Just Announced: Philippians Sermon Series

Summary: Jesus tells his disciples that they need to go out into the world and sing God’s song. This requires action! Not everybody will recognize God’s song but for those who do, it will be beautiful. This requires action on our part. We are the ones who sing

VIDEO: YOUTUBE: Joshua Bell; Washington Post in Metro DC, Length 2:44

Gene Weingarten from the Washington post writes: "HE EMERGED FROM THE METRO AT THE L’ENFANT PLAZA STATION AND POSITIONED HIMSELF AGAINST A WALL BESIDE A TRASH BASKET. By most measures, he was nondescript: a youngish white man in jeans, a long-sleeved T-shirt and a Washington Nationals baseball cap. From a small case, he removed a violin.

Placing the open case at his feet, he shrewdly threw in a few dollars and pocket change as seed money, swiveled it to face pedestrian traffic, and began to play. It was 7:51 a.m. on Friday, Jan. 12, the middle of the morning rush hour. In the next 43 minutes, as the violinist performed six classical pieces, 1,097 people passed by."

Weingarten says: "No one knew it, but the fiddler standing against a bare wall outside the Metro in an indoor arcade at the top of the escalators was one of the finest classical musicians in the world, playing some of the most elegant music ever written on one of the most valuable violins ever made.”

But on that Friday in January, Joshua Bell, the international acclaimed virtuoso, playing a seventeenth century violin valued at 3.5 million dollars was just another noisemaker competing for the attention of busy people on their way to work.

He can command as much as $1,000 per minute for his skills with the violin, but on this average busy day only a handful of people actually stopped to listen. After his masterful 43 minute performance, he managed to amass a whopping $32 dollars and seventeen cents. The Washington Post arranged this experiment to find out if musical genius would be recognized by the masses if it were played in an ordinary place. It was not. (www.startribune.com/465/story/1110380.html)

When God himself came to earth in the flesh he was just another noisemaker to many. But to those who recognized the beauty and authenticity of his song, their lives were changed forever.

Jesus is the master rabbi whose song reaches around the planet. Like Joshua Bell in the busy Metro station many people hear the song but the business of life and complexities of careers turn his magical message into trivial mumblings yet the music continues to play. Can you hear it?

For three years Jesus taught the truth and touched people with God’s love. His twelve disciples called Talmidim in Hebrew, followed him wherever he went observing everything that he taught and everything that he did. They heard him teach truth and watched him touch people with God’s love. They saw him patiently caring for people and living a life fully devoted to God. They heard his song and they began to hum along as he sang God’s song to the masses. Then, at just the right time, Jesus sent them out to sing that same song to others.

Luke 10 tells us the story:

“After this the Lord appointed seventy-two others and sent them two by two ahead of him to every town and place where he was about to go. He told them, "The harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few. Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into his harvest field.” Luke 10:1-2 NIV

Jesus told them that there are plenty of people who are willing to listen, but very few who are willing to sing. He told his disciples to pray that God would send out more workers to meet the demand.

"When you enter a town and are welcomed, eat what is set before you. Heal the sick who are there and tell them, ’The kingdom of God is near you.’ But when you enter a town and are not welcomed, go into its streets and say, ’Even the dust of your town that sticks to our feet we wipe off against you. Yet be sure of this: The kingdom of God is near.’ I tell you, it will be more bearable on that day for Sodom than for that town…. "He who listens to you listens to me; he who rejects you rejects me; but he who rejects me rejects him who sent me." Luke 10:8-12, 16 NIV

The fact is that some people will stop and listen to God’s song and want to participate with you. Others will be too busy with life and find the song irritating or unworthy of attention, and ignore it as if it were background music in the elevator. But for those that hear the song and join in, there is great joy.

“The seventy-two returned with joy and said, "Lord, even the demons submit to us in your name." Luke 10:17 NIV

The disciples found out that they could sing God’s tune just like Jesus. If they were traditional talmid this was the moment that they would have become a rabbi in their own right. They were able to teach God’s truth and touch people with the love of God just like their master rabbi Jesus and he rejoiced with the good news.

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