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Breaking a People-Pleasing / Man's Approval Spirit
July 21, 2018      |     By: Aaron Wallace      |      Category: Sermons

Aaron Wallace preaches regarding our people pleasing nature and human desire to seek man’s approval.  Not only is man's approval never going to be enough, never going to satisfy, it keeps us from pursuing the greater things of God. Only when we hunger for Jesus and His approval will our bondage for the craving of man's approval and people pleasing be broken. When Christ is supreme, we can handle man’s approval — or lack thereof — in the right way.  

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We war against… whose affections we desire

War for our affections:  World will try and win you over, Do not love the world or anything in the world…

Galatians 1:10
10 Am I now trying to win the approval of human beings, or of God? Or am I trying to please people? If I were still trying to please people, I would not be a servant of Christ.

Then again in 
1 Thessalonians 2: 4
4 For we speak as messengers approved by God to be entrusted with the Good News. Our purpose is to please God, not people. He alone examines the motives of our hearts.

This people pleasing spirit…seeking man’s approval
--keeps us from pursing the greater things of God…
--“TAMES” us in Christianity (keep it status quo)

Beginning Roots: 
Genesis 3: 6
6 The woman was convinced. She saw that the tree was beautiful and its fruit looked delicious, and she wanted the wisdom it would give her. So she took some of the fruit and ate it. Then she gave some to her husband, who was with her, and he ate it, too.

Adam had a choice… WHO’S approval do I care more about… God’s or Eve’s.   ---He chose Eve’s.  

1. Eyes open… SELF – AWARE… (Self Conscious instead of God conscious)…
2. We would spend the rest of our lives fighting for our focus to be on God or OTHERS… 

Follow the Track Record:  O.T./N.T.- Heavy in leaders succumbing to man’s approval and people pleasing spirit…
-Aaron building the Gold calf…people complaining and wanted appeased
-Saul: desired approval of men before God
-1st and 2nd Kings- kings doing evil in the eyes of God in that they won’t tear down the high places of worship… High places = Popular places.
-Peter: Rebuked by Paul for being fearful of others’ thoughts of him

Many decisions made through the filter of “what are other people going to think of me more so than what will God think”

Why? Because we at times are more self conscious rather than God conscious…

Proverbs 29:25 says  “Fear of man will prove to be a snare, but whoever trusts in the LORD is kept safe.”

People Pleasing spirit manifested: People Pleasing spirit comes as an appeasing/pacifying nature: 

Aaron the Priest-- 
Exodus 32: 1-5
1 When the people saw that Moses delayed to come down from the mountain, the people gathered themselves together to Aaron and said to him, “Up, make us gods who
shall go before us. As for this Moses, the man who brought us up out of the land of Egypt, we do not know what has become of him.”
2 So Aaron said to them, “Take off the rings of gold that are in the ears of your wives, your sons, and your daughters, and bring them to me.”
3 So all the people took off the rings of gold that were in their ears and brought them to Aaron.
4 And he received the gold from their hand and fashioned it with a graving tool and made a golden calf. And they said, “These are your gods, O Israel, who brought you up out of the land of Egypt!”
5 When Aaron saw this, he built an altar before it. And Aaron made a proclamation and said, “Tomorrow shall be a feast to the Lord.”

In vs. 5 when Aaron says we shall have feast to the LORD… the Hebrew word for Lord used is Yahweh… (the proper name of God)…

One of the only times in scripture you’ll see the name Yahweh given to an IDOL. They tried to “Hand Make God” to Appease/pacify their appetite of wanting to worship something…

Aaron trying to appease man by “trying to create” an image to worship and calling it God… Birthed out of a desire to PLEASE People… but called God…
2. People Pleasing spirit comes as a desire for Approval 

1 and 2 Kings - Word used around 117 times in O.T… HIGH Places… (idol worship in the hills) --Israelites were commanded to tear down…
--Rather than tearing them down they became places that seduced God’s people to them to worship…
--Moses pleaded with the people in Numbers 33: 52… demolish all the high places (or they) will become pricks in your eyes and thorns on your sides…
--Deep seated in the hearts of the people… they LEFT the high places alone
--The High Places popular to the People…
--The Kings desired the Peoples approval over the Lords commands…
--High places we NEED to deal with… the APPROVAL of man

Jeremiah rebuked Israel for the High Places: 
Jeremiah 2:1-8, 13
1 The Lord gave me another message. He said, 
2 “Go and shout this message to Jerusalem. This is what the Lord says: “I remember how eager you were to please me as a young bride long ago, how you loved me and followed me even through the barren wilderness.
3 In those days Israel was holy to the Lord, the first of his children. All who harmed his people were declared guilty, and disaster fell on them. I, the Lord, have spoken!”
4 Listen to the word of the Lord, people of Jacob—all you families of Israel!
5 This is what the Lord says: “What did your ancestors find wrong with me that led them to stray so far from me? They worshiped worthless idols, only to become worthless themselves.
6 They did not ask, ‘Where is the Lord who brought us safely out of Egypt and led us through the barren wilderness— a land of deserts and pits, a land of drought and death, where no one lives or even travels?’
7 “And when I brought you into a fruitful land to enjoy its bounty and goodness, you defiled my land and corrupted the possession I had promised you.
8 The priests did not ask, ‘Where is the Lord? Those who taught my word ignored me, the rulers turned against me, and the prophets spoke in the name of Baal, wasting their time on worthless idols.
13 “For my people have done two evil things: They have abandoned me—the fountain of living water. And they have dug for themselves cracked cisterns that can not hold water!

--Craving human praise and approval is a cistern that cannot hold water.
--Man’s approval is NEVER going to be enough… it’s leaky and can never satisfy

3. People Pleasing spirit comes as a Fear of Man over God

Godly Rebuke to Peter:
Galatians 2: 11-13
11 But when Peter came to Antioch, I had to oppose him to his face, for what he did was very wrong.
12 When he first arrived, he ate with the Gentile believers, who were not circumcised. But afterward, when some friends of James came, Peter wouldn’t eat with the Gentiles anymore. He was afraid of criticism from these people who insisted on the necessity of circumcision.
13 As a result, other Jewish believers followed Peter’s hypocrisy

--Peter Filled with Spirit of God, still contending in this…
--Peter already rebuked before b/c of this…
--Jesus in Matthew 16… telling Disciples His path would lead to Jerusalem /suffering/crucified/but would raise…

Matthew 16 “Peter took Him aside and began to rebuke Him, saying, ‘No way LORD! This must never happen to you!'” Then Jesus turned to him and said “‘Get behind me, Satan! You are a stumbling block to me; you do not have in mind the concerns of God, but merely human concerns.”'”

Jesus uses “behind me Satan"
a) because he is contending against God’s plan…
b) Satan’s fall was b/c SELF got in the way… He wanted SELF Glory…

Peter had a little SELF issue getting in the way…

Killing the desire for human approval and people pleasing. Best way to take away the desire to be made much of… to focus on making much of Him… (ENDING OF SELF)…

Galatians 2: 20 – I have been crucified with Christ and I NO LONGER LIVE… but Christ lives in me… the LIFE I DO live I live by Faith in the son of man who loved me and gave himself for me…

Only when we hunger for Jesus and His approval… (which we have in the Holy Spirit)… (His Spirit bears witness with our spirit that we are His kids)… will our bondage for the craving of mans approval and people pleasing be broken.

When Christ is supreme, we can handle man’s approval — or lack of— in the right way.  
Who do we want to have our affections:

Jesus put it this way: Matthew 5: 16 “Let your light shine before men so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven”

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