This broadcaster has 681 podcast archives available on-demand.
Keep up-to-date with this broadcaster on social media and their website.
May 11, 2022 6:00 am
Jesus is praying for unity based on truth unity based on truth unity based on what truth, what you get that unity based on truth and in particular, unity based upon the truth of Jesus Christ is Jesus himself the church, especially for unity among his shares of the church can emulate God's love words and actions first love sharing how you already making an impact on others for your support of this minister. Listen to this letter… I've been listening to for about years and teachings have gotten me through a pretty tough time. I'm probably not alone when I say that although I've accepted Jesus into my heart and life. I struggle with certain thin and want to do what's right and still fall flat on my face. At times his messages encourage me to keep trying.
Stories like this one only happened because generous listeners like you can and your support today will help take these teachings even further and connect more people with God's truth simply does it connectwithskip.com/donate today connectwithskip.com/donate or call 800 9288. Again, that's 819 to thank you, John chapter 17 as we dive into her study with Skip put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the doublethink of the spaceman the astronaut and the space put on the armor of God, that you might be able to stand against the wiles of the limitless all the art pieces of armor, but he finally says, and the sword of the Spirit which is the word of God. So Jesus says, sanctify them by your truth.
Your word is truth as the Bible. The Bible reader to be wise, believe it to be safe, practice it to be holy.
Or as Peter put it as newborn babes, desire the sincere or pure milk of the word that you might grow thereby so you need to know and you need to grow we need to be knowing your our position. We need to be growing in preparation, but at some point we have to be going, because if all we do is no and grow.
You know what happens if people just accumulate a lot of knowledge and keep growing and growing and feeding and feeding on truth. They get fat spiritually obese site. I got all this great knowledge. Okay so go work it out work it off yeah to go out and so after knowing our position and growing in preparation we have to be going for penetration that takes us back to verse 18.
The word sent you sent me into the world. I've also sent them into the world. That is the goal of knowing that is the goal of growing I made a list of five things I discover there are five different responses that Christians have historically had the world around them.
There may be more but just to make it easy. There are five basic responses that Christians in any era at any time in any age have toward the world system around response number one and is not the best response is to isolate the isolate themselves they become isolationist. The whole goal is to escape the world to live in a monastery. I want to get away from all the bad things are happening.
The world is evil. It is fallen.
There have even been attempts in American history to create Christian communities. Christian villages town cities that are only occupied by Christians as to be great just have all your neighbors is born again Christians you're describing heaven now, but but I get it or people say when it be great to work around Christians all day long off.
The only people you work with her believers take it from somebody who works with Christians all day long. It ain't what you think it is worth still fallen human beings sinners saved by grace like anybody else and anyplace else so response number one and is not the right responses to isolate. Here's another response historically Christians a patchwork the world not to isolate but to insulate the become insular, it's all about protecting themselves.
I'm in this bad place called the world so I need to protect myself and to protect my children and protect my family so I'm to be way over here and I'm gonna notice the bad things in the world on point at them and and and say that's a bad person.
That's a bad thing. Look out bad. That is some people, all they do is spew negative bad comments about all the bad things around you know is really good at that. The Pharisees Pharisees didn't evangelize. They just pointed out all the bad people. Even Jesus they thought was bad because he ate with tax collectors and sinners he mingled with and they pointed out that bad so you can isolate and you can insulate those are not the best responses. 1/3 response. Historically the churches had toward the world is to vegetate.
I think this is even worse because this is a person who is apathetic is vegan out man is no passion for the lost no concern for the lost. He looks around and notices. People are dying and going to hell.
So these are not and and their goal is to make it through life with as much personal comfort as possible and who cares about everybody else that's vegetate all three are not what Jesus intended where not to isolate where not to insulate. We are not to vegetate me give you forth response and this is not a good response either to imitate the world be just like him act just like a and and some believers.
Some Christians actually think this is a good strategy. Yeah Maddow show the world that I was cool as they are. I do what they do. I can I can I can be like them. When you attract unbelievers to the same thing. They are the only thing that's attractive is that you're different from their you would raise the bar so these responses as you can see are not the best responses where not to imitate were not to isolate. We are not to insulate were not to vegetate.
Here's the best response to penetrate to penetrate the darkness with light to go out into the world to rescue souls out of it. That's penetration we want to go for penetration because Jesus said you are the light of the world.
You are the what's the next part.
You are the salt of you can see, you can see it's church. You can talk back to me at least, you are the salt of the earth.
Last time I checked salt doesn't do a whole lot of good in the salt shaker just sits in the salt shaker.
The only time salt is good is when you empty the salt out of the salt shaker minutes on your food taste good. Salt it up a little, but spice it up a little, but I'm so grateful for the salt being here in the salt shaker but at some point we need to get out to rescue souls to throw some up on the screen… Read this together.
