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January 15, 2022 3:00 am
I don't think any of us would close a personal letter by saying something like wishing you poverty and hunger, and sadness. So why did Jesus call these things blessings will find out today on Truth for Life with Alastair beg the message is titled a Christian manifesto, Alistair's teaching from Luke chapter 6 were in verses 20 through 27, we discover that God has purposed the people of his own people on his own on his own. He called his holy people and the word essentially means set apart from set apart to set apart from sin from the world. From my own propensities and set apart to he who is in himself. Holiness. One of things that happened was that the people of God God in externalism whereby they determined that although I was interested in was that they made sure they All these external rules and regulations. God was sending his profits to them again and again and again to see the issue is not out there, the issue is in here that was the one thing that he embraced externalism and the other was that they were absorbed by the surrounding peoples time and time again to see what's happening here. Throughout history, that is, that God says your my people. You belong to me.
Your all line I want you to live from your heart in relationship to the principles that I provide people of God say you know what, let's just do it externally. Make sure were clean on the outside and we can do whatever we like. Behind closed doors. They began to operate on a double standard. God sends his prophecies as you can do that.
The external is only relevant provided the internal is true, James.
By the time you come to the New Testament is buying the same drum. He says to them, don't you realize you do them. I'm writing that friendship with the world is enmity with God.
As you can do this double standard you can be playing a game over here and playing a game over there.
You can be Saturday night over here on Sunday morning and this you can be a mass during the week in your school and then trying to play the game on Sunday.
It is incongruous. It's not impossible, but it is totally incongruous. Let the words of your mouth and the meditation of your heart be acceptable in the sight of God. Peter says the same thing you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a people belonging to himself. First Peter chapter 2 verses 11 and 12. He says you know when you are your aliens and strangers aliens and strangers and I and you to abstain from sinful desires, which war against your soul and live such good lives among the pagans that, though they accuse you of doing wrong, they may actually see your good deeds and glorify God in the daily visits. As in other words, when we spend time amongst our pagan friends. It is not an opportunity for us to be like our pagan friends when, like our pagan friends in the sense that we breathe the same air that we will probably wear similar close except in extreme circumstances that we will drive some of our cars and live in similar houses.
But once those extent also tackled when it comes to the core value system of the Christian.
Although we live amongst the pagans. We do not live like the pagans, and the reason the largest reason for the ineffectiveness of contemporary Christianity is that is resolved soon as first of all on my part. The radical difference that Jesus calls for within our Christian pilgrimage.
We are at the end of 1/4 of a century of congratulating ourselves for being able to go amongst our pagan friends and safe you know what just the same as you and Dave come back and said you know what I think you're absolutely right for what right does the Christian businessman who cheats on his income tax have to speak to his buddy in the office about integrity, not what right does the Christian professing young person who sleeps with her boyfriend have to say to their friends when they're out with them on an evening about morality absolutely none. What does the inventor, backbiting, rigid horrible mouth woman have to say to her friends about the beauty and power and transforming grace of Jesus when all he ever get from her when there with her is vitriolic criticism and enmity. She has absolutely nothing to say why because she is the exact same and indeed love was the degree to which that is true, calls us to do what Paul says examine yourselves to see whether you are all the faith you going to get to the end of chapter 60 just deal. He says you call me Lord, Lord, and you do not do what I tell you what you think you're doing, says Jesus going to all those services preaching all those sermons back to attend all those conferences getting your photograph and all those brochures. Why do you call me Lord, Lord, and do not do what I tell you you're supposed to be different. He says the same laugh at the same jokes you watch the same films you embrace the same lifestyle is the difference. That's what God says I have a sneaking suspicion that's what my pagan name. Just exactly why is it Alastair that I'm supposed to believe your Christ just exactly why is it that I am supposed to trust in this profession of Christianity. What when where are you telling me this for you that you live such good lives among the pagans that when they see your good deeds.
They will glorify God in the day of visitation, not so that you live like the pagans and you act like the pagans and you are not generally pagan makes the pagans feel comfortable. That's why the light having is around as we make them comfortable may be as simple something as simple as buying your head in grace saying grace and thanking God for your food makes them distantly uncomfortable doesn't. Why are you doing well if I'm doing it to make them uncomfortable. I lost a blessing. I'm doing it to make some point you know because I want to attract attention to myself as well. Going lock myself in the toilet for two or three minutes minute financially doing it out of expression of a heart. This is thank you for my food.
Three months later, one of your business Association was present, but not sitting with you but at another table comes over to incisional work for just one thing I noticed about you bow your head before his before you even realize you do that you do that in here we go because God so that he provides a fluid we don't believe that DSI sent me to wait on them. God has made himself known to the audience. I do.
I believe he's made himself known. Why was he made himself known was made himself known in the world is made himself known in the book and is made himself known in Jesus the Foss as well and will talk about that sometime soon.
Maybe we will start because you were different but with a big pointed hat know that's easy.
I would be an easy one right. I go behind your get pointed hats for everybody getting all are okay go on where you pointed hats and everybody will know where the Parkside people you know with the pointed hats that's easy. I'm not condemning anyone worth pointed hats or flat hats or slides or any kind of externalism is easy.
