December 28, 2019

Cry of Victory - Mark 15:37-39

"Let me tell you, from what I understand from history, the veil that covered the Holy of Holies in the temple was a veil, it was so thick that it would take more than a team. Two teams of horses pulling in opposite directions to rip the veil. The veil was the place that separated the mercy seat of God in the Holy of Holies, in God's temple in Jerusalem from all the people of the world."

Family Discussions:

  1. Describe your personal feelings about Jesus' work on the cross.
  2. How would you get to God had the veil not been torn in two?
  3. How in the world could you ever approach a Holy God?
  4. Describe your feelings about the privilege, the honor that you've been given by the act of love.

Transcription:

00:13          Hey, I'll never forget the day my little college team at SMU beat Oklahoma in a bowl game. I mean, we went in the locker, we went crazy. The cries of victory were just incredible, but compared to the cry of victory that we're going to talk about today in this devotional it was but a tiny peep. In fact, you can't even hear it. But this cry of victory was the greatest cry victory of all time. We're in Mark chapter 15 and verse 37 it says this, "and Jesus uttered a loud cry and breathed his last and the veil of the temple was torn into from top to bottom." Verse 39 says, "when the Centurion who was standing right in front of him saw the way he breathed this last, he said, this man truly was the son of God." Jesus' cry was to tell a style. It's paid in full. Your debt is paid in full. It is finished. I've done what I came to do. His final grueling act of crucifixion was over. The veil was torn in two.
 
01:21          Let me tell you, from what I understand from history, the veil that covered the Holy of Holies in the temple was a veil, it was so thick that it would take more than a team. Two teams of horses pulling in opposite directions to rip the veil. The veil was the place that separated the mercy seat of God in the Holy of Holies, in God's temple in Jerusalem from all the people of the world. The only way you could get into the Holy of Holies was the high priest. The ultimate Jewish religious figure could go in once a year and he, after all the washings and purifications, according to the ceremonial rites, he could go in and plead for the mercy and the sins of the nation.
 
02:08          But on this day, when Jesus cried, it is finished. It's done to tell us that over the veil of the temple was torn in two. And men and women, you know what that means? Do you know what that means? That means to you and me that we, based on the blood of Christ, that is in our hearts as believers. We can enter the Holy of Holies and we can come to the mercy of God. Every time I say that I tremble. In the book of Hebrews, it says that we can approach the throne of grace with confidence. And I don't know about you, but every time I read this passage, it humbles me to my knees. That we can literally in the name of Jesus, close our eyes, or leave our eyes open in our days of our greatest sorrow. When this world crushes us as it does or in our days of greatest joy and victory, we can slip in before the mercy seat of God because Christ was the ultimate sacrifice. And his blood gave us the rights to go in before a Holy God and to say, God, I need you. God. Please forgive me, God, I give you my life.
 
03:24          And here's the questions for today. You know, as Jesus did that, as Jesus literally made God's lap as a father accessible to you to come to, describe your personal feelings about Jesus' work on the cross. And the second question today is this, how would you get to God had the veil not been torn in two? How in the world could you ever approach a Holy God? And then the third question is this, now that you can approach God with confidence as it says in Hebrews based on the blood of Christ, describe your feelings about the privilege, the honor that you've been given by the act of love. And then here is the lifeline or the thought for the day. A family that prays together stays together.

"It was at our sports kamps and there was a scrimmage between two great teams. One team had a young man from Boston, he was an inner city kid and he lived in one of the poorest places in the country. But this 19 year old young man had an incredible love for a woman he was going to marry. But there was a drive by and that old car came by the front of that inner city house and a gun was stuck out of the window of that car."

Family Discussions:

  1. What is Jesus' sacrifice for you mean to you?
  2. What is it about the name Jesus that makes it the name above every other name that at the name of Jesus, every knee will bow and every tongue will confess that Jesus is Lord?
  3. How can you, in some small way today in your home, in your business, in your university, or in your school?
  4. How can you be a little bit like that boy from Boston today who took the bullets for his girlfriend?

Transcription:

00:13          If this was the only Bible study that you and I ever had the privilege of getting to do together, and trust me, the privilege is more mine, than it is yours. It would be this Bible study today. It was the darkest hour of all time, but it was the pinnacle peak hour of all human history. In John chapter 15, starting in verse 33 scripture says this, "when the sixth hour came, darkness fell over the whole land until the ninth hour. At the ninth hour, Jesus cried out with a loud voice. 'ELOI, ELOI, LAMA SABACHTHANI', which is translated: 'My God, my God. Why has thou forsaken me?'" At that moment in history, Christ became sin.
 
