Sunday, March 9, 2014

Weekly Faith: Week 9

I'm slacking on my posts, aren't I?! I have so many blog posts I want to type up and not enough time. Well, anyway, here is my Weekly Faith, almost too late for this week. It's about the sermon I heard from RealitySF not this Sunday but last. The series RealitySF is going through is "The Emo Church: A Series on Becoming an Emotionally Healthy Church" and the message of the week was "Receiving the Gift of Limits." If you don't have enough time, feel free to just read the notes below. Otherwise, you can find and listen to the sermon here.

Last week, the pastor went through Genesis 3:1-7, John 1:19-27, John 3:22-30. As like the recent messages, I'll share the notes I took as well the tweets my friend, Christian, and I tweeted as we listened to the message. Feel free to follow him and I on Twitter!

Genesis 3:1-7 - Now the serpent was more crafty than any of the wild animals the LordGod had made. He said to the woman, “Did God really say, ‘You must not eat from any tree in the garden’?” The woman said to the serpent, “We may eat fruit from the trees in the garden, but God did say, ‘You must not eat fruit from the tree that is in the middle of the garden, and you must not touch it, or you will die.’” “You will not certainly die,” the serpent said to the woman. “For God knows that when you eat from it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.” When the woman saw that the fruit of the tree was good for food and pleasing to the eye, and also desirable for gaining wisdom, she took some and ate it. She also gave some to her husband, who was with her, and he ate it. Then the eyes of both of them were opened, and they realized they were naked; so they sewed fig leaves together and made coverings for themselves.
  • "It is not possible for a Christian to be spiritually mature while remaining emotionally immature."
  • Why the tree? He is saying "believe me and stand in your place as a creature, not as one who is autonomous. Believe me and love me as a creature to his creator and all will be well. This is the place for which I have made you." 
  • You are created as human so will you take it as a gift from God?
  • We are made in His image so we are like God.
  • The serpent was basically saying "Do you want to just know what's good or do you want to know what's good for you and what's evil and anything else without the limits God has set on you?"
  • We are told that we can live without limits. We are constantly told that we can do anything we want to do and we can be anything we want to be.
  • We live a life of envy and are never happy with what we have.
  • The essence of sin is man substituting himself for God.
  • You have God-given limits and potential.
  • We may all want to be CEOs for example, but we all can't be. You may try really hard to be but it might not be within God's limits for you. You would basically be living someone else's life that God hasn't planned for you.
John 1:19-27 - 19Now this was John’s testimony when the Jewish leaders in Jerusalem sent priests and Levites to ask him who he was. 20 He did not fail to confess, but confessed freely, “I am not the Messiah.” 
21 They asked him, “Then who are you? Are you Elijah?”
He said, “I am not.”
“Are you the Prophet?”
He answered, “No.”
22 Finally they said, “Who are you? Give us an answer to take back to those who sent us. What do you say about yourself?” 23 John replied in the words of Isaiah the prophet, “I am the voice of one calling in the wilderness, ‘Make straight the way for the Lord.’” 24 Now the Pharisees who had been sent 25 questioned him, “Why then do you baptize if you are not the Messiah, nor Elijah, nor the Prophet?” 26 “I baptize with water,” John replied, “but among you stands one you do not know. 27 He is the one who comes after me, the straps of whose sandals I am not worthy to untie.”
  • John the Baptist's Identity
    • I am not the Messiah.
    • I am not Elijah.
    • I am not the Prophet.
    • I am a Voice (for the Lord).
    • I am a Baptizer (in water).
    • I am unworthy (to untie his sandals).
John 3:22-30 - 22 After this, Jesus and his disciples went out into the Judean countryside, where he spent some time with them, and baptized. 23 Now John also was baptizing at Aenon near Salim, because there was plenty of water, and people were coming and being baptized. 24 (This was before John was put in prison.) 25 An argument developed between some of John’s disciples and a certain Jew over the matter of ceremonial washing. 26 They came to John and said to him, “Rabbi, that man who was with you on the other side of the Jordan—the one you testified about—look, he is baptizing, and everyone is going to him.” 27 To this John replied, “A person can receive only what is given them from heaven. 28 You yourselves can testify that I said, ‘I am not the Messiah but am sent ahead of him.’ 29 The bride belongs to the bridegroom. The friend who attends the bridegroom waits and listens for him, and is full of joy when he hears the bridegroom’s voice. That joy is mine, and it is now complete. 30 He must become greater; I must become less.”
  • Jesus' followers were growing and John's were getting smaller.
  • He must become greater; I must become less.
  • John understood he was limited and received his selfhood. "A person can receive only what is given them from heaven." This is John's limit.
  • "I am not the Messiah but am sent ahead of him." This was John's potential. 
  • "He must become greater. I must become less." This was John's reality.
  • The essence of salvation is God substituting himself for man.
  • We are not God. You are only God. 
  • Thank you, God, for doing what we deserve and taking our place.

I know this Weekly Faith was super long but it is definitely an interesting one to look into. Wherever you may be, remember that God has an amazing plan for you. He may have set limits on you, but on the other hand He's provided you with a great potential you may not even know yet yourself. Trust in His plan, and remember that HE>i.


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