I get a free list all of the left is externalism and nobody would know just from the expression of my heart.
My lips are my life my bank balance or my check stubs or something since I admonish you, as aliens and strangers. Some of you traveled overseas. You know what is like to be an alien, you have to stand in a different line of the passport control you use that in 15 lines for you going through. You get over there again. Finally aligned to go through my life then motivate people. Welcome over here is not wheezing. Be honest, I was not wheezing what are used to being treated like this is what you really alien God's people. As we said all along, are in danger of two extremes. One being absorbed by the culture, thereby having people to talk to and nothing to say on being isolated from the culture having something to say and no one to talk to the challenges for us to be able to identify with the world in its need, but not in its sin and there surely can be no more hurtful comments for the Christian than the words, but you are no different from anybody else, at least as it comes to the issues of money, ambition, friendship, integrity, and overall lifestyle. I love ones. I confess to you that I find this this is been about his heart passage of Scripture to get into as any that are faced in the long time and the reason I find it so hard is because it is so incredibly personally challenging. I feel myself in all honesty to be standing is aware on the edge of an ocean, in which are nice and bit my toes, but I've never even been close to and past my I found myself saying, oh God, there's a dimension of spiritual geography here in OH I need to enter in a whole new way. And perhaps others will feel the same because, to the extent I submit to you that is God's people. We are prepared to take seriously the standards in these volumes and to display them as we live our lives then and then only will we offer to the world. An alternative society.
We will offer the world what Stark refers to as the Christian calendar, culture, and the only thing that we have really been offering in 25 years is an attempt to overturn the political structures for the well-being of some right wing costs and any honest person has to admit it flat out didn't work in every indication is not about the work we are not to be surprised because it was never the mandate off Christ. It is not in the Christian manifesto is going to be happy about different things from what other people are happy. I weigh the inside of our stuff that other people routinely don't decide I want you to have as your ambition, something that the world regards as tawdry and ineffectual.
I want you to be holy, and the fact is that happiness or the absence of happiness depends in its final analysis on the response of men and women to Jesus and his words right here versus 17 to 19. There are three groups you will note the apostles the disciples in the larger crowd were not members of the apostles, for they are where an unrepeatable group of the foundation of the church.
Therefore, as we read this and seek to identify ourselves in the context we can ask ourselves the question I'm IN the group of disciples RMI in the crowd very important question here in these verses 20 to 26.
Jesus describes a value system that is at variance with that of the non-Christian world we live in a contemporary setting that cries for us to assert ourselves. Stand up for ourselves.
Be proud of ourselves, elevate ourselves, serve ourselves and avenge ourselves or the end of 1/4 century of man centered focus in education and the social realm, and so on is undeniable. Nobody denies it.
People believe that it's right it's right for is now to be aggressive and self assertive.
The lady leaves her husband, the husband leaves his wife the reason he fed up with it.
Frankly, and he's really done enough for looking after her and providing for and providing for his kids and it's time now for him to assert himself know there's no one else involved know there's nothing else you want to be concerned with peers.
Once I have some of his own time with some of his own money to do some of his own thing we hear it every week we live our lives in other words, is the embracing of total selfishness that I should be too hard to counter unless of course were discovering that Christian men and women are saying the exact same thing when he come in for counseling with the pastors you know what they are. So how we are to make a difference in the world. The pagans do this with the Christians, do out of the question. Shining the light and that they are consumed by the same darkness so I'm so sorry that I'm divorced here this morning and is dreadful.
You picked on me. I'm not picking on you, I'm just illustrating it, and God is able to overturn our stupidities and he's able to restore even the years of the locus of Eaton and there are things that are behind in our lives that we need to leave here not rummage around in the dustbin of unforgiven sin. The fact remains that as we continue to go forward unless there is a radical turnaround in relationship to these things, the circumstance will be far worse in another quarter-century than they are right now. This is why God is given, pastors and teachers of the Bee Gees.
The Bible called the people to repentance: to faith: to obedience in the Bible is what I do well hook verses 20 to 23.
Makarios is the what it means blessed the Latin word gives as the anti-chewed.
The English word is happy or whatever you like and Jesus gives us in these things, the exultation of what the world despises the rejection of what the world admires Blessed are you a report he says what is Jesus doing, suggesting, somehow or another that deprivation. Human deprivation is the key to salvation is of course one of the ways in which this is used, the people are poor. To be really glad because of the poor, the rent serve your poorly written. Blessed are the poor, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven all their support. So he's in the kingdom of heaven is our Jesus teaching what is Jesus saying you seeing that specifically those who in their poverty become aware of the poverty that is true spiritually are those who become the beneficiaries of the kingdom of Godvery important to point out that outward poverty may well be a means of spiritual blessing because it leads a man or a woman to discover their utter dependence upon God not only for physical and material things, but also for spiritual blessings and so poverty yields a far greater response to the gospel's saver did you get that from simply by observation data rich young ruler is referred to.
