What Is This?

What Is This?.

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The Genuine Church: Pray, Go and Show Gerçek Kilise: Dua Et, Git Ve Göster

Sometimes when I preach, people respond in the following week with…

-requests for prayer…

-counseling requests…

-times of confession.

Also, many times after a sermon, I find myself tested by what I preached…

We must…

“practice what we preach.”

So, often I ask to myself,

“Can I, really, follow this?”

This week was different…

-This message has been tested and confirmed for the past several weeks.

Let me tell you about one of these events:

ILLUSTRATION

I was looking online for a photo to use as an illustration.

It was about SMS messages that had gone wrong due to autocorrect.

SMSs are useful but autocorrect is sometimes a nightmare.

So I knew that there would be examples online.

But as I looked, I found many that I could not show, because they were inappropriate…

in fact, some were so bad that I felt violated to read them, and so I stopped.

One that I found was funny to me, so I posted it on Facebook.

I posted this on my Facebook page,

Soon, after posting, someone wrote me and asked, “Did you see what is at the bottom of your post?”

I didn’t realize what was there…an abbreviation of a bad phrase

I thanked the friend and took off the post

Then I looked at the other one I wanted to show, today, and it, too, had actually a bad phrase at the bottom.

If my friend had not told me, then I would have offended people without realizing it

It reminds me of a time when I was in another country, and a innocent looking young lady who was working in a grocery store was wearing a new tee shirt.

The tee shirt had a very bad and provocative statement in English on it.

I assumed that the young lady did not know English, so I gently informed her.

Later that day, I went back to the grocery store and saw that the young lady was wearing an apron to cover the writing.

Look at this SMS

Notice that the person writes that he wants to kill her…but he meant to write “kiss”

The recipient could have done the following:

  1. Be offended…do nothing and let the offense build up and stress herself
  2. Be offended…and write something offensive back
  3. Be offended…talk to others about what this person wrote, maligning the person’s character
  4. Be offended…but show the person their mistake
  5. Not be offended…show the mistake…laugh it off and move on
  6. Not be offended…not show the mistake…laugh it off and move on
  7. Kırılmak…bu konuda hiç bir şey yapmayıp, kırgınlığın artmasına izin vermek ve kendini strese sokmak
  8. Kırılmak…ve karşılığında kırıcı şeyler yazarak cevap vermek
  9. Kırılmak…diğer insanlarla bu kişinin yazdıklarını konuşmak, bu kişinin karakterini kötülemek
  10. Kırılmak…ama kıran kişiye hatasını göstermek
  11. Kırılmamak…bu kişiye hatasını göstermek…gülüp geçmek ve hayata devam etmek
  12. Kırılmamak…hatasını göstermemek… gülüp geçmek ve hayata devam etmek

As a pastor, I am a magnet for information:

-people share with me their triumphs and their tragedies,

-their struggles and their stellar moments.

-sometimes they share with me their worries about someone else

-sometimes they tell me of how someone offended them

This happens in ministry… it is an occupational hazard. J

But today is not a time for complaints,

but to see how important it is for each of us to be in a real with each other and in right relationship with each other.

Here is a verse I want to share in my introduction:

11 So Christ himself gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the pastors and teachers, 12 to equip his people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up

Ephesians 4:11, 12

11 Kendisi kimini elçi, kimini peygamber, kimini müjdeci, kimini önder[b] ve öğretmen atadı. 12 Öyle ki, kutsallar hizmet görevini yapmak ve Mesih’in bedenini geliştirmek üzere donatılsın.

Efesliler 4:11-12

As a pastor, I understand my biblical mandate to equip others to minister.

We are a genuine church in that we are not a group of people acting like we are part of church, but we are called by Jesus out of the world to come together to serve and worship.

As well, we are Nations Church, with over 30 different passports represented in our church!

We cannot assume that we are always understood.

And we must not think that everyone is like us.

I’ve mentioned before that we should not speak about politics, as politics can be too complicated to speak about.

Politics can divide churches…we see this in the US and in other countries as well.

National and personal history affects how politics are viewed by people.

Different cultures have differing expectations, but if we can work together, we will bring glory and honor to Our Lord Jesus the Messiah.

Farklı kültürlerin farklı beklentileri vardır, ama birlikte çalışabiliriz, görkemi ve zenginliği Rabbimiz Mesih’e taşıyabiliriz.

The largest group of people in our church is Americans, but they’re not the majority.

On Easter we had 113 people, but only 28 were American adults.

That is 25%.

Among the Americans, we have people from the South, North, Midwest and Southwest.

Our views are different on many things.

In church, while serving together, we sometimes find ourselves observing things that are wrong:

-We see someone is living with someone outside of marriage, or

-someone is gambling, or

-someone is getting drunk or

-someone is flirting with a married person, etc.

No matter what we see, we feel something isn’t right in our spirit.

What should we do?

-We should pray.

-We should be ready to go to the person who is ether sinning or on their way to sinning and tell them (either as a warning or as a rebuke)

-And we should not be like a judge, but as an encouraging brother/sister.

-Dua etmeliyiz.

-Günah işleyen veya işlemek üzere olan kişiye gitmeye hazırlıklı olmayız (bu kişiyi uyarmak ya da azarlamak için)

-Ve bir hakim gibi davranmamalıyız, o kişiyi teşvik edici kız / erkek kardeş gibi davranmalıyız.

The Bible was written to and for ordinary people.

-not for a super race of people, -nor was it written only for pastors and church leaders to read,

-but it was written for all, whom God so deeply loves.

When man sinned in the Garden of Eden, sin became the new norm for man, and separation from God and from each other occurred.

When God reached out to man through Noah and then through Abraham and through Moses it was for reconciliation and for judgment.

As I consider Nations Church to be a Genuine Church, I believe that we need to love each other, deeply.

To love each other deeply means we desire the best for each other.

The Scriptures teach this about reconciliation:

Brothers and sisters, if someone is caught in a sin, you who live by the Spirit should restore that person gently. But watch yourselves, or you also may be tempted. Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ.

 

Galatians 6:1, 2

Kardeşler, eğer biri suç işlerken yakalanırsa, ruhsal olan sizler, böyle birini yumuşak ruhla yola getirin. Siz de ayartılmamak için kendinizi kollayın. Birbirinizin ağır yükünü taşıyın, böylece Mesih’in Yasası’nı yerine getirirsiniz.

Galatyalılar 6:1,2

PRAY

  1. Who Lives by the Spirit?
  2. Ruhsal Olan Kimlerdir?
  1. Who Lives by the Spirit?
  2. Ruhsal Olan Kimlerdir?
  1. Those Exhibiting the Fruit of the Spirit:

a.Ruhun Meyvelerini Sergileyen Kişiler

When a person receives Jesus and becomes a new creation, the Holy Spirit is alive in them, as well the Holy Spirit wants to empower them and give gifts…

this often can be a separate experience and we observe in such people the gift of speaking in other spiritual languages.

I do believe in the gifts of tongues, as we call it, but I’ve known people with the gift whom I would not equate as “living by the spirit.”

What I mean is that they may emphasize a gift without

drawing from the fruit the same Spirit of God brings forth.

If we live by the spirit, then the Spirit’s fruit will be evident in our lives, too.

  1. Who Lives by the Spirit?
  2. Ruhsal Olan Kimlerdir?
  3. Those who follow the Scriptures:

b.Kutsal Yazılar’ı Takip Edenler

Living by God’s Spirit means that our lives follow the Scripture.

All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.

2 Timothy 3:16, 17

16 Kutsal Yazılar’ın tümü Tanrı esinlemesidir ve öğretmek, azarlamak, yola getirmek, doğruluk konusunda eğitmek için yararlıdır. 17 Bunlar sayesinde Tanrı adamı her iyi iş için donatılmış olarak yetkin olur.

  1. Timoteos 3:16, 17

I’ve heard some people claim many things by God’s Spirit, that were against the Scriptures that were inspired by the Same Spirit.

And when corrected or rebuked, they’ve even discounted (diminished) the Scriptures as not being as important as having God’s prophetic gifts.

[DON’T READ]

Dear friends, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world. This is how you can recognize the Spirit of God: Every spirit that acknowledges that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God, but every spirit that does not acknowledge Jesus is not from God. This is the spirit of the antichrist, which you have heard is coming and even now is already in the world.

1 John 4:1-3

Sevgili kardeşlerim, her ruha inanmayın. Tanrı’dan olup olmadıklarını anlamak için ruhları sınayın. Çünkü birçok sahte peygamber dünyanın her yanına yayılmış bulunuyor. İsa Mesih’in beden alıp geldiğini kabul eden her ruh Tanrı’dandır. Tanrı’nın Ruhu’nu bununla tanıyacaksınız. İsa’yı kabul etmeyen hiçbir ruh Tanrı’dan değildir. Böylesi, Mesih Karşıtı’nın ruhudur. Onun geleceğini duydunuz. Zaten o şimdiden dünyadadır.

  1. Yuhanna 4:1-3

Whatever we claim is from God, prophetically in our lives MUST measure up with the Scriptures, as they themselves tell us:

  1. Who Lives by the Spirit?
  2. Ruhsal Olan Kimlerdir?

 

  1. Those Who Have Been Crucified with Jesus

c.İsa ile Birlikte Çarmıha Gerilenler

Our sinful flesh must die in order to live by the Spirit, otherwise we are living by the flesh.

I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.

Galatians 2:20

Mesih’le birlikte çarmıha gerildim. Artık ben yaşamıyorum, Mesih bende yaşıyor. Şimdi bedende sürdürdüğüm yaşamı, beni seven ve benim için kendini feda eden Tanrı Oğlu’na imanla sürdürüyorum.

