Summary: God’s desire is that we would experience the blessed life – where we would be happy, supremely blessed; and spiritually prosperous – with life-joy and satisfaction in God’s favour and salvation.
THE BLESSED LIFE #2 – VIVA LA VIDA
TODAY’S DATE: Sept. 28 – it was 18 years ago in a farmhouse in Lacombe, Alberta, where I first encounter God in a life-transforming way, and my life has never been the same since!
ILLUSTRATION: Look to the Classifieds:
Let me quickly share with you some intriguing classified ads that have appeared in newspapers:
• Illiterate? Write today for free help.
• Dinner special – Turkey $2.35; Chicken or Beef $2.25; Children $2.00
• Tired of cleaning yourself? Let me do it.
• Auto Repair. Free pick-up and delivery. Try us once, you’ll never go anywhere again.
• And finally, one of my favourites: Stock up and save. Limit one.
That sums up pretty well what I want to talk about today. When is a great deal not a great deal?
SONG LYRICS: Viva La Vida by Coldplay:
• You can learn a lot about our society by the music that is most popular today, as music is often a reflection of the feelings and attitudes of a generation.
• Viva La Vida by Coldplay has been the #1 song on the Billboard Charts for 17 weeks.
I used to rule the world, Seas would rise when I gave the word
Now in the morning I sleep alone, Sweep the streets I used to own
I used to roll the dice, Feel the fear in my enemy’s eyes
Listened as the crowd would sing, "Now the old king is dead, long live the king"
One minute I held the key, Next the walls were closed on me
And I discovered that my castles stand, Upon pillars of salt and pillars of sand
• Here is the life of a person who had it all – power, authority, influence, success.
• But it all turned out to be nothing, empty and meaningless.
• See the Biblical symbolism: “My castles stand upon pillars of sand.” Matt. 7:26:
• Jesus said, “But everyone who hears these sayings of Mine, and does not do them, will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand.”
I hear Jerusalem bells a-ringing, Roman cavalry choirs are singing
Be my mirror my sword and shield, My missionaries in a foreign field
For some reason I can’t explain, I know Saint Peter won’t call my name
Never an honest word, But that was when I ruled the world
• The song’s title is: Viva la Vida = “Live the life!” - Live the BLESSED Life!
THE BIG IDEA:
God’s desire is that we would experience the blessed life – where we would be happy, supremely blessed; and spiritually prosperous – with life-joy and satisfaction in God’s favour and salvation. The Sermon on the Mount in Matthew 5-7 gives us the keys to living the blessed life.
• Jesus said: “If you know these things, blessed are you if you do them.” (John 13:17).
There were these two guys who were watching this movie, and as the movie went on, it got towards the end of the story, and the one guy said to his friend, “Watch this. I bet he’s going to jump off of that train and kill himself.” His friend said, “No way, no way!” So he said, “I bet you he will!” He said, “No way, he’s not going to do that.” “Yeah, yeah, I bet you five bucks, five bucks!” “Okay, you on brother!” So all of a sudden, the guy jumps off the train and kills himself! “No way!” The guy said. And the first guy said, “I told you! You owe me five bucks!” “Aw man, here’s my five bucks!” The first guy said, “I’ve gotta be honest with you, my conscience is bothering me. I saw this movie already, and I knew what was going to happen.” And the second guy said, “I saw it too, but I never thought he’d do it twice!”
• Just because you have knowledge doesn’t mean you use it well!
BACKGROUND TO THE SERMON ON THE MOUNT:
“And Jesus went about all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, preaching the gospel of the kingdom, and healing all kinds of sickness and all kinds of disease among the people. Then His fame went throughout all Syria; and they brought to Him all sick people who were afflicted with various diseases and torments, and those who were demon-possessed, epileptics, and paralytics; and He healed them. Great multitudes followed Him--from Galilee, and from Decapolis, Jerusalem, Judea, and beyond the Jordan.” (Matt. 4:23-25).
• Over the next couple of months, we are going to study the Sermon on the Mount.
THE SERMON ON THE MOUNT:
“And seeing the multitudes, He went up on a mountain, and when He was seated His disciples came to Him. Then He opened His mouth and taught them, saying…” (Matt. 5:1-2).