Sunday Summary – April 24, 2022

The Sunday after Easter is unique as an inevitable correction to the swell of Easter attenders. However, Christianity is still in Eastertide, so the celebration continues despite the many who have moved on. I preached on one of my favorite subjects – Provision. I know the story from 2 Kings 4:1-7 is an encouragement to those in overwhelming debt that God cares and has provision for them.

CLICK BELOW:

Sunday Summary – Jacob Bell, “On the Road with Jesus”

This week was so complex that I had not taken the opportunity to write on this blog. Still, it is cathartic for me to review Sunday, and it creates a historic archive for our church and my ministry.

Pastor Jacob Bell preached for the first time at CIL, and he was so well prepared and clear in his communication. What a heart for God that came through his message titled “On the Roadway with Jesus.” Jacob is only 25 years old, but his wisdom and maturity come through in his life and this message. I anticipate great things through his ministry.

WATCH the service by clicking below:

We need covenant relationships

We instinctively long for covenant relationships. What is this? It’s a sacred agreement between two parties. This covenant takes away the fear of abandonment. I wish I would have learned this principle earlier in life. It would have saved me from sin, mistakes, and the destruction of meaningful relationships.

An example of this is Jacob and his father-in-law, Laban. Their poor relationship turned into a covenant relationship.

Genesis 31:44 (CSB)
“Come now, let’s make a covenant, you and I. Let it be a witness between the two of us.”

Genesis 31:49 (CSB)
… “May the Lord watch between you and me when we are out of each other’s sight.”

Covenant requires trust. Both the Lord and the covenant watch over the two parties when they are apart. None of us have been perfect in this, but we can live with this understanding and aspiration from this point forward.

To listen or watch my sermon on this, watch here:

People of conviction

This statement was in my notes today but did not make it in the sermon. Still, I think it is important to consider:

If there is never a time when a conviction conflicts with someone you like, then you probably are not living as the Lord’s servant.

“For am I now trying to persuade people, or God? Or am I striving to please people? If I were still trying to please people, I would not be a servant of Christ.” – Galatians 1:10

The right mountain for the right Kingdom

We learned on Sunday from Hebrews 12 that the Kingdom of God is no longer in the realm of fear, intimidation, and separation. The symbol of the Kingdom of God is not the first mountain, where even Moses was afraid.

“Instead, you have come to Mount Zion, to the city of the living God (the heavenly Jerusalem), to myriads of angels, a festive gathering, to the assembly of the firstborn whose names have been written in heaven, to a Judge, who is God of all, to the spirits of righteous people made perfect (Hebrews 12:22-23).”

A festive gathering!

The Kingdom of God is enjoyable!

It is for everyone.

It is not too hard.

This joyful realm happens when we die to ourselves and let Christ resurrect within us.

Rules or People?

When Jesus healed a woman who had been sick 18 years, the leader of the synagogue (the Senior Pastor), was angry because of the breaking of sabbath rules. In that case, rules were more important than people.
 
Jesus demonstrates to us a different way of valuing individuals.
 
I hope we all keep looking to Jesus as our standard of care. While rules can be necessary, a useful one enhances the common good without restricting human flourishment.
 
The Kingdom of God is a renewing reality.
The Kingdom of God is about renewing people!

People of the present and future Kingdom

“The kingdom of God” is a big theme for Jesus.
In the ESV translation, “kingdom” is mentioned 126 times in the Gospels.
 
What is the Kingdom of God?
The Kingdom of God is the reign of God.
 
Through Jesus,
The kingdom is already here.
The kingdom is not yet fully here.
 
So as God’s people, we are what Michael Green wrote:
 
“…people of the future living in the land of the present.”
 
That’s us!

The Fire We Need

The best you is the sanctified you.
 
Still, the very thing we need – the sanctifying, transforming, purifying work of God – seems to be the one thing we are trying to avoid.
 
Let the fire of the Lord purify you.
When He changes you, everything gets better.
 
The fire we need is the eyes of Jesus (Rev. 1:14)