May 19, 2019

“The Uncomfortable Church”, Mark Abril, Thames Valley churches of Christ, 19 May 2019″

Preacher:
Passage: Luke 5.1-11
Service Type:
What is the church?
  • Ekklesia: assembly for worship
  • Jesus is the head, the church is his body, Col 1.18
    • We form the body, 1 Cor 12.12; Eph 5.30
  • Complacency is the enemy to growth
  • Are we in spiritual “holiday mode”?
  1. It is uncomfortable to follow Jesus: Luke 5.1-3
    • “Once while Jesus was standing beside the lake of Gennesaret, and the crowd was pressing in on him to hear the word of God, he saw two boats there at the shore of the lake; the fishermen had gone out of them and were washing their nets. He got into one of the boats, the one belonging to Simon, and asked him to put out a little way from the shore. Then he sat down and taught the crowds from the boat.” (Luke 5:1–3 NRSV)
      • If want to see God do His work, must be willing to allow him to make us uncomfortable.
      • Peter was open to being made uncomfortable
    • “When he had finished speaking, he said to Simon, “Put out into the deep water and let down your nets for a catch.” Simon answered, “Master, we have worked all night long but have caught nothing. Yet if you say so, I will let down the nets.” When they had done this, they caught so many fish that their nets were beginning to break. So they signaled their partners in the other boat to come and help them. And they came and filled both boats, so that they began to sink.” (Luke 5:4–7 NRSV)
      • It must have been so inconvenient to do as Jesus said
      • We don’t know their attitude, but we can see their obedience.
    • “But when Simon Peter saw it, he fell down at Jesus’ knees, saying, “Go away from me, Lord, for I am a sinful man!” For he and all who were with him were amazed at the catch of fish that they had taken; and so also were James and John, sons of Zebedee, who were partners with Simon. Then Jesus said to Simon, “Do not be afraid; from now on you will be catching people.”” (Luke 5:8–10 NRSV)
      • This moment changed Peter’s life.
      • He started as a fishermen and became one of the most influential men in history simply because he allowed himself to be made uncomfortable by Jesus
      • Key phrase, “if you say so…."
      • Are we available for God? Or are we too busy? Even with good things?
      • People are in need.
      • When was the last time you helped someone to become a Christian?
  2. It is uncomfortable to give ourselves up: Luke 5.10-11
  • “Then Jesus said to Simon, “Do not be afraid; from now on you will be catching people.” When they had brought their boats to shore, they left everything and followed him.” (Luke 5:10–11 NRSV)
      • Jesus gave Peter a new identity.
      • Jesus did not ask Peter to leave everything - but Peter understood it that way.
      • Because Peter was willing to give himself up, Jesus gave him a new name, purpose and mission.
      • His legacy lasts to this day.
  • “So they watched him and sent spies who pretended to be honest, in order to trap him by what he said, so as to hand him over to the jurisdiction and authority of the governor. So they asked him, “Teacher, we know that you are right in what you say and teach, and you show deference to no one, but teach the way of God in accordance with truth. Is it lawful for us to pay taxes to the emperor, or not?” But he perceived their craftiness and said to them, “Show me a denarius. Whose head and whose title does it bear?” They said, “The emperor’s.” He said to them, “Then give to the emperor the things that are the emperor’s, and to God the things that are God’s.”” (Luke 20:20–25 NRSV)
      • Whose image is on me?
      • If it is that of Christ, we need to offer ourselves back to him.
“Then Jesus said to Simon, “Do not be afraid; from now on you will be catching people.” When they had brought their boats to shore, they left everything and followed him.” (Luke 5:10–11 NRSV)
“Do not be afraid” - 14 times in NT
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God bless,
Malcolm

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