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Summary: This message deals with the source of stumbling-blocks and the sight of God in dealing with the source.

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We Need to Talk! As I stand cradled within the sanctuary of these four walls, I wanted to high light this headline during this period of proclamation. We need to discuss — “How Jesus Views Instigators Of Sin.”

The Text I have tagged and targeted for teaching is Luke 17:1-2 (read).

In1:1, Luke titles his account of the Gospel concerning Jesus Christ as “a declaration of those things which are most surely believed among us.” I like to think of Luke’s Gospel Narrative as “A Declaration of Settled Beliefs.” For the facts of Jesus’ miraculous and immaculate conception and birth, His ministry as Messiah as evidenced by His authoritative words and mighty deeds of power, His substitutionary death on the Cross, and His burial, resurrection and ascension to the right hand of God the Father, Luke says that these are Settled, Irrefutable Beliefs among the Servant-Saints of the Savior: in spite of apostasy, splits and heresy, these beliefs have remained constant and clear thru two millennia up to this present day. They have out-lasted the prancing horses and militaristic empire of Rome. They have outlasted the icy beauty and architectural splendor of Greece. Outlasted the goose-stepping, Nazi regime of Hitler’s Germany. Outlasted the communistic, militarist union of the Soviet Union. And they shall outlast the capitalistic democracy of America. The faith that was once delivered to the saints is A Declaration of Settled Beliefs.

In Acts 1:1, Luke views the Gospel as “all that Jesus began both To Do and Teach.” The Good News is both Jesus’ Doings and Doctrine, His Acts and Assertions, His Works and Words, His Service and Sayings. I think we do well to remember that, for some of us divorce His Works from His Words, while others of us focus on His Words to the exclusion of His Works. But the Gospel is “all that Jesus began both to do and teach.”

So, in this declaration of settled beliefs, Luke not only high lights The Doings of Jesus, he also underscores the Sayings of the Savior. And in our Target Text (17:1-2), we are confronted by the Sayings of Jesus; for in verse 1 Luke writes, “Then said He unto the disciples.”

Now, as far as I am concerned, these Sayings of Jesus have to do with His Ebonics rather than with His Phonics or Phonetics. Meaning, What He Says rather than with How He Says It; with the Substance and Meaning of His Statements and not with the Form and Pronunciation of His Words; with Content rather than with Construct. It is His Ebonics, His Content that is important.

The reason I am stressing Ebonics is because, in our move to be assimilated into this American culture, many of us have mastered, to a great extent, the construct, form and structure of the King’s English, yet we lack substance in our conversation. But Grandma was short on syntax, isagogics and style but long on getting over what she was saying. Communicating, conversation is basically making one’s self clear, divulging substance and meaning. If once you get close to God, you’ll become concerned with Ebonics rather than with Phonics.


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