have set before you life and death. Now, God's saying, I'm going to tell you something today. It has to do with life and death. Now, it might not be physical death, but it could be spiritual. Instead of just getting along, you can have a life and have it more abundantly. Blessings and curses. Some of y'all say, Man, it just seems like I go through one thing after another after another. Therefore, choose life.

James Greer: [00:03:57] God's saying, what I want you to do, He says, I sit before you blessing and curses, but I want you to choose life that you may love the Lord your God and that you may obey. Say, obey. His voice. And that you may cling to Him, for He is your life and the length of your days. God's saying, Listen, if you want to have God's favor faster and you want it to be greater, it's your choice. It's by the choices that you make. And the faster you make the right choices, the faster and better you have the favor of God. So in other words, today, when I'm preaching, even when you hear God's Word and you obey it, the faster you obey, the faster you have God's favor and the greater God's favor is upon your life. That's just like people often say, How do I know if I'm maturing in life? When you hear the Word of God, do you obey the God or do you delay? If you obey, you're maturing. If you delay, you're not. So what I say, let's obey. Amen. So we start finding out what the favor of God is. But let me tell you third, favor of God's way makes the ordinary extraordinary. We talked about you can have it faster and greater the faster you obey. But third, listen to this. When you have the favor of God, you have a fantastic future. This is one of my favorite things. When you have the favor of God in spite of whatever happens to you, you can have a fantastic future.

James Greer: [00:05:30] Now, in Genesis 50:19, it says Joseph, he said to his brothers. His brothers had tried to kill him. They had sold him into slavery. They had lied about him. But now Joseph, because of God's favor, he's risen to the second most powerful person in the world. He tells them, Don't be afraid. Can I do what only God can do? Now here is the favor of God's verse. Here's how you know that if you have the favor of God, you've got a fantastic future. You meant to hurt me, but God turns your evil into good to save the lives of many people, which is being done. God says when you have the favor of God, it doesn't matter what everybody did to you, no matter how bad they tried to hurt you, God turns it around for your good and you have a fantastic future no matter what. No matter what's happened in your path, no matter what somebody has done to you, when you have the favor of God, you've got a fantastic future. That's good. Amen. Matter of fact, it's so good, it's the favor of God gives a fantastic future. The favor of God can turn your hurts into helps. The favor of God can not only turn your hurts into helps, the favor of God can heal your hurts.

James Greer: [00:06:37] Everybody in here has been hurt. But when you get the favor of God, your hurts can be healed. See, Joseph, who had the favor of God, his brothers had tried to hurt him and hurt him and hurt him. And now he came before them and his hurts were healed. And he loved them, and he provided for them instead of hurting them. So, my goodness, don't you want the favor of God? Amen. So now what I'd like to do is tell you when and how you get the favor of God. When you have it, I told you, instead of ordinary, you get an extraordinary life. I tell you, you've got a fantastic future. So let's talk about how to have the favor of God. When I say the favor, sometimes I mean grace. Grace is unmerited favor. In Ephesians 2:8, it says, For it is by free grace, God's unmerited favor, that you are saved, you're delivered from judgment and made partakers in Christ's salvation, through your faith. Now when I say salvation, that's what we call salvation, is when you put your trust and faith in Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. This is what's really cool. When you put your faith and trust in Jesus Christ, He gets our sins, our shortcomings, and we get God's grace and favor. That's a pretty good trade. Amen. He gets all our junk, and we get all his goodness. I'm telling you, if you really understood salvation and if you really understood God's favor, every single person would take God's favor and salvation. Amen.

