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Summary: The disturbing good news about Jesus can bring healing and forgiveness to all who believe in Him.

Disturbing Good News

Acts 4:1-12

Intro: While staying in a hotel this past week, I saw the little signs they put in your room that you hang on your door when you don’t want to be bothered. You know what they say: DO NOT DISTURB! Or in espanol, no moleste. The idea is this: “I’m busy doing what I want to do, so don’t bother me.” Some people seem to go through life with one of these signs around their neck: “Don’t bother me. I’ve got my own thing going on and I don’t have time for you.” I do hope that isn’t the message we as Christians are sending to those around us, although I fear that our actions may sometimes give that message.

-Well, today we’re going to talk about a good kind of disturbance that needs to happen in everyone’s life. It is something that offends people, and makes some of them angry. This disturbance has gotten a lot of people hurt or killed. It has even divided families, causing one brother to turn against another. So, why would we want to talk about something like this? What’s so good about it? Here it is:

Prop: The disturbing good news about Jesus can bring healing and forgiveness to all who believe in Him.

TS: I’d like to look at 4 thoughts as they relate to the disturbing message of Jesus.

I. Jesus Disturbs Those Who Reject God

-V.2 says, “They were greatly disturbed….” This, of course, is a reference to the priests, the captain of the temple guard, and Sadducees. The priests were organized into 24 different groups who served at the temple on a rotating basis. The priests and Levites took care of the morning and evening sacrifices. The captain of the temple guard was a priest in charge of the temple police force. He ranked 2nd in authority to the high priest. His job was to maintain order in the temple and its surrounding area. The Sadducees were of priestly descent (supposedly from the line of the high priest Zadok- Ezek. 40-48). Their party controlled the temple and high priesthood, giving them a lot of political power. They accepted the 1st 5 books of the OT, but didn’t place much value on the rest of the OT. This led them to deny teachings about the Messiah, angels, demons, immortality, and resurrection. Incidentally, it was primarily the Sadducees who had Jesus arrested, falsely tried, and executed. There may have been some Pharisees involved, but most of Jesus’ opposition came from the Sadducees.

-These Sadducees thought they had done away with Jesus of Nazareth, so when they heard about the healing of the lame man who had been lame all of his life, and had been coming to the temple for most of it, they thought they’d better check it out. Jesus had really messed with their influence over the people, and now His followers were doing the same thing. The message of Jesus disturbed these religious leaders. Jesus has a way of disturbing those who reject God and His ways. He doesn’t do this out of spite or out of ill will toward those who think they know better than God. Jesus disturbs people because He wants them to realize the truth about themselves and about God.

-Jesus was speaking to some of these same rulers in Matthew 21:42-44: 42”Jesus said to them, "Have you never read in the Scriptures: "’The stone the builders rejected has become the capstone; the Lord has done this, and it is marvelous in our eyes’? 43 "Therefore I tell you that the kingdom of God will be taken away from you and given to a people who will produce its fruit. 44 He who falls on this stone will be broken to pieces, but he on whom it falls will be crushed."

-See, all people need to come to a place where they realize that they cannot make it without God’s help. No amount of religious activity can erase the sin in our lives. Jesus said, “He who falls on this stone will be broken to pieces.” Only by humbling ourselves at the feet of Jesus in repentance (being broken before Him) can we come into right standing with God. And the message of Jesus will disturb us until we surrender ourselves to Him. However, for those who continue to reject the message of Jesus, the stone will eventually crush them.

-If the message of Jesus disturbs you, please know that it is because He loves you and wants you to turn your life over to Him. Don’t fight against Him any longer. Make things right with Him today. Fall on Jesus and find what you’ve been looking for all of your life.

-TS: Let’s take a quick look at what happens to those who respond appropriately to being disturbed by God.

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