Saturday, June 23, 2012
Sermon Notes for Fourth Sunday after Pentecost
Between Here and There
Fourth Sunday after Pentecost
June 24, 2012
* The Call to be a Disciple
- Inversion of ‘Christian’ and ‘Disciple’ - Acts 11
- To be with him and to be sent by him - Mark 1
I. The Sower Sows: “Let us go to the other side.”
A. Christ brings us into what he’s been teaching us; Christian faith is not a download of information, its a personal, cultural, and cosmic transformation.
B. Christ brings us into what he’s come to do: deliver others.
* Mark 5:1-9: Land of the Gerasenes - Roman Legions, Roman food, Roman culture
- The disciple’s abandon: Ezekiel’s wading into the River of Life...finally, so deep one is simply carried along.
C. Christ sowed the seed of the word and went to sleep.
* Exactly as his parable had taught; he expected a harvest - getting to the other side. He didn’t say ‘Lets TRY to go to the other side...’, or ‘Lets go halfway and die...’
II. The Storm Rages
A. Between where we are right now and the place to which Jesus has called us, between here and there, the storm is waiting
* Storms on Galilee
* Fishermen and they knew things were bad
- But Israel had been through the sea before
- But Jonah had been in the deep as well
- But the world was under water - and under the Spirit, a far stronger wind - when God fashioned the order: Job 38; Genesis 1
Let us learn, in the first place, that Christ’s service does not exempt His servants from storms. Here were the twelve disciples in the path of duty. They were obediently following Jesus, wherever He went. They were daily attending on His ministry, and hearkening to His word. They were daily testifying to the world, that, whateverScribes and Pharisees might think, they believed on Jesus, loved Jesus, and were not ashamed to give up all for His sake. Yet here we see these men in trouble, tossed up and down by a tempest, and in danger of being drowned. Let us mark well this lesson. If we are true Christians, we must not expect everything smooth in our journey to heaven. We must count it no strange thing, if we have to endure sicknesses, losses, bereavements, and disappointments, just like other men. Free pardon and full forgiveness, grace by the way and glory at the end,—all this our Savior has promised to give. But He has never promised that we shall have no afflictions. He loves us too well to promise that. By affliction He teaches us many precious lessons, which without it we should never learn. By affliction He shows us our emptiness and weakness, draws us to the throne of grace, purifies our affections, weans us from the world, makes us long for heaven. In the resurrection morning we shall all say, "it is good for me that I was afflicted." We shall thank God for every storm.
JC Ryle on Mark 4
B. Between where we are right now and the place to which Jesus has called us, between here and there, the Savior is with us.
* Jesus looks for faith from his disciples
- Paul shows the way: Acts 27:25 - “Keep up your courage men, for I believe God that it will turn out exactly as I have been told.”
III. The Savior Reigns
As he approached, the enemy sought to stop him...but the opposing winds and waves of darkness could neither delay nor deter the Son of God.
This is why I would rather be in the storm with Jesus than in the calm without him.
This service, right here, right now, is not where Jesus is taking you. This is where he is telling you “Lets go over there...” Will you go? He who calls you is with you, in every storm, and his power over creation, over darkness, over all opposition will only be witnessed by those willing to be with him where he is going. He is going to where we are least likely to be comfortable, to serve and help people who are very different from us, to places of tyranny to bring liberty, to lands of despair to bring hope.
Ready to go?