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Jesus: Our True Salvation

January 7, 2018

 

Now still breathing threats and murder against the disciples of the Lord, went to the high priest 2 and asked him for letters to the synagogues at Damascus, so that if he found any belonging to the Way, men or women, he might bring them bound to Jerusalem. 3 Now as he went on his way, he approached Damascus, and suddenly a light from heaven shone around him. 4 And falling to the ground, he heard a voice saying to him, “Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting Me?” 5 And he said, “Who are you, Lord?” And He said, “I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting.6 But rise and enter the city, and you will be told what you are to do.” 7 The men who were traveling with him stood speechless, hearing the voice but seeing no one. 8 Saul rose from the ground, and although his eyes were opened, he saw nothing. So they led him by the hand and brought him into Damascus. 9 And for three days he was without sight, and neither ate nor drank.

10 Now there was a disciple at Damascus named Ananias. The Lord said to him in a vision, “Ananias.” And he said, “Here I am, Lord.” 11 And the Lord said to him, “Rise and go to the street called Straight, and at the house of Judas look for a man of Tarsus named Saul, for behold, he is praying, 12 and he has seen in a vision a man named Ananias come in and lay his hands on him so that he might regain his sight.” 13 But Ananias answered, “Lord, I have heard from many about this man, how much evil he has done to your saints at Jerusalem. 14 And here he has authority from the chief priests to bind all who call on Your name.” 15 But the Lord said to him, “Go, for he is a chosen instrument of mine to carry My name before the Gentiles and kings and the children of Israel. 16 For I will show him how much he must suffer for the sake of My name.” 17 So Ananias departed and entered the house. And laying his hands on him he said, “Brother Saul, the Lord Jesus who appeared to you on the road by which you came has sent me so that you may regain your sight and be filled with the Holy Spirit.” 18 And immediately something like scales fell from his eyes, and he regained his sight. Then he rose and was baptized;" (Acts 9:1-18, ESV)

 

Jesus: our true salvation

Acts 9:1-18

 

An Encounter with the Living God

  

"And he said, “Who are you, Lord?” And He said, “I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting."

 

 

"14 How then will they call on Him in whom they have not believed? And how are they to believe in Him of whom they have never heard? And how are they to hear without someone preaching? (Romans 10:14, ESV)

   

Communion with the Living God

 

10 Now there was a disciple at Damascus named Ananias. The Lord said to him in a vision, “Ananias.” And he said, “Here I am, Lord.” 11 And the Lord said to him, “Rise and go to the street called Straight, and at the house of Judas look for a man of Tarsus named Saul, for behold, he is praying," 

 

John MacArthur - "Paul used to pray prayers of a Pharisee. He used to pray the legalistic prayers of one who thought he was righteous in his own way. Now he prays in blind, helpless dependency. This is the transformed life that cries out to God. This indicates a real transformation" 

 

Fellowship within a new Family 

 

 13But Ananias answered, “Lord, I have heard from many about this man, how much evil he has done to your saints at Jerusalem. 14 And here he has authority from the chief priests to bind all who call on Your name. 

 

17 So Ananias departed and entered the house. And laying his hands on him he said, “Brother Saul, the Lord Jesus who appeared to you on the road by which you came has sent me so that you may regain your sight and be filled with the Holy Spirit.” 18 And immediately something like scales fell from his eyes, and he regained his sight. Then he rose and was baptized;

 

" 18 For through him we both have access in one Spirit to the Father. 19 So then you are no longer strangers and aliens, but you are fellow citizens with the saints and members of the household of God, 20 built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Christ Jesus himself being the cornerstone, 21 in whom the whole structure, being joined together, grows into a holy temple in the Lord. 22 In him you also are being built together into a dwelling place for God by the Spirit." (Ephesians 2:18-20, ESV)

Week 1 - Jesus: Our True Salvation

 

Sunday’s message was the first in our new series called ‘Upside Down’.  The whole premise of this series is that Jesus came to change everything--including our worldview, because He has a better way! Today’s study will not be specifically about this week’s topic, but rather a reinforcement of the entire vision for this series.  We will look throughout scripture to illustrate how Jesus came to establish a kingdom that would world would see as ‘Upside Down’.

 

When Jesus speaks in scripture it is truthful and authoritative (Mt. 21:23, Mt. 28:18, Mk. 1:22) and it is also captivating (Lk. 2:45-47, Mt. 9:6-8). The way that Jesus speaks and the things that he describes paint a clear picture of two distinctly different worldviews.  He spoke as one who: knew God personally, who understood life, knew a better way--a more narrow way, and as one who wasn’t bound by the religious traditions established by men.  As a group will look at multiple passages from scripture where Jesus describes something that is directly opposite from the way that the world would view it.  As a group, you will be tasked with identifying how each passage compares to the way that the world views or believes.

 

As a group turn to and discuss how each passage below is opposite to a secular worldview.

1. Luke 9:24

 

2. Mark 10:31 &  Mt. 20:28

 

3. Matthew 5:43-44

 

4. Acts 20:35 (Christ quoted)

 

5. Mt. 5:39 & Mt. 18:21-34

 

6. Mt. 5:5

 

7. Mt. 23:11-12

 

Impact Statement

Scripture is pretty clear, there are two sides: the worldly and the heavenly. (Rev. 3:16).  There are also many passages that explain the difference between the two worlds: 1 Kings 18:21, James 4:4, and Joshua 24:15. Jesus describes clearly in scripture the aspects and expectations for those pursuing the heavenly side.  They will no doubt be viewed by the world and non-believers as upside down--but Jesus knows a better way!

 

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