00:58          At that moment in history, every creepy crawly thing that we've done against a Holy God literally became a part of that dear man's sacrificial offering. You know, I get to see events like that. Not to that degree, but in small ways. I get to see people doing things like that. I'll never forget the football scrimmage. I'll never forget it. It was at our sports kamps and there was a scrimmage between two great teams. One team had a young man from Boston, he was an inner city kid and he lived in one of the poorest places in the country. But this 19 year old young man had an incredible love for a woman he was going to marry. But there was a drive by and that old car came by the front of that inner city house and a gun was stuck out of the window of that car. And five bullets were shot at this precious innocent girl that was sitting by this young man's side. But not one bullet hit her because this young man dove across her lap and he took all five bullets into his neck and into his back. Not one of the bullets fortunately hit his spinal cord and he actually lived to play football again. But what a story of sacrifice, man. What a story of love.
 
02:23          I heard a story one time and I didn't know the man but there was a platoon that had to go fight in a very difficult war in Vietnam years ago. And the father of this soldier went over to fight and he was there for a year and somehow he survived, although tens of thousands of soldiers died in that awful war. Then the platoon was asked for another amount of soldiers. The father had come back to America to safety. But his son was in the second round and the father went to the officer and he said, 'if I go, can my son stay home?' And the commanding officer granted his request. So the got to stay home and safety and the father took his place in the battle. Boy, it just, it just fires you up, doesn't it? To see people who live and die like that.
 
03:11          And so my question to you today is Christ died in your place. What is Jesus' sacrifice for you mean to you? And secondly, what is it about the name Jesus that makes it the name above every other name that at the name of Jesus, every knee will bow and every tongue will confess that Jesus is Lord. What is it about that name? And the third question is this. How can you, in some small way today in your home, in your business, in your university, or in your school, How can you be a little bit like that boy from Boston today who took the bullets for his girlfriend? And then the lifeline is two words - I'm Third. I'm Third is the motto of the kamps that I get to be in. God first. Others second. And I'm Third.

"One of my favorite writers, Chuck Colson, and one of my favorite books, 'Loving God', talks about an Asian monk named Telemachus back in the days of the Roman empire. The cruel and perilous Roman empire. Telemachus one day heard the voice of God in his heart. And God said, Telemachus, go to Rome."

Family Discussions:

  1. How does Telemachus and his act of incredible life sacrificial bravery remind you of what Jesus did on the cross?
  2. How does Barabas' good fortune remind you of what Christ did for you? And then the third question is this.
  3. What do you think Jesus meant when he said, no greater love has any man than to lay down his life for his friends?

Transcription:

00:14          The scripture today is the pinnacle of human history. It's a moment in the life of Christ that would literally shake the foundations of the world. We're in Mark chapter 15, and we're in verse 11, and it says this, "But the chief priest stirred up the crowd to ask Pilate to release Barabas for them instead. Answering again, Pilate said to them, 'then what shall I do with him whom you call the King of the Jews?' They shouted back, 'Crucify him! Crucify him!' But Pilate said to them, 'Why? What evil has he done?' But they shouted all the more. 'Crucify him! Crucify him!' So wishing to satisfy the crowd. Pilate released Barabas to them. And after having Jesus scorched, he handed him over to be crucified."
 
01:07          One of my favorite writers, Chuck Colson, and one of my favorite books, 'Loving God', talks about an Asian monk named Telemachus back in the days of the Roman empire. The cruel and perilous Roman empire. Telemachus one day heard the voice of God in his heart. And God said, Telemachus, go to Rome. I can only imagine the feeling that this dear old godly man had as he walked up the Appian way, that so many hundreds of Christians had marched into Rome knowing that they would soon be slaughtered for their faith in Christ. He walked straight into the Colosseum. And as the gladiators were out in the Colosseum killing people, In fact, Fox's book of martyrs says that some days in the Colosseum of Rome in the first and second centuries under Domitian and under Marcus Aurelius and under Nero, some days, 5,000 Christians would be slaughtered in the Colosseum of Rome for their faith in Christ.
 
