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Summary: Doing What God has called us to do.

CROSSING CULTURAL BARRIERS

1 KINGS 5:1-6 (quickview) 

INTRODUCTION: IN ORDER TO EFFECTIVELY ADVANCE THE KINGDOM OF GOD ON EARTH, CULTURAL BARRIERS MUST BE CROSSED. RACIAL PROFILING HAS TAKEN CENTER STAGE IN THESE YET TO BE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA. THERE EXISTS A COLOSSAL GAP BETWEEN BLACK AND WHITE, WHITE AND RED, RED AND YELLOW, WITHIN THE STRUCTURE OF OUR COMMUNITIES. PREDJUDICE AND RACISM CONTINUE TO REAR IT’S UGLY HEAD, HOLDING HOSTAGE THOSE WHO ARE IN NEED AS WELL AS THOSE WHO CAN SUPPLY THE NEED. IN THE WORDS OF RODNEY KING, “CAN’T WE ALL JUST GET ALONG?” IF WE ARE CHRISTIANS IN THE TRUE SENSE OF THE WORD, IF WE ARE CHRIST-LIKE, SPIRITUAL AND CULTURAL DIVERSITY IS A MUST. JESUS IS NOT JUST THE MESSIAH AND SAVIOR OF BLACK FOLKS, WHITE FOLKS, RED FOLKS, OR YELLOW FOLKS; HE IS THE SAVIOR TO ALL THAT CALL UPON HIS HOLY NAME. IF WE ARE GOING TO UPLIFT THE DOWN TRODDEN, AND EMANCIPATE THE LOST, WE MUST BE WILLING TO CROSS CULTURAL BARRIERERS.

I. TEXT

IN HIS QUEST TO BUILD THE TEMPLE SOLOMON REALIZED THAT HE WOULD HAVE TO CROSS CULTURES, ENGAGING THE ASSISTANCE OF THE PHONECIANS IF HE WAS TO BE SUCCESSFUL IN COMPLETING HIS TASK. THE PHOENICIANS WERE PAGANISTIC IN THEIR RELIGIOUS BELIEFS. PHOENICIA WAS A STRIP OF COASTAL TERRITORY BETWEEN THE LEBANON RANGE, THE UPLANDS OF GALILEE, AND THE MEDITERRANEAN SEA. THEY WERE FAMOUS FOR THEIR NAVIES, AND THEIR SKILL IN HEWING. THE ALPHABET THAT WE USE TODAY IS FROM THE LAND OF THE PHONECIANS.

SOLOMON UTILIZES KINGLY CORRESPONDENCE IN THE SOLICITATION FOR ASSISTANCE FROM KING HIRAM. BIBLICAL RESEARCH (2 SAM. 5:11) REVEALS THAT HIRAM HAD A FAVORABLE RELATIONSHIP WITH DAVID, AND THAT FRIENDSHIP LED TO THE BOND THAT WE NOW READ ABOUT.

SOLOMON WAS AWARE OF THE FACT THAT THERE WERE THOSE OF ANOTHER CULTURE WHO HAD WHAT HE NEEDED. ALLOW ME TO MOCK TIME MOMENTARILY AND SHARE WITH YOU THAT WE LIVE IN AN AGE WHERE THOSE OF ONE RACE WILL NOT PUT THEIR RACIST VIEWS ASIDE TO ASK FOR HELP FROM THOSE WHO DON’T LOOK LIKE THEY DO. BUT IT IS A FOOLISH AND DANGEROUS THING TO REFUSE HELP BECAUSE OF THE DIFFERENCE OF SOMEBODY’S SKIN COLOR. I HAVE HEARD BLACK FOLK SAY, “I DON’T NEED WHITE FOLK.” I HAVE HEARD WHITE FOLK SAY, “I DON’T NEED BLACKS.” BUT BABY LET ME TELL YOU, IF I’M DROWNING IN THE SEA, I DON’T CARE WHAT COLOR YOU ARE, SAVE ME! IF I’M HUNGRY AND YOU HAVE SOME FOOD, FEED ME. IF I’M BROKE AND YOU WANT TO GIVE ME SOME MONEY, HELP ME. AND IF I DON’T KNOW JESUS, REGARDLESS OF YOUR COLOR, TELL ME ABOUT JESUS.

II. BARRIERS

AS CITIZENS OF THIS COUNTRY IT IS NO SECRET THAT WE FACE A MONUMENTAL CHALLEGE OF CROSSING CULTURAL BARRIERS. JUST WHAT ARE BARRIERS? BARRIERS ARE THOSE THINGS THAT IMPEDE AND SEPARATE PERSONS, COUNTRIES, CHURCHES, MARRIAGES, SCHOOLS. AND GOVERNMENTS. THESE BARRIERS ARE OFTEN ECONOMICAL, RACIAL, SPIRITUAL AND RELIGIOUS, ENVIRONMENTAL, AND SOCIAL.

NOT ONLY MUST WE CROSS THE BARRIERS OF OTHERS, WE MUST CROSS THE BARRIERS IN OUR OWN LIVES AS WELL. ACTS CHAPTER 10 REVEALS THAT PETER HAD A PROBLEM FELLOWSHIPPING WITH GENTILES. GOD HAD TO ELEVATE HIS ATTITUDE BY TEACHING HIM THAT HE MADE ALL PEOPLE. ACTS CHAPTER 8 TEACHES THAT PHILIP CROSSED RACIAL AND SPIRITUAL BARRIERS IN TEACHING AND BAPTIZING THE ETHIOPIAN EUNUCH. WE MUST DO THE SAME.


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