Sermons

Summary: 2nd in series of 5 on John 3-4. When I see a movie or hear a young person talk about the "circle of life" I really can’t help but think of Nicodemus – an intelligent and perceptive man who really want to understand about life. He is the man who came to

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From Mortal to Immortal

A Study of John 3-4

The Circle of Life

Have you heard of the “circle of life”?

What do you think of when you hear about the "Circle of Life?" In an unofficial and unscientific survey I’ve conducted during the past week most people think of the "Lion King" when they hear this phrase.

It was the wise old Lion King himself who taught his young cub that there is a great “circle of life” extending backwards into a connected past and reaching into the present.

Not that the movie “Lion King” has any sort of lock on the “circle of life” idea. The writers of this movie script simply reflected the secular religious faith of our present day culture. In this pantheism of faith everything is connected. Everything. The hills, the forests and all of nature are all a part of us and we are part of them in a great “circle of life”.

Julia Butterfly Hill advocates for the protection of the earth and the preservation of trees. In 1996 to dramatize the loss of the redwood forests she moved into and lived for 768 days in a tree she named “Luna”.

While the preservation of our natural resources are important and good what I find especially interesting was her philosophy of life. During the months and years living in the canopy of this tree she talked to it. Julia would hug the tree and ask for forgiveness from the tree for all the harm humanity has caused the forests. She would grasp a limb and connect with the tree while she prayed her prayers to the tree.

It is really a form of pantheism and reincarnation all rolled together. They focus on spiritual realities but leave out the author of life.

Lyrics

From the day we arrive on the planet

And blinking, step into the sun

There’s more to see than can ever be seen

More to do than can ever be done

There’s far too much to take in here

More to find than can ever be found

But the sun rolling high

Through the sapphire sky

Keeps great and small on the endless round

It’s the Circle of Life

And it moves us all

Through despair and hope

Through faith and love

Till we find our place

On the path unwinding

In the Circle

The Circle of Life

It’s the Circle of Life

And it moves us all

Through despair and hope

Through faith and love

Till we find our place

On the path unwinding

In the Circle

The Circle of Life

This view of life is very spiritual… and defective

When I see a movie or hear a young person talk about these kind of things I really can’t help but think of Nicodemus – an intelligent and perceptive man who really want to understand about life. He is the man who came to Jesus at night seeking wisdom and understanding.

What he got was the mystery of birth. Jesus said, “You must be born again.” Nicodemus said, (I’m paraphrasing here)… “Huh? – I don’t get it. How can you be born twice?”

Jesus responds to this with two important observations – valuable to us today:

John 3:10-11 (The Message)

Jesus said, “You’re a respected teacher of Israel and you don’t know these basics? Listen carefully. I’m speaking sober truth to you. I speak only of what I know by experience; I give witness only to what I have seen with my own eyes. There is nothing secondhand here, no hearsay. Yet instead of facing the evidence and accepting it, you procrastinate with questions.


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