Summary: Do we really understand that the Gospel of Jesus Christ is a GLOBAL GOSPEL, that Jesus died for the WHOLE WORLD, that the Bible is not a Middle Eastern religious book but it is God’s Word to the WHOLE WORLD?
• The Global Heart of Jesus
• Where does America stand in relation to the rest of the world?
• Global Population as of September 2018 is 7.6 Billion
• America 325.7 Million as of the 2017 census (4.6% of the worlds population)
• Global Economy - Overall, the Global Economy is worth an estimated $79.98 trillion with the US boasting $20.4 trillion of that. (In 2nd and 3rd place are China - 14 trillion, and Japan - 5.1 trillion)
• Government - The United States is a Federal Republic with three branches of government, Legislative, Executive & Judicial which lend themselves to representative and constitutional democracy. We are not Socialist, Cultural Marxist or Communists. We are America… formed by the people, for the people. We are the “Land of the Free because of the Brave!” This makes us unique and much more prosperous than the rest of the world.
• Let’s Recap - America is 4.6% of the world’s population and over 25% of the world’s economy. Therefore, and in light of these truths we, as God’s Church in America, need to ask ourselves a few questions. Here they are:
1. What is the American Church’s responsibility to the world?
2. What should our attitude be towards the rest of the world?
3. Have we represented Jesus well in the areas of Proclaiming Christ, Discipleship and Humanitarian Efforts?
4. Do we really understand that the Gospel of Jesus Christ is a GLOBAL GOSPEL, that Jesus died for the WHOLE WORLD, that the Bible is not a Middle Eastern religious book but it is God’s Word to the WHOLE WORLD?
5. What are we going to do moving forward?
• As we embark upon this series, RED LETTERS, I feel we should do it with a clear understanding that this is God’s message to all of humanity.
I. A LOOK AT THE GOSPELS
A. Matthew was a disciple of Jesus and a former publican (tax collector).
1. Matthew focuses on Jesus fulfilling Old Testament prophecies that prove Him to be the Messiah. Matthew shares the lineage of Jesus going back to Abraham. (Luke’s go back to Adam)
2. Matthew uses the term "that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophets” rather frequently. Matthew refers to the kingdom 55 different times, and the "kingdom of heaven" 35 times. Of the 15 parables recorded by Matthew all but three begin: "The kingdom of heaven is like..."
3. Matthew quotes more from the Old Testament than any other New Testament writer signifying to us that his book is very possibly placed as the first book of the OT to serve as a transitional book between the Old and New Testaments.
4. Matthew ends with his version of what has become known as “The Great Commission.”
18 And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth.
19 Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:
20 Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen.
B. Mark is the son of Mary and the cousin of Paul’s missionary companion Barnabas.
1. Mark begins by focusing on the forerunner of Jesus, John the Baptist. (He was called Baptist because he baptized people in water in the wilderness)
2. Mark focuses more on the works of Jesus (miracles) than His teachings. (He records 20 miracles and only four parables)
3. An interesting note is that all but four of the sixteen chapters begin with the word “And”. (Some scholars have noted that this “illustrate’s how Christ's life and service are a complete and perfect whole.”)
4. Mark 16:14-20 - He to end’s with The Great Commission but emphasis Action, Power & Signs.
Mark 16:20 And they went forth, and preached every where, the Lord working with them, and confirming the word with signs following. Amen.
C. Luke was a Gentile Physician! He gives an “eyewitness account” of Jesus life and works. (Especially the miracles since Luke was a physician)
1. Luke gives the longest account of the life and ministry of Jesus and is the only one who covers His childhood, including His visit to the Temple at the age of 12.
2. Luke focuses more on the Humanity of Jesus. (John focuses more on His Diety) He is the only one to:
a) Share about the good Samaritan, the Publican, the Prodigal Son and Zacchaeus.
b) Showing mercy to the thief on the Cross
c) Jesus weeping over Jerusalem
d) Jesus sweating, as it were, great drops of blood in the Garden of Gethsemane