22 April 2013

THE SENSE OF URGENCY



John 4:27-42

We are in age where this word “urgency” gets put on a shelf and left to collect dust. Think about it! The more you grow in grace through His word your eyes become more and more aware of the sin that permeates throughout the world and the sin that is in your own life, but there's something that we’re lacking to do in our Christian lives? A desire to go with urgency for the world to hear the gospel message; a message of hope for people who are still slaves to their sin. Sometimes we make excuses or blame it on Televangelists, Street preachers, the Westboro Baptist Church, or we blame our lack of urgency on the American affluence in our lives. YES! Some of those people, methods and things have made it impossible or wrecked our opportunities to share the hope that lies within us. Can I just say up front! That’s cop out to the deeper problem.......you and me! We tend to make excuses before we ever get an opportunity to have a gospel encounter. See! The problem is that we don’t do what we’re supposed to do! Why? I don’t think we really care about people as much as we tell ourselves most of the time.

I DON’T THINK WE REALLY CARE ABOUT PEOPLE AS MUCH AS THE BIBLE TELLS US TOO.
  • The bible says “love your wife” so I’m supposed to love my wife
  • The bible says “love your neighbor” so I’m supposed to my neighbor
  • The bible says “love your enemy” so I’m supposed to love my enemy

There is no getting around this problem of not loving people as Jesus loved. The question for us is…..do we really care about others? THINK ABOUT THIS SCENARIO:You have a loved one who is sick or hurt and they need medical attention right away, what’s the first thing you do? We urgently rush them to the hospital! Why? There are special to us…we love them dearly [a rightfully you should] We love them so much we stop doing whether it is were doing: work, play, rest, vacation..etc, so that we can get them to the hospital as fast as possible. Our homes could be burning down, the bank is about to foreclose our homes and cow giving birth…..all these things mean nothing when you are urgently thinking of someone else other than yourself. Why? Their quality of life is threatened and this concerns you greatly. So we do what comes natural get them help ASAP and rightfully so, as Paul said we're to look on the interest of overs at all times!

SO MY QUESTION TO US IS………What are we not doing? Why is it that we can go day by day with the people we work with, play or hang out with, and not urgently tell them about their spiritually condition? Which by the way is far worse than cancer, aids, or death itself? Can we honestly answer that question this morning truthfully! Is it because we care more about the physical well-being of people over the spiritual? Is it because we really don’t care about people in general at all? To be honest…….I think we don’t really care! And you can disagree with me because you know I’m right. You and I don’t invest our time into the lives of others as much as we should. Why? We’re comfortable and satisfied with the status quo in the Christian life. We’ve bought into the lie of this world “just leave people alone” or “be tolerable” This is the complete opposite of the Lord Jesus Christ…….remember what He said to His disciples?
  • I’ve come to separate father and son, mother and daughter
  • Anyone who looks back isn’t fit for the Kingdom
  • Take up your cross and come follow me
  • Sell everything you have and give to the poor
  • You will be hated for My name sake
  • Go into all the world and proclaim the gospel truth
  • I send you out as doves among wolves

Jesus said these things not so we can debate or argue who’s right and whose method works or write another evangelism book. He called us all to proclaim the news before it’s too late. He’s calling us with urgency because the day is approaching it will be glorious and frightening all at the same time. We have just witnessed Jesus tearing down the walls between the Jews and the Samaritan’s! Meaning His grace is open to all who come in and dine with Him. But as I said many times before! “To dine with Him is to die to self.” We have just witnessed Jesus’s relentless pursuit for sinners.His relentless pursuit for the spread of the gospel.

