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Posts Tagged ‘Prophetic’

A Church For a New Age

November 17th, 2010

Amos 9:5-16; Acts 15:6-21

The book of Amos speaks about God’s judgement of His people – it paints a big picture of Almighty God. But alongside the promise of judgement is the promise of restoration. The key verse is  v.11 – the “booth” or tabernacle of David – one day the people of God will live with God in the new heavens and new earth.

1. The Prophetic Mandate (Our Vision):

i) Eden:

  • Adam walked with God and was able to hear God and minister to God on behalf of creation. He had authority on earth to expand Eden – the cultural mandate.
  • But Adam sinned and the fellowship was broken.
  • But from Genesis to Revelation, we are shown that God is restoring this and wants to dwell again with His people.

ii) The Tabernacle:

  • The dwelling place for God and His glory on earth.
  • The tabernacle of Moses on Mount Gibeon was about rules and rituals, but the tabernacle of David on Mount Zion was about being able to freely enter and worship God – a foretaste of the New Covenant of grace.

iii) The Temple:

  • This was God’s next dwelling place for his manifest presence.
  • However, with the second temple there was no presence of God – just rituals and religion. God wanted a restoration of the tabernacle of David.
  • When Jesus was on earth He said the temple would be destroyed but that He would rebuild it after 3 days. He was talking about Himself – He identified Himself with the temple, of God dwelling with man – and the resurrection after 3 days.
  • The coming temple was not one built with stones, but with people – the Church.

iv) The Church:

  • We are being built into a temple, experience God and His presence and power, by the Spirit.

2. The Prophetic Pivotal Point (Our Theology & Practice):

  • This is where the passage in Acts comes in. The era of the early church, filled with the Holy Spirit. The Jews were adding to the gospel – that Christians had to obey the Old Testament laws.
  • Here we see displayed the following:

i) Relationship leadership:

  • The leaders discussed this issue – whether new Christians should obey the Law of Moses.
  • v.16 – James quotes Amos – the restoration of David’s tabernacle, the covenant of grace, no more sacrifices or rituals.
  • The church are to fulfil the cultural mandate – to take the good news of the gospel to the ends of the earth.

ii) Operational power

iii) Defining grace

iv) Missional vision

3. The Prophetic Process (Our Lessons from History):

  • There is a process with promises being fulfilled. Things in history have happened in order to get us further towards that end fulfilment of the mandate and of the restoration.
  • 3 key words from the last 30-40 years: revival, renewal, restoration.
  • We are restoring the Church – building right. God has a bigger plan than just little pockets of revival.
  • What God does in one generation is different but all part of the big plan.

4. The Prophetic Challenge (Our Commitment):

i) Expect to grow – the fruit of restoration

ii) Expect the Spirit – He is given to us to reach out to others, not just for our benefit

iii) Build the church

iv) Change the city – rebuild the city, take Eden into it, release the captives, see people restored to God

v) Expect stability

Who did Jesus think He was?

October 13th, 2010

Was Jesus just a man with an over inflated story? Would he just be embarrassed by all the subsequent attention? Actually Jesus very clear about who he was and he must have been either incredibly deluded or someone absolutely unique in human history.

The basic message of Jesus was himself and that’s the evidence of the gospels. This makes Christianity unique in world religions, take Jesus out of Christianity then it all collapses. It’s all built on his identity so it’s important we understand who he is.

John’s gospel is built around the ‘I am’ statements of Jesus.

I am the bread of life. We all have a hunger that needs satisfying. Jesus didn’t just direct people to the source of this satisfaction he claimed to be that himself.

He didn’t just point to the truth he said; I am the way, the truth and the life.

I am the resurrection and the life Jesus doesn’t provide the answers he provides himself, THE answer.

Jesus often described himself as the son of man. Was Jesus emphasising he was just human?

Daniel 7:13-14  provides a great description of the son of man. He has authority to rule all the nations and they’ll worship him. It’s not about manhood, the name refers to him being God,  or another name for the son of man; Messiah. Messiah means anointed, empowered by God for a certain task.

Old Testatment  full of prophetic promises for a coming rescuer, the messiah. Jesus read all those things, understood them and realised that was his identity. Jesus could have crushed this identity, most ‘messiahs’ end up being killed! Even before the Sanhedrin prior to his execution. They asked are you the Christ? He says I am.

What part do our expectations play in the way God acts?

The Jews didn’t understand why Jesus wasn’t acting like the messiah they’d expected. They thought their enemy was the Romans but Jesus talked about an enemy much more dangerous that required a much different saviour to the one they expected.

We all want Jesus to solve our problems and help us get what we want. But that can show we don’t really understand Jesus and what he offers.

Our problems are much deeper. There is a heart issue at stake.

Joshua – Inheriting the Promise

August 3rd, 2009

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Historical Context

  • God’s big plan
  • The forming of a people
  • Entering the land

Prophetic Significance

  • Parallel acts
  • Opens up a new era
  • Helps us understand transition

Pastoral Application

  • Entering the inheritance
  • Receiving the inheritance
  • Confidence in the inheritance
  • Guarantee of the inheritance
  • Enjoying the inheritance
  • Everlasting inheritance