Summary: a 3 week series to restore vision in the church
The Power of vision series, Vision Gives us a clear focus
Eric A. Snyder, Minister Farwell Church of Christ
December 2, 2002
Doctor who comes to a split in the road on a Vermont back country lane. The road sign at the fork points both directions for the same town. Seeing a farmer beside the road he asked him, “does it matter which road I take to get to town?” The Farmer replies, “Not to me it don’t.”
God Has a vision for the Church:
God Has a vision for your life:
How are you going to get there
Michigan State was playing UCLA in football, the score was tied at 14 with only seconds to play. Duffy Daugherty, Michigan State’s coach, sent in place-kicker Dave Kaiser who booted a field goal that won the game. When the kicker returned to the bench, Daugherty said, "nice going, but you didn’t watch the ball after you kicked it." "That’s right, Coach," Kaiser replied. "I was watching the referee instead to see how he’d signal it. I forgot my contact lenses, and I couldn’t see the goal posts."
Is this the guy that you want kicking field goals for you?
Mark 9:1-9 And he said to them, "I tell you the truth, some who are standing here will not taste death before they see the kingdom of God come with power." After six days Jesus took Peter, James and John with him and led them up a high mountain, where they were all alone. There he was transfigured before them. His clothes became dazzling white, whiter than anyone in the world could bleach them. And there appeared before them Elijah and Moses, who were talking with Jesus. Peter said to Jesus, "Rabbi, it is good for us to be here. Let us put up three shelters--one for you, one for Moses and one for Elijah." He did not know what to say, they were so frightened. Then a cloud appeared and enveloped them, and a voice came from the cloud: "This is my Son, whom I love. Listen to him!" Suddenly, when they looked around, they no longer saw anyone with them except Jesus. As they were coming down the mountain, Jesus gave them orders not to tell anyone what they had seen until the Son of Man had risen from the dead.
Vision gives us a Clear Focus
1. Jesus beats the law, talks to Moses Completing the Law
Fiorello LaGuardia was mayor of New York City during the worst days of the Great Depression and all of WWII, he was called by adoring New Yorkers ’the Little Flower’ because he was only five foot four and always wore a carnation in his lapel. He was a colorful character who used to ride the New York City fire trucks, raid speakeasies with the police department, take entire orphanages to baseball games, and whenever the New York newspapers were on strike, he would go on the radio and read the Sunday funnies to the kids.
One bitterly cold night in January of 1935, the mayor turned up at a night court that served the poorest ward of the city. LaGuardia dismissed the judge for the evening and took over the bench himself. Within a few minutes, a tattered old woman was brought before him, charged with stealing a loaf of bread. She told LaGuardia that her daughter’s husband had deserted her, her daughter was sick, and her two grandchildren were starving. But the shopkeeper, from whom the bread was stolen, refused to drop the charges. "It’s a real bad neighborhood, your Honor." the man told the mayor. "She’s got to be punished to teach other people around here a lesson." LaGuardia turned to the woman and said "I’ve got to punish you. The law makes no exceptions--ten dollars or ten days in jail."
But even as he pronounced sentence, the mayor was already reaching into his pocket. He took out a bill and paid the fine. Then he said "Here is the ten dollar fine which I now remit; and furthermore I am going to fine everyone in this courtroom fifty cents for living in a town where a person has to steal bread so that her grandchildren can eat. Mr. Bailiff, collect the fines and give them to the defendant."
The following day the New York City newspapers reported that $47.50 was turned over to a lady who had stolen a loaf of bread to feed her starving grandchildren. Fifty cents of that amount being contributed by the grocery store owner, while some seventy petty criminals, people with traffic violations, and New York City policemen, each of whom had just paid fifty cents for the privilege of doing so, gave the mayor a standing ovation.
Jesus says in a later text that he did not come to destroy the law but to complete it. So the law is complete in Jesus. He kept the law so that we could escape the penalty.