James Greer: [00:08:03] It's a pretty good trade. And this salvation that we're talking about, it's not of yourselves, of your own doing. It came through your own striving, but it is a gift of God. No, you can't buy it. And you sure can't be good enough for it. There's nobody in here good enough for God's favor and God's salvation. We've all sinned and come short of the glory of God. I've sinned, you've sinned, and a bunch of y'all have even sinned worse. But, I mean, just nobody can be good enough, right? Not only you can't be good enough, you can't work hard enough. If you could be good enough, God would not have had to send His sinless son to die on the cross and pay the price. And he paid the price because He did not sin. So because He did it, it's a free gift. It's like coming today. We want every single person to get a free hoodie. Amen. They're absolutely free. You can't buy them. I have people this week texting me saying, Hey, Brother James, would you get me a hoodie? The answer is come to church. Can I buy a hoodie? Nope. I can tell you how to get a hoodie. They're absolutely free. Journey Church wants to give you one. All you have to do is come to church.

James Greer: [00:09:25] Now, see, that's great. We want you to have one. But you know what else is true? Salvation. It's absolutely free. But you know what? You have to come and accept it. You know, your mama and your daddy and your grandparents, they could all be saved. They could all come to church. They can all be baptized. But that don't save you. You have to come and get it yourself. You've got to come and accept it. It's absolutely free, but you've got to come get it. It would be crazy to come to church and not get a free hoodie. I like hoodies. This first time I've ever really preached much in a hoodie, but I like it. But it'd be crazy for everybody to come and not get you a hoodie. But you know what would be crazier than not coming and getting a hoodie? It ain't made crazier to come to church and not accept God's favor and salvation. Amen. Not because of works. You can't work hard enough. Not the fulfillment of the law demands. Lest any man should boast. It is not a result of what anyone could possibly do. You can't be good enough. There's nothing you can do to do it. God wants to get the honor and God wants to get the glory. No one can pride himself in it and take the glory for himself. In other words, God says, Listen, I want you to know I'm going to get the honor. I'm going to get the glory. I'm the one that sent my son. I'm the one that rose him from the grave. There's nothing you can do about it. So it's a free gift. You can't buy it, and you can't work for it. Amen.

James Greer: [00:11:01] But I want to tell you how to activate it. It's one thing to have salvation and the favor of God. It's another thing to activate the favor of God. Now, let me tell you something. Until you accept the free gift of God, don't worry about working for God. There's a lot of people out doing all these different works and all these charity things and all this stuff. Go for it. Work your little butt off. But it's not going to matter in Heaven. Because see, the works I'm talking about don't really matter till after you have the favor of God. So when I'm talking about activating the favor of God, it's for those people that have already accepted the favor of God and salvation. Then it says, for we are God's own handiwork. His workmanship. Listen, let me tell you what, God created you. God said, You're fearfully and wonderfully made. Nobody should ever make fun of anybody. Because it doesn't matter how ugly you are, somebody else thinks you're pretty. That's just the way God created you. He said, Listen, you're his workmanship. He created you, created in Christ Jesus, born anew. You get a brand-new start. Your past is forgiven. That we may do those good works which God predestined. He planned ahead of time for us.

James Greer: [00:12:23] See, God gives us His favor, His grace, and He gives us an inside power to do what He's called us do and do it with joy. In other words, it begins to change. We have good works even in our marriage. We start doing things that we normally wouldn't do it. Now we enjoy it. We go to work and we have a different attitude because we do it. Our actions and our thoughts change. See, not only does God give us His grace, He gives us His favor, He planned beforehand. And He doesn't want us to miss His prearranged plan. He doesn't want us to miss His purpose. He doesn't want us to miss His joy and the power that He has for it. Because He said taking the path which He prearranged ahead of time, that we should walk in them. Are you ready? Now, wait a minute. Wait a minute. Y'all were doing pretty good. Do y'all know the answer? When I say, y'all either say amen or yes. Are y'all ready? Okay, listen, this is so good. That you should walk in them living the good life, which He prearranged and made ready for us live. See, when you got God's favor, He said, Listen, I've already gone ahead of you. I prearranged the life for you. I want you to walk in it. It's not just some life. It's a good life that I prearranged. It's made ready for you to walk in it. That's a good life. Amen. And what happens? So many people are worried about their future. But you should be worried about God's favor. Because if you got God's favor, you don't have to worry about your future. Because if you got God's favor, you're going to have a fantastic future. Amen.

