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February 25, 2021 7:05 am
Has there ever been a time in history when people of been more polarized by cultural issues right now. Arguably, the last 12 months have been the most tumultuous in our lifetime. So as followers of Jesus we navigate through sensitive conversations during this season of blatant hostility.
How do we nurture our relationships without compromising our convictions today on Insight for living Chuck Swindoll reminds us that the answer is found in Jesus sermon on the Mount, the first century was rife with conflict and division.
Jesus commanded his followers to be salt and light outline from the worship folder and I want you to place it at the second chapter of first John K, not the gospel of John. You'll be tempted to go there. Toward the end of your Bible you will find three letters.
First, second and third John slip the Senate first John chapter 2 will begin our message from God's word there and work our way to the passage were looking at in Matthew chapter 5 what you've done that, please turn to for verses. Matthew five that come on the heels of the Beatitudes, which we looked at in our previous study of Matthew fits because the kind of person we are to be in character is a kind of individual that the world is to see an action, but not like you might think we are salt and we are light so our major task as believers in Christ is to shake and shine.
That's what we do and when we do it well, amazing things happen to those never known Christ. Matthew 513 through 16 you are the salt of the earth. But if the salt has become tasteless hacking to be made salty again, is no longer good for anything except to be thrown out and trampled underfoot by men. You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden, nor does anyone light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on the lampstand, and it gives light to all who are in the house. Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works and glorify your father who is in heaven. I hope is that we will understand the metaphor salt and light and see how they apply to the way we live our lives in a world that's lost its way to study the book of Matthew with Chuck Swindoll sure to download his searching the Scriptures. Studies by going to Insight world.org/studies and now Chuck's message titled shake and shine Isaac Watts asks questions that we need to answer each one of us. Admittedly, he asked his question back in the 18th century and were living in the 21st but not surprisingly, those questions are as relevant as they were when he first asked them he wrote his questions and to him so for change rather than having you open your Bible to a certain place, I'd like you to open your hymnal to number 728 and there you will see the questions Isaac Watts asks him.
You will notice one question after another after another, all of them searching, and the one singing the year is asking herself or himself the question.
Look at the MIS soldier of the cross. Am I a follower of the Lamb. There's another should I fear to own his claws or blush to speak his name. Look at the questions here's another must be carried to the skies.
That means going to heaven must be carried to the skies on flowery beds of these while others fought to win the prize and sale through blood disease.
The questions are over. Are there no photos for me to face, must I not stem the flood is the center is this vile world a friend to grace to help me on to God. Interestingly, all all the questions deal with our relationship to Christ. To begin with and then to the world the big world. What when I say world, you may immediately think of the globe. The continents that form the planet.
The great bodies of water. The flow of between and around the continents.
Not referring to that world. That world is not vile that that world was made by our God just as he made all the planets of all the galaxies and all the sons and all the stars than what's vile world is that when you sing a hymn, you must think and you must think often in analogies because they are filled often with word pictures that transport you to another setting, and it is usually not one familiar to conversation today, this grand old hymn written in 1724 by an S very S2 theological thinker Watts is designed to make us think and I soldier not really a follower, you are blush to speak his name those around his life. One great big picnic where I spread the quilt out on flowery beds of these while others not that far away are facing martyrdom. This vile world friend or an enemy now enough of the questions clearly most of the answers are no, no, no world is not a friend know I'm not supposed to sit around in and wait for the next picnic know this isn't about taking live easy the Christian life is is is not something I enter into to enjoy a playground is a battleground in the adversary never sleeps.
I can wake up in the middle of the night. 1 o'clock in the morning and the adversary knows it and is ready to tempt me, I can finish my day at any time of the day and night falls and the adversary has never pulled away. He studied me he knows every chink in my armor. He's known me since I first read earth, air, and the same for you. In fact, this adversary is a leg up on us because he's running things in this world. If you haven't noticed me give you couple definitions of world he may want to find a spot on your outline right so set your hymnal aside open the first John chapter 2 was talk about the world for a moment to review moments because John writes about the fact he says by way of command do not love the world back the way he writes it stopped loving the world or the things in the world anyone loves the world, the love of the father is not in him. What's in the world. The next verse, the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes. The boastful pride of life, none of that's from the father.
The father doesn't give you lust.