I love this paragraph live churches are constantly changing. Dead churches don't have to live churches have lots of noisy kids there churches are fairly quiet live churches expenses always exceed their income that churches taken more than they ever dreamed of spending live churches are constantly improving for the future. Dead churches worship their past live churches focus on people dead churches focus on programs, live churches, dream great dreams of God did churches relive nightmares, live churches don't have Kant in their dictionary did churches have nothing but live churches evangelize that churches fossilized think that last part is that's true for churches. That's true for individuals. You are one of two options.
If you don't evangelize. You will fossilized will start turning inward about me and my blasting in my group and and that's what that's the tendency evangelize or you will fossilized so we need to be knowing our position growing in preparation growing for penetration. Listen, I love people coming to church. I love the church full but the goal is not to fill churches goal is to fill heaven to fill heaven so so that is one of the marks of the church. That's what Jesus prayed for. That's what he wants. We are to be those who are demonstrating God's glory communicating God's truth and penetrating God's world I give you forth in the final Mark trait characteristic that Jesus wants and prays for his church. We are to be a church that emulates God's love we are to emulate God's love we come to the final part of this prayer in verse 20, and it's the most exciting part of the prayer because you're in it you are he is praying for you. Verse 20 I do not pray for these alone. These 12. These 11 us apostles I'm saying. 11 because of Judas, but also for those who will believe in me through their word lets us. We believe the testimony passed down from the apostolic era last 2000 years to us what is he pray for that they all may be one as you father are in me and I in you, that they may be one in us, the world may believe that you sent me, and the glory which you gave me. I have given them that they may be one, just as we are one IN them and you and me, that they may be perfect and one that the world may know that you have sent me, and of love them as you have loved me. Father, I desire that they also, whom you gave me may be with me where I am, that they may behold my glory which you have given me for you loved me before the foundation of the world all righteous father. The world has not known you but I have known you, and these have known that you sent me and I have declared to them your name and will declare it, that the love with which you loved me may be in them, and I in them.
That's a mouthful. So I kinda want to distill it down. Jesus prays for an four times. He prays for four times. He mentions that he prays for oneness, prays for unity. They may be one as we are one. Which is to be very interesting that of all the things Jesus in looking to the future of the church when he prays for, he does not pray for our safety is not pray for our health.
He does not pray for our successes. He does not pray for our happiness. He prays for unity that's noteworthy is high on his list that they may be one as we are one hell of you explain unity because all I want to know what it does not mean unity is not unanimity is not somehow praying for some ecclesiastical ecumenism where were just going to, you know, forget denominations in all get together one group and hold arms and sing Kumbaya and just all get along. Then he can happen if you if you're thinking that's gonna happen.
That's an unrealistic expectation because as I read my New Testament. Even the best and closest followers of Christ didn't see I die.
That didn't get along sometimes there was an argument among the apostles as to who would be the greatest in the kingdom, and a 1.2 of the apostles were were were asking Jesus to sit in the kingdom one on the right-hand one on the left hand, which brought the whole mess up again and they argued again and then up Peter and Paul argued about the law in relationship to the Galatian Christians. There's a couple of chapters in Galatians all about that argument. One in particular the Jerusalem Council in acts chapter 15 had a falling out how to quarrel as to the requirements of salvation. And then there's the classic argument between Paul and Barnabas. They had a falling out and it says that the contention between them was so sharp that they split company into two completely separate evangelistic groups. That's in the Bible. That's just the early church. So when he says I'm praying that they may be one he's not praying for unanimity and he's not praying for uniformity. Unity is not uniformity were all going to think the same were all gonna vote the same.
We all have to read out of the same version of the Bible where I can agree on everything. Somebody once told me a mentor told me if you find two people that agree on everything. One of them is in think so. I can agree on every topic, every subject every theological subject or not. Can we agree on church policy where I can agree on every song that we sing their some of you I hate that some or some music. I was reaching out some worry and that's just what it is that style and we should understand that because were all from the family right you grow up in a family of brothers and sisters, presumably if you have a large family. You know what diverse city, and unity are all about your one family, but you're very different from one another in the family you have one kid is rambunctious, one whose very, very quiet and off to himself or herself.
You may have one person who's a morning person.
One is a night person very different personalities but still one family.
There is unity in diversity, welcome to the church all the kids are different. You got some fuzzy fundamentalists you got some crazy charismatics you got some reformed you got some deformed you got some pretrip mid-trip post tribute at all millennialist premillennialists post millennialist in your thinking. I have no idea what you just said hang on couple weeks will be explaining all some prefer stained-glass windows and robes and candles and the Oregon and hymns and others prefer guitars and granola were still God's people. It's unrealistic to think were going to agree on everything and let me say how thankful I am that there are different churches in this community and others communities to accommodate all the different people with different style.
I can be a good thing. So when he says that they may be one as we are one.
