Summary: People can talk about virtually anything, but when you bring up the name of Jesus, it creates such strong response. People are either drawn near or they are repelled. Why? Because the very name of Jesus has power and when His Word is spoken it has authori
I don’t know about you, but Hollywood ticks me off. A relatively small number of directors and producers through TV and movies depict, portray and even promote their view of what America is and how it should be. I wonder if they ever get out of their glass bubble and see how most of us really live. And it’s not just with American way of life, its other things as well. During this Easter season there has been an abundance of movies and programs on the life of Christ, some old, some new. What bothers me is that if I never read the Gospels, but solely relied on Hollywood’s depiction of Jesus, I would have a vastly different view of Him than how He really is.
More often than not, Jesus is portrayed as anemic, weak, and pale. Though He was a carpenter, traveled extensively by foot in the hot Mid-east sun they depict Him rather fragile, milk toast and even scrawny. Rarely is He shown as strong though tender, firm though understanding, straight forward though gentle.
Most European paintings of Jesus likewise have it wrong, portraying Him with auburn hair, blue eyes and fair skinned, rather than being born an ethnic Jew.
That’s why we want you to join us in reading through the Gospel of Luke to discover who Jesus is, what He did and how he did it. We want you to encounter the real Jesus and not some manufactured facsimile or cheap trinket of the real thing.
We want you to discover and encounter who Jesus really is instead of Hollywood’s version of Him.
We desire that each and everyday when you strap on your shoes, you can with confidence follow your Lord and Life Coach, Jesus Christ.
In our passage this week in Luke 4:31, we are told that that after proclaiming to those in His hometown of Nazareth; His purpose, His plan and His mission of redeeming humanity, He went to Capernaum, a town in Galilee, and on the Sabbath began to teach the people. They were amazed at his teaching, because his message had authority. 33In the synagogue there was a man possessed by a demon, an evil spirit. He cried out at the top of his voice, 34"Ha! What do you want with us, Jesus of Nazareth? Have you come to destroy us? I know who you are—the Holy One of God!" 35"Be quiet!" Jesus said sternly. "Come out of him!" Then the demon threw the man down before them all and came out without injuring him. 36All the people were amazed and said to each other, "What is this teaching? With authority and power he gives orders to evil spirits and they come out!" Luke 4:31-36
Notice what it says, They were amazed at his teaching, because his message had authority. V. 32
Now the word “amazed” literally means “to strike with panic or shock”. They were awestruck and experience a thunderstorm in their souls. You see, Jesus’ preaching was clear, unlike the teachers of the law; the Pharisee’s and the Sadducees who said a whole lot of nothing. Jesus’ message was and continues to be straight forward and clear. And it is our responsibility that we present it clear. This is why our AWANA ministry is so very important to us. The word AWANA is taken from 2 Tim. 2:15. Be diligent to present yourself approved of God, a worker who does not need to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. 2 Timothy 2:15 A Workman Approved Need not be Ashamed. Why? Because they rightly handle the Word of truth.
Folks, there is quite frankly a lot of garbage peddled out there today and unfortunately it comes from many church pulpits. You may have seen things on the news lately that shock you. I have preached in some churches where God’s Word is totally ignored and where Jesus is negated, maligned, stripped of His glory and left benign.
Folks, Pastor Nate and I want you to know and be rest assured that he and I are followers and disciples of Jesus Christ. That His Word is paramount, that He’s in charge, that He’s the Head Coach and we will do our absolute best to teach you from His Word, straight up and straight forward. Because we have a responsibility to teach God’s Word. Why, you ask? The Apostle Paul said it best
For I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God for the salvation of everyone who believes: Romans 1:16
Salvation! All of humanity is in need of salvation. Jesus came and while here on earth He taught the way of salvation and it created a response in one of two ways: Either people responded to Him in love or they reacted to Him in anger.