Galatyalılar 2:20

It is not enough to live like an unbeliever all week, and then live like a believer when we get to church.

As well, if we are tolerating a little sin, and thinking it won’t hurt us, we need to remember that it takes only a small amount of sin to destroy us….just a little extra time lingering on a sinful thought is enough to lead us toward sin.

If we say we’ve been crucified with Jesus, then let’s live it…24/7.

İsa ile birlikte çarmıha gerildiğimizi söylüyorsak, bunu yaşamlarımızda gösterilim…24/7.

Part of crucifying the flesh is to fast and pray….part of it is to starve what needs to die rather than continuing to feed it.

In the criminal justice system, there are short and long sentences and even life sentences. There is the death sentence, too.

While these are political issues in the justice system, when it comes to sin, we need to give sin a death sentence, and not a life sentence.

When we recognize sin in our own lives, let’s give it a death sentence rather than a life sentence.

Hayatlarımızda bir günahın farkına vardığımızda, bu günaha ömür boyu hapis cezası vermek yerine, idam cezası verelim

To the youth here today, I say, get rid of sin in your life while you are young, otherwise you will have many wasted years and decades of sin hindering you…don’t give sin a life sentence or it will give us a death sentence.

  1. Restore One Another

2.Birbirimizi Yola Getirmek

  1. The Neglected Commandment

a.İhmal Edilmiş Buyruk

This is not only for pastors, but for all in the Body of Christ.

If Christians were more active in the work of restoration, the world would be a much better place. Instead, we watch people crash and do nothing about it.

This is not an option in God’s eyes, but many of us have considered it to be an option…too many of us.

Restoration is double process.

If we restore others, then we, ourselves, are restored.

If we neglect the restoration of others, then we are neglecting ourselves, too.

If we reach out to people in restoration, then they may reach out to us and restore us when we need it.

How do we do this?

  1. Gently

b.Yumuşak Ruhla

This is how we would want to be restored, but it often is where restoration falls short.

Perhaps because we have judgmental thoughts about the person we wish to restore, maybe that is why we are not gentle.

We say things like…

“you always are like this”

“there you go, again.”

“are you crazy?”

Another hindrance to gentleness is that we are so

shy, or insecure that we can be used of God to restore…

This takes practice and God’s grace.

Remember, if we needed restoration, we would want to be restored gently.

Gentleness is the fruit of God’s Spirit in our lives

The Scriptures teach:

A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.

Proverbs 15:1

Yumuşak yanıt gazabı yatıştırır,

Oysa yaralayıcı söz öfkeyi alevlendirir.

Süleyman’ın Özdeyişler 15:1

Gentleness is the way to approach many things in life

Thus, note, that men are often called “gentlemen” even if they are not acting as such.

When we act gently, we can be frustrated if people don’t follow through with the restoration,

and we may be tempted to take matters into our own hands.

Gentleness is the attitude, but what are the actions we must take in order to restore

  1. Go, Show and Restore

c.Git, Göster ve Yola Getir

If you or I offend someone by accident, we want to know this.

If we don’t know that we have offended someone, then wewould like to know this.

Why?

Because, we don’t want to have a bad relationship with someone.

If you offend me and I tell you this, then we have the opportunity to build up our relationship and build up each other.

What to do when offended:

Kırıldığımızda ne yapmalıyız:

  1. Pray
  2. Decide
  3. Go to the offender

1.Dua Etmeli

2.Karar Vermeli

3.Bizi Kıran Kişiye Gitmeliyiz

  1. Pray (especially if we are easily offended, the problem may not be the other person, but we may be the problem)
  2. Decide: is this a problem that I can ignore (our skin needs to become thicker, especially in this world of Social Media where it is very easy to criticize without thinking about it….but, if we are going to live with it, then we must be committed to live with it…otherwise, it will eat us alive. To ignore the problem means to forgive the offense and forget it.
  3. Go to the person who has offended us, and speak our peace. Be prepared, they may be clueless that they have offended us. People have different tolerations and some of us seem as though we are deaf and blind. It is very frustrating to show someone how they have offended, if they don’t grasp it. I think this is what goes into the chemistry of successful friendship. Some people just don’t mix well, and that’s OK.

Galatians was one of the first New Testament books to be written (possibly as early as 48 AD).

As such, this letter briefly shows us the need to bring correction at times.

Matthew’s gospel would have been written 10-20 years later, and by this time, the Church had been dealing with discipline according to what they knew.

The same Holy Spirit who inspired the writing of Galatians inspired the writing of Matthew.

Matthew included a teaching that Jesus gave the disciples about discipline, and it is in Matthew 18:

15 “If your brother or sister sins, go and point out their fault, just between the two of you. If they listen to you, you have won them over. 16 But if they will not listen, take one or two others along, so that ‘every matter may be established by the testimony of two or three witnesses.’ 17 If they still refuse to listen, tell it to the church; and if they refuse to listen even to the church, treat them as you would a pagan or a tax collector.

Matthew 18:15-17

15 “Eğer kardeşin sana karşı günah işlerse, ona git, suçunu kendisine göster. Her şey yalnız ikinizin arasında kalsın. Kardeşin seni dinlerse, onu kazanmış olursun. 16 Ama dinlemezse, yanına bir ya da iki kişi daha al ki, söylenen her şey iki ya da üç tanığın sözüyle doğrulansın. 17 Onları da dinlemezse, durumu inanlılar topluluğuna bildir. Topluluğu da dinlemezse, onu putperest ya da vergi görevlisi say.

Matta 18:15-17

This is self-explanatory.

I will give you a recent example:

ILLUSTRATION

I was concerned about someone in the church. I felt that I needed to speak to this person…I don’t know the person very well, so I wasn’t certain that the person would receive a word of concern from me, even though I’m a pastor.

So, I prayed….and I asked God, “help me to have a chance to speak with this person.”

This week, something wonderful happened: this person whom I was praying for asked me, “pastor, what do you think about….”

My response was not even as a pastor, but more as a father….others were also present, and I was so touched that they were not judgmental in my opinion, but motivated by love. We had so great a time of sharing. I told them that I would mention it this Sunday, but without mentioning names.

Step One: Go, show, and hopefully there is restoration; if not, then….

Step Two: Take someone with you, again, go, show and hopefully restore; if not, then….

Step Three: tell I t to the church, if he still refuses to listen, then set him out of the church…no communion, no ministry, no influence in people’s lives

More details

Step 1a: go

Physically

If that’s not possible, then call…Skype or FaceTime

Email…this can get us into more trouble, though…but, it can still be rewarding…it may lead to necessary phone calls and personal meetings

Step 1b: Show

You cannot show unless you go

We are not smart enough

We are not spiritual enough

To read minds and know what we have done…or if we gave offended

Step 1c: restore…win your brother

Step 2a: go with someone

Step 2b: show with someone

Step 2c: restore with someone

Step 3: tell it to the church

Meaning, tell the leaders so we can get involved, assist and protect the church from the sins of the unrepentant sinner

I had to tell an American man in Kazakhstan to stop dating women in the church because he was inappropriate with many women

We cannot restore…we cannot win our brother if we are not willing to go and show…

What a tragedy that we who are so educated and led by the Spirit if the Living God, yet refuse to go, show and restore…

Why do I share this, today? Because as a church we need to be involved in this. Sometimes in churches, people know of a sin, but maybe the pastor doesn’t know.

Let’s be people who pray, go and show, and are willing to received those who pray, go and show to us.

Let’s pray

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The Inconvenience of Christmas Doğuş Bayramı’nın Uygunsuz Ko

I am so glad to address our congregation today,

and to declare that Jesus is alive

and sitting at the right hand of God the Father Almighty!

This is Christmas Sunday, my second favorite Sunday of the year (my favorite is Easter).

Clover and I just took a trip to Bulgaria. It was our first trip there.

I have an American pastor friend who serves there, but we were not able to see him, because we were celebrating our 32nd wedding anniversary!

We went away because we wanted to visit a country that celebrates Christmas. We went by bus, and it was a long day of travel. Though the distance isn’t too far, we, of course, crossed borders, and I was surprised at how different Bulgaria appeared.

My friend works in a very poor area with Roma people. I learned that his church recently obtained a washing machine for their people, otherwise they wash their clothes in the river.

He has a very sarcastic bent, and when I wrote to inform him of our trip, his response was,

“You are celebrating your 32nd anniversary in Bulgaria!? How romantic.”

I could hear the sarcasm.

As we crossed the border, we could see what he meant, as the land is in a developing state. However, the city we visited was very charming and sweet.  If one could strip away the rough exterior…the post Communist small town look… one could see culture and beauty as there were dozens of art galleries and many museums.

Though Bulgaria is formerly communist, I noticed no symbols of the hammer and sickle, but having lived in Central Asia for 15 years, I recognized the architecture of the apartment buildings on the outer ring of the city

Similarly, the center of the city was much nicer than the outside appearance, and the old part of the city, was a real gem.

The city is cloaked with humility and plainness, yet deep inside, there is beauty.

We went to Plovdiv because we had heard that the downtown area was decorated for Christmas, and the old city looked like a storybook. It is true! We loved it.

As we consider the real meaning of Christmas, let us consider what we could see if we stripped away what blocks our vision.

I am not comfortable listing all that blocks one’s vision from the truth about Jesus, but I trust that the Holy Spirit will speak to each of us.