02:02          So Telemachus walks into the Colosseum. The gladiators are slaughtering people and he screams with a voice that silences the crowd. He screams in the name of Christ. Forebear. The crowds begin to call him names and jir at him. So he jumped over the wall onto the dirt floor of the Colosseum where the gladiators were out in battle. And he looked up at the proconsul of Rome and he said the name of Christ forebear. Well, the second time he said it, one of the gladiators took his sword and he slashed him across the chest and as Telemachus fell to his face in the dirt of that Colosseum joining the other martyrs for the faith. With one last burst of energy, he raised his head from the dirt and he said in the name of Christ forebear. And he put his head down and he died. One by one, the people in the crowds began to walk out of the Colosseum until the Colosseum was empty. And history testifies to the truth that that was the last day of the gladiator killings in the Colosseum of Rome. That man, it ended that tradition.
 
03:13          So the questions today are these, how does Telemachus and his act of incredible life sacrificial bravery remind you of what Jesus did on the cross? And then secondly, what does or how does Barabas' good fortune remind you of what Christ did for you? And then the third question is this. What do you think Jesus meant when he said, no greater love has any man than to lay down his life for his friends? And here's the thought for the day. Love is love when it's strong enough to die for.

"I think the top 10 things in my life, most of them have to do with anything my kids ever wanted to do with me. Brady would say, Hey dad, let's go shoot baskets. And we shot thousands of baskets together. Him shooting, me catching and throwing back. Copp would let me, you know, run past patterns. And then, so he'd throw me the football. Jamie and Courtney, let me help them in gymnastics and volleyball. 'Hey dad, let's go to the Dairy Queen. Let's get a snack.' I didn't care what they asked me to do. I was ready to go."

Family Discussions:

  1. Why did God have to turn his head when Jesus died?
  2. Why does God want the relationship between a parent and a child, especially in the home, to be so strong?
  3. Why is it of such high value?
  4. What can you do in your home to build a parent-child bond like that one, that Jesus and God had?

Transcription:

00:13          In this scripture today, scripture speaks very soberly to us about a time in Christ's life that was probably the most difficult day he had on earth. It was the most difficult for sure but probably not for the reason you think it was. He's in the Garden of Gethsemane and it's the night before his crucifixion. And here's what Mark says in chapter 14, starting in verse 32 it said, "They came to a place called Gethsemane and he said to his disciples, 'sit here until I have prayed.' And he took with him, Peter and James and John and began to be very distressed and troubled. And he said to them, 'my soul is deeply grieved to the point of death. Remain here and keep watch.' And he went a little while beyond them and he fell to the ground and he began to pray and he was saying, 'Abba, father, all things are possible for you. Remove this cup from me. And yet, not what I want will, but what's your will be done.'" Not my will, but your will be done.
 
01:22          You know what? I think the top 10 things in my life, most of them have to do with anything my kids ever wanted to do with me. Brady would say, Hey dad, let's go shoot baskets. And we shot thousands of baskets together. Him shooting, me catching and throwing back. Copp would let me, you know, run past patterns. And then, so he'd throw me the football. Jamie and Courtney, let me help them in gymnastics and volleyball. 'Hey dad, let's go to the Dairy Queen. Let's get a snack.' I didn't care what they asked me to do. I was ready to go. I remember one time Courtney asked me to take her to the mall to get a dress for a college forum or prom or something that she did. And we looked at dresses and stuff all day long. I don't even think we bought one, but we had a blast looking together.
 
02:10          But I didn't know that I'd see a picture that day and one of the clothing stores that would rock my world. It was a sports illustrated. Courtney was trying on yet another dress. And I saw this picture in sports illustrate in fact it was the cover picture. It was Michael Jordan. And at that time, Jordan was Mr. Basketball. It was years ago, but he was definitely the King of the game. But it wasn't a picture of Michael shooting a three. It wasn't a picture of Michael, you know, with the world championship trophy on his hands. He had just won four world championships with the Chicago bulls. But it was a picture of Michael laying on the floor bawling his eyes out, clutching his basketball to his chest, weeping because it was Father's Day. The day he won the championship was Father's Day and his daddy wasn't there. Three years ago his daddy had been murdered.
 
03:02          I think the biggest pain on the cross for Christ was not the nails or the scorching, although those must have been horrible. But that was the day he had to become sin. That was the day that he had to clothe himself with everything bad. Everything negative, everything sinful that you and I've ever done before a Holy God. Christ became Galatians 3:13 says he became the curse of sin and there his daddy had to turn his back because his daddy, Father God was Holy and always was and always will be. Christ had become sin. The father and son were separated. I believe it was the worst moment of his life. But in that moment came victory for you and me.
 
