Summary: Many people today are wondering what is going on and why God allows trouble. The answer to our questions is not found in politics or protest, but in preaching the Gospel.
God Speaks From The Storm: Will we forget why we are here? 110908
A man was looking for his wallet in the wrong place. Has the Church looked for the answer in the wrong place?
• The world is in turmoil, or nation is in crisis.
• We are facing a storm: What will our response be?
• Will we run and hide, or will we rise and shine like a city on a hill?
• Will we carry out the mandate to make disciples of all nations?
• Running away or hiding will not fix our problems. But it is in storms that God speaks the clearest.
God speaks from the storm: Job’s greatest questions were answered by a challenge: Job 38:1-7
• Where was God? Isn’t God on our side?
• Be careful when you question God, brace yourself.
• God is speaking to us in the storm.
Acts 1-8: The Church is in a storm:
• Being Pentecostal is not only about the good feelings, it is also about being strong in hard times and being witnesses to the world.
• In great persecution, Philip leaves a successful ministry and witnesses to an Ethiopian in a key position of political power.
Much of the storm of the Church today is internal: its our own fault.
• Today, the Church often gets distracted by internal issues:
• The enemy will try to distract us with strife, petty arguments and differences when we need each other the most.
• Everett Stenhouse: “Bob Pierce said, ‘Let my heart be broken over the things which break the heart of God.’ Buildings and chairs do not break God’s heart. People break God’s heart.”
• When we persecute one another, we persecute Jesus.
Why didn’t the Jews like Christians? Because they were looking for a political savior, not a spiritual savior. Israel asked for a king rather than God and got what they asked for. There is not a political party in the world that will bring salvation. We cannot get distracted by politics. “Let the Church be the Church!”
Storms have a tendency to cause us to withdraw, reduce our efforts. We cannot afford to relax.
In our comfort and then in our struggle, have we forgotten the primary mission of the Church is to bring people to Christ? Nothing will change this nation more than the salvation of souls.
We cannot afford to preoccupied with the things that do not bring people to Christ.
We cannot relax: We have to intensify our efforts.
Start where you are. Start with your church, ministry.
• Don’t go to church less, go more!
• If we want people to come to church, we better say good things about it.
• We all get tired – Vince Lombardi: “Fatigue makes cowards of us all.”
• Increase your efforts. Put more into your ministry.
• When is the last time you attended some training to increase your ministry ability?
Start where they are: Philip started where the Ethiopian was.
• “GO make disciples:” We cannot reach people where we are when they are not here.
• Start with your neighbor, with your coworker, with your friends and family.
• Be sensitive to people – ask questions: How is your life going?
• Pushy statements push people away. The statements against sin in scripture are mostly directed to the Church, not the world.