What is he praying for, listen carefully, Jesus is praying for unity based on truth unity based on truth unity based on what truth wanted to get that unity based on truth and in particular, unity based upon the truth of who Jesus Christ is and what he is come to ask the unity and assault like you think boy, I hope that they have unity. He he he is knowing that they will have unity we saw something we hope we get we already have. We already have and I want you to see that go back to verse eight Jesus said, I have given to them the words which you have given me and they have received them and have known surely that I came forth from you and they have believed that you sent. I pray for them.
I do not pray for the world. But for those you have given me, for they are yours and all mine are yours and yours are mine, and I'm glorified in them.
Now I am no longer in the world, but these are in the world and I come to you. Holy father keep through your name those whom you have given me, that they may be one as we are forget that our unity is based on the belief that Jesus came here to do the father's will. That's what he said so personal to me. I'm a Christian the same way, you're a Christian I believe in the finished work of Jesus Christ sent from heaven to die on a cross for my sins. You're saved by the same belief my Savior. If you receive Christ as your Savior.
That's the unity so if you believe that Jesus Christ has been sent from the father and us come to pay for your sin were family.
If you don't believe Jesus Christ is sent from the father to pay for your sins we need family, you might be a neighbor you might be a nice guy or gal which are not family because there are certain things that we would call essentials of the Christian faith. Other things we will call nonessentials when it comes to essentials, we divide over that we make a division you have a kooky idea about Jesus is a kooky idea. This not typical about how you get saved were not family but if you believe that the Jesus is who he said he is with the Bible says he's going to do the father's will die on the cross for your sins believe anything you want pretrip mid-trip post trip you can have any belief you want about styles of worship, modes of baptism, etc. because all of that is nonessential, with secondary were still family. So as Augustine put it in essentials unity and nonessentials liberty but in all things shared now. Jesus, as I mentioned praise for unity based on truth four times in this last section, four times over and over and over and over again. He prays that they may be one as we are one. So it's pretty important for him to repeat it to the father four times why why is it so important. Verse 21 here is that they may be one as you father are in me and I in you, that they may also be one in us. That's the unity here is that, or better yet, so that the world may believe that you sent me.
You see, unity helps create belief. Our unity makes outsiders want to be part of the community they're looking for a real place that gives authentic love and is together over the essentials they're looking for something like that. And when they see it in us that's attracted to them because they can't get it at the Elks club or any other club they see it in the church so unity among Christians proves the reality of the Christian message you want to hear that even write that down unity among Christians proves the reality of the Christian message. That's why that the world may believe that you sent is tubular before watchful eyes and they the world is noticing with great scrupulous in this our unity or our disunity. Imagine how ridiculous it seems to an unbeliever when they look at churches and see them fighting over the wearing of robes. The colors of pews. The styles of music the length of hair modes of baptism.
It's absurd because were out there supposedly trying to rescue them from their plight and bring them into God's family and they're saying I don't need rescuing. I don't need to go into your family because your family like a soap opera right so division in the church bickering in the church will turn people off. He will send people away. I want you to see what Paul Bill Heimer wrote to the continuous and widespread fragmentation of the church has been the scandal of the ages.
It is been Satan's master strategy. The sin of this unity probably is because more souls to be lost than all other sins combined powerful statement.
Think of your New Testament.
There was there was arguments within congregations back then Paul wrote to the Romans and Corinthians in and there were people arguing over eating meat not eating meat rights to idols so Paul never said listen, you got an argument going on go down. The church is free to start another church just for meat eaters only and then on the other group go down the street and start another church for non-meat eaters only. That's is no way to sit work it out was a nonessentials. Let there be unity over the essentials so that our challenge is to become the people that God intended us to become that the church that Jesus prayed for one that would demonstrate his glory, one that would communicate God's truth, one that would penetrate God's world, one that would emulate God's love.
If we don't if that isn't what were fixed on doing and being in regular turn out to be another Epcot entertainment place that people go to visit occasionally instead of what he intended place were people life together that wraps up Skip a text message series 2020 right now to share about a great resource to cultivate an enduring faith to every season of life stands between you and a more fruitful walk with Jesus health for prominent women in the Bible thinks their struggles in a neat teaching series for my sake called Queens of the Bible on the Queen of Sheba hearing is the first step toward spiritual life right now, hearing the staff were requesting because faith comes by hearing and hearing by the word of God hear more from she exploits the faith in the feelings of four different queens in Scripture Queens of the Bible collection of teaching for family and saying thank you $35 or more today to support this type of teaching ministry with the cost of following Christ is to go wherever healing your copy of these unique teachings when you come hundred 98 or give online securely connectwithskip.com/offer connect this gift account/offer tune in tomorrow Skip Heitzigs. It gives you a startling glimpse from Scripture about what you can expect in the future. There are some people who have a unhealthy preoccupation prophetic thing for all their about all the study they look for signs see signs everything flower by the road by five, and unhealthy preoccupation can also become a healthy