This is a poignant passage revealing the uniqueness of the Gospel. It shows how Jesus' message is utterly new, and therefore, incompatible with any form of religion, or self-righteous effort. It is a passage revealing the purity of the Gospel, and that anything false corrupts its efficacy to save sinners. It is a timely message in light of a pluralistic, syncretistic culture, which says that there are many paths to salvation. Jesus says there is only one path, and it is His path alone.
The Incompatibility of the Gospel
October 4, 2020 • Matt Miller • Luke 5:33-39
November 15, 2020 • Matt Miller
Here we see Jesus begin His famous Sermon on the Mount. He begins His introduction with a series of paradoxical statements, famously known as the beatitudes. While many have thought this is a sermon on ethics, it is a sermon on salvation. It is a declaration of who is in His kingdom and who is not. In these four statements (or beatitudes) Jesus gives us an opportunity to self-reflect. They are four marks of a converted soul. Are we of Him and among the blessed, or are we not of Him and among the cursed? This is the question He wants His audience to wrestle with, and it is His question to us. These are the indicators of a redeemed heart, and therefore, who is blessed.
Preaching, Power, and Popularity
November 8, 2020 • Matt Miller
Luke gives us a summary statement of Jesus' immense popularity. Many are coming to Him for various reasons; hoping to hear Him, be healed, and be amazed. It's a passage that reflects on the people's perspective toward Jesus up to this point in His ministry. Yet, Luke masterfully places this before Jesus' Sermon on the Plain. Jesus will end that sermon by saying true disciples are not one's who merely here and consume, but obey. It is a powerful reminder that we must examine ourselves to see if our life truly bears the marks of a faithful disciple.
The Master's Men
November 1, 2020 • Matt Miller
Jesus now gathers His twelve disciples for ministry. Among the crowd of followers, Jesus chooses twelve, very common, very ordinary men. They are imperfect and weak, yet the Lord will use them to accomplish mighty things. God is not looking for super saints to accomplish His purposes. He uses the weakness of common, ordinary men to fulfill the extraordinary. And the weaker we are, the more useful we'll be. And it all began with these twelve men who will become the foundation of His Church.