Summary: This is the third sermon in a series, "Loving People Into the Kingdom", "Don't Just Go To Church Be the Church"
SERMON SERIES: “Loving People into the Kingdom”
“Don’t Just Go To Church Be the Church”
SERMON TITLE: “Small Acts Can Make a Big Splash”
OPENING COMMENTS AND REVIEW
We have been preaching this month on the subject, “Loving People into the Kingdom.” “Don’t Just Go To Church Be the Church”.
We have looked for two Sunday’s basically at the story of the Good Samaritan told by Jesus in Luke 10, where the Priest and the Levite both workers in the temple in Jesus day who both went out of their way to avoid helping a man who had been robbed and wounded on the road that led from Jerusalem to Jericho. They were so set on not helping this man that they crossed the street when they passed by him. However Jesus said, a Samaritan came along, had compassion on him, went to him, bandaged the wounds, poured oil and wine into the wounds, set him on his animal and took care of him.
The whole climax of the story was this, Jesus said, “You go and do likewise.”
We are looking at the idea that it doesn’t take big things all the time to make a difference. God often uses small things in His Kingdom.
There is a passage of scripture that is found in Zechariah 4:10, Zachariah is receiving a vision, concerning the work of a man named Zerubbabel in restoring the temple and the angel asked, “Who has despised the day of small things?” The truth of the matter is, we have in America.
• We have come to believe that bigger is always better.
• We tend to recognize, respect, and remember those things in life that are big, while we tend to give little thought to the small things.
• Our secular world is mandated by the “Big I little you syndrome.”
• The Devil loves to use this false theology against us as Christians by saying things to us like:
o You are not good enough
o You are not significant
o You don’t have enough money
o You don’t have enough talent
o You just aren’t important enough to be used by God in a meaningful way.
• When it comes to spiritual matters bigger is not always better
• God does not look at the outward appearance but God looks at the heart.
“God will not look you over for medals, degrees or diplomas but for scars.” Elbert Hubbard an American Philosopher 1856-1915
This brings us to our text this morning found in the book of Luke chapter 13.
Jesus tells two parables back to back. Luke 13:18-21.
1. One was the Parable of the Mustard Seed
2. The second one was the parable of the Leaven
18 Then He said, "What is the kingdom of God like? And to what shall I compare it?
I think Jesus was probably looking around and saying, “Um, let me see, and he saw a mustard bush and said, “ It is like a mustard seed, which a man took and put in his garden; and it grew and became a large tree, and the birds of the air nested in its branches."
In this first example Jesus said, God’s working is like a mustard seed, which a man took and planted in his garden, it grew and became a tree, and the birds of the air perched in its branches.
The mustard seed is very, very small. When I was in Israel they had a bag of mustard seeds and they are actually smaller than the ones shown on the power point back drop this morning. They actually looked like coffee grounds and to get one you had to wet the tip of your finger and let them stick to your finger.
The mustard seek was the smallest seed ever sown by first-century farmers in Israel when Jesus was here upon the earth.
You have used or heard the expression about someone, “That person has a pea brain.” If you were here in Jesus day you would have said, “That person has a mustard seed brain.”
That may have been what Mary said to Joseph when they forgot Jesus and left him in Jerusalem when he was only 12 years of age. I can just hear her now, “You mustard brain.”
When I think of that story I always feel like Joseph got the blame for it.
Here is the comparison in the parable, even thought the mustard seed was the smallest seed it grew into the largest of herbs grown in that area. It grew anywhere from 8-12 feet tall and its limbs were so big birds would come and nest in it.
So you have the first comparison that Jesus was making, “I am taking something very small and making something very large out of it.”