Sunday, April 26
Theme: Victorious Living!
Message Title: Justified Victory
Message Focus: Victory is personal but never personalized
Message Text: Matthew 12:19-21 (NIV)
→Message Aim: Encourage a posture of victory that spills over to our everyday civic lives.
19 He will not quarrel or cry out; no one will hear his voice in the streets.
20 A bruised reed he will not break, and a smoldering wick he will not snuff out, till he has brought justice through to victory. 21 In his name the nations will put their hope.” Matthew 12:19-21 (NIV)
15 As evening approached, the disciples came to him and said, “This is a remote place, and it’s already getting late. Send the crowds away, so they can go to the villages and buy themselves some food.” 16 Jesus replied, “They do not need to go away. You give them something to eat.” Matthew 14:15-16 (NIV)
7 The righteous care about justice for the poor, but the wicked have no such concern. Proverbs 29:7 (NIV)
➣ÖAnd while the church is a visible manifestation of God's kingdom, the church is not all of God's kingdom. God is concerned with making every realm of his creation whole.
Biblical justice involves making individuals, communities, and the cosmos whole, by upholding both goodness and impartiality. It stands at the center of true religion, according to James, who says that the kind of "religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world" (James 1:27). Earlier Scripture says, "The righteous care about justice for the poor, but the wicked have no such concern" (Prov. 29:7).
Only as we despair of ourselves and cling to Jesus can we participate in his work of restoring lives, the church, and the world by the Spirit of the Lord. We, the church, are to live now in light of Jesus' restoration of all things.
Both individual transformation and community transformation are part of restoring wholeness. While morality and immorality are birthed in the human heart (James 3:10-18), justice is centered in God's heart. We are to purify our hearts (James 4:8) whose desires lead us to sin. With transformed hearts, we are to extend God's justice to the poor, orphans, and widows, and to show no partiality.
#1 Original message to early church was one of hope in the victory which Jesus had won for them.
They preached the resurrection of Christ because of the victory it confirmed.
People who heard scripture (early times) were anything but comfortable. They were people in need of great comfort because of the hardship of life via persecution of faith and/or culture.
The Word of God and message of hope gave solace to people who’s lives and sanity were on the line.
Today, victory represents something else…
People (of faith) are comfortable and satisfied…we’re pursuing a temporal victory rather then eternal reward.
The message now isn’t “hold out, Jesus is coming back;” but rather, the message is, “let go, Jesus is coming back!”
#2 Another trap is an insatiable desire for knowledge and no desire for application. Studying scripture for knowledge sake re: reverence for it’s author, audience or adherents.
#3 Focus of Jesus’ Victory should:
- convince us of our helplessness in saving ourselves
- convince us of our chosenness by God
- convince us of our righteousness, established by and confirmed in the risen Jesus Christ, hence creating a worthiness of victory as ratified by the Exalted Jesus Christ
- Aw we worship Jesus, we affirm our God, Chris’t resurrection, Christ’s ascension, Our Intercessor, Our authority.
The good news…or gospel…isn’t merely that Jesus died for the world any more than a bag of ingredients from the grocery store is a gourmet meal.
- Find out what scripture states about how injustice breaks God’s heart & find ways to help address a particular issue
- Find out where God is at work and join in (Henry Blackerby)
- God told Israel to remember its humble beginnings by helping others who are in similar situations.
- Pray for understand that you are vehicle for God’s solutions!
- Take the next leap of faith in your faith journey