Let’s look at a favorite Christmas passage of Scripture from the Apostle Paul, Philippians 2:5-11 (it encompasses more than just “Christmas”):

[5] Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus:  [6] Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be grasped, [7] but made himself nothing, taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness. [8] And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself and became obedient to death— even death on a cross! [9] Therefore God exalted him to the highest place and gave him the name that is above every name, [10] that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, [11] and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

Philippians 2:5-11

5 Mesih İsa’daki düşünce sizde de olsun. 6 Mesih, Tanrı özüne sahip olduğu halde, Tanrı’ya eşitliği sımsıkı sarılacak bir hak saymadı. 7-8 Ama kul özünü alıp insan benzeyişinde doğarak ululuğunu bir yana bıraktı. İnsan biçimine bürünmüş olarak ölüme, çarmıh üzerinde ölüme bile boyun eğip kendini alçalttı. 9 Bunun için de Tanrı O’nu pek çok yükseltti ve O’na her adın üstünde olan adı bağışladı. 10-11 Öyle ki, İsa’nın adı anıldığında gökteki, yerdeki ve yer altındakilerin hepsi diz çöksün ve her dil, Baba Tanrı’nın yüceltilmesi için İsa Mesih’in Rab olduğunu açıkça söylesin.

Filipililer 2:5-11

PRAY

  1. Jesus Left the Conveniences of Heaven for the Inconveniences of Earth
  1. İsa Dünya’nın uygunsuz koşulları için, Cennetin uygun koşullarını bıraktı

Christ Jesus:  [6] Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be grasped,    Philippians 2:5, 6

Isa Mesih : [6] Tanrı özüne sahip olduğu halde, Tanrı’ya eşitliği sımsıkı sarılacak bir hak saymadı.   Filipililer 2:5,6

The difference between Turkey and Bulgaria is not as vast as the difference between Heaven and earth, but it shows a similarity. My friend could not understand why we would choose Bulgaria to celebrate.

In Scripture, there is a vague reference to a group of individuals who also wondered about the move from Heaven to earth that our redemption required:

the angels.

There are many references to angels in the story of Christmas:

announcing the conception of Jesus to Mary

encouraging Joseph in a dream to still take Mary as his wife

announcing Jesus’ birth to shepherds

praising God before the shepherds

warning Joseph in a dream to take Mary and Jesus to leave Bethlehem

Angels, though, are simply God’s messengers …

His servants.

They do as they are told, and are not to be worshipped, nor prayed to (Jesus taught us how to pray, and that is only to God).

And Scripture reveals that not every angel or spirit should be trusted, but they should be tested, as well, the Scriptures teach that …

Satan himself masquerades as an angel of light

2 Corinthians 11:14

Şeytan da kendisine ışık meleği süsü verir.

2 Corinthians 11:14

Angels in the Christmas story were following orders from God.

In 1 Peter there is an interesting verse about angels that states….

Even angels long to look into these things.

1 Peter 1:12

Melekler bu gerçekleri yakından görmeye büyük özlem duyarlar.

  1. Petrus 1:12

The angels “long to look”…or this could be even more deeply understood as

“[angels] bending over and stooping to look into this.”  

What is this?

Redemption.

Just as my friend wondered why would we celebrate our anniversary in an economically challenged land, angels wonder how and why would God be interested in the things of mankind?

God’s Son who lived from the beginning of time, even before time, came from Heaven to earth…to redeem us.

His bed was a feed trough, as there was nowhere else to place him

Jesus left the convenience of heaven for the inconvenience of earth and was born in the most humble of circumstances.

In the coming few years, Jesus would be a refugee, as his family had to escape the real threats of King Herod.

Christmas was Inconvenient for Jesus, but He came, anyway.

-Angels wonder at the inconvenience…

-scholars consider it and –

-skeptics scoff at it.

  1. The Baby in the Manger is the Creator and He Offers Re-Creation.
  2. Yemlikte Bebek Yaratandır ve Yeniden Doğuş İmkanını Sunar.

“Christ Jesus…made himself nothing, taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness. [8] And being found in appearance as a man,…”

Philippians 2:5, 7, 8

5 Mesih İsa’daki düşünce sizde de olsun. 6 Mesih, Tanrı özüne sahip olduğu halde, Tanrı’ya eşitliği sımsıkı sarılacak bir hak saymadı. 7-8 Ama kul özünü alıp insan benzeyişinde….

Filipililer 2:5, 7, 8

Of the four gospels, only two tell of Jesus’ birth, which is what we consider to be the traditional story of Christmas…

at least only two present his birth stories,

but, they ALL tell the story of God coming to earth in Jesus.

Mark begins his gospel with this announcement:

The beginning of the gospel about Jesus Christ, the Son of God.

Mark 1:1

Tanrı’nın Oğlu İsa Mesih’le ilgili Müjde’nin başlangıcı.                     

Markos 1:1

This statement tells us who the good news is about (“gospel” means “good news”).

Mark’s beginning statement is like a public service announcement, meaning,

This book is not about anyone else, but about the Son of God, Jesus.

John’s Gospel goes back further, and reads like the book of Genesis, starting with,

“In the beginning…”

John 1:1

“Başlangıçta…”

 Yuhanna 1:1

He describes Jesus as the Word…

he declares who the Word truly is…

and his “Christmas story” is summed up in verse 14 of the first chapter.

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. [2] He was with God in the beginning. [3] Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made.

… …

[14] The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the One and Only, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.         John 1:1-5, 14

Başlangıçta Söz vardı. Söz Tanrı’ylabirlikteydi ve Söz Tanrı’ydı. 2 Başlangıçta O, Tanrı’yla birlikteydi. 3 Her şey O’nun aracılığıyla var oldu, var olan hiçbir şey O’nsuz olmadı. 

… …

[14] Söz, insan olup aramızda yaşadı. O’nun yüceliğini –Baba’dan gelen, lütuf ve gerçekle dolu biricik Oğul’un yüceliğini gördük                                                         Yuhanna 1:1-5, 14

-The baby in the manger who was visited and worshipped by wise men from the East…

-the baby in the manger, about whom, angels proclaimed, protected and praised…

-this harmless baby was one of thousands of nameless babies born that same day in the pagan Roman Empire…

-but this baby would change that Empire….

all babies will one day die,

but this baby came with the purpose of dying, sacrificially, for all mankind who would believe in Him….

and the angels

-bend over and

-stoop down,

-scratching

-their shaking heads and wonder,

“what?”

He created all, and through Him is provided the promise of re-creation…re-birth…renewed life.

his birth was a miracle:

God with us- Emmanuel;

  1. Don’t Let the Novelty of the Poor Baby Block the True Meaning of His Coming
  1. Bu Yoksul Bebeğin Tuhaflığının,

Gelişinin Gerçek Anlamını Görmenize Engel Olmasına İzin Vermeyin

Therefore God exalted him to the highest place and gave him the name that is above every name, [10] that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, [11] and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.    Philippians 2:9-11

Bunun için de Tanrı O’nu pek çok yükseltti ve O’na her adın üstünde olan adı bağışladı. 10-11 Öyle ki, İsa’nın adı anıldığında gökteki, yerdeki ve yer altındakilerin hepsi diz çöksün ve her dil, Baba Tanrı’nın yüceltilmesi için İsa Mesih’in Rab olduğunu açıkça söylesin.

Filipililer 2:9-11

When we watch Christmas plays we often see dolls in the place of the Baby Jesus.

Or, if there is a baby in the congregation, and the parents are brave enough,

a live baby is used in the pageant…

and, undoubtedly, the live baby becomes the star of the show, even if the baby cries too much.

I recall all when I was young and wa in my first Christmas pageant. My brother, who is 5 years older than I had lines to recite, while I, since I was 5 or 6 didn’t have any lines. I was disappointed. My brother kept forgetting his lines, and I knew all of his lines. I was disappointed to be the nameless shepherd boy at stage right.

It was the 1960s, and there was something known as the Hippie movement at that time in which people made the “peace” sign with their fingers. As I sat on the stage wishing I could say something in the play, the narrator reported the words of the angel and said, “Peace on earth, good will toward men.” I quite innocently looked up at the spotlight, held up my fingers in the peace sign and exclaimed, “PEACE!”

I recall all the old people on the front row whose false teeth dropped from their jaws, and whose wigs flipped off their heads….I had stolen the show for a brief moment.

The baby knows nothing of what is happening, but after the show, people often talk about how precious and cute the baby-actor was.

Thus, the cuteness or the novelty of the baby in the manger, overshadows the message of the gospel.

Some people think that Christians believe that God had unnatural relations with Mary and that is why Jesus is called “Son of God.” But nothing could be further from the truth (and Mary is not 1/3 of the Trinity).

The Bible teaches that Jesus existed from the beginning with God the Father. Jesus is supreme above all people, prophets, angels and kings.

[15] He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. [16] For by him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things were created by him and for him. [17] He is before all things, and in him all things hold together. [18] And he is the head of the body, the church; he is the beginning and the firstborn from among the dead, so that in everything he might have the supremacy. [19] For God was pleased to have all his fullness dwell in him, [20] and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether things on earth or things in heaven, by making peace through his blood, shed on the cross.

Colossians 1:15-20

15  Görünmez Tanrı’nın görünümü, bütün yaratılışın ilk doğanı O’dur. 16 Nitekim yerde ve gökte, görünen ve görünmeyen her şey –tahtlar, egemenlikler, yönetimler, hükümranlıklar– O’nda yaratıldı. Her şey O’nun aracılığıyla ve O’nun için yaratıldı. 17 Her şeyden önce var olan O’dur ve her şey varlığını O’nda sürdürmektedir. 18 Bedenin, yani kilisenin başı O’dur. Her şeyde ilk yeri alsın diye başlangıç olan ve ölüler arasından ilk doğan O’dur. 19 Çünkü Tanrı bütün doluluğunun O’nda bulunmasını uygun gördü. 20 Mesih’in çarmıhta akıtılan kanı aracılığıyla esenliği sağlamış olarak yerdeki ve gökteki her şeyi O’nun aracılığıyla kendisiyle barıştırmaya razı oldu.

