Summary: The two things that break God’s heart are people in need and people in greed. God’s people must be those who minister to those in need and never tainted by greed.
1. Review and Overview
a. We have been talking about letting God turn us inside out and change the focus of our lives from being self-centered, self-interested, and self-absorbed to that of a God centered, Kingdom minded, outward focused people of God.
b. This transformation will not come about as a result of a sermon.
c. It will not come about merely by wishing it to be.
d. It will only come about when the Spirit of God so grabs your soul and your heart and stirs you to have the same passions as God Himself has.
e. So long as you and I choose to keep the status quo, live prayer-less lives, live in our comfort zones and refuse to take new risks, we will keep God at a distance and our world will remain the same.
ii. 100,000 teenagers fasted and prayed and then gathered in Nashville Tennessee to pray for revival last Saturday. They were serious about God. Serious enough to sacrifice not only an entire weekend but also many fasted for a week or longer. They are passionate about Jesus! Why aren’t we?>
2. Today I want to share two things that break the heart of God (beyond merely rejecting Him)
a. The two things that break God’s heart are people in need and people in greed.
i. People dying in need – trapped by poverty which tells a person that they have little value to society. Those caught in poverty are told:
1. You are a burden to society.
2. You aren’t adding to the tax base but to the tax burden.
3. You aren’t making a contribution to society.
4. Why can’t you pull yourself up by the bootstraps?
ii. People dying in greed – their prosperity has convinced them that their value comes from what they’ve got.
1. Shut up in their gated communities, their pass code protected driveways, their McMansions and their tinted windowed Mercedes – they have the life that most covet, and yet they are dying on the inside.
2. Quote: “I know money won’t make me happy but I’d like to try to find out for myself.”
3. We don’t need to look very far – the headlines and Paris Hilton – to see someone who has it all and yet is dying on the inside.
3. Do you remember Jesus’ first sermon that He preached? He delivered it in Nazareth, His home town. “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he anointed me to preach good tidings to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim release to the captives and recovery of sight to the blind.” (Luke 4:18)
a. Why was Jesus sent to the poor? Why not the rich…after all, aren’t they people too?
i. Now in those days, a rich person was someone who could afford two sets of clothing. A commoner, a poor man, only had the clothes he wore and a cloak to wrap himself in at night. (that is why it was against the law to hold a cloak held in surety overnight).
ii. The poor of that day were poor not only materially but also in terms of rights and every part of life, both physical and spiritual.
iii. They were the downtrodden, the oppressed, the uneducated, the unemployed, the unskilled, the sick, the imprisoned, the luck-less ones.
iv. They were those who life had not smiled on, in fact that life had frowned upon. Not much different than today is it?
Bob Higgins Page 2 7/14/2007
b. Put yourself in the position of these poor:
i. You go to hear Jesus speaking.
ii. He heals your cousin from something he’d been suffering from for years but could never afford to go to the doctor for.
iii. You see in the crowd that crazy guy that everyone had written off as hopeless, looking calm and happy and in his right mind.
iv. You hear Jesus speaking about how God is looking for the lost and rejoicing over those who come to Him in childlike faith. It sounds like good news doesn’t it?
4. Why not the rich?
a. Did you know that the poorest of Americans would be classified as rich in 4/5th of the world