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Summary: Chad a 34-year-old software developer married with two children from Florida would rather sleep in on Sundays...find out why.

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West Greeley Baptist Church

May 20 2001

“When the rain comes”

Matthew 5: 44-45

Pastor Mark Hensley

44But I tell you: Love your enemies[1] and pray for those who persecute you, 45that you may be sons of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous.

Introduction: Chad a 34-year-old software developer married with two children from Florida responded to the question why don’t you attend church, this way:

“ Most Christians I know have a very positive outlook on life. But sometimes they can’t talk beneath the surface of their religion. I have some pretty deep questions, and so far no one has answered them. Like why does God allow innocent children to suffer and die? Why can criminals who have committed horrible acts profess to believe in Jesus right before they die and then go to heaven? What is heaven like, anyway, and why would I want to go there? Does anybody have proof? What if this heaven and hell thing is just a scare tactic? I would really like to explore questions like that with someone intelligent who has come up with some answers”

Transition: Chad has asked questions that every person has thought about at one time or another in this journey we call life. Soon Timothy Mcveigh will give an account of his horrible crime that took 168 lives in Oklahoma City. We remember where we were when it happened, just as we remember where we were when the space shuttle challenger exploded over the Atlantic Ocean in 1986. If you were alive you remember. Just as our parents remember where they were when John F. Kennedy was assassinated in Dallas. It’s as if time stands still, refusing to move forward wrapping us up in a historical event we wish would have never happened! We wonder why?

Chad has simply asked questions that are not simple to answer. We have grappled with them ourselves late at night when it’s quiet. Today in a message titled: “When the rain comes” we will face those questions squarely, seeking God’s perspective. Take God’s word and be finding Matthew 5:44-45

44But I tell you: Love your enemies[1] and pray for those who persecute you, 45that you may be sons of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous.

God is Sovereign He causes the:

Sun to shine

Rain to come

I. The sun shines because God is sovereign 44But I tell you: Love your enemies[1] and pray for those who persecute you, 45that you may be sons of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous.

Jesus is teaching his followers concerning interpersonal relationships. In context he is trying to help them see that love is the answer! All of us have people that meander into our lives who frustrate us, who tax us! Well-intentioned grace builders! The solution? Love, warmth kindness understanding, in effect the “fruits” of the Spirit in operation and applied!

Rabbi David A. Nelson likes to tell the story of two brothers who went to their rabbi to settle a longstanding feud. The rabbi got the two to reconcile their differences and shake hands. As they were about to leave, he asked each one to make a wish for the other in honor of the Jewish New Year. The first brother turned to the other and said, "I wish you what you wish me." At that, the second brother threw up his hands and said, "See, Rabbi, he’s starting up again!" David A. Nelson


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