                   Koloseliler 1:15-20

Jesus is so powerful, yet traditions, teachings, cultures, values block peoples’ view of him.

Humans are easily blocked,

and one bit of misinformation can deflect the Truth about Jesus for millennia.

Let nothing stand between us and the real baby in the manger….

-He is God in the flesh, a paradox that only God Himself could accomplish…

-He is the One who declared that He and God the Father are one…

-He is the One who declared that He was before Abraham, and in doing so indicated that He Is God, …this caused those around him to want to stone him for blasphemy.

At His birth there were distinct words of Jesus’ future:

He was named “Jesus” for he will save his people from their sins

But as well, Jesus was worshipped as God and declared as such even from his birth.

Don’t let the cuteness of a baby block us from the severity of Almighty God.

In the Old Testament era, God called individuals such as prophets to hear God’s Word, and then to make it known to others:

[6] These commandments that I give you today are to be upon your hearts. [7] Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up.

Deuteronomy 6:6, 7

[6] 6 Bugün size verdiğim bu buyrukları aklınızda tutun. [7] Onları çocuklarınıza belletin. Evinizde otururken, yolda yürürken, yatarken, kalkarken onlardan söz edin.

Yasa’nın Tekrarı 6:6, 7

God’s Word has been given to man through prophets, and then shared by each other.

Moses desired the following…

I wish that all the Lord’s people were prophets and that the Lord would put his Spirit on them!”

Numbers 11:29

Keşke Rab’bin bütün halkı peygamber olsa da Rab üzerlerine Ruhu’nu gönderse!”

Çölde Sayım 11:29

And later God spoke through the prophet Joel

I will pour out my Spirit on all people. Your sons and daughters will prophesy, your old men will dream dreams, your young men will see visions. [29] Even on my servants, both men and women,           Joel 2:28, 29

 28 “Ondan sonra bütün insanların üzerine Ruhum’u dökeceğim. 
Oğullarınız, kızlarınız peygamberlikte bulunacaklar.
Yaşlılarınız düşler, Gençleriniz görümler görecek.  
29 O günler kadın, erkek kullarınızın üzerine de Ruhum’u dökeceğim.

Yoel 2:28, 29

This baby in the manger would grow up, and later, speak,

and by His words he appointed Apostles to be with him, to hear and see everything,

He commissioned those Apostles to make disciples of all nations, baptizing and teaching them to obey everything He commanded them.

Then Jesus ascended to Heaven, but the Scriptures teach that when He ascended, he gave three other gifts, besides Apostles and Prophets:

-evangelists;

pastors; and

-teachers.

And through these five ministries of the Church, the Great Commission comes all the way to us.

Today I continue His COMMISSION to teach what He commanded.

And I declare, Jesus IS Lord!

Jesus Is Lord!

  1. The Inconvenience of Jesus
  1. İsa’nın Uygunsuz Koşulları

When Joseph was trying to comfort his very pregnant wife,

the baby came at an inconvenient time, while traveling to a crowded little town.

When I consider Bulgaria, it may have that post Communist look…even an impoverished look, but we met a dear couple….

They pastor a church of 500 people in the city that we visited.

As well, this pastor provides leadership to about 500 other churches in their association in all of Bulgaria. OF HIS CHURCH ASSOCIATION, THERE IS ONLY ONE CHURCH IN ALL OF TURKEY

It is hard for me to believe that the Truth of Jesus is not understood in Turkey, the land of the New Testament…and as I have said previously, and I will say again,

-if people knew Jesus as the Bible teaches Him…

-if they knew Jesus as I know Him,

-if they knew Jesus, as God’s Holy Spirit calls out to them,

they would not be able to resist the relationship that He wants to have with them.

When someone truly meets Jesus, surprisingly, they are inconvenienced.

I think of Joseph, who was urged to take pregnant Mary as his wife…

-this was an inconvenience.

I think of the shepherds in the fields with their flocks being encouraged to see Jesus…

-it was an inconvenience…

-even the Apostle Paul who terrorized the early Church and assisted in the murder of an eloquent and gifted young man named Stephen,

-yet Jesus, later, met Paul and inconvenienced him.

Today, when people meet Jesus it is an inconvenience, too…

-Jesus changes the way we think.

-in America they are known as the people who are intolerant of those who are different….

-in Turkey, people who meet Jesus lose their families…

But, when we are inconvenienced by Jesus, we rest in the will of God and in His peace.

Conclusion and Response

  1. Do you believe that God sent Jesus to earth for our redemption?
  1. Do you believe that Jesus is God in the flesh?
  1. Do you recognize the supremacy of Jesus over all of creation?
  1. Are you ready to be inconvenienced by Jesus?

Let’s pray

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Thankful for the Unshakable Kingdom Sarsılmaz Egemenlik için Şükürler Minnettar Olmak

This week in America is a celebration:  Thanksgiving.

While we are not an American church, I want to share about how important it is to be thankful.

In many cases, thankfulness is the antidote to anger, fear, confusion, frustration and doubt. When we are able to give thanks, rather than to give in to fear, etc. our lives are changed.

We must be people who give thanks.

There are several Bible verses about giving thanks, and today I want to present a couple of verses.

28 Therefore, since we are receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, let us be thankful, and so worship God acceptably with reverence and awe, 29 for our “God is a consuming fire.”

Hebrews 12:28,29

28 Böylece sarsılmaz bir egemenliğe kavuştuğumuz için minnettar olalım. Öyle ki, Tanrı’yı hoşnut edecek biçimde saygı ve korkuyla tapınalım. 29 Çünkü Tanrımız yakıp yok eden bir ateştir.

İbraniler 12:28,29

PRAY

The Unshakeable Kingdom Sarsılmaz Egemenlik

According to this verse, the original readers of the book of Hebrews were receiving an unshakable kingdom (and so are we).  Those who originally read this letter would most likely have heard Jesus’ teaching regarding prayer.

This is because the gospels of Luke and Matthew which present what we call the “Lord’s Prayer” were already written and being circulated among the churches.

I find that I so often am thinking of the Lord’s Prayer in life.

Jesus taught us to pray like this

“This, then, is how you should pray:

“‘Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your name,
10 your kingdom come,
your will be done,
on earth as it is in heaven.
11 Give us today our daily bread.
12 And forgive us our debts,
as we also have forgiven our debtors.
13 And lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from the evil one.’

for yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen.

Matthew 6:9-13

“Bunun için siz şöyle dua edin:

‘Göklerdeki Babamız,

Adın kutsal kılınsın.

10 Egemenliğin gelsin.

Gökte olduğu gibi, yeryüzünde de

Senin istediğin olsun.

11 Bugün bize gündelik ekmeğimizi ver.

12 Bize karşı suç işleyenleri bağışladığımız gibi,

Sen de bizim suçlarımızı bağışla.

13 Ayartılmamıza izin verme.

Bizi kötü olandan kurtar.

Çünkü egemenlik, güç ve yücelik

Sonsuzlara dek senindir! Amin

Matta 6:9-13

So specifically, I want us to consider these words from that prayer:

“This, then, is how you should pray:

‘Our Father in heaven, … …

   your kingdom come, … …

   on earth as it is in heaven … …’”

Matthew 6:9, 10

“Bunun için siz şöyle dua edin:

‘Göklerdeki Babamız, … …

Egemenliğin gelsin, … …

Gökte olduğu gibi, yeryüzünde de … …’”

 Matta 6:9, 10

There is a good chance that the first readers of the book of Hebrews were already praying this prayer and understood that the unshakeable kingdom is already here.  And let US continue to pray as we are going to receive this.

As we read this verse, we need to notice the term, “therefore?” “Therefore” is there for a reason. It tells us that what precedes this verse is related to this statement.

In the verses immediately preceding this verse the writer draws a distinction between the lives of the previous believers and holy people compared to our lives.

Here are some examples:

By faith [Abraham] made his home in the promised land like a stranger in a foreign country; he lived in tents, as did Isaac and Jacob, who were heirs with him of the same promise. 10 For he was looking forward to the city with foundations, whose architect and builder is God.

Hebrews 11:9-10

İman sayesinde [İbrahim] bir yabancı olarak vaat edilen ülkeye yerleşti. Aynı vaadin ortak mirasçıları olan İshak ve Yakup’la birlikte çadırlarda yaşadı. 10 Çünkü mimarı ve kurucusu Tanrı olan temelli kenti bekliyordu.

 İbraniler 11:9-10

Abraham lived in tents but was looking forward to something that God would build.

Tents are not unshakeable. I thought of something else that is similar to Abraham’s tents: visas and residence permits are also not unshakeable.

Tents are nice and they are mobile, but have you ever been in a tent during a storm? Remember, they are NOT unshakeable.  On several occasions I have been in tents during storms and it is not easy.  As a child, my family and I were camping once and the wind was so intense that I went back to the car to sleep through the night. When I awoke, I saw that the tent had fallen on top of my brother and my father.

Another time I was with a group from church and we were camping in the mountains. One of the tents actually blew away in the wind (it was empty). We never found it.

Here is another verse about those who were before us:

13 All these people were still living by faith when they died. They did not receive the things promised; they only saw them and welcomed them from a distance, admitting that they were foreigners and strangers on earth. 14 People who say such things show that they are looking for a country of their own. 15 If they had been thinking of the country they had left, they would have had opportunity to return. 16 Instead, they were longing for a better country—a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared a city for them.

