This week's message is The Equalizer. Choose your connection speed to listen: dialup - broadband - transcript
Political Correctness vs. Heavenly Perspective
The world will tell you that you shouldn't call someone blind, but visually impaired. You shouldn't call someone white or black, but Caucasion or African-American. They will also tell you that if you didn't vote for Obama, you're racist. That's because all the world's attempts at equality and morality outside of Jesus Christ fail. Focusing on our rights will build up division, while focusing on Jesus will bring us together.
Today we contrast the world's views of equality with God's views as found in Scripture, and consider how that applies to our own lives.
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Jesus, Not Our Rights
Galatians chapter three says, "for as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ," as though they were putting on some type of covering or garment. And it is through this baptism into Christ that God sees us, and this is why he sees us as holy. This is why we can come into his presence and why our fellowship with him has been restored. It is because we have put on Christ. And as the Scripture says, it is therefore "no longer I who lives, but Christ who lives in me."
And it is this indwelling of the Spirit of God that changes us from glory to glory into the image of God, purifying us, building our character, and giving us the power to put to death the carnal man with its sinful desires.
The world tries to combat bigotry by focusing on the rights of a certain race, or the rights of the low or middle class, or the rights of women. But the Scriptures call us to lay down our rights, putting on Christ Jesus, who was the supreme ruler of the universe and yet took the place of common criminals like you and like me.
Are you a Jew? It doesn't matter. Are you a Greek? It makes no difference. Are you black or white? It's of no consequence. Are you rich? Trust in God. Are you poor? Be content with where God has placed you. Are you a male or a female? Forget your so-called rights and act like one.
Jesus Christ is the great equalizer. Equality will never come by focusing on race or gender or economic class. That only magnifies our differences. True equality comes by focusing on Jesus, for that magnifies the one who is preparing for us a city, a place where the redeemed of the Lord will serve him for all eternity with peace and joy, free at last from the curse of sin.
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Prayer Requests & Praise Reports
Prayer for Sister – Kathy writes, My sister, Janet, is in need of prayer. I spoke with her tonight and she is really down. She moved four months ago to a new city in a new state with her husband. Her daughter graduated college four months ago and is now in Australia learning to do missionary work. Her son lives 3 hrs away, but his company has just been bought out, he will lose his position in 4-6 months, he is in the middle of building a home which he now will not be able to afford and his last two job interviews are not panning out. My brother in law is struggling at his new job and travels a great deal now and works late. In short -- she is trying to support them all through all their challenges, and is feeling weighed down herself and is far removed from the support system upon which she has relied for her 27 years in her former town. She is a deeply spiritual woman, and it takes a lot to flag her spirit. Her brother and I and our parents are all 12 hours away. I ask for the comfort of the Holy Spirit to descend upon her, to nourish and rejuvenate her, to cloak her in the protection of the Blood of Jesus from all dangers and to protect her this night and to remove any doubt, worry, or other agents which are seeking to dampen her spirit and her resolve. I ask your prayers for her tonight and in the future that she be kept safe and uplifted by God. Thank you for your prayers and for your ministry -- I will pray for you also. In Jesus' name and love, Kathy
Prayer for Hope – Sydnee writes, I have been feeling like I have nothing else to give or offer anymore...I am yelling at my daughter more and more and have put our bank account in the negitive so far that we have no money to live on or have money for Christmas for our daughter. I am so discontent with myself and feel my soul needs to be prayed for (not that I have not been saved, I have).
Continued Recovery – Jen's step father had cancer removed a few weeks ago and is going through chemotherapy. Please pray for strength and healing, and that this will result in God's glory in his life.
Abducted Girl – The 13-year-old daughter of a member of our church was abducted by a 42-year-old man. Please pray for her complete safety and protection in all ways, and that they would be found quickly and the daughter returned to her mother.
Pray For Us! Please pray that God will continue to move through this ministry in an even greater measure. Without your prayers, our labor will not have much effect. But when the work of the ministry is backed by prayer, great things will happen!
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