He's a seeker comes running after Jesus throws himself down on his knees to some good measure. What must I do to inherit eternal life. Within a couple minutes.
The guys walking down the road like this.
He was seen coming on the roses and on the following running up there on the big beaming smile on his face. He said he was going to see Jesus he about eternal life happened in the disciples are standing on Jesus what you doing this in one of the best prospects we've had in ages.
The guy comes running up news down nice and respectful, well-dressed, good looking guy.
We Jesus for so what what is Jesus saying I tell you the truth it's hard for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven. And then he uses a striking picture. He says invite if you want to know how hard it is. It's easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than it is for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God and gentlemen, if you ever get those jolly things you know in it on the airline or are in the hotel room whatever sewing kit and the button comes off and you start on it.
I don't how you are, but I'm telling you to get that thing flew. The thing is that is on our is a feminine thing. I don't want to be sexist, but first they have graveyard to get that things will but I cannot get in line flew there so you think you're going to get a camel through you know why so few people come to Christ the Parkside to reach to satisfy two well-heeled to selfish you so I'm willing to admit to poverty so weak to explain what we've achieved and how we've done and sole longing for somebody to sit on the strength of all you've achieved and all you've done. You step over here. I'm coming to the king.
We could see wanting you step over here and come into this and step over here to go into that but there is only one who can see and step over here and come into the kingdom and he actually calls us to bow down and come into the king, says Calvin.
He only who is reduced to nothing in himself and relies on the mercy of God is the one who is poor and the Christian believer should be the last person in the world to be guilty of snobbery. The last class, said challenge Julia challenges me of all people in the world that are snobs. Christians should never be snow should be allowed to be snobs before Christians because Muslims are earning their way there there tipping the scale cc they're doing good to outweigh the bad.
Therefore, they consummate a saying you know I think I did more than more good than bad. But the Christian tip the scales all you can do is bow down and technology poverty of spirit same thing reveals itself in hunger, Jesus is suggesting that destitution is the key to blessing, nor is he suggesting that starvation is the key to blessing that would be easy. Wouldn't you just go all sell everything or give it all away.
Take all the food out of your pantry in our freezer and are in your fridge guard in the street and give it all away go up on 91 or whatever it is you live in Maple Heights.
Just give it all away straight down to the bare essentials and go hide behind a tree somewhere by here shortly. If you need a short in a bed of nails. If you want somewhere to sleep and be destitute and*enter the kingdom of stupid is that as monasticism because prying is not removed by the removal of stuff and spiritual fullness is not dealt with by then getting rid of material things because the issue is an issue of my the same thing with sadness you want to be happy now, and sad. Then her said no napping. And that's the and the same is the issue in popularity jointly popular now and have somebody say, depart from me.
I never knew you or you want to be unpopular not have Jesus say, welcome to my king you want to be rich to be popular you want to be happy to want to be well fed or you want me said Jordan Morton joined the hungry people say all manner of things I don't give the teacher the answer is looking for.
I want to be rich, happy, well spoken, and I want to have an account at restaurants where I can go and I only have to sign my name in the park my car from unless of course Christ was a revolution within my heart and puts eternity soaring 90s. The things that made me think I'm something now pale into insignificance and prospect of the day, when I stand before we see that's more than enough. I think I agree. Who is our monarch who issues the manifesto he who is the servant King. He is king. But he is servant we are embraced by Christ, but we are to serve others. It's it's in this immense paradox that we live our lives that is Alister big helping us understand that as Christians we are aliens and strangers in this world.
That's why we need to learn to love what the world despises and to reject what the world admires your listing to Truth for Life weekend and we hope you'll keep listening.
Alister will be back in just a minute to close our program with prayer. If you listen to Truth for Life. We can regularly you know were very particular about the books we recommend and this is the last week and will be offering a book titled the all sufficient God by Dr. Martin Lloyd Jones.
This book takes us through Isaiah chapter 40 and as you go through with Lloyd Jones, you'll discover how this Old Testament passage is actually a perfect summary of genuine Christian faith will be encouraged to read about the many ways God has already addressed our greatest doubts and fears.
Learn more about the book the all sufficient God. When you visit our website Truth for Life.or by the way, if you enjoy the convenience of on-demand listing using Amazon Alexa or Google home device. Did you know you can use them to hear Truth for Life simply asked Alexa to play Truth for Life or if you use Google home asked Google to listen to Truth for Life to great way to listen to Alister's messages at your convenience and now here's Alister to close our program Lord our God turn our lives the right way out. Give us the embracing of values which make is absolutely no different from our pagan neighbors and friends forgive us for being able also to point at others and see their glaring inconsistencies while at the same time being unable to face ourselves in the mirror of your word is not surprising that Jesus very quickly comes to the admonition in his sermon, judge not so you won't be judged. So father start to work with me transform is by your grace, make is not only the subjects of the servant King make is like for his namesake, bumping listening is certainly not a pleasant experience for any of us to be hated or despised, so why would Jesus tell his followers to rejoice in such treatment. Find out when you join us again next week. Bible teaching of Alister big is furnished by Truth for Life with the Learning is for Living