03:42          So here's the questions for today in this incredible Bible passage. Why did God have to turn his head when Jesus died? And the second question is this, why does God want the relationship between a parent and a child, especially in the home, to be so strong? Why is it of such high value? And thirdly, you know, what can you do in your home to build a parent-child bond like that one, that Jesus and God had? And the thought for the day is this. You know, parents and their children have a bond that should never be broken. The only bond greater is the bond between us and Christ.

"Hey I had a fantastic dad. People called him Spike. And you know, my dad was firm. I'll never forget my last spanking from my dad with this belt. That was in seventh grade and I lied to my mom and I remember him coming in and he said. It was Friday and he said, bring me my belt on Sunday."

Family Discussion:

  1. Recall an event that you anticipated with excitement or one that you anticipated may be with fear. What was the difference?
  2. How do you personally view the imminent return of Christ?
  3. What can you do to make these days feel secure and bringing great peace in your mind?

Transcription:

00:13          I've entitled this devotional today, "The Lesson of the Fig Tree." But a more personal title would be "Daddy's Home." Listen to this. This is great. We're going to be in Mark chapter 13 in verse 28 and we're talking about the second coming of Christ. In fact, Jesus is giving us the signs of his coming. He said, these things are going to be happening all over the world and when you see these things happening, you better get ready because Christ is going to come and he's going to consummate the age in which we live. Verse 28 says, "now learn the parable from the fig tree when its branch has already become tender and puts forth its leaves, you know that summer is near. Even so, you too when you see these things happening recognize that he is near right at the door. Truly I say to you, this generation shall not pass away until all of these things take place. Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away." And then he, and then he hits the nail on the head. He said, "but if that day or hour, no one knows, not even the angels of heaven nor the son, but the father alone, but take heed. Keep on the alert. For you do not know when the appointed time comes."
 
01:29          Hey I had a fantastic dad. People called him Spike. And you know, my dad was firm. I'll never forget my last spanking from my dad with this belt. That was in seventh grade and I lied to my mom and I remember him coming in and he said. It was Friday and he said, bring me my belt on Sunday. I had three days to die knowing that on Sunday I was going to get creamed. But he probably didn't give me enough of 'em actually I probably deserve more but he was a great dad. Usually when my daddy would come and when I see my daddy, I was really happy to see him. My daddy would travel and he didn't travel because he wanted to. He traveled because he needed to. But when he'd come home, I was always so happy to see him. I'd go wait out in the driveway to see that old station wagon drive into my house. And then as a daddy myself, when my kids were small in the home, I had to travel a lot. And every time I'd leave home I'd look in the rear view mirror and I would grow so sad knowing that I had to go away for two or three weeks on the road to recruit. But I'll tell you what, coming home was an believable. I drive through the night oftentimes to get home, just to get one little glimpse of my kids. It might be three in the morning or four in the morning when I'd get home. And then man, the kids would run upstairs and you know, daddy's home, daddy's home. I'd hear the little pitter patter of their little feet. Those little footie pajamas that they'd wear. Sometimes they put signs and posters on the front of the house and in my closet, daddy's home.
 
03:02          Y'all, I think the best understanding of the return of Christ, if you really do love him, if you're a follower of his, if he lives in your heart, is that daddy is coming. Oh, it's not to be feared if you're a follower of Christ. Daddy's coming home. Hey, here's the questions for today. Recall, an event that you anticipated with excitement or one that you anticipated may be with fear. What was the difference? And how do you personally view the imminent return of Christ? And I believe it's imminent. And then next, what can you do to make these days, I mean, anticipation. Feel secure and bringing great peace in your mind? And then here's the thought for the day. Daddy's coming home. Daddy's coming home can be the three sweetest words in the English language.

"About 10 or 12 years ago, my wife and I in our sports camps were able to adopt 19 schools in Haiti. And so every day we have the privilege of loving and feeding and educating these 5,800 kids down there in Haiti. Men, of all the things that have ever happened around Kanakuk Kamps, you know, the Kamps that, I mean, the schools in Haiti bring smiles to our faces like none other."

Family Discussions:

  1. What is your interpretation of Jesus' metaphor of the camel in the eye of the needle?
  2. Why does our excesses keep us from really enjoying a full enrich relationship with God?
  3. What action can you or your family take to comply with Jesus' command here?