The father doesn't prop pride or arrogance soul from the world.
So what's the world amending Vincent gave us years ago this rather brief definition it is the sum total of human life in the ordered world system considered apart from alienated from, and hostile to God, the world don't miss that lives apart from alienated from, and hostile to God. That's where you work.
That's where you drive your car. That's a courtroom into which you go to school where you train Mr. lifestyle that's all around you is being lived out by a very convincing ordered system made to make you think. Unquestionably we go further, 80 Robertson renders Cosmas to the word world here in first John five, first John two in verse 15 do not love the world.
It's the word TOS MOS we get our word cosmopolitan from what is Cosmas because 80 Robertson great Baptist scholar, writes Cosmas's refers to an ordered system here is the ordered system of which Satan is the head's fallen Angels and Demons are his emissaries and the unsaved of the human race, or his subjects.
I think you have to think to travel along with me through this. It'll prepare you for what were going to read about salt and light.
It is the ordered system of which Satan is the head's fallen Angels and Demons are his emissaries. The unsaved of the human race are his subjects together with those purposes pursuits pleasures practices in places where God is not wanted much in the world system is religious cultured, refined and intellectual but it is anti-God and anti-Christ don't love the world system don't love the world's opinion as JB Phillips rendered this paraphrase of Romans 12. Don't let the world around you squeeze you into its mold politically correct thinking is all about agreeing with the world system. They love it when you do.
They resent you when you don't have words for us when we don't fall in line and fit into the system.
See the entire world system is degenerate.
I said to Cynthia the other day as we were hearing the news and it was a tragic bit of news.
Just horrible information about the way certain individuals were treating others and I just sighed and said under my breath when world is. She answered very softly and accurately depravity.
It's about depravity. When you forget that you're going to be disillusioned so this vile world is no friend to grace to help us on to God. So what can we expect from this world. I'm giving you a place in your outline to write three words that you know but maybe haven't put together, we can expect hatred, persecution and tribulation with that turn from 1st.and unknown for you to wait benefit of this look at the last chapter of first John chapter 5 verse 19 look closely. We know that we are of God as the believer in Christ. I look at the world.
We also know that the whole world lies in the evil one in my Bible written in italics are the words the power of the evil. One of my mentors, J. Dwight Pentecost used to use the paraphrase the whole world lies in the lap of the evil one.
The whole world operates under his control. The world thinks like the evil one thing the world has opinions like the opinions of the evil one when you get this you are not shocked or disillusioned. You sigh your hurt when you get the specifics of how that works its way out as people treat one another like they do, especially as people treat Christians like they do were marked out show you why that hatred is like it is not returned to the gospel of John McKay, not from not the letter but over toward Matthew stop off at John's Gospel chapter 50. How can I see that the world really resents us eight because that's what Jesus taught.
He told his disciples before he went to the cross. That's the world that they would enter and he says it without equivocation. Look at Chapter 16 of John. The last verse these things I've spoken to you, so that in me you may have peace in the world.
The implication is there is no peace in the world you have tribulation, but take courage. I have overcome the world about chapter 50 may point out why we can expect hatred, persecution and tribulation John 15 verse 18.
These are the words of Jesus.
I happen to have a red letter Bible.
So these words are in red. These are the words Jesus spoke in what was called the upper room discourse words he gave his disciples shortly before he was arrested and crucified. If the world hates you, you know that it has hated me before it hated you to show you three reasons the world hates us number one if you were of the world, the world would love its own, but because you're not of the world.
That means a world system, but I chose you out of that system because of this the world page. The first reason is because were different. The world wants us to feel like they want us to be as miserable as they are. They want us to curse like they curse they want us to hold opinions regarding morality like they hold opinions regarding morality. They want us to think about marriage like they are thinking about marriage. They want us to deal with issues like they deal with issues.
That's why you find yourself so often out of step. You're so different. Why well because your guidance is the word of God which is not a part of the world system. If the world has its head is where it would burn every Bible there is not even allowed to bring into a school now minute and no place for this is so different and therefore I hate that I could, teaching, bigoted, or whatever word they may wish to use will be disillusioned as written. Learn don't get hostile is commonly realize what you're dealing with the world that you because you're different.
That's verse 19.
Let's not stop there to 20 and 21 years.
