One book only 100 pages long published by the Department of Justice and that can be downloaded is a book that no parent wants to read. The title is When Your Child is Missing. Key bullet points and action steps are on the cover of the book, like, “You’re not alone,” “Hope is essential,” “Trust your feelings and share them with law enforcement officials,” “Distribute pictures,” “Keep your focus,” “Exercise caution,” and the final exhortation is “Never stop looking.” The parents of Jacob Wetterling have been searching for him since 1989. They post messages saying, “We’re still searching for you and we will never quit.” Parents will spare no expense as with resolute passion they search for their missing children. So does God. God has lost children, who have gone the wrong direction, lost their bearings, lost their place in this life and lost their vision of the next life. God initiated a massive search and rescue strategy to find his lost children. First was Israel. God wanted a nation through whom to show his character and to call people back to himself. Next was Jesus Christ. Jesus declared, “I am the Way, the Truth and the Life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” We are lost and Jesus is the only way back home. By His death on the cross and His resurrection, we can be reunited to our heavenly Father. How does the church fit into this search and rescue plan? It is through the Holy Spirit working through the church that God gets His message to people. We will be looking at the Book of Acts, beginning with Acts 1:1. The Holy Spirit empowers the believer (and the church) for ministry.
Have you ever had a decisive moment in your life? One where everything changes and you say, “I’ll never be the same.” I have. Some of my favorites include my salvation, my wedding, and the birth of my daughter. Last week we talked about the crucifixion of Christ. It was one of those decisive moments in history where everything changed. The world was different. You are also never the same when you become a Christian. When you are cleansed from you sin and clothed in the righteousness of Christ, you are never the same. Likewise, when we encounter the empty tomb, we are never the same. We realize that Jesus is alive, and He is with us always (and everywhere). That is a decisive moment in life. In this sermon, we are going to look at four stories and see how people’s lives were changed, how things were never the same, after they encountered the resurrected Christ. These are real people. These are real encounters. What happened in their life? Can it happen in yours? When we encounter the resurrected Christ, we are never the same.
Claude Harmon was a great golf instructor. He had four sons who would go on to become golf instructors as well. One of them, Butch Harmon, would be an instructor of the pros: Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson, just to name a few. Claude would tell his sons, “Boys, whenever someone comes to you to learn to play golf, you will see in their swing ten different problems. Your job as their teacher is to find the ONE that causes the other nine.” When we look at the world, we can easily see ten problems (poverty, hunger, lack of drinking water, failing economy, rise of socialism, infectious diseases, civil unrest, lack of accountability, unceasing worry, etc.). Is there one problem that causes the rest? The Bible gives a resounding yes! SIN IS THE ONE PROBLEM that causes all of the rest. Sin is falling short of God’s standard in thought, word, and/or action. The fundamental result of sin is separation from God. Jesus dealt with this problem, the fountainhead of all others, on the cross. When the problem was addressed, Jesus declared, “It is finished” (John 19:30) The question to us is “What was finished?” What task, what mission, did Jesus complete? What happened on the cross that makes the cross such a big deal? How is the world different after Jesus died? Today, we are going to answer the questions surrounding the importance of the cross. Jesus died so that we may live.
The answer to the question, “Who is Jesus?” is the only one with eternal implications. Jesus walked off the mountain onto the beach, out into the bay, and did not sink in the middle of a storm… Who is this guy? Jesus took a boys picnic lunch and turned it into an all-you-can-eat buffet for thousands of people… Who is this guy? Jesus wove leather strips together into a whip and purged the temple of money changers and hucksters… Who is this guy?
Today, we are going to see how folks in Jesus’ day answered that question, what our options are, and then see how Jesus answered that question.
Big Idea: “Jesus is no ordinary God.”
The sermons from Faith Bible Church are here in blog format. You can search based on year [drop down menu], month, series, book of the Bible, or preacher. Some include video, notes, and even the bulletin. Enjoy!