Transcription:

00:13          This devotional today that I get to share with you really puts a smile on my face because it's about some of the most beautiful kids in the world. About, Oh gosh, 10 or 12 years ago, my wife and I in our sports camps were able to adopt 19 schools in Haiti. And so every day we have the privilege of loving and feeding and educating these 5,800 kids down there in Haiti. Men, of all the things that have ever happened around Kanakuk Kamps, you know, the Kamps that, I mean, the schools in Haiti bring smiles to our faces like none other. Every Christmas we get to take Christmas gifts to every single child. We've been doing this for years and years and to see these kids, you know, like take a pack of Lifesavers and eat the first Lifesaver they've ever eaten and get their first Christmas gift from Papa Noel. You know, what they call Santa Claus down there in Haiti. And then to get to share. You know what Christmas is really about with those kids, not Santa Claus, but you know Jesus Christ born on earth. It's the joy of our lives.
 
01:21          You know what Jesus has something to say about you and about me and about our kids in Haiti and around the world. Listen to Mark chapter 10 verse 24 through 27. Here's what scripture says. "The disciples were amazed at his words, but Jesus answered it again and said to them, children, how hard is it to enter the kingdom of God? It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God. They were even more astonished and said to him then, who can be saved? Looking at them, Jesus said with people, it's impossible, but not with God. For all things are possible with God."
 
02:08          You know, being really transparent, honest with you, I don't need a bite of food. I mean, I hardly take a bite that I don't think about our kids in Haiti. They are so happy with a bowl of beans and a bowl of rice every day. It just breaks my heart to see the circumstances that they're in and not just our kids that are little schools in Haiti because really they're doing pretty good compared to most starving kids in the world. But God has a word to us and I believe his word is, and you know what? Everybody in America's rich, by the way, if you think you're very, very poor, I will tell you that the kids that we get to work with here at Kids Across American and Kanakuk, many of our kids, 7,000 of our kids come from inner cities and they will tell you because they have a chance to know Jesus. They have meals every day. That even though they are the poorest in our country, they're rich compared to the kids of Haiti whose parents live on about 11 bucks a week.
 
03:02          But he says, for all of us in America that are rich, he said, you've got to be willing, like a camel who would walk up to the city Gates over the wall villages of that day, and there would be a little opening just to the side of the city gate that a camel couldn't get through with anything on his bag. In fact, the camel would have to get down on his knees and they would have to unload the camel and then he could go through the eye, the needle, what they call this little hole in the gate, on his knees without anything on his back. And then they could reload him. Once he got through the gate.
 
03:35          The word picture is clear. You know, a rich man. Here we are in our country and in the Western world. Jesus said, we must be willing to give it all to give everything we've got. The heart has got to be willing to let go. And you know what? The more you let go, the more the kids of Haiti and the rest of this world are going to be blessed. And through our gifts, those kids are going to get to know Jesus because they're going to know it was the hand of Christ that unloaded our baggage off our camel and gave it away to them in the name of Jesus.
 
04:09          Here's the questions today in this perplexing, thoughtful gospel. What is your interpretation of Jesus' metaphor of the camel in the eye of the needle? And the second question is, why does our excesses keep us from really enjoying a full enrich relationship with God? And then the third one, what action can you or your family take to comply with Jesus' command here? And here is the lifeline. You know, families that give together, stay together. People that give generously are the happiest people in the world.

"We used to ski as a family in Steamboat Springs, Colorado. And sometimes we would take all of our young life kids and our young life clubs to Steamboat Springs to ski. And we had more fun and we took lots of Kanakuk kids over the years. But when you go from Missouri to Steamboat Springs, you crossover a pass called Rabbit Ears Pass and Rabbit Ears Pass is 9,400 feet high. And it is the watershed of the United States of America"

Family Discussions:

  1. If Jesus asked you that faithful question, "who do you say that I am?" How would you respond?
  2. What does it mean when Peter said, you are the Christ? What does the Christ mean?
  3. Why did Jesus say, why did he say "I am the way I am the truth and I am the life. No one comes to the father except by me."?

Transcription:

00:14          Today's devotional is absolutely amazing. This is a devotional. In fact, there's one statement of this devotional day that is absolutely gonna patch your hair. It's in Mark chapter eight, and we're going to begin with verse 27. It's a conversation between Jesus and his disciples. And listen to what one of them says in verse 27. Scripture says, "and Jesus went out along with his disciples to the villages of Caesarea Philippi. And on the way, he questioned his disciples and he said, who did the people say that I am? They told him, saying John the Baptist. Others say Elijah, others say one of the prophets. But he continued to question them." And here's the question. "He said, who do you say that I am? And Peter said to him, you are the Christ, the son of the living God."
 
