Summary: Most of know what the cross has done "for" us; but what is the cross doing "in" us now? This one is about the Mystery of the Gospel. The Kingdom of God in the here and now.
16, October 2005
Dakota Community Church
I have three words I want you to think about this morning:
- The first is “desperation”. Are you desperate for the Lord in your life this morning? Have you come to worship with a sense of urgency? Don’t let this be a church attendance experience – get hungry - and don’t leave until you’re satisfied.
- The second word is “mystery”. Why do you think it is that God wants us to pursue Him? Why is there so much intrigue involved? Why doesn’t He just lay it all out in the open so we can really get the whole picture?
- The third and final word is “love”. The Bible tells us that God is love. Jesus said that basically all He requires of us is that we love God with everything we have, and that we love each other. Could these three things be related? Think about it!
1 Corinthians 2: 1-10
When I came to you, brothers, announcing the testimony of God to you, I did not come with brilliance of speech or wisdom. For I determined to know nothing among you except Jesus Christ and Him crucified. And I was with you in weakness, in fear, and in much trembling. My speech and my proclamation were not with persuasive words of wisdom, but with a demonstration of the Spirit and power, so that your faith might not be based on men’s wisdom but on God’s power.
However, among the mature we do speak a wisdom, but not a wisdom of this age, or of the rulers of this age, who are coming to nothing. On the contrary, we speak God’s hidden wisdom in a mystery, which God predestined before the ages for our glory. None of the rulers of this age knew it, for if they had known it, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory. But as it is written:
What no eye has seen and no ear has heard, and what has never come into a man’s heart, is what God has prepared for those who love Him. Now God has revealed them to us by the Spirit, for the Spirit searches everything, even the deep things of God.
The word “mystery” is used 27 times in the New Testament. It comes from the Greek word “musterion” and means “a hidden secret”.
I love a good mystery! I’ve read literally hundreds of books (Everything by John Grisham, David Baldacci, Jack McDevitt, Orson Scott Card, and many others, and I’ve watched many TV shows and movies.
My favorites are the ones I don’t have figured out by the half way point. – “Sixth Sense”
Most good mysteries have a few things in common.
- A crime of some sort.
- A victim or victims.
- A bad guy.
- A hero
- A damsel in distress.
This mystery of God’s has each of these.
Three truths about this mystery:
1. God is the author of this mystery.
Have you ever finished a great mystery and thought, “Wow, I wish I could write like that!”?
Now to Him who is able to establish you according to my gospel and the preaching of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery kept secret since the world began but now made manifest, and by the prophetic Scriptures made known to all nations, according to the commandment of the everlasting God, for obedience to the faith— to God, alone wise, be glory through Jesus Christ forever.
Look at the first exchange between the beloved and her lover in Song of Songs:
Tell me where you’re working -I love you so much--Tell me where you’re tending your flocks, where you let them rest at noontime.
Why should I be the one left out, outside the orbit of your tender care?
If you can’t find me, loveliest of all women, it’s all right. Stay with your flocks. Lead your lambs to good pasture. Stay with your shepherd neighbors.
He’s playing hard to get!
The secret things belong to the LORD our God, but the things revealed belong to us and to our children forever, that we may follow all the words of this law.
Concerning this salvation, the prophets, who spoke of the grace that was to come to you, searched intently and with the greatest care, trying to find out the time and circumstances to which the Spirit of Christ in them was pointing when he predicted the sufferings of Christ and the glories that would follow. It was revealed to them that they were not serving themselves but you, when they spoke of the things that have now been told you by those who have preached the gospel to you by the Holy Spirit sent from heaven. Even angels long to look into these things.