Hebrews 11:13-16

13 Bu kişilerin hepsi imanlı olarak öldüler. Vaat edilenlere kavuşamadılarsa da bunları uzaktan görüp selamladılar, yeryüzünde yabancı ve konuk olduklarını açıkça kabul ettiler. 14 Böyle konuşanlar bir vatan aradıklarını gösteriyorlar. 15 Ayrıldıkları ülkeyi düşünselerdi, geri dönmeye fırsatları olurdu. 16 Ama onlar daha iyisini, yani göksel olanı arzu ediyorlardı. Bunun içindir ki, Tanrı onların Tanrısı olarak anılmaktan utanmıyor. Çünkü onlara bir kent hazırladı.

İbraniler 11:13-16

They were longing for something unshakable and followed God for this. Abraham and all of the others were searching for this, and they saw it from afar.  We see this kingdom, now, as we have found Jesus.  Those who had gone before: Noah; Jacob and Joseph were looking for the unshakeable kingdom of God.

Jesus began his ministry announcing this Kingdom:

Jesus went into Galilee, proclaiming the good news of God. 15 “The time has come,” he said. “The kingdom of God has come near. Repent and believe the good news!”

Mark 1:14, 15

İsa, Tanrı’nın Müjdesi’ni duyura duyura Celile’ye gitti. 15 “Zaman doldu” diyordu, “Tanrı’nın Egemenliği yaklaştı. Tövbe edin, Müjde’ye inanın!”

Markos 1:14, 15

This kingdom is what all were looking for, previously. And kingdoms were established, but they ended: Saul’s; David’s and Solomon’s.  What they sought, we have, what they were looking for, we have found, and what they predicted, we know has been fulfilled.

It required faith for those before Jesus to pursue God’s coming kingdom, just as it requires faith for us, today, to receive it.

Yet, if we could bring one of those Old Testament prophets to the future and sit down with them, we could ask them what they were pursuing. He would tell us of the kingdom to come to come, and we could tell him that the Kingdom that has come in Jesus.

The Consuming Fire / Yakıcı Ateş

When the Hebrews were at the base of Mt Horeb (aka Sinai), they were afraid of the cloud on the mountain that looked like fire.

15 When Moses went up on the mountain, the cloud covered it, 16 and the glory of the Lord settled on Mount Sinai. For six days the cloud covered the mountain, and on the seventh day the Lord called to Moses from within the cloud. 17 To the Israelites the glory of the Lord looked like a consuming fire on top of the mountain.

Exodus 24:15-17

15 Musa dağa çıkınca, bulut dağı kapladı. 16 RAB’bin görkemi Sina Dağı’nın üzerine indi. Bulut dağı altı gün örttü. Yedinci gün RAB bulutun içinden Musa’ya seslendi. 17 RAB’bin görkemi İsrailliler’e dağın doruğunda yakıcı bir ateş gibi görünüyordu.

Mısır’dan Çıkış 24:15-17

This “consuming fire” caused fear in the hearts of the Hebrews, and they didn’t want to come near God. As well, God doesn’t want sinful man to come near him.  He allowed Moses, but there were limits. When Moses asked God to show him His glory, God agreed to a point, as God said to Moses:

20 But,” he said, “you cannot see my face, for no one may see me and live.”

Exodus 33:20

20 Ancak, yüzümü görmene izin veremem. Çünkü yüzümü gören yaşayamaz.”

Mısır’dan Çıkış 33:20

Though the people were afraid of the cloud in which God was, and they saw it as a “consuming fire,” and yet Moses, went into the cloud.  I cannot imagine anyone wanting to go into something that looked dangerous.  Yet, firefighters and police are trained to enter dangerous places.

In response to the fear of the Hebrews, God spoke this through Moses to the people:

15 The Lord your God will raise up for you a prophet like me from among you, from your fellow Israelites. You must listen to him. 16 For this is what you asked of the Lord your God at Horeb on the day of the assembly when you said, “Let us not hear the voice of the Lord our God nor see this great fire anymore, or we will die.”

17 The Lord said to me: “What they say is good. 18 I will raise up for them a prophet like you from among their fellow Israelites, and I will put my words in his mouth. He will tell them everything I command him.”

Deuteronomy 18:15-18

15 Tanrınız RAB size aranızdan, kendi kardeşlerinizden benim gibi bir peygamber çıkaracak. Onu dinleyin. 16 Horev’de toplandığınız gün Tanrınız RAB’den şunu dilemiştiniz: ‘Bir daha ne Tanrımız RAB’bin sesini duyalım, ne de o büyük ateşi görelim, yoksa ölürüz.’ 17 RAB bana, ‘Söyledikleri doğrudur’ dedi. 18 ‘Onlara kardeşleri arasından senin gibi bir peygamber çıkaracağım. Sözlerimi onun ağzından işiteceksiniz. Kendisine buyurduklarımın tümünü onlara bildirecek.

Yasa’nın Tekrarı 18:15-18

Because God’s presence is too difficult to be tolerated by sinful man, God promised to send a greater prophet than Moses and God’s Word would be in Him. Jesus was sent so we could see God and live.

Jesus, the Consuming Fire and the Unshakable Kingdom / İsa, Yakıcı Ateş ve Sarsılmaz Egemenlik

Jesus is known as “the Word of God.”  Jesus is shown by Scriptures to be greater than the angels, even Gabriel;  and greater than all of the prophets, even Moses. He is the greatest High Priest of all.  Referring to the previous prophecies about himself, Jesus said,

56 Your father Abraham rejoiced at the thought of seeing my day; he saw it and was glad.”

John 8:56

56 Babanız İbrahim günümü göreceği için sevinçle coşmuştu. Gördü ve sevindi.”

Yuhanna 8:56

There was an occasion that is referred to several times in the Bible known as the transfiguration. This was when Jesus and three of his disciples, Peter, James and John, when to the top of a mountain. While they were there, Jesus was transfigured, which meant that his divinity was shown and his glory was revealed. On this occasion, Jesus changed in such a way that his face was as bright at the sun and his clothing was whiter than bleach could make them, or even bright like lightening. Certainly, they couldn’t see all of his glory, or these disciples would have died, but they saw something. And they heard the voice of God the Father declare that Jesus was His Son.

While this story is told in three of the Gospels (Matthew, Mark and Luke), John refers to it in his Gospel, but doesn’t tell the story. He refers to Jesus as the “Word:”

14 The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.

John 1:14

14 Söz, insan olup aramızda yaşadı. O’nun yüceliğini –Baba’dan gelen, lütuf ve gerçekle dolu biricik Oğul’un yüceliğini– gördük.

Yuhanna 1:14

Peter referred to this event, too, when he wrote his second letter:

17 He received honor and glory from God the Father when the voice came to him from the Majestic Glory, saying, “This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased.” 18 We ourselves heard this voice that came from heaven when we were with him on the sacred mountain.

2 Peter 1:17, 18

17 Mesih, yüce ve görkemli Olan’dan kendisine ulaşan sesle, “Sevgili Oğlum budur, O’ndan hoşnudum” diyen sesle Baba Tanrı’dan onur ve yücelik aldı. 18 Kutsal dağda O’nunla birlikte bulunduğumuz için gökten gelen bu sesi biz de işittik.

  1. 2. Petrus 1:17, 18

We follow Jesus because there has never been and there will never be anyone greater than Jesus. He is not only the One Who proclaimed the unshakeable Kingdom, but He IS the unshakeable Kingdom.

The writer of the book of Hebrews showed a distinction between those who believed before Jesus and those who believed after. This writer and his audience knew of another distinction, as well, between those who believe and those who don’t. The Apostle Paul, under the influence of God’s Holy Spirit wrote these words about this distinction:

13 For he has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son he loves, 14 in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.

15 The Son is the image of the invisible God,

Colossians 1:13-15

13 O bizi karanlığın hükümranlığından kurtarıp sevgili Oğlu’nun egemenliğine aktardı. 14 O’nda kurtuluşa, günahlarımızın bağışına sahibiz.

15 Görünmez Tanrı’nın görünümü,…

Koloseliler 1:13-15

Our Response / Bizim Verdiğimiz Tepki

How do we respond to this information? The Scripture we looked at to begin with today tells us how to respond:

28 Therefore, since we are receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, let us be thankful, and so worship God acceptably with reverence and awe, 29 for our “God is a consuming fire.”

Hebrews 12:28,29

28 Böylece sarsılmaz bir egemenliğe kavuştuğumuz için minnettar olalım. Öyle ki, Tanrı’yı hoşnut edecek biçimde saygı ve korkuyla tapınalım. 29 Çünkü Tanrımız yakıp yok eden bir ateştir.

İbraniler 12:28,29

Let us respond with thankfulness and by worship.

How do we thank people?

  • We tell them.
  • We give them a card.
  • We buy them a gift.
  • We hug them.
  • We give them attention

How do we express thanks to God?

  • By telling Him, and
  • Following Him.

As well, we are to worship acceptably and in awe.

God is greater than we can understand and yet, He understands us and chooses to be concerned with us. God is the most powerful force in the universe and yet, He withholds His wrath from us and does not destroy us as our sins deserve. God chooses to love us, and He reaches out to us, but let us not forget that He is a consuming fire.

Jesus sent His Holy Spirit to us not merely to help us be freer in our worship, though that is wonderful, but His Spirit is with us that we would be with Him. That He would be able to correct us and we would hear it. His Spirit is with us so that when we hear something that goes against God’s Will, we would not applaud it, but we would speak a loving word of correction.

God calls us into a relationship with him, a relationship of worship. This is acceptable, and pleasing.

This week, I met a man from Syria who is ethnically Christian, but has no relationship with God through Jesus (he declares himself to be an atheist). I told him that we pray every week and some of us are praying, daily, for Syria. He wasn’t impressed, but instead told me that recently there was a group of people praying in a church and a rocket hit the church and destroyed the building.

This man didn’t understand that the church building, like a tent, is NOT unshakeable. Jesus is unshakeable, and yes, people died, but if they had a relationship through God by Jesus, then they were already part of the unshakeable kingdom.

