A JESUS WHO IS WORTH BELIEVING IN
A Jesus Worth Believing In
This week Duane discussed worth, the worth of Jesus and how much He thinks we're worth.
What item that you own is worth the most to you? An item you would pay an outrageous amount of money to keep.
Let's read the passage:
4 "I tell you, my friends, do not fear those who kill the body, and after that have nothing more that they can do. 5 But I will warn you whom to fear: fear him who, after he has killed, has authority to cast into hell. Yes, I tell you, fear him! 6 Are not five sparrows sold for two pennies? And not one of them is forgotten before God. 7 Why, even the hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear not; you are of more value than many sparrows.
8 "And I tell you, everyone who acknowledges me before men, the Son of Man also will acknowledge before the angels of God, 9 but the one who denies me before men will be denied before the angels of God. 10 And everyone who speaks a word against the Son of Man will be forgiven, but the one who blasphemes against the Holy Spirit will not be forgiven. 11 And when they bring you before the synagogues and the rulers and the authorities, do not be anxious about how you should defend yourself or what you should say, 12 for the Holy Spirit will teach you in that very hour what you ought to say."
13 Someone in the crowd said to him, "Teacher, tell my brother to divide the inheritance with me." 14 But he said to him, "Man, who made me a judge or arbitrator over you?" 15 And he said to them, "Take care, and be on your guard against all covetousness, for one's life does not consist in the abundance of his possessions." 16 And he told them a parable, saying, "The land of a rich man produced plentifully, 17 and he thought to himself, 'What shall I do, for I have nowhere to store my crops?' 18 And he said, 'I will do this: I will tear down my barns and build larger ones, and there I will store all my grain and my goods. 19 And I will say to my soul, "Soul, you have ample goods laid up for many years; relax, eat, drink, be merry."' 20 But God said to him, 'Fool! This night your soul is required of you, and the things you have prepared, whose will they be?' 21 So is the one who lays up treasure for himself and is not rich toward God." [Luk 12:4-21 ESV]
Was there anything in the passage that struck you? Challenged you? Raised questions with you?
Duane broke this teaching from Jesus into three ideas for us to think on:
The Worth of the Sparrow
The Worth of the Spirit
The Worth of the Soul
THE WORTH OF THE SPARROW
Jesus is inviting the people in to a different way to see worth. To see the worth of things from the perspective of God. He has a very different way to measure worth because He needs nothing.
Jesus points out that our fear is often misplaced. We fear things that are temporal and lose no sleep over things that are eternal. He says we shouldn't fear people, but fear God.
How do you explain fearing God? What would that look like?
Why do we so often fear people more than God?
Jesus also says we should fear God because He "has authority to cast into hell", Duane read from Jonathan Edwards who expanded on that idea describing hell as "not the absence of God but his presence"
Why would that be something to be afraid of? What do you think our culture in San Diego thinks about hell?
THE WORTH OF THE SPIRIT
Jesus goes on to explain how one escapes hell and gets into heaven. He explains that we will be judged by God (Ecc 12: 14-15) and can be saved by acknowledging Jesus as Son and receiving His forgiveness. Jesus is telling this to people before He has died, preparing them for what they are about to see.
Duane explained that forgiveness only works if someone pays the price, was there a time you had to forgive someone? Who ended up paying the price?
Those who acknowledge Jesus as the Son are not just forgiven, they're also given The Spirit of God to live within the. (John 14:16)
Duane mentioned many benefits of having the Spirit within us, including:
We're never alone
Reminds us that we're valuable
Reminds us of God's word
Gives us courage to take on the world and talk about Jesus
Which of these benefits have you needed most in your life this week?
THE WORTH OF THE SOUL
Someone in the crowd brings a question to Jesus, asking him for judgement about a dispute. Jesus addresses the man's heart by again redefining worth as what God values.
He tells a the story about the rich man who hordes his riches and then dies. Highlighting the difference between economic security and eternal security.
Duane explained that we all have 3 gifts to invest in this life: time, talent and treasure.
How are you investing your time towards eternal things? Your talent? Your treasure?
What are some ways you can begin investing those gifts properly?
Jesus takes on hedonism and materialism with His story. Duane explained that life consists in the abundance of Christ, not in the abundance of things.
What can you do to live a life in the abundance of Christ?
Pray with your goup, that we wouldn't be a church that covets, but a church that blesses and realizes what Jesus is worth, what the Spirit is worth, and what God believes we are worth.