Radical Christianity

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But wisdom that comes from above is…. *Without partiality*…. 
James 3:17

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PARTIALITY – unfair bias in favor of one thing or person compared with another; favoritism.

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I find it interesting what we do with the words of Jesus.

We take Jesus’ command in Matthew 28 to make disciples of all nations and we say, “That means other people.” But we look at Jesus’ command in Matthew 11:28, “come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest,” and we say, “Now, that means me.”

We take Jesus’ promise in Acts 1:8 that the Spirit will lead us to the ends of the earth, and we say, “That means some people.” But we take Jesus’ promise in John 10:10 that we will ‘have abundant life,’ and we say, “That means me.”

In the process we have unnecessarily (and unbiblically) drawn a line of distinction, assigning the obligations of Christianity to a few while keeping the privileges of Christianity for us all.

In this way we choose to send off other people to carry out the global purpose of Christianity while the rest of us sit back because we say we’re “just not called to that.”

Now we know that each of us has different gifts, different skills, different passions, and different callings from God. God has gifted you and me in different ways. This was undoubtedly the case with the disciples. Peter and Paul had different callings. James and John had different callings. However, each follower of Christ in the New Testament, regardless of his or her calling, was intended to take up the mantle of proclaiming the Gospel to the ends of the earth. That’s the reason why He gave each of them His Spirit and why He gave them all the same plan: ‘make disciples of all nations.’
– Excerpt from “Radical”

   by David Platt

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Remember, it is sin to know what you ought to do and then not do it.
James 4:17

I implore you,

Trust ♔ Jesus!

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GOD’S RESPONSE TO OUR DOUBTS

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GOD’S RESPONSE TO OUR DOUBTS

Moses said to the LORD, “Pardon your servant, Lord. I have never been eloquent, neither in the past nor since you have spoken to your servant. I am slow of speech and tongue.”

The LORD said to him, *”Who gave human beings their mouths?*

Exodus 4:10-11

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Four years ago I had to complete the licensing process all over again from the beginning. In my previous life before faith in Christ, I had made a number of poor decisions regarding it that were in dire need of redemption.

As I prayerfully leaned on the Lord to work these things out in me, I had finally got to the day when I was set to complete my G test.

Looking for some sort of encouragement in God’s Word, I sought Him and came across this verse above in Exodus chapter 4.

I was sort’ve puzzled at first at how such a Word could be relevant for my driving test, but instead of rejecting it, I simply nestled it away into the quiet meditation of my heart as I went about my day.

When the driving examiner approached the car, she looked angry and annoyed. As we began the test, her demeanor was exemplified in her attitude. Short razor-sharp remarks followed a darkened seriousness and a strict focus.

The entire test was made up of her criticisms; pointing out driving errors and writing on my examination paper.

A moment of despair crept in as I imagined already failing the test and bracing myself to receive that news when all of a sudden the Word God spoke to me earlier that morning came bubbling up in my Spirit…

*”Who gave human beings their mouths?”*

I immediately realized that God was once again using this every day situation to demonstrate to me His *Sovereign* rule over *all* His creation.

Joy began to replace those brief thoughts of despair, and peace flooded my soul as I dared to believe that God had brought me this far and was going to complete the work He had begun regardless of what anyone had to say about it! I smiled as her critiques intensified toward the ending of the examination.

Sure enough, we pulled back into the ministry as she completed the rest of her marking and then handed me the paper marked, “Pass!”

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Not to us, O Lord, not to us, but to your name give glory,

    for the sake of your steadfast love and your faithfulness!

Why should the nations say,

    “Where is their God?”
Our God is in the heavens;
    he does all that he pleases.
Psalm 115:1-3

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This event also reminded me of a passage in Scripture where God used the murderous plan of the High Priest to prophesy the very way Jesus would die. (John 11:49-50) Think about that for a second…

The Spirit of God spoke prophetically through Jesus’ enemies to declare his future destiny which he came to accomplish!

If then, God controls the outcome of His every spoken Word to us to ensure that His purposes alone come to pass, how much more could God then make the meaningless rant of those who oppose or speak against what we are led by the Spirit to accomplish come to nothing?

When I revisited the passage in Exodus, it actually broadens the scope of God’s Sovereign rule over His creation. It says:

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Then the LORD asked Moses, “Who makes a person’s mouth? *Who decides whether people speak or do not speak, hear or do not hear, see or do not see?* Is it not I, the LORD?

Exodus 4:11

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As the enemy stands ready to assault us with doubts and despair when we judge the outcome of our life’s situations based on our present circumstances or by the misplaced opinions of others, take a deep breath and remind yourself in these very moments Who is *actually*  in control of your life and purposes it for His good pleasure.

Whether it’s a matter of a simple driving examination, or leading two and half million people out of captivity, I encourage you to make a choice to believe by faith.

I implore you,

Trust ♔ Jesus!

What’s Our Purpose? 

WHAT’S OUR PURPOSE?

You, however, know all about my:
– teaching,
– my way of life,
– *my PURPOSE,*
– faith,
– patience,
– love,
– endurance,
– persecutions,
– sufferings
what kinds of things happened to me in Antioch, Iconium and Lystra, the persecutions I endured. Yet the Lord rescued me from all of them.
*2 Timothy 3:10-11*

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I came across this Word tonight in Scripture: “purpose,” and began to consider to myself what the Apostle Paul’s *purpose* might’ve been. I mean, I can make a number of well founded inferences based on how he lived his life, about the faith he professed, about how he spent his time serving others and so forth, but I wondered if it was possible to have assumed more or less of what the actual thought was that he had in mind at the very moment when he penned this letter to his young protégé Timothy.

I decided then, to look up the Word in its original Greek to see if it might lend any revelation and insight, but what I stumbled upon was more profound than I would’ve imagined.

It turns out that the Greek Word that he specifically used here for ‘purpose’ is the same Greek Word used for “Showbread.”

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PURPOSE (Gr. Prothesis)
a setting forth, the show-bread; predetermination, purpose.

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If you remember well, the showbread in the Old Testament was one of the key articles of the Tabernacle that was to constantly remain in the presence of the Lord in the Holy place.

When we consider the spiritual significance of this Old Testament symbol in light of our New Testament faith, we could faithfully posit that the Apostle Paul could be saying:

“you saw how I lived as if *always in the presence of God Himself* no matter where I went – follow my example”

OR

“You witnessed how I consecrated myself to the Lord. Do likewise.”

What if we expected to meet with and encounter God in the coffee shops, the barbershop/salons, the grocery stores, book stores, the dinner table, the short and long drives, the gym, work and school, and everywhere else we might travel day to day – in the same way that we expected to meet with Him in the sanctuary?

The Holy Spirit was revealing through Paul to his young protégé Timothy that the secret of living out faith in keeping with our God ordained purpose was accomplished by being *ever aware that God is always present with us* in all we do.

This week, I ask God to open our eyes to see all the different ways that He is at work in our daily activities, and that our faith would be encouraged to believe and step out to act when called upon to do so!

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And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that He exists and that He rewards those who earnestly seek Him.
*Hebrews 11:6*

*Trust ♔ Jesus!*