As I close, I want us to look at Psalm 100.

Shout for joy to the Lord, all the earth.

Ey bütün dünya, RAB’be sevinç çığlıkları yükseltin!


    Worship the Lord with gladness;
come before him with joyful songs.

O’na neşeyle kulluk edin,

Sevinç ezgileriyle çıkın huzuruna!

Know that the Lord is God.
It is he who made us, and we are him;
we are his people, the sheep of his pasture.

Bilin ki RAB Tanrı’dır.

Bizi yaratan O’dur, biz de O’nunuz,

O’nun halkı, otlağının koyunlarıyız.

 

Enter his gates with thanksgiving
and his courts with praise;
give thanks to him and praise his name.

Kapılarına şükranla,

Avlularına övgüyle girin!

Şükredin O’na, adına övgüler sunun!


For the Lord is good and his love endures forever;
his faithfulness continues through all generations.

Çünkü RAB iyidir,

Sevgisi sonsuzdur.

Sadakati kuşaklar boyunca sürer.

           Psalm 100/Mezmur 100

Let’s pray

 

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“Father, Into Your Hands I Commit My Spirit” “Baba, Ruhumu Ellerine Bırakıyorum” Sermon 8 of the series on the Seven Statements from the Cross Çarmıhtan Gelen Yedi Sözün 8. Vaazı

Introduction:                                   “Why Seven Statements?”

 Giriş:  “Neden Yedi Söz?”

We continue in our series on the statements of Jesus from the cross.

Today, we will look at the final statement.

As I think about the difficulty that Jesus would have had to be speaking from the cross, I am amazed that he spoke seven times.

I think, we must understand that he spoke at LEAST seven times from the cross.

Perhaps he spoke more, but we really don’t know.

Each gospel writer records these for us, and it just happens that the TOTAL number of statements is seven.

Seven is a significant number in the Bible:

There were:

Seven days of creation

Many sevens in the book of Revelation:

Seven churches;

Seven lampstands;

Seven lamps;

Seven spirits;

A scroll with seven seals;

Seven angels with seven trumpets;

Seven thunders…etc.

But I don’t think it is significant for our understanding that there were seven rather than six or rather than eight statements from the cross.

And when I wonder why didn’t each gospel presenter record all seven?

I must remember that each writer had a particular audience to which he was writing, initially.

Only one miracle, for example, is in all four gospels:

the feeding of the 5000.

So to include all of these statements would have made their presentations longer

Let’s consider the various audiences

Matthew wrote to a Hebrew audience and only recorded the “My God, My God” statement.

This was perhaps because this statement came directly from the Old Testament and pointed to the will of God being fulfilled in Jesus

Mark’s audience was Roman/Gentile audience that had Hebraic roots and heritage, thus for his presentation of the Gospel, the “My God, My God” statement summed it all up

Luke’s gospel accompanied Paul in his ministry, so it is interesting Jesus’ prayer, “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing,” and the later statement of Jesus welcoming the repentant man who was crucified with him would be included.

It may have been particularly special to Paul who persecuted the church, not realizing that he was going against God.

In John’s gospel, John explained why he had taken care of Jesus’ mother.

And his gospel presentation showed the suffering of Jesus as he thirsted and that he knew he was dying as one who had successfully fulfilled the Father’s mission as he said, “It is finished.”

Now, we come to the final statement.

Luke is the only one who quotes Jesus saying this, and he mentions that Jesus “called out with a loud voice.”

The other three gospel writers allude to this statement, as well.

Both Matthew and Mark mention a loud cry.

And when Jesus had cried out again in a loud voice, he gave up his spirit.

Matthew 27:50

50 İsa, yüksek sesle bir kez daha bağırdı ve ruhunu teslim etti.            

Matta 27:50

With a loud cry, Jesus breathed his last.

Mark 15:37-39

37 Ama İsa yüksek sesle bağırarak son nefesini verdi.

Markos 15:37

While John doesn’t quote Jesus, he does record the action of Jesus’ final statement:

…he bowed his head and gave up his spirit. John 19:30

…başını eğerek ruhunu teslim etti.       Yuhanna 19:30

So let’s, now, read from Luke 23:44-46.

[44] It was now about the sixth hour, and darkness came over the whole land until the ninth hour, [45] for the sun stopped shining. And the curtain of the temple was torn in two. [46] Jesus called out with a loud voice, “Father, into your hands I commit my spirit.” When he had said this, he breathed his last.

Luke 23:44-46

44-45 Öğleyin on iki sularında güneş karardı, üçe kadar bütün ülkenin üzerine karanlık çöktü. Tapınaktaki perde ortasından yırtıldı. 46 İsa yüksek sesle, “Baba, ruhumu ellerine bırakıyorum!” diye seslendi. Bunu söyledikten sonra son nefesini verdi.

Luka 23:44-46

PRAY

  1. Jesus Gave His Strength/İsa Gücünü Verdi

One of the most famous verses in the Bible is John 3:16

“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.”             John 3:16

“Çünkü Tanrı dünyayı o kadar çok sevdi ki, biricik Oğlu’nu verdi. Öyle ki, O’na iman edenlerin hiçbiri mahvolmasın, hepsi sonsuz yaşama kavuşsun. 

Yuhanna 3:16

This speaks of God, the Father, giving His Son, and it is true.

This is foundational to our faith, as the singer, Michael Card put it:

“What Abraham was asked

To do, He has done,

He offered His Only Son.”

“God Will Provide a Lamb”

Michael Card, Songwriter

İbrahimden isteneni,

O kendisi yaptı,

Biricik Oğlunu Verdi.”

Tanri bir kuzu sağlayacaktır”

Michael Card, İlahı Yazar

I have wrestled with the thought of God giving His Only Son for us.

I don’t know if I could have been faithful like Abraham to offer any of my dear children, and, praise God, we are not expected to do that!

But God

did this.

He gave His Only Son for our sins.

I can’t imagine giving my son or daughter for any one else, and yet God gave His Son for us all.

Not only did God give His Son, but The Son gave Himself for us.

There is no greater love, Jesus said, than to give one’s life for his friends (John 15:13).

Jesus not only SAID this, but He DID this, he DID this.

Every step of the way, especially during that 24 hour period, Jesus gave His strength.

As he shared the Passover meal with his disciples, he knew it was his last meal…

as he washed their feet…

as he told Judas to do what he had planned and do it quickly…

these were emotional moments when he was giving his strength.

In the Garden of Gethsemane, he gave his strength and his sweat was like drops of blood.

As he was beaten, abused, mocked, nailed and crucified, he gave physical and emotional strength.

Jesus gave his strength and kept giving. He did not give up or quit.  And in the end, as he saw the time was fulfilled, He still had some strength, and he cried out “Father, into Your Hands I commit my Spirit.”

I mentioned last week that I used to run, and when I would run the 2-miler, I always found a way to pour out more energy during the final 2-300 yards.

The last 100 yards I pushed harder….

People remarked that I gave my all for the team, but I didn’t give my all, because if I had, I would have died.

In truth, I didn’t give all for my team,

I did it for myself:

-It was fun hearing people cheer.

-It was fun pushing myself.

Yes, I wanted to help the team, but I would not have died for them.

But Jesus gave His all for us.

In this last moment before dying on the cross, Jesus had enough strength to speak with a loud voice.

He gave his strength for us and…

  1. Jesus Gave His Life, Freely/İsa Canını İsteyerek Verdi

As the Good Shepherd, Jesus laid down his life for his sheep.

Being a shepherd is not always thought of as a very noble profession, though among the Hebrews, it was considered to be special since Moses, Jacob and Jacob’s sons were all shepherds.

To many people, including myself, a shepherd is worth more than his sheep, so it is hard to understand when a shepherd risks his life for his sheep.

David risked his life killing lions and bears in order to save his sheep. David understood of God’s relationship to man, was like the relationship between a shepherd and sheep.

Jesus took this metaphor and applied it to his life, since he is the Son of God and it was appropriate.

He talked about his relationship to people as a shepherd and the risks:

[11] “I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep. [12] The hired hand is not the shepherd who owns the sheep. So when he sees the wolf coming, he abandons the sheep and runs away. Then the wolf attacks the flock and scatters it. [13] The man runs away because he is a hired hand and cares nothing for the sheep….

[17] The reason my Father loves me is that I lay down my life—only to take it up again. [18] No one takes it from me, but I lay it down of my own accord. I have authority to lay it down and authority to take it up again. This command I received from my Father.”

John 10:11-13, 17, 18

11 Ben iyi çobanım. İyi çoban koyunları uğruna canını verir. 12 Koyunların çobanı ve sahibi olmayan ücretli adam, kurdun geldiğini görünce koyunları bırakıp kaçar. Kurt da onları kapar ve dağıtır. 13 Adam kaçar. Çünkü ücretlidir ve koyunlar için kaygı duymaz….

17 Canımı, tekrar geri almak üzere veririm. Bunun için Baba beni sever. 18 Canımı kimse benden alamaz; ben onu kendiliğimden veririm. Onu vermeye de tekrar geri almaya da yetkim var. Bu buyruğu Babam’dan aldım.”

Yuhanna 10:11-13, 17,18

No one took Jesus’ life from him.

Some people seem to find comfort in blaming the Jews for Jesus’ death, but Jesus, himself, said that no one took his life from him.

Jesus gave his strength and his life freely for us.

He did this because through his sacrifice the way would be open for us to God the Father and to heaven.

We know that the Scriptures continue to teach why and how he gave his life for us:

…Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.                     