LOOK WHAT JESUS SAYS AND WHAT HAPPENS WITH THIS WOMAN WHEN HIS DISCIPLES RETURN FROM THE MARKET. Again remember this a immoral woman who was once ashamed to get water at the right hour is no longer ashamed to run to her village [who knew of her character] with a message of hope to tell others. She ran with urgency (v28-v30). This gave time for Jesus to explain to his disciples the importance of why we are here! For the sake of the gospel message. People are dying in there sin and guilt and we have the only medicine that can cure there disease. But there is something lacking in our lives “urgency” for the lost! Again Jesus takes something as simple as food as He did with the woman “give me a drink” to explain to his disciples about His purpose and our purpose  in life. (v31-v38). Jesus says “my food is to do the will of Him who sent Me” By talking to the woman about her spiritual condition Jesus was obeying and honoring His Father will. Which means He was doing His will by sharing the truth of His word to a sinner in need of saving grace. Remember what Moses wrote “man shall not live by bread alone; but man lives by every word that proceeds from the mouth of the LORD.” Deut 8:3. Jesus also said “look at the fields, for they are already white for harvest” At this time of year the crops would have been planted and sprouting up in vibrant green color. So they were surrounded by crops and Jesus uses this as an object lesson into the window of His heart for the disciples to see what He saw……His urgency for sinners who needed to hear the message of hope. Jesus is calling His disciples to do the work of evangelism which contain promises of a reward “wages” which results in fruit that brings eternal joy…..everlasting joy! By obeying the Father’s will it build the Kingdom of God which brings eternal joy that we get to share in with God Himself? The joy of seeing a bad person come to Jesus on God’s terms not mans. THE FUNDAMENTAL QUESTION WE NEED TO ASK OURSELVES! DO I CARE ABOUT BAD PEOPLE [MEANING SINNERS]? Jesus needed “to go to Samaria” and look what resulted in that simple encounter with a sinner! (v39-v42). If Jesus saw the importance to speak this woman what makes us think we are to do any different? He loved sinners young and old! He wants us to do the same

SO WHY DOES JESUS SPEAK WITH SUCH URGENCY TO HIS DISCIPLES [AND TO US]?


SINNERS NEED TO HEAR ABOUT THE GOSPEL OF GRACE

Acts 20:24  But none of these things move me; nor do I count my life dear to myself, so that I may finish my race with joy, and the ministry which I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify to the gospel of the grace of God.


SINNERS NEED TO HEAR ABOUT THE GOSPEL IN EVERY PART OF THE WORLD

Mat 24:14 “And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in all the world as a witness to all the nations, and then the end will come.”


SINNERS NEED TO HEAR ABOUT THE GOSPEL OF SALVATION

Eph 1:13  “In Him you also trusted, after you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation; in whom also, having believed, you were sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise,”


SINNERS NEED TO HEAR ABOUT THE GOSPEL OF CHRIST

Rom 1:9 “For God is my witness, whom I serve with my spirit in the gospel of His Son, that without ceasing I make mention of you always in my prayers,”


SINNERS NEED TO HEAR ABOUT THE GOSPEL THAT GLORIFIES JESUS CHRIST. 

2 Cor 4:4 “whose minds the god of this age has blinded, who do not believe, lest the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine on them.”


150 000 people will die again today! And Jesus says “they are ready for harvesting” The question is do we care? God entrusted this message to His special sanctified people to tell the world about the saving grace found in Christ alone. As David Platt said “church we are plan A, and there is no plan B” 

With a little sanctified imagination for a moment! Jesus returned to Heaven and talking to T.V. interviewer (who has somehow got in) The Interviewer begins by saying “You suffered much and died for the whole world. What have you done about making known that love to all the people in the world?” Jesus responds with “I have asked Peter, John, Andrew, James and others down there to make it known, and for the people they tell to tell others, and so on.” The Interviewer says: Yes, but suppose they don't? Jesus responds by saying “I have no other plans.” Think about this scenario as we close…..If you were walking past your neighbors  house, and you looked in and saw that they were watching TV, but you also saw that their house was on fire, you'd rush up and bang on the door yelling: "Your house is on fire!" You wouldn't stand there saying, "Aw, I don't know. They look so happy and they're having such a nice time. They're right in the middle of a movie. Maybe they'll be upset." If you told them, would you be considered a lunatic? No! You'd be a hero. But not till after they realized what you're saying was true. As Jesus said “Then He said to His disciples, "The harvest truly is plentiful, but the laborers are few. Therefore pray the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into His harvest." Matt 9:37-38. With urgency Jesus is calling our bluff this morning to do what we know is right! The Sunday question is……………….Do we really care about lost sinners as we should according to Jesus, not us?

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