Sunday Worship: Contemporary @ 9:00 a.m. | Traditional @ 10:50 a.m.
First Christian Church, Grand Junction – Praising God, Changing Lives!

Sermons on Luke

Rewritten

April 16, 2017 Sermon “Rewritten” Reading – Luke 24:1-12 24 But on the first day of the week, at early dawn, they came to the tomb, taking the spices that they had prepared. 2 They found the stone rolled away from the tomb, 3 but when they went in, they did not find the body.[a] […]

Interruptions

I started the sermon by talking about the character Dug from the animated movie “Up”. And Dug had this way of stopping the important stuff to chase after squirrels. I’ll bet there are some Christians out there, maybe even in HERE, who think of taking the time and effort to share love with and be present with the seemingly most unworthy people is akin to chasing after squirrels. But in my reading of the scriptures, in my reading of the life and ministry of Jesus, it’s pretty much everything ELSE that is akin to chasing after squirrels. It’s pretty much everything ELSE that comprises the interruptions.

The Stick?

At first glance, Jesus story of the Rich Man and Lazarus might sound like a description of the afterlife. It might sound like a description of the afterlife intended to scare people with a big stick into living as God desires. But I don’t think that’s what it is at all. Rather, I think it’s Jesus’ attempt to teach people how to get the carrot, how to experience the great party offered here and for eternity. It’s Jesus way of yelling, “Choose God instead of choosing silver that turns to dross!”

The Carrot

There’s rejoicing in God’s kingdom when people choose God and love over power. There’s rejoicing in God’s kingdom when people choose to acknowledge that it is JESUS who justifies, not us, and so the finger-pointing and name-calling stops. There’s rejoicing in God’s kingdom when we all decide to welcome everyone who chooses God with open arms instead of insisting there’s no way that God would allow THAT person into the party or even that we wouldn’t WANT that person in the party…and so we refuse to enjoy any party that includes THAT person.

Not Enough

As we begin this Lenten season, our journey toward the cross, I encourage you to evaluate your faith-life, and compare it to your day-to-day life. Is your faith-life something that exists in your heart and your head? Is your faith-life something manifests itself in Sunday morning worship and fellowship events with a few of your close friends? Or does your faith-life look like a compulsion, a compulsion driven by the love of God to seek out those who have need – even for, especially for, people who are nothing at all like you and who you didn’t even know before you decided to help them – and to perform actions of mercy on their behalf?

Listen to Him

At the beginning of the sermon, I mentioned a Bible study that began with the words, “All Christians want to know God’s will for their lives.” Y’all, we DO want to know God’s will for us, but, somehow, I doubt we’re going to discover it by rolling dice. Rather, we’ve got to do everything we can to HEAR Jesus’ words as provided in scripture….and then yield to what we hear. In other words, we need to LISTEN TO HIM.

Changing the Rules

Which gets me wondering: how are we, FCCGJ, doing when it comes to seeing the rules of our faith through the lens of loving and helping other people? Do we spend more time telling other people what to believe and how to live or more time shining the light of our love in the their lives? Do we spend more resources on ourselves or on others? In other words, are we following the rules made by people, even US, to help us feel comfortable and good about what we have, or are we doing everything we can to follow God’s rules?