Posts Tagged 'invitation'

Aha Moments: God’s Guest List

Aha Moments: God’s Guest List

Matthew 8:5-13

Not everyone is comfortable in new or different environments. Some people just can’t picture themselves doing a different thing, so they always do what they’ve always done. But what if the Jesus that’s being rejected is just some bad misunderstanding of who He really is? How can we encourage others to truly interact with Jesus?

Go Beyond Invitation

Support the Seeker’s Search ~ Matthew 8:5-9

  • 5 non-Jewish military man seeks out a rabbi; this is WEIRD
  • 6 notice nothing is asked; the centurion just states the facts
  • 7 Jesus: heal=I will serve/cure/restore (not a super definite word)
  • 8 centurion: heal=cure! (more certain)
  • 9 modern vernacular: SAY THE WORD

Foster the Seeker’s Faith ~ Matthew 8:10-13

  • 10 centurion faith isn’t in God whom he can’t see, but Jesus right in front of him
  • 11 reminder: the Kingdom is larger than redeemed Israelites
  • 12 “subjects of the kingdom” → the natural nation of Israel; we have to remember that there is a difference between the chosen people of God Israel and the political state of Israel
  • 13 The command we ignore here? GO!

If we believe that Jesus is doing is work, then we’re to trustingly GO. Ask yourself: where are you supposed to be GOING?

Do We Need To Achieve It? – God Prepares His Prize

Do We Need To Achieve It? – God Prepares His Prize

Hebrews 4:1-11

You know what I love more than a good party? Not much! Fun people, good music, free food… what’s not to love? So imagine my dismay when I completely forgot to go to a party to which I was invited!

Want To Go To The Ultimate Christmas Party?

Receive His Invitation ~ Hebrews 4:1-5

  • 1 setup: refers to Moses & promised land; God intends to bring us to Himself
  • 2 message+faith=functional (toy w/out batteries? BOTH need to be present in the present)
  • 3 look at the contrast: those who don’t enter God’s presence are those who refuse to believe & trust Him: true then, true now!
  • 4/5 Rest isn’t about “not working”; it’s the reflection that God is responsible for His work (not us).

Actually Show Up! ~ Hebrews 4:6-11

  • 6 disobedience=apatheia; they didn’t think God’s promise was WORTH it
  • 7 God wants us to respond to His invitation NOW, TODAY
  • 8/10 rest from our own work: what a Christmas gift THAT is
  • 11 “make every effort”=flavor of urgency – let’s GET TO IT; no time like Today to Trust God for His Good Gift

God plans the party; God sets up the decorations; God sends out the invitation. OUR part? Respond with Joy!

Snapshots from Mark: Weighing Wealth

Snapshots from Mark: Weighing Wealth Sermon Audio Here

Mark 10:17-31

I recently read an article about a math whiz taking advantage of a lottery; he amassed millions before being shut down. He was more upset about losing the opportunity to use a mathematical loophole than he was about not making money. His attitude reminded me of this section of Scripture…

Warnings About Wealth From The Word

The Problem of Self-Measurement ~ Mark 10:17-22

  • 17 inherit= recognition of relation to God; if God has adopted us into His family, it’s reasonable to ask HOW that is accomplished. THAT is what the man is asking: Do I really belong to God?
  • 18/19 Jesus responds with “keep the Commandments”
  • 20/21 Jesus challenges him to go BEYOND the expected observance of the law, and to give his very SELF away: get rid of everything, and come and follow me. Jesus gave this invitation to very few people directly.
  • 22 Face fell: notice the wide swing of emotion – man ran up and threw himself of Jesus feet in excitement… and then slumped down dejected. Is it possible this man was paying more attention to how he FELT about following Jesus than actually following Jesus? Is that possible for us?

The Paradox of De-Treasurement ~ Mark 10:23-31

  • 23/25 difficulty for the rich to let go of being defined as “rich”; money **shouldn’t** be the thing you use to measure your self-worth, but often is. THAT’s what Jesus warns us about, because if He is to be LORD, that means He gets control of ALL of your life – including what you use to define yourself
  • 26/27 Peter points out this goes against our human nature; Jesus agrees, but the whole POINT of salvation is the REPLACEMENT of our human nature with our SPIRITUAL nature
  • 28/30 Pete: “what about us?” Jesus: yeah, you’re in… AND you’ll receive real-world benefits as well, although that’s not the point – eternity with God is the goal

31 The invitation to the rich man must have shook the disciples (based on Peter’s reaction); Jesus is reminding them that God’s Economy isn’t based on wealth, or status, or worldly measure. We give up our SELVES so that Christ is LORD. That’s how it works.


Pastor Ed Backell

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