01:12          You know what? We used to ski as a family in Steamboat Springs, Colorado. And sometimes we would take all of our young life kids and our young life clubs to Steamboat Springs to ski. And we had more fun and we took lots of Kanakuk kids over the years. But when you go from Missouri to Steamboat Springs, you crossover a pass called Rabbit Ears Pass and Rabbit Ears Pass is 9,400 feet high. And it is the watershed of the United States of America. Every drop of rain that falls on the West of Rabbit Ears Pass goes to the Pacific and every drop that falls on the East goes eventually to the Atlantic. The watershed divides the nation as far as water and moisture's concern. This passage is the watershed of Christianity.
 
01:57          You know, the Muslims say that Mohammed and sufficient works is the way to God. The Mormons say, Joseph Smith's teaching and sufficient works are the way to get to God. The Jehovah's Witnesses say that sacrifice of Christ is only part of the equation. It gets one to God for eternity. You name them, Joseph Smith, Muhammad Charles Tate Russell. They all recognize Jesus as a great historical and religious figure, but their beliefs on Bible doctrine and the saving blood of Jesus are on the opposite side of the watershed from Jesus' own words about himself. On Jesus' side of the watershed are some staggering claims that true Christianity must accept completely. One, He is the fulfillment of all old Testament prophecy about the Messiah. Two, he as he says in John 14:6 is the only way to God. Three, He is fully God, 100% God in the flesh. Four, He is the complete atonement for our sin. His death on the cross was sufficient. And five, the Bible is the Word of God. It is his complete word to mankind. And you know what? Revelation makes it clear. Nobody adds anything to this word.
 
03:21          So who do you say that He is? Well, Peter answered correctly and upon that belief that Jesus was the son of God. Jesus built his church on that belief and on that faith, and that's where his eternal family stands. So here's the questions today. One, if Jesus asked you that faithful question, "who do you say that I am?" How would you respond? And then secondly, this is big. What does it mean when Peter said, you are the Christ? What does the Christ mean? And then thirdly, why did Jesus say, why did he say "I am the way I am the truth and I am the life. No one comes to the father except by me."? It's a big claim. And he lived it and he died it. Here's the lifeline. To believe in him, is to love him. To love him, is to follow him. To follow him is to obey him. And to obey him, is to walk with him forever.

"One of the many reasons I just admire my wife and every cell in her body is the witness that she has to her family. Her family were not believers but one by one because of the life of that girl that grew up in a home that just didn't know God."

Family Discussions:

  1. Why was it the most difficult for Jesus to be effective right there in his own hometown?
  2. Why is it the most difficult for you to be a true witness for Christ in your home?
  3. How can your family support you and how can you support your family as you try to be an effective witness in your home?

Transcription:

00:13          You know, the reason I love this book so much is because it's Word of God obviously. And because the new Testament of course is a whole lot about Jesus. In fact, it's all about Jesus. And the Old Testament points toward the coming of Jesus. And the New Testament, points back at the life of Jesus. But he was just so incredibly wise. And the things that he says, man, they hit you right in the heart. This is this a great statement to anybody who is in any member of a family. This is about being a Christian at home. We're in Mark chapter six and we're in verse one and it says this. "Jesus went out from there and came in to his hometown and his disciples followed him. When the Sabbath came, it goes on. He began to teach in the synagogue there in his hometown. And many listeners were astonished saying, where did this man get his wisdom? It's been given to him. And the miracles performed by his hands. Is not this the carpenter, the son of Mary, the brother of James and Joseph and Judas and Simon? Are not his sisters with him here with us? And they took offense at him. Jesus said to them, a prophet is not without honor, except in his hometown and among his relatives and in his own household."
 
01:32          Hey, it's easy to be a witness out there, he's saying. But what about in your home? Man, I opened my heart and let Jesus come in when I was 17. I was a high school kid. My world was football. There were a lot of inconsistencies in my life. And you know what my greatest desire was to witness to my brother. My big brother, Bill, has always been my hero. But I wanted to share Christ with him. He wasn't a believer. He might've believed here, but didn't believe here. I don't think any of us knew that you could open your heart, let Jesus literally come into your heart. But I just did the best I could to be a friend to Bill. And you know what? I will never forget the night, probably five years later that I got to pray with bill and I saw my brother except Christ into his heart. It was definitely one of the greatest years of my life. You know, home may be the most difficult place in the world to witness, but it is always, and it will always be the best place on earth to let your light shine for God.
 