Hebrews 12:2

Gözümüzü imanımızın öncüsü ve tamamlayıcısı İsa’ya dikelim. O kendisini bekleyen sevinç uğruna utancı hiçe sayıp çarmıhta ölüme katlandı ve şimdi Tanrı’nın tahtının sağında oturuyor.        

İbraniler 12:2

Jesus knew that there was joy before him. He knew that in the end there would be resurrection, ascension and he would be sitting at the Right hand of God the Father.

And the gospels reported that the curtain hanging in the Temple was torn in two, signifying that the way to the Father was now open.

As the way was open, we realize that we, too, can pray the same prayer that Jesus prayed from the cross, committing our lives to our heavenly Father.

  1. Can We, Too, Say This With Jesus?/Bizde Bunu İsayla Diyebilir miyiz?

First, Jesus could say this because he had already done this every day.

Jesus Prayed Regularly

İsa Düzenli Bir Şekilde Dua Etti

The Gospel of Mark records this action of Jesus:

Very early in the morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house and went off to a solitary place, where he prayed.  

Mark 1:35

Sabah çok erkenden, ortalık henüz ağarmadan İsa kalktı, evden çıkıp ıssız bir yere gitti, orada dua etmeye başladı.              

Markos 1:35

And the Gospel of Luke records this repeated action of Jesus:

Jesus often withdrew to lonely places and prayed.

Luke 5:16

Kendisi ise ıssız yerlere çekilip dua ediyordu.

Luka 5:16

Jesus regularly prayed and kept close to God the Father in prayer.

Jesus Listened To and Was Obedient To Our Heavenly Father

İsa Göksel Babamızı Dinleyip İtaat Ederdi

Jesus didn’t merely repeat a prayer to God but listened to him in his time of prayer.

Jesus gave them this answer: “Very truly I tell you, the Son can do nothing by himself; he can do only what he sees his Father doing, because whatever the Father does the Son also does.

For I did not speak on my own, but the Father who sent me commanded me to say all that I have spoken.

John 5:19; 12:49

İsa Yahudi yetkililere şöyle karşılık verdi: “Size doğrusunu söyleyeyim, Oğul, Baba’nın yaptıklarını görmedikçe kendiliğinden bir şey yapamaz. Baba ne yaparsa Oğul da aynı şeyi yapar. 

Çünkü ben kendiliğimden konuşmadım. Beni gönderen Baba’nın kendisi ne söylemem ve ne konuşmam gerektiğini bana buyurdu.

Yuhanna 5:19; 12:49

We, Too, Can Pray, Listen and Obey

Bizde Dua Edebilir, Dinleyebilir ve İtaat Edebiliriz

I have not always been fruitful and successful, but for a good part of the past 41 years I have been praying, listening and doing my best to obey.

Daily, we are called to

  • deny ourselves,
  • take up our crosses and
  • follow Jesus (Luke 9:23).

When we are able to do this daily/regularly, then we will do be able to do this at our last and final moment.

I mentioned a few months ago about sitting in the dentist chair last year in the US and how I was given a shot of epinephrine. Epinephrine is adrenalin and it rushed to my heart. I thought I was having a heart attack, and after alerting the nurse, I could only do two things:

I sent an SMS to Clover saying, “I love you,”

and I said to God, “Lord, I’m ready to see you.”

Although I felt great dread, and my arms wanted to just lay by my sides as they felt like they were lead. I put myself in God’s hands.

Another time:

When I had surgery last year, also, the surgeon asked me to trust him, but really, my trust was in God’s Hands.

We need to trust Him, daily, and learn to hear His voice so that we will do what He asks of us.

God is calling us today to enter and re-enter into a close relationship.

He is asking us today:

Are we concerned about our failures more than we are concerned about God’s wrath?

Are we seekers of our own honor more than people offering to honor God above all things through our lives?

Are we awed more my our own wisdom and good sense than through the incredible wisdom of God?

Are we, like Jesus, willing to give our spirits to God,

Meaning….

Our dreams & our wishes

Our choices & our friends,

Our plans & our priorities

Our sexuality & our finances

Our hopes & our desires

If we are, then let us with Jesus say,

Father, into your hands I commit my spirit.

Baba, ruhumu ellerine bırakıyorum

When Jesus said these words, he died.

Some of us have to die.

We have to die to our selves, and let our flesh die, so that Jesus can be raised in us.

That His Holy Spirit can come alive in us.

Let’s meet with God in prayer

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Remember us?

writersteppe:

I love my daughter and granddaughter!

Originally posted on Mama Knows What?:

Mother said,
“Come what may,
Follow the path
And never stray.”

 IMG_3056

IMG_3246

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IMG_3216

Jolie and I have left Amanda to keep this blog up for months now. We thought we’d drop in to let you all know we are still growing… 2 years old already, with new adventures every day.

Can I just say that 2 is a magical age. We can go through every emotion in a matter of minutes. It is incredibly challenging to parent a 2 year old, especially one with so much sass. She is going to move mountains and change the world, and I pray every day for wisdom to raise her to never stray. She is a ball of fire, God has a specific and fantastic plan for her and it is an honor to be the one to watch it unfold.

His mercies are new every morning, and I am thankful that children do…

View original 52 more words

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It Is Finished/Tamamlandı: The Statements of Jesus from the cross (statement 6, series sermon 7) İsa’nın çarmıhtaki sözleri (6. sözü, 7. Vaaz)

INTRODUCTION

I Quit!

Never Again!

That’s the Last Straw!

What kind of words are these?

Usually, these words are used to express frustration and they might be expressed in anger.

I’m Done!     \            Say these sadly;

It’s Over!        \

I’m Finished! /And then say them

That’s All!     /            Joyfully

When any of these words are used, we can’t understand them without inflection and context.

When merely reading them, silently, we don’t know how to read them, without context.

I used to be a substitute teacher, and I remember that I gave a quiz to some students and one of them as soon as he received it, wrote his name on the top of the page and then announced, “I’m done!”

I assumed he was the class clown.

We need to understand the context in order to understand what is meant by any statement.

This is the seventh (7th) sermon in the series on the Statements of Jesus from the cross.

We have looked at the context and the meaning of each statement.

Jesus spoke very briefly on each occasion.

He spoke clearly, and not in parables on these occasions.

We must remember that it was hard for him to speak, as he hung naked, bruised, flogged and broken, nailed to the cross on that awful day.

I’ve shared no hidden meaning behind any of these statements.

Today, as we look at the sixth (6th) statement, let’s consider the previous five statements:

  1. “Father, Forgive Them” (Who Jesus Was—Full of Grace)Baba onları bağışla” (İsa’nın kişiliği – Merhametle dolu )
  2. “Today, You Will Be with Me in Paradise” (To Where Was Jesus Going—Heaven)    ”Bugün benimle birlikte cennete olacaksın” (İsa nereye gidiyor-du – Cennete)
  1. “[to Mary] Dear Woman, Here Is Your Son…[to John] Here Is Your Mother” (Who He Was— Concerned For His Mother’s Earthly Future) ”[Meryem’e] Kadın işte oğlun…. [Yuhanna’ya] işte oğlun” (İsa kimdi-Annesinin geleceği için kaygılanıyordu)
  1. “My God, My God, Why Have You Forsaken Me?” (Why Jesus Went to the Cross—Forsaken to Save the Forsaken) ”Tanrım, Tanrım beni neden terk ettin?” (İsa neden çarmıha gitti-Terk edilmişleri kurtarmak için terk edildi)
  1. “I Thirst” (How He Showed His Love—Suffering For Us) ”Susadım (Sevgisini nasıl gösterdi – Bizim yerimize acı çekerek)

Today, as we look at the sixth statement, we will read the fifth statement, again.

This is because I want us to see the context of the statement.

To merely show that Jesus said, “It Is Finished,” and then preach my sermon, would be incomplete to me.

28 Later, knowing that everything had now been finished, and so that Scripture would be fulfilled, Jesus said, “I am thirsty.” 29 A jar of wine vinegar was there, so they soaked a sponge in it, put the sponge on a stalk of the hyssop plant, and lifted it to Jesus’ lips. 30 When he had received the drink, Jesus said, “It is finished.” With that, he bowed his head and gave up his spirit.         John 19:28-30

28 Daha sonra İsa, her şeyin artık tamamlandığını bilerek Kutsal Yazı yerine gelsin diye, “Susadım!” dedi.  29 Orada ekşi şarap dolu bir kap vardı. Şaraba batırılmış bir süngeri mercanköşk dalına takarak O’nun ağzına uzattılar. 30 İsa şarabı tadınca, “Tamamlandı!” dedi ve başını eğerek ruhunu teslim etti.  Yuhanna 19:28-30

PRAY

A couple weeks ago, when we looked at the fourth statement,

“My God, My God! Why have You forsaken me?”

and I asked the simple question:

“Why ask the question, ‘Why?’”

That was a simple question that led to a full statement that Jesus answered the “why” questions of those who were watching, even those of us who read the story of the crucifixion, today.

Why did God forsake him?

Because God had long ago planned to forsake Jesus for our sakes.

Today, I have another very simple question that is in my mind as I share from God’s Word about this statement:

“What is ‘It?’”

Jesus said, It….is finished.

So, What is “it?”

In order to understand the answer to this simple sounding question, I believe that we need to understand the context that surrounded this event.

  1. The Context

1.İçerik

    a. Context Clarifies/İçerik durumu açıklığa kavuşturur

John helps us understand what Jesus meant by the statement, “It is finished.”

He wrote that Jesus knew everything had now been finished.

So “It” is “Everything”…So what is “Everything.”

