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Summary: All it takes is to tell people that you experience a loving community of faith. At its best this community is gathered around Christ’s table and enjoys communion with Jesus and with one another..

1. John 5:1-12

Faith Conquers the World

- Verse 4: "This is the victory that conquers the world, our faith.", writes someone ion this ancient letter

- Back in Bethlehem people began to understand that Jesus is the Son of God and that conquered their world:

- hardworking shepherds in tough economic times

- living in an occupied land permanently loosing friends and family to the enemy, just like the brace men and women we remember this Memorial Day Weekend

- experiencing the rule of death in this world where ultimately gravity is going to win

- getting up every morning we try to overcome gravity, every night we surrender

- the shepherds found a meaning in all this mess we have to endure every day

- Once you believe Jesus is the Son of God, you also come to realize that everybody is a child of God

- Love everybody extraordinarily

Three that testify

- The Letter continues, Verse 7-8: "There are three that testify: the Spirit and the water and the blood" What are they?

- Spirit: Gives faith and love

- Water: Baptism is grateful reply

- Blood: Communion reassures us

God’s Testimony in the Spirit

- Verse 11: "God gave us eternal life"

"God gave"

- not an unknown power

- not a natural possession of ours

- giving act, gratefully to be received

"us"

- not "me"

- Israel, all peoples and because of that also me

- not limited to the church, they are only those who already have replied

- "us" means everybody is a child of God

"eternal life"

- not about the afterlife and what may or may not happen

- about God’s never ending love

- this faith and love are shared with us through the spirit

- we shall overcome this current recession

- we shall be at peace with our mortality

- we shall love everybody extraordinarily

- Because everybody is a child of God, because Jesus is the Son of God

Our Testimony in the Water of Baptism

- professing Jesus as the Son of God

- recognizing in every human being a beloved one of God

- act accordingly

- help your acquaintances, coworkers, neighbors, friends and family professing Jesus as the Son of God

- help them desire to be baptized or reaffirm their baptism in case they got lost on the way

- in our day and age most people were baptized at some point

- help them remember what’s so great about their Testimony in the Water of Baptism, their grateful reply to God’s initial love

The Testimony in Blood

- I do not feel equipped to share the faith

- Baloney: All it takes is to tell people that you experience a loving community of faith

- At its best this community is gathered around Christ’s table and enjoys communion with Jesus and with one another

- And after worship we sit together over coffee and goodies and talk about what is going on in our lives

- That is God’s way of equipping us to live extraordinary love

- Verse 4: "This is the victory that conquers the world, our faith."

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