02:49          One of the many reasons I just admire my wife and every cell in her body is the witness that she has to her family. Her family were not believers but one by one because of the life of that girl that grew up in a home that just didn't know God. With a home without a dad. It was just a mess in a lot of ways. But Debbie Jo was a witness and she still remains a witness and we see her family members, like several of those folks in her family come to Christ. And live completely different lives. So, it happens everywhere and I know it can happen in your home.
 
03:28          So let me ask you these questions. Why was it the most difficult for Jesus to be effective right there in his own hometown? That was Jesus. And then secondly, why is it the most difficult for you to be a true witness for Christ in your home? And then thirdly, how can your family support you and how can you support your family as you try to be an effective witness in your home? And here's the thought for the day. You know, a family that is quick to forgive, a family that is quick to forgive and slow to judge is the home where witnessing is easy.
November 23, 2019

A Two-Way Mirror - Mark 2:8-9

"I have a great friend who was an F-16 top gun pilot. In fact, he was top gun twice and everything he does, he does according to the book. I mean the guy is precision to perfection. He's an American Airlines pilot trainer and is very successful in what he does. Everything by the letter. Everything by the book. Everything done exceedingly well. He has a great wife and a great family of three fantastic daughters. But one day, one of his daughters brought home something that my friend would never have imagined happening in his home. She brought home the news that she was pregnant and indeed she would seem soon give birth to a beautiful baby. "

Family Discussions:

  1. How did Bob's relationship to Jesus, the dad, how did his relationship to Jesus make his decision so immediately obvious?
  2. How does Jesus' death on the cross make you want to reciprocate to your family, to your closest friends with the problems that they have or the way they've offended you today?
  3. Why do we hold grudges in our home, in your marriage, in your parenting, in your kids, to your parents? W
  4. Is there anyone you need to forgive today?

Transcription:

00:13          It is great to be back with you again today. And I am so excited to share these two Bible verses with you because they are gigantic in the life of a father, mother, son, daughter. Whatever you are in school or in business, this speaks straight to your heart today. We're in Mark chapter two, and we're in the scene that we were talking about yesterday where these guys lower their friend down through a pallet, through a hole in the roof they dug to get him in front of Jesus because the guy was paralyzed. But Jesus does something unusual. The first thing, is very unusual, that only God could do by the way, but the first thing he does is he forgives the guy's sins. Later on, he heals the guy. But he starts getting some criticism from the Jewish leaders because to forgive sins, he was claiming to be who he was - God in the flesh. And of course, the penalty for that was blasphemy and the penalty of death.
 
01:09          And scripture says in verse eight of chapter two, "Immediately Jesus aware in his spirit that they were reasoning that way within themselves. He said to them, why are you reasoning about these things in your hearts, which is easier to say to the paralytic, your sins are forgiven or to say to the paralytic, get up, take up your pallet and walk." You know, forgiving sins, only God can do that. We know that. And thank God, but what a price Jesus had to pay to forgive us of our sins. That was absolutely the most difficult thing I'm sure that ever happened in all of eternity. But I see it all the time in homes. I see it in friendships.
 
01:56          I have a great friend who was an F-16 top gun pilot. In fact, he was top gun twice and everything he does, he does according to the book. I mean the guy is precision to perfection. He's an American Airlines pilot trainer and is very successful in what he does. Everything by the letter. Everything by the book. Everything done exceedingly well. He has a great wife and a great family of three fantastic daughters. But one day, one of his daughters brought home something that my friend would never have imagined happening in his home. She brought home the news that she was pregnant and indeed she would seem soon give birth to a beautiful baby. She wasn't married, she had a boyfriend, but she and the boyfriend just to call a spade a spade just fell into sin and she became pregnant and brought the news home.
 
02:55          Bob had a choice and I know you've got choices like this today, as well. You know, he could put her out on the streets. He could say, Hey, too bad, you know, you made a mistake. So, you know, take your mistake and go deal with the consequences or as some people do, which is a grave mistake. He could demanded that she get an abortion. So his reputation is a dad, wouldn't be stained. But for this friend of mine, the choice was easy. He also could say to his daughter, Hey, my love for you is unconditional. I don't care what you do or what mistakes you make, you are still my daughter and we will care for you. And we will care for that baby is if that baby we're our own. Well that daughter went on to make great decisions and to raise that child in a wonderful Christian family and that child is going to serve God I'm sure for the rest of that child's life.
 
