I laugh sadly sometimes, when I hear people talk about the emerging church movement and accuse it / us of not sticking to God’s word, watering down truth, only tickling people’s ears and giving them the feel good Gospel… Because it has always been so DIFFERENT for us.
We have started through Romans in our worship gatherings on Sunday evenings. It has been INCREDIBLE. MJ (pastor) made a New Years Resolution that he would not teach / give a message or sermon to Souljourn unless he believed it was specifically a word of God FOR Souljourn… in other words, he wouldn’t get up and gab about the passage, Truth as it may be, unless he felt GOD gave it to him for THIS church body at THIS time. (no word = lots of music and reading of Scripture, open sharing, whatever) yeah. I over explained that, sorry!
This last week’s sermon… Romans 1: 24-32… God’s wrath… (our 2nd week on this!) Mmmm… you might think this was a depressing sad scary week. NOT SO! Because if you look at Romans 1 in context, you realize, firstly, that God’s wrath is NOT what we think of as wrath (angry man cut off in traffic, revenge, etc.) God’s wrath is (3x it says this) giving us over to our sinful nature and depraved minds… it is God leaving us alone. Taking His hand off us.
Its VERY good to read Scripture in context… 🙂 you know, hear ALL of God’s conversation with us!! From 2 Sundays ago, check this out… if you throw some questions into the text, see how Paul answers them…15 "So, for my part, I am eager to preach the gospel to you also who are in Rome. why in Rome? For I am not ashamed of the gospel why? for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek (us) why to everyone who believes? For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith to faith; as it is written "but the righteous man shall live by faith" why is righteousness needed to live by faith? For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men who suppress the truth in unrighteousness, how do we know? because that which is known about God is evident within them; why? for God made it evident to them how can it be made plain? for since the creation of the world His invisible attributes, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood through what has been made, so that they are without excuse, why the wrath? for even though they knew God, they did not honor Him as God or give thanks, but they became futile in their speculations, and their foolish heart was darkened. and what resulted? professing to be wise, they became fools, and exchanged the glory of the incorruptible God for an image in the form of the corruptible man and of birds… (IDOLS)
as a result of their/ our idolotry they / we sin…
therefore God gave them over… v24 – end.
MERCY MERCY MERCY – it is SO SO good, and God just washed us with it Sunday night. In light of our depravity, and God’s mercy in accepting our repentance, how can we NOT desire changed hearts… and God’s mercy includes not only life everlasting in heaven, free from sin anywhere! But included is a life of joy and freedom from the BONDAGE of sin HERE!!! by-by slavery to sin…hello slavery to Christ! Its a great place to serve… in my mercy clothes.