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Summary: THE WORD OF GOD SHOULD NEVER BE OFFENSIVE TO US!

A WORD ON THE WORD: OFFENSIVE OR OFFENSIVE PART I

LUKE 9: 18-27

AUGUST 29, 2004

INTRODUCTION: OFFENSIVE: 1. offending. 2. attacking.

A famous Methodist evangelist named Peter Cartwright was known for his uncompromising preaching. However, one day when the President of the United States, Andrew Jackson, "Old rough and ready," came to Cartwright’s church, the elders warned the Pastor not to offend the President. In those days, the President had great power to influence a denomination for good or bad. Content, that their Pastor would not say anything to discredit their church, the elders retired to the back of the sanctuary.

When Cartwright got up to speak, the first words out of his mouth were, "I understand that President Andrew Jackson is here this morning. I have been requested to be very guarded in my remarks. Let me say this: "Andrew Jackson will go to hell if doesn’t repent of his sin!" The entire congregation gasped with shock at Cartwright’s boldness. How could this young preacher dare to offend the tough old general in public, they wondered.

After the service, everyone wondered how the President would respond to Cartwright. When Andrew Jackson met the preacher at the door he looked at him in the eye and said, "Sir, If I had a regiment of men like you, I could conquer the world!" When we appreciate the power of the word of God and the Holy Spirit speaking from the lips of people with conviction we will make eternal differences.

Contributed by: Paul Fritz

TRANSITION THOUGHT: Our text for today speaks to a powerful understanding of God’s word. Just like the powerful Methodist Preacher Peter Cartwright knew, the word of God is both offensive and offensive. Just sharing Jesus can offend someone and yet the sharing of Jesus is the only way to advance the Kingdom, it is the kingdom offensive! The struggle for us here concerning a WORD ON THE WORD, is how we deal with God’s word. For some, the word is offensive, it demands more than we want to give. For a select few, and as hard as it is to say this, I truly believe it is a select few, the Word of God is our offense, our method for reaching the lost, for building the kingdom without and within our own souls. Today, I want us to think about the word of God that is very offensive, as in offending, to us and to those we may share it with. Now you may say to me, Joe, the word of God is never offended me or anyone I know. I beg to differ with you on this. If the word of God doesn’t offend us, then why don’t we follow it?

THESIS SENTENCE: THE WORD OF GOD SHOULD NEVER BE OFFENSIVE TO US!

I. OFFENSIVE IS THE NAME VV. 18-20

A. THE NAME IS A PUBLIC OPPINION

B. THE NAME IS A PRIVATE OPPINION

C. THE NAME IS THE ANNOINTED OF GOD

ILLUSTRATION: I was leaving the nursing home after visiting one of our members and I passed a lady in a wheel chair. "What’s your name?" she said, smiling sweetly. I told her my name and asked, "What’s your name?" Suddenly her face contorted into a scowl and she said, "None of your business!"

Contributed by: Steven Easterwood

JESUS- NOT HATE BUT HOPE

"Jesus.

It’s a little name.

A small word.

Say this little name in public, however, in a way other than an obscenity, and stand back and watch the fireworks.

This little name is like a tiny detonator that triggers a nuclear warhead.

You can say "God," and you won’t get a squeak.

You can say "Our Father/Mother in Heaven," and few will flinch.

You can say "Great Spirit," and people will nod in approval.

You can say "Allah" and you will be deemed tolerant.

But say "Jesus" and just wait for the sonic boom.

Articles will appear in the paper. Reprimands will be posted from the home office. Suits will be threatened by the civil liberties block.

So don’t say Jesus.

Jesus is divisive, and now is a time for unity.

Jesus is an extremist, and that must mean right wing.

Jesus is exclusive, so His name amounts to hate speech.

Keep His name to yourself. Cloister it in your church. Lock it in your prayer closet. Close it between the covers of your Bible. But for God’s sake, don’t voice it in the public square!

It’s immodest. It’s immoral. It’s unloving.

Only one problem.

Jesus is God.

Only one problem.

Jesus alone brings salvation.

Only one problem.

All other gods are nothing.

So speak His name aloud.

Shout it from the mountain.

Whisper it in the dark.

Write it in the sky.

That’s not hate, it’s hope."

SOURCE: From The Southeast Christian Church, Louisville, KY, Newsletter, http://www.southeastchristian.org/. CITED IN: "The Question That Condemned Jesus - (Whose Line Is It?)": Matthew 26:57-68 by Jeff Strite.

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