The second reason.
Remember the word that I said to you, a slave is not greater than his master. If they persecuted me will also persecute you. If they kept my word, they will keep yours also. But all these things they will do to you for my name's sake because they do not know the one who sent me.
Second reason because we bear the name of Christ you want to name that is going to make conflict quickly emerge in most conversations Christ you want to spur on terrorism taught about Messiah being your master because we identify with Christ, we rated draw. Look what they did to him. Is that amazing the one who never did a wrong against anyone. He fed the hungry. He healed the sick. He raise the dead. He comforted the afflicted. He was there to be of support and advocate on behalf of those who had fallen. He cared he loves sinful people was it about. He was so different. You gave them fits the religious folks you don't fit our mold talk. Our language is the third reason is that this and put the clincher rented verse 22. If I had not come and spoken to them, they would not have sin, but now they have no excuse for their sin.
24. If I had not done among them the works which no one else then they would not have sand, but now they have both seen and hated me and my father is well number three we expose their sin just being there. They hated it. Why because he took up for the adulterous and said go and don't send like that anymore, but we not going to stone you, you are without sin, you cast the first stone vacated that dinner you expose us as arrogant and proud goes on to this day. Generally, we can expect this kind of treatment because the world rests in the lap of the evil one, and specifically because of those things I just plain because were different because we bear the name of Christ.
And because we expose their sin now to tell you what the natural response is that we respond like a whirl. Response after all raised with that if your parents were not Christians.
They taught you to hit him back harder than they did.
You Jesus is way way way way to fight fire with fire. You don't win them over to me, baptizing them in the mouth. You don't go out with both guns blazing in barnstorming your way through the dormitory, shouting about Jesus being the dominant one in your lot. No, no, no, wait a minute that's not how it's done. Jesus didn't do that affected the disciples, some of them were were just concerned about him because he didn't come in and talk about overthrowing role. Get rid of the swine. No says you will in Texas. Texas and they were as quiet as you are right now. I mean, that's not the world's way. There's a counterculture here that Jesus is promoting.
He does it in the Beatitudes the peacemaker, the merciful. Blessed are you when you're persecuted you and I have no concept of persecution.
We may have someone disagree with our opinion that the persecution persecution happens when somebody and they were in the room is on the verge of losing his life, if not altogether persecution is when you are silenced and if you don't shut off will shut this reason you don't fit in as a child of God.
In Matthew chapter 5. Certainly places are persecution in proper perspective living in challenging days for sure, but most of us have never experienced the level of persecution suffered by first century Christians you're listening to Insight for living in a message from Chuck Swindoll titled shake and shine and to learn more about this ministry or Chuck Swindoll visit inside world.org now by way of clarification chucks brand-new study in Matthew will command our attention over the next several months.
In fact the better part of 2021 just started with the birth of our king and our tracing his footsteps through all 28 chapters moving toward his great commission to go and make disciples and in conjunction with this broadcast series.
Chuck recently completed a commentary on Matthew as well because of the scope of this study Chuck's commentary comes in two hardbound volumes. The set is called Swindoll's living incites commentary on Matthew. Whether you're new to the Bible or you teaching the Bible is a pastor or professor. You'll find Chuck's approach to Matthew, both scholarly and user-friendly. And it's written in the engaging style that's become a hallmark of Chuck's teaching to purchase Swindoll's living incites commentary on Matthew go to Insight.org/offer or if you prefer. Call us if you're listening in the United States dial 1-800-772-8888 Insight for living ministries is supported not by the purchase of books and resources through the contributions of people like you and we invite you to join our mission to introduce King Jesus to all 195's of the world to give a donation today. Thomas listening in the US dial 1-800-772-8888 and I don't forget many are choosing to automate their giving. By becoming a monthly companion. This growing family of supporters is allowing Insight for living to advance its mission with people to become a monthly companion today because listening in the US dial 1-800-772-8880 or you can easily sign up online Insight.org/monthly companion Wendell continues his message about becoming salt and light. Christ right here on Insight for living. The preceding message shaken shine was copyrighted in 2015 and 2021 and the sound recording was copyrighted in 2021 by Charles R. Swindoll. All rights are reserved worldwide. Duplication of copyrighted material for commercial use is strictly prohibited