service starts at 0:28 of the video
This week Dan taught on how we as Disciples of Jesus live out our faith with integrity in relation to the world and the culture that we find ourselves in.
“If the world hates you, keep in mind that it hated me first. If you belonged to the world, it would love you as its own. As it is, you do not belong to the world, but I have chosen you out of the world. That is why the world hates you. Remember what I told you: ‘A servant is not greater than his master.’ If they persecuted me, they will persecute you also. If they obeyed my teaching, they will obey yours also. They will treat you this way because of my name, for they do not know the one who sent me. If I had not come and spoken to them, they would not be guilty of sin; but now they have no excuse for their sin. Whoever hates me hates my Father as well. If I had not done among them the works no one else did, they would not be guilty of sin. As it is, they have seen, and yet they have hated both me and my Father. But this is to fulfill what is written in their Law: ‘They hated me without reason.'”John 15:18-25
Dan gave us some examples of how Jesus and his followers do not belong to the world:
- Our motivations and our purposes are different.
- We are no longer consumers of culture. We are not interested in the modern religion of self-actualization.
- We are no longer driven to seek popularity, approval, and affirmation of our culture, nor do we take our identity from it.
What does it mean to you to be called out of the world? One of the temptations today, in light of how Christians are currently viewed by society, is to simply be silent—do not let anyone know, do not speak up for fear of being ridiculed and rejected. But one of the reasons why people hold Christians in contempt today is that they have never met a real one; how many people in your life know that you are a Christian?
Dan also gave us some examples of how Christians are perceived negatively by the world today, often with scorn and contempt:
- Storming of the Capitol by people carrying crosses and Bibles
- Self proclaimed Christian prophets
- Grace Life Church
How do we live out the name of Jesus and reveal the heart of the Father for the world? Do people in our communities and in our city really know who Jesus is? Do we as the body of Christ truthfully portray who Jesus is by
our public words and actions? Do we care for the people that Jesus cares about the marginalized, the stranger, the oppressed?
But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.Galatians 5:22-23
Dan taught us that Jesus said that He and his disciples would be hated because:
- Jesus and his followers are not of the world
- The world does not know God
- Jesus revealed sin
What does it mean to abide in the Jesus who reveals sin in the world? Some Christians over the years have taken it upon themselves to reveal sin in others. Is that our job? How is it that Jesus reveals sin yet was he known as the Friend of tax collectors and sinners? How does that work? And what is our role in that?