James Greer: [00:14:01] That's good, Brother James. Let me give you a few things besides everything I told you that you get when you get God's favor. Number one, you get free of all condemnation. That is so wonderful. It says there is no condemnation to those that are in Christ. There's no guilt. There's no self-condemnation. There's no longer that you feel ill about yourself. Because when you get God's favor, you get God's forgiveness, you get God's salvation, you get rid of all your guilt. Put it in the past. God wants you to live guilt-free. Boy, isn't that a great gift? So first of all, when you get God's favor, you don't have guilt. Second of all, when you get God's favor, you get an abundant life. I love that because it's the devil that comes to steal, kill, and destroy. Saturday I had to go to a funeral. Friend of mine, 54 years old. He overdosed and died. He'd been struggling on and off. And I had Josh look up to date. In 2018, he walked in the church, hadn't seen him in about five years, and he came to the front. And because we had had ups and downs, when he's on drugs and not on drugs, and it's tough to deal with people sometimes. And, you know, we said we loved each other. And he said, I just want to make sure I know Jesus Christ is my savior and he invited Christ. And that was a great thing. While I was sitting there, though, some of those family members came out and said, I'm almost glad it's over. They said, you just can't imagine the ups and downs and worrying about where he's at and what he's doing.

James Greer: [00:15:30] In the last year, I couldn't even let him in the house. You know? But it was the devil that came to steal, kill, and destroy. If you got a drug problem, get help. We got professional counseling. You can go to rehab. We got CR on Thursday nights. But the wonderful thing that went to my mind is, back in 2018, he gave his heart to Jesus Christ. Though he may have overdosed and he may have died, he's not here, he's in Heaven. And probably for the first time in the last 10 or 15 years, he's healthy and he's happy. Amen. But God says, I've come that you could have life and that you could have it more abundantly. The devil came to steal, kill, and destroy. But Jesus came that you could have abundant life. So God has many things for you. See, when you get salvation, you get God's favor, you don't have guilt anymore. Some of y'all have done some things in the past, you keep carrying guilt with you. God said, Hey, not after today. Some of y'all hadn't had abundant life. God says, I have an abundant life for you. You just love God and obey God and be thankful for what He's done and you start having abundant life. Third, I love it. You become a child of God. You become His child, His kid. I love that. Because you know what it's like if you have kids. I do things for my kids I'd never do for you.

James Greer: [00:17:04] I tell my kids sometimes and grandkids, I'm not going to give you anything anymore. I'm not going to do this. I do it anyway. God does stuff for me, I never believe that He should do. He just does it anyway. John 1:12 says, But as many as received Him, Jesus Christ, to them, I gave the right to become the children of God, to those who believe in His name. God takes care of His kids. God provides for His kids and you need to make sure you're one of His kids. There's no condemnation. You have the opportunity to have an abundant life. You become a child of God. One of the most important things as we get ready to close is instead of hell, you get Heaven. Isn't that wonderful? Now, He said, in my Father's house of many mansions. If it were not so, I would have told you so. I go to prepare a place for you. My friend I was talking about, he's in one of those mansions now. And so that's what I'm saying. Isn't that wonderful? Because there's another place and Revelation tells us about it. It's a place that I wouldn't want anybody to go. And anyone not found written in the Book of Life is cast in the lake of fire.

