History, Geography, Literature

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Three Subjects To Brush Up On That Just Might Change The World

Salvation history. God is in command of and working through the events in history (vs the deist watchmaker and vs the god who represents our agenda)

  • God’s people have chronicled history as a series of God’s creative and redemptive actions
  • Creation, Covenant, Exodus, Kingdom, Exile, Messiah, Cross, Resurrection, Spirit ...
  • History teaches us that God is now doing what he has always done

    The Future Is God’s History

    What kind of world will the children born this year live in?

    How you answer. Pessimism or optimism is largely influenced by culture and the way we feel about right now

    I can recall the optimistic predictions of the future. New technology. Communication scientific advancement perspective

    Our hope about the future can be misplaced. But so also can our despair about the future.

  • Romans 8:18-25
  • Past History = Future Hope

    Romans 8:28 - Hope

    Here’s a history lesson – God’s people in the past had problems with geography. They thought that salvation was limited to the boundaries, borders, and ethnic barriers of Israel.

    Boundaries, Borders, and Barriers – Hostility and Separation - "For he himself is our peace, who has made the two one and has destroyed the barrier, the dividing wall of hostility, by abolishing in his flesh the law with its commandments and regulations. His purpose was to create in himself one new man out of the two, thus making peace, and in this one body to reconcile both of them to God through the cross, by which he put to death their hostility." (Ephesians 2:14-18)

    This is real political stuff ... Our politics have to be Kingdom Politics – God’s geography. God’s grace does not end at the U.S. border.

    The Trip to Mexico That Wasn’t – This isn’t just a problem for Mexico. It isn’t a problem that a fence or a border

    A statement on a newsite from Sir Bikesalot 8:12 - "If you overindulgent Americans would stop smoking, shooting, snorting, and inhaling your precious drugs, none of this would be happening."

    He makes a point. It isn’t just Mexico’s problem – the market for drugs is in the U.S.A.

    When we say, “But there's sin and suffering in that nation. How can that be godly?” Then we are on the verge of two mistakes:

    1. We assume that God is something like fortune. He is with you and things go well. If things go bad, then he isn't (misfortune).
    2. That people in other nations need to become more like us (Southern? American? Middle Class?) and then they will be alright.

    Geography Lesson: All mission is to the world, including our nation. All mission is sent by Christ from heaven, not from one nation to another ...

    This is our Father’s world! He has claimed it long before there was a U.S.A. To say this is our Father’s world is to say more than just the brooks and streams and flowers and trees. It also means the cities, the streets, the highways and byways. Those are part of God’s world, too. And if they don’t look like it, then it is no different from the fact that some of God’s children don’t live up to their birthright. Juarez, Mexico is my Father’s world. Fifth Ward of Houston is my Father’s world. Iran is my Father’s World. Hollywood, California is my Father’s world. Haiti is my Father’s world. Every Muslim nation and every communist country is my Father’s world. Nigeria and North Korea. This is my Fathers world – Satan cannot lay claim to any of it. Jesus Christ rules it all. The world just needs to know.

    People don’t need to become more like us. No. What they need is what we need, to live out the story. Next subject, literature.

    Telling the right story.
    From the movie, Walk the Line:

  • Young J.R. Cash: "There's more words in the Bible than in the Heavenly Highway Hymns."
        Young Jack Cash: "Look, J.R., if I'm going to be a preacher one day, I gotta know the Bible from front to back. I mean, you can't help nobody if you can't tell the right story."

    2 Peter 1:16
    Talking and Walking – Eyewitnesses to the story. Tell it and live it.
    Our Story and The Story – Authenticity is authority. Not everyone accepts the authoritative base of the Bible – we do, but how do we communicate to those who do not? They won’t listen unless we are credible. (Peter was an eyewitness.)

    Knowledge and Art – Know it. Tell it well – in many languages and many ways. Capture minds and hearts. Tell the story and tell it well ... with passion, with conviction, with style, with color, with words, with deeds.

    Math wasn't on here because we've done too much evangelism “for the numbers” and people aren't numbers. Leave the counting to God. We need to tell the story, tell it well, live it out, and trust God.

    Chris Benjamin

    West-Ark Church of Christ, Fort Smith, AR
    Morning Sermon, 28 March 2010

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