Summary: The bible starts out with ACT 1 - Segregation Then it moves to ACT 2 - Desegregation Then it ends with ACT 3 - Reconciliation
God’s Plan for De-Segregation
Today's sermon is about the dominant theme of the bible…
Most of you here know what de-segregation was…
When schools were integrated with white and black
You remember it was not a smooth time
The bible talks about de-segregation
But not the de-segregation championed by Martin Luther King, Jr.
You could say the champion of this de-segregation was Martin Luther
I’m not talking about ending racial segregation but I am talking about ending segregation
What do I mean
What is the problem of de-segregation today?
What segregation needs to be ended?
The greatest problem humans have is SEGREGATION
Jesus came to end segregation
The bible starts out with ACT 1 - Segregation
Then it moves to ACT 2 - Desegregation
Then it ends with ACT 3 - Reconciliation
1. It starts with the ACT 1 - story of segregation from God.
God and man had great relationship in the garden
Excited to be together
Then in chapter 3 of Genesis is the saddest story ever told
Verse 6 "she took the fruit and ate and gave it to her husband and he ate."
SIN SPOILED, DESTROYED THE RELATIONSHIP.
Verse 23,"Therefore, (because of their sin) the Lord God sent man out of the garden."
Man is estranged, segregated from God.
The break with God is the primal break,
Being estranged from God we can't be right with any of his creation either.
2. The bible next tells the story of man’s segregation from his fellow man.
This tragedy of separation from our brother is found in Genesis 6.
Abel lying in pool of warm blood.
Result of sin.
In Genesis 11, the split is widened.
Verses 7-8, because of their sin, God confused their languages and scattered them over the face of the earth.
Not just brother against brother, but
nation against nation, race against race.
Now the segregation is complete…
man is separated from God and fellow man.
So the scripture turns to the story of reconciliation
In the Jewish world the spiritual segregation is represented by two physical objects
The Veil of the Holy of Holies
And the dividing walls in the temple
The veil is a 60 foot tall and 30 foot wide curtain made of extremely densely woven fibers which is 4 inches thick
Imagine how heavy that was
It hangs over the opening to the holy of holies to prevent anyone from seeing inside because behind that curtain is the mercy seat… the place where God sits to receive sacrifices
Actually inside there is a wooden box covered with gold
Inside the box are the tablets of the law that were given to Moses
Aaron’s rod which budded
And some of the manna
The lid of the box is extremely ornate with two winged seraphim and it is all covered with gold
Between those two seraphim, sort of like a saddle, is the very place where God sits
If a person were to see God, he would die
Even the High Priest
So, the veil was there to protect the priests from accidently seeing God
Why would a person die if they saw God? SIN
The veil hung there as a constant reminder to the people that they were separated from God… Unable to approach Him… hopelessness of intimacy with God
The second object was… the dividing wall
Actually the dividing walls
The temple was basically like this…
Show image boxes within boxes
There were a series of dividing walls that separated the people on different bases.
The outer box was the Court of GENTILES… they could only go this far and get this close to God
Next was the court of WOMEN (and girls and boys under 12)
Next was the court of ISRAEL (men)
Then the court of PRIESTS
Then the Holy Place
Finally the Holy of Holies
Each level took you closer and closer to God
But each was more and more restrictive… who could go in
So there were all these dividing walls that divided man from man
This wall symbolized the segregation between people because of sin
The whole temple was a giant object lesson about the segregation brought about by sin
God allowed this to exist for centuries because He was teaching them some lessons
The purity and holiness of God
The separation between man and God
The separation between men
This segregation was NOT GOD’S WILL
His will was DE-segregation…
Man reconciled to God
Man reconciled to man
So God got rid of the segregation
Through the incarnation, perfect life, vicarious death and glorious resurrection of Jesus Christ
God knew man could not be trusted so God accomplished this reconciliation without the help of man
HE supplied the lamb
He sacrificed it
He raised it to life