James Greer: [00:18:30] So number one is no condemnation to you anymore. You get an abundant life. You get to be a child of God and you get to go to Heaven. That's why I'm so excited. Because at Journey Church, you're not only going to get a free hoodie and everybody's going to get one, you have the opportunity to get the most important decision you've ever made in your life, and that's Jesus Christ as your savior. You simply have to believe that you sinned. And I know that I've sinned. And don't you believe that you sinned before? Amen. Sin separates you from God. God didn't want you to be separated. You've got to believe God sent His only begotten Son to pay the price for your sins and my sins. He died on the cross and He rose on the third day. Then you got to ask Him to come into your heart, not just think it. You've got to ask Him to come in and forgive you. Romans 10:9 tells us this. It says this. For if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and you believe in your heart God raised Him from the dead, thou shall be saved. See, at that point, not only do you miss Hell, not only do you go to Heaven, you begin living the good life that God has already promised for you. No more guilt, no more shame, no more condemnation. You get a peace and a power that surpasses all understanding. Would you stand and let me pray with you? Heads bowed and eyes shut.

James Greer: [00:20:02] See, if you want God's favor and you want to accept Jesus Christ as your savior, if you want the good life that He promised, with heads bowed and eyes shut, in just a minute, I'm going to count to three. Instead, I'm going to ask you, right there where you're at, just to raise your hand and say, man, I want God's favor and I want His salvation. I want the good life that He's promised. In the count of three, just raise your hand. One, two, three. Just stick your hands up all over. Amen. Amen. Amen. Keep your hands up. As you have your hands up, ushers are going to give you a packet. In that packet, just quickly fill out just the top part of it and hand it in. Raise your hand real high. We want to make sure that you know Jesus Christ as your personal savior. Make sure that you want the abundant life that surpasses all understanding. Just raise your hand and ushers should come give you a packet. Ushers, if you would, everybody's got their hand up. Would you give them a packet? So if you would keep your hands up. Do you know that you're making the most important decision that you've ever made in your life? Upstairs, you'll keep your hands up, if you would. If want one of those packets, they'll get to you as soon as they can.

James Greer: [00:21:20] Just raise your hands. They should have packets to give to everybody. Raise your hand. Keep your hands up. If you have not received a package, would you please raise your hand as soon as you can? Ushers. Ushers. Come on. Upstairs. Okay. One more time. Just keep your hands up. If you have not received a package, would you raise your hand? And fill that card out briefly, and they'll be giving you a package. Must've run out of packages. They'll get you a package. Raise your hand. They'll just give you a card and then we'll make sure that you get a package. Wade, did y'all see them upstairs? Nothing else, give them a card. Then we'll make sure they get a package. Josh, y'all make sure you make some more packages. Make sure everybody gets one. Okay. One more time. Raise your hand if you didn't get a card or package. Because you just made the most important decision of your life. Okay.

James Greer: [00:22:58] Now, if you would, if you'd bow your heads everybody. And I'm going to ask everybody to repeat after me where they don't have to do that by themselves. You ready? Repeat after me. Say, Father, I know I've sinned. I want you to forgive me of my sins. Come into my heart. Be the Lord of my life. I believe that Jesus died on the cross, rose on the third day for my sins. In Jesus' name. Amen. Now, look up here just a minute. I'm gonna read a verse for you. Romans 10:13 says, For whosoever calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved. The reason that I say that, a lot of people say, Well, I don't know what call means. It means you simply pray and invite Jesus Christ in your heart. Let's hear it for every single person that did that. Amen. And for you all that did not get a package, you filled out a card, they have the cards and they will get you a package. Now, what I'm going to do is I'm going to pray and I'm going to give the others an opportunity to make a decision to come to the front. Father, we just thank you for this wonderful day.

James Greer: [00:24:11] I pray for those that you said to activate the favor of God. Maybe they hadn't followed through in baptism, but yet they know they should have done that. And today's the day they're going to step out. They're going to say, hey, I want to obey. I want to activate it for those that have been visiting, they say, hey, I want to join the church. For those that have been hurt and they want to be healed. For those that need somebody to pray with them, to pray for them. Whatever God's laid upon your heart, I pray that you let God have His will and His way. I pray it in the precious name of Jesus. Amen.

Recorded in Pineville, Louisiana.
Read More
Journey Church
2900 Donahue Ferry Rd
Pineville, Louisiana 71360