Summary: If we believe the Scriptures are inspired, inerrant and authoritative, we must need, reed, feed, heed and seed the Bible.
Why You Can Trust the Bible
Rev. Brian Bill
May 2-3, 2015
Announce National Day of Prayer this Thursday and then pray for Nepal, Baltimore, and the Supreme Court.
On Tuesday and Wednesday I was up in Madison to speak to some young men who are involved in a ministry called Cru. Being in Madison is good for me because it’s where I got saved 36 years ago. It helps me think about what my life was like before I met Christ. My mind floods with memories of how God used my college roommate to lead me to Jesus and all the things I learned through Cru (called Campus Crusade then) and other campus ministries. As Pastor Dan preached last weekend, these memories “stir me up” and help keep my faith fresh.
My college friend Jim arranged for me to share my top ten insights for “Making an Impact.” I came up with 12. Interestingly, Jim put his own list together and he came up with 12 as well. I won’t take the time to go over all of them but I did post them on the sermon extras tab on our website. Here’s the very first thing I wrote down: Preach the gospel to yourself every day – don’t ever forget God’s grace. And on Jim’s discipleship dozen, he made a similar statement: Remember your plight before you found Christ…repent frequently and thank God for Christ’s perfect sacrifice.
I found it fascinating that we both came up with something so similar: “Don’t ever forget God’s grace…Remember your plight before you found Christ.”
That’s exactly what the ordinance of communion is designed to do. When I go to Madison I recount God’s grace in my life and replay the gospel. When we participate in communion we remember the cross, where Christ made the perfect sacrifice. And, we repent frequently as we replay the gospel.
Jesus knew that our faith would become fickle and we’d be forgetful so he gave us something tangible that we can see, touch and taste. Communion is designed to jog our memory, to stir us up again spiritually and even to correct us.
We see this in 1 Corinthians 11.
1. Look up. 27 Therefore whoever eats this bread or drinks this cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner will be guilty of the body and blood of the Lord.
2. Look within. 28 - But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of the bread and drink of the cup.
3. Look around. 33 Therefore, my brethren, when you come together to eat, wait for one another.
And so, we evaluate our relationship with God, we do an inventory of our own lives and finally we’re called to consider whether we have any relational ruptures. Up, in and around.
→ Take some time right now to do that.
After giving some correctives we’re then given some directives in 1 Corinthians 11:23-26:
“For I received from the Lord that which I also delivered to you: that the Lord Jesus on the same night in which He was betrayed took bread; 24 and when He had given thanks, He broke it and said, “Take, eat; this is My body which is broken for you; do this in remembrance of Me.” 25 In the same manner He also took the cup after supper, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in My blood. This do, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of Me.” 26 For as often as you eat this bread and drink this cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death till He comes.
• You will be given two cups stacked together.
• Twist the top one to take them apart.
• Hold a cup in each hand and meditate while others are being served.
• We’ll then take the elements together – “co” – mmunion, to demonstrate our unity
→ The Bible: Man on the Street
Those interviews were quite eye opening, weren’t they? Here are some of the Bible beliefs I heard…
• I have my own spiritual thing.
• I see it as my own conceptualized feeling.
• I find my spiritual source within myself and from the people around me.
• It’s better to take your religious or spiritual stuff from everyday experiences and put it in more modern terms.
I experienced some of that a week and a half ago when I attended an interfaith dialogue in Rock Island featuring a Catholic priest, a Jewish rabbi and a Muslim imam. I was surprised when I walked in the room to see that there were well over a hundred people in attendance. The title for the dialogue was this: “Intersections, Bridges and Divided Highways: Meeting Each Other on the Path to God.”