28 Later, knowing that everything had now been finished, and so that Scripture would be fulfilled… John 19:28

28 Daha sonra İsa, her şeyin artık tamamlandığını bilerek Kutsal Yazı yerine gelsin diye,…  Yuhanna 19:28

Right away after this statement, Jesus drank the wine vinegar and that fulfilled one of the prophesies in the psalms:

They put gall in my food
    and gave me vinegar for my thirst. Psalm 69:21

But, over all, all prophesies pointing toward the suffering of the Messiah up to that point had been fulfilled.

The context clarifies that Jesus was not quitting, but he was making a declaration.

Jesus had declared this, previously, in what we call the “Sermon on the Mount:”

“Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them.”   Matthew 5:17

Up to this point, Jesus had fulfilled the Law and the Prophets.

      b. Scripture Fulfillment / Kutsal Yazıların Tamamlanması

At least thirteen different prophesies about the suffering of the Messiah were fulfilled in a 24 hour period from Jesus’ Betrayal to his Burial.  The next prophetic fulfillment that Jesus needed to do would be burial, and after that, his resurrection, which would happen on the third day, when he would raised from the dead to a new body.

The Apostle Paul, who was educated in the Holy Scriptures (the Law of Moses; the Books of the Prophets; and the Writings, including the Psalms of David), wrote these words (by the way, he wrote from Ephesus…I love to remind people in Turkey that most of the New Testament was either written in Turkey, or by people who were born in Turkey, or to people in Turkey) about 20 years later to the Corinthian church:

15 Now, brothers and sisters, I want to remind you of the gospel I preached to you, which you received and on which you have taken your stand. By this gospel you are saved, if you hold firmly to the word I preached to you. Otherwise, you have believed in vain. For what I received I passed on to you as of first importance: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures,  1 Corinthians 15:1-4

Şimdi, kardeşler, size bildirdiğim, sizin de kabul edip bağlı kaldığınız Müjde’yi anımsatmak istiyorum. Size müjdelediğim söze sımsıkı sarılırsanız, onun aracılığıyla kurtulursunuz. Yoksa boşuna iman etmiş olursunuz.

3-4 Aldığım bilgiyi size öncelikle ilettim: Kutsal Yazılar uyarınca Mesih günahlarımıza karşılık öldü, gömüldü ve Kutsal Yazılar uyarınca üçüncü gün ölümden dirildi.  1 Korintliler 15:1-4

By the context, Jesus’ statement is clarified.

It was not a whine of a wounded loser, but the cry of Victory, by the One Who had come with the purpose of dying, to fulfill the Scriptures and open the way for all of us who would believe in Him to have a way to enter Heaven.

“It” is Done.

The “It” meaning, the fulfillment of Prophetic Scriptures to this point, “’It’ is Finished.”

  1. The Cry/Yakarış  

Today’s statement from the cross is,

Jesus said, “It is finished.”  John 19:30

“…İsa ‘tamamlandı’ dedi…”     Yuhanna 19:30

We are only reading words, so we don’t know the inflection in his voice.

I hear this statement as a CRY.  Not a Cry, like with tears but a Cry, like a SHOUT or an EXCLAMATION!

Let’s look at three ways this could be understood as a shout:

a. Cries of the High Priest/Baş Kahin’in feryatları

The writer of the Letter of Hebrews reports that Jesus is our High Priest who cried out to God on our behalf:

During the days of Jesus’ life on earth, he offered up prayers and petitions with fervent cries and tears to the one who could save him from death, and he was heard because of his reverent submission.       Hebrews 5:7

Mesih, yeryüzünde olduğu günlerde kendisini ölümden kurtaracak güçte olan Tanrı’ya büyük feryat ve gözyaşlarıyla dua etti, yakardı ve Tanrı korkusu nedeniyle işitildi. İbraniler 5:7

A priest is one who cries out to God on behalf of Man.

We know from this verse in Hebrews that Jesus was heard.

We know that David was heard when he cried out as he records in Psalm 22.

Jesus’ cry of “It Is Finished” was not a cry to God, specifically, but to the universe that what he had set out to do, as a sacrifice was accomplished.

b. The Cry of Victory/Zafer (nidası) yakarışı

This statement, “It is finished” is the cry of a champion runner finishing a race. When I was young, I won a few races. My cry of victory was more of a grunt as I successfully strode first across the finish line.

It is the shout of a concerned parent when their child finishes a difficulty in life, like a dangerous job, or university, or even their teenage years.

It is an exclamation of success when someone finishes a project or a job.

Like when I was building a deck last year in America. When I had nailed the last nail, I said, “That’s all!” meaning,  “it is finished!”

c. The Cry, “Paid in Full.”/Yakarış, “Eksiksiz ödendi,”

The term that John wrote in the gospel that we translate as “It is Finished” had another meaning: “Paid in Full!”

This term was used for accounting, and once an account had been fully paid, this word was used:

ΤετέλεσταιTetelestai—“paid in full”

IT IS FINISHED

ΤετέλεσταιTetelestai—“tamamı ödendi”

BİTTİ

The greatest prophetic work that was finished on that day was the repetitious work of sacrifice.

Sacrifices were made as a payment to God. Jesus’ statement meant that full payment was now made.

Remember my initial question,

“What is ‘It?’”/“Bu nedir?”

“It” had been “paid in full!”

“It” is the work of God on our behalf from the introduction of sin to man unto this point in time of the crucifixion.

No longer would “It” be the sacrifice of a sheep or ram or any other animal, because the perfect Lamb of God, Jesus, was sacrificed.

So “It,” i.e., “sacrifice” AND EVERYTHING THAT HAD BEEN PROPHESIED UP TO THAT POINT.

Jesus knew he was fulfilling prophesy.  Sometimes I learn after the fact that I have done something good or followed God’s will, but Jesus knew that he was.

This is because He Is the Son of God…He is the Word of God…He is God in the Flesh.

Just as God showed Abraham that the sacrifice of our own children cannot please God, so He showed that no longer was any sacrifice for sins needed.

For in Jesus, Sacrifice for Sins, is “It” and It is FINISHED.

Not since the words, “Let there be light,” and there was light have the Words of God been more magnificent and more important than “It Is Finished!”

Sin has been paid in full!

This is the Word of God, Jesus, spoke this word, and darkness fled.

Light travels at a speed of 186,000 miles per second, but have you ever wondered how fast darkness travels?

The same speed, because light drives away darkness.

So what does this mean for us, besides the obvious?

  1. The Call/Çağrı

Earlier in the story of Jesus’ ministry, people asked him what did they need to do, what work they must accomplish to please God?

28 Then they asked him, “What must we do to do the works God requires?” 29 Jesus answered, “The work of God is this: to believe in the one he has sent.”       John 6:28, 29

28 Onlar da şunu sordular: “Tanrı’nın istediği işleri yapmak için ne yapmalıyız?” 29 İsa, “Tanrı’nın işi O’nun gönderdiği kişiye iman etmenizdir” diye yanıt verdi.        Yuhanna 6:28,29

IT IS FINISHED!

PAID IN FULL!

Our call in response to this is to rest in the assurance that in Jesus,

I am saved…that is, if I believe in His sacrifice.

If I don’t believe in His sacrifice, then I am not saved.

I am not a student of other religions, but what I see in the Words of Jesus is that we can trust in Him for our salvation.  I don’t believe anyone else offers such assurance of safety.

Our call in response to Jesus’ cry, “It Is Finished!” is to trust in Him.

As well, we are called to stop trusting in our own ways to live and to rule our own lives.

Jesus’ Cry, “It Is Finished!” means that we must not only BELIEVE in His Finished Work on the Cross, but we must live as one who believes.

Serving as pastor of Nations Church is one of my greatest privileges and ministry experiences of my life, but the greatest experience was when our whole family served at a special needs children’s home in Almaty, Kazakhstan.

I remember children there in wheelchairs, children with Down Syndrome, Autism and even Schizophrenia…we loved to help those kids and to show them the Love of Jesus.

One of the ladies who worked there asked me,  “Why are you doing this?” She continued, “Are you doing these good things so that God will reward you with heaven?”

I looked at this woman and said, “I am already saved and know that my home is in heaven because of the Good Work that Jesus did on the Cross. THEREFORE, I do these good things as a response to the work of God.”

We should do good things NOT in order to be saved, but because we ARE ALREADY saved by Jesus.

People love to criticize Christians when they say anything about sin.

They love to say, “you guys are acting like Pharisees;” or “you guys act as though you’ve never sinned.”

Because Jesus finished everything on the cross, I want to respond with my life, being lined up with heaven.  As Jesus taught us to pray,

‘Our Father in heaven:
May your holy name be honored;
10 may your Kingdom come;
may your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.  Matthew 6:9, 10 GNT

“Bunun için siz şöyle dua edin: ‘Göklerdeki Babamız,Adın kutsal kılınsın.10 Egemenliğin gelsin. Gökte olduğu gibi, yeryüzünde de Senin istediğin olsun.  Matta 6:9,10

Our calling in response to Jesus’ statement from the Cross

ΤετέλεσταιTetelestai—“paid in full”

IT IS FINISHED

ΤετέλεσταιTetelestai—“tamamı ödendi”

BİTTİ

Our response is to honor God the Father’s Holy Name with our Lives;

Our response is to open our lives to God’s heavenly Kingdom.

Our response is to stop following our sinful will

(our lusts, tastes and tangents) and to let His Perfect Will lead our lives.

Can We Say “It Is Finished”?

“Bittiğini / Tamamlandığını” Söyleyebilir miyiz?

And I want us to look at our lives and look at what we need to “finish.”

What do we need to let go of?

What are we doing that does not please God?

What must we disarm in our lives?

Where must Satan’s will be broken in our lives?

I want us to take a few minutes to pray.

I encourage you, if you like, to get on your knees and pray.

When Jesus said, “It Is Finished,” he meant that our sins were paid in full, but what is it we still need to repent of.

Let’s pray.

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