This past Sunday we have talked about our need to remember this world is not our home; our journey on this earth is temporary. If you could use some help with what that should look like in your life I want to recommend a sermon delivered on Sunday evening, October 12, 1862, by Rev. C. H. Spurgeon at the Metropolitan Tabernacle in Newington, England entitled: "Citizenship In Heaven". The sermon is based on Philippians 3:20 "For our conversation is in Heaven; from where also we look for the Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ". It will provide a much richer picture of what it should look like and mean to be an alien and a stranger in this world. Please don't give up if you find the listening or reading a little challenging; it will be worth your time and effort. You can read the sermon by clicking here or listen to it being read by clicking here.
This Sunday we continued to look at some of the final thoughts of Jesus as he concludes the Last Supper Discourse, specifically John 16:1-15. He has prepared His disciples by forewarning them of the trials and suffering that were to be their experience after He goes away. Jesus addresses their sorrow over His announcing He would soon leave them. I can imagine the confusion and anxiety this announcement must have had on this group of men who have given up everything to follow Him. But He not only tells them He is leaving He also tells them they will actually be better of because of His leaving.
I wonder if you have ever thought how great it would be to walk and live with Jesus in the world like His disciples did? I have. But the message I got from this Sunday’s sermon and scripture passage is this:
Sunday we continued to think about our relationship to the world in John 16. Jesus gives his followers a reality check, warning them what to expect from the world (that system of organized society that is hostile to God and Jesus’ followers). Jesus’ reality check offers no false hope and assures them life was not going to be easy. Jesus prepares His disciples for reality so that being forewarned they would also be forearmed to avoid being trapped by the enemy.
Sunday September 8th we continued to explore our relationship to the world. In our study passage, John 15:18-16:11, Jesus makes it clear that as his followers we will be mistreated. The key question for us is: What does Jesus expect from us as we live out our lives in a system of organized society that is hostile to God?
As a reminder, here are the scriptures we looked at together:
John 16:2 They will put you out of the synagogues and in fact a time is coming when they think that by killing the followers of Jesus they are actually offering a service to God ...
This Sunday we looked at the last of three relationships that Jesus tells us are essential; our relationship to the world. By world, scripture means the system of organized society that is hostile to God and constantly trying to squeeze us into it's mold. Christians in the west, especially in America, have not had much experience with serious worldly hatred or persecution but our fellow believers in other parts of the world testify to a very different experience. Many say there is more hatred and persecution of Christians today than any other time in history.
For more info on persecution check out these links: Voice of the Martyrs - Open Doors - Christianity Today
Our relationship to the world should be characterized by how Jesus interacted with the world.
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