03:51          So here's the questions to you and I today. How did Bob's relationship to Jesus, the dad, how did his relationship to Jesus make his decision so immediately obvious? And then the second question is this. How does Jesus' death on the cross make you want to reciprocate to your family, to your closest friends with the problems that they have or the way they've offended you today? And then talking about the family. Number three question. Why do we hold grudges in our home, in your marriage, in your parenting, in your kids, to your parents? Why do we hold grudges? And Hey, is there anyone you need to forgive today? So here's the thought for the day. You know, the gift of forgiveness is a two way mirror. We reflect to our family what we see in the eyes of our savior.

"walking into the ancient wall city of Rome, Italy alone, that 2000 plus year old original stone Laden Appian way is without a doubt, one of the most memorable walks of my life. It was on these very stones that the feet of Paul and the feet of Peter walked as they entered their final places of historical gospel spreading ministry. Before the crushing hand of Rome."

Family Discussions:

  1. Why is your witness on aroma of life to the believer?
  2. Why is that same aroma, the aroma of death to an unbeliever or to a scoffer?
  3. Compare the relative severity of the ridicule you might receive as your life bears the witness of your faith in Christ to the martyring that Peter and Paul and the other martyrs of Rome received in their triumphal march into Rome?
  4. How can you make your aroma stronger?

Transcription:

00:13          You know, I don't know that there's a candle in our whole office building or in our Kamp, but I feel like the most fortunate guy alive because there's a fragrant aroma everywhere I go. I get to work with the neatest people in the world. My little office. These people that I get to work with have this fragrant aroma and it's a fragrant aroma of Christ around them. And all over the sports Kamps. These guys and these women of faith that I get to work with, there's just this fragrant aroma of Christ that follows them every where they go. 2 Corinthians chapter 2:14-16 says this about that. It says, "But thanks be to God who always leads us in the triumphal precession in Christ and through us spreads everywhere. The fragrance of the knowledge of him, for we are of God, the aroma of Christ among those who are being saved. And among those who are perishing. To the one we are the smell of death, but to the other, the fragrance of life."
 
01:22          You know, walking into the ancient wall city of Rome, Italy alone, that 2000 plus year old original stone Laden Appian way is without a doubt, one of the most memorable walks of my life. It was on these very stones that the feet of Paul and the feet of Peter walked as they entered their final places of historical gospel spreading ministry. Before the crushing hand of Rome. The hedonistic Roman government rendered their relentless testimony of their risen savior. It became a national political problem and brought capital punishment upon them and their untimely final judgment. The Appian way also, if you've ever got a chance or we'll get a chance to walk it, was the main artery and it was the most powerful city in the world which the Roman armies would return in their infamous, they call it the parade of triumph.
 
02:15          Here, the proud Roman generals would display their troops and their captured throngs of slaves and condemned prisoners to the wildly cheering crowd that land the great walled thoroughfare into the heart of the city. You know, tradition held that burning aeromedical incense would accompany the chariots and officers that govern the parade. To the Roman conquerors, it was an aroma of life. To the prisoners, it was an aroma of death because like Peter and Paul, this would be the last walk upon which their feet would ever take them. In a matter of weeks, a cruel Roman death awaited them by Roman's favorite form of punishment, the same fate that was given to Jesus in the neighboring Jerusalem, crucifixion upon the Roman cross. So to some, the fragrant of life. To some, the fragrance of death.
 
03:06          And I think that tell-tale questions that hopefully will make sense in your life today is this, when you carry your Bible to school, or when you carry your Bible to work or you've live out and you speak out for the true trueness of the gospel of Christ, you know, while a scoffer will jeer you, why is your witness on aroma of life to the believer? And why is that same aroma, the aroma of death to an unbeliever or to a scoffer? And then secondly, compare the relative severity of the ridicule you might receive as your life bears the witness of your faith in Christ to the martyring that Peter and Paul and the other martyrs of Rome received in their triumphal march into Rome? And how can you make your aroma stronger? To some your the aroma of life and you know what? To some you are the aroma of death. But hopefully to those that will see the spirit of Christ in you and some of those that are dying would come to life because of the aroma of Christ was too much for them to ignore.

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