Monday, January 17, 2011

One Prayer Week Two

Pastor Jerry brought a message on One Call yesterday and spoke on Matthew 16 where Peter confesses that Jesus is the Christ (messiah, anointed one) the Son of the Living God.

Everything in our lives hinges on this one question. Who do you say that Jesus is? Many in that day said that He was John the Baptist, or Elijah or Jeremiah or another great prophet. But they all missed out on the true identity of this God-man. There are many today who still consider Jesus a great prophet, a great teacher or a great man.

Matthew 7:21 “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father in heaven. 22 On that day many will say to me, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many deeds of power in your name?’ 23 Then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; go away from me, you evildoers.’

This is a startling passage in Matthew where Jesus makes clear that people who claim Jesus as Lord and even do work in His name aren't guaranteed the Kingdom.

A couple things happen in the Christ Follower upon them professing Jesus as Lord:

1. Surrender of Will (Not once but always)
2. Transforming Sanctification (His grace changes you) If you don't have a before/after story of what Jesus Christ has done in your life, then be very cautious. Jesus changes us. Simon was renamed Peter. Saul was renamed Paul. The disciples left an old way of life to follow him. The lame were made able. The blind could see. The dead were raised to life. If our story is, "I prayed a prayer to Jesus and now I'm 'covered' for Heaven"...we've missed it.

The other highlight of the day was our role with the church. The bride of Christ, imperfect but perfecting is where the transformed person continues transforming. We need each other to walk through this life. If there was such thing as a perfect church, there would be need for Christ, no need for confession and the forgiveness of sins, no need for each the sacraments, etc. Bonhoeffer said it well...Our expectations of what Church 'ought to be' are often the biggest barrier to community.

Next up: Kurt Landerholm on One Lord!

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