the mission at home.
title: Loving Our Neighbors
teacher(s): Jacob & Dawn Bender
date: March 19, 2017
scriptures: Luke 10:30-37, Acts 2:42-47, Galatians 2:6, Galatians 2:9-10, James 1:27, 2 Corinthians 6:18, Isaiah 32:8
Series: The Narrative of Grace
Title: Beginning with Grace
Date: November 15, 2015
Teacher: Jacob Bender
scriptures: Matthew 1:1-17, Genesis 12, Genesis 38, Joshua 2, Hosea 6:6, 1 John 3:18
Do you ever find yourself keeping score of failures? Or do you tend to assign a guilt you have to some current life circumstance?
I am alone because __________
I can’t go home because __________
I’ll never do that because __________
I don’t deserve grace because __________
But what if I were to tell you that the because doesn’t matter?
In fact, the only BECAUSE that does matter is That Jesus loves you BECAUSE you are his child. I try to tell my daughters that, as often as I can… Milly I love you…
“I know” she’ll say.
And I don’t do this every time, but sometimes, when I am at the top of my parenting game, I will ask her “Do you know why I love you?
Because you are my daughter. You are my daughter…
I love her because she is my child.
Well you are children of God. And nothing can change that. The bible says that nothing separates us from the love of God. Not death nor life..
“For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” (Romans 8:38-39 NIV)
The because does not matter. Because nothing can not separate us from the love of God any more than anything else.
You think you are jacked up? That God can’t use you anymore?
Look no further than the first of names on the list we read at the beginning… the names of those in JESUS’ family line…
Mathew one… The lineage… A genealogy was something that told people who you were… There was a sense of pride in where you came from, and the fact that God chose this particular family to be the one to birth Jesus into has great significance.
These people weren’t just jacked up like sometimes I think I am jacked up. These people were JACKED UP.
We invite you to join us as we explore this jacked up family for the six weeks leading up to Christmas.
title: The First with a Promise
teacher: Jacob Bender
date: October 25, 2015
scriptures: Ephesians 6:1-3, Exodus 20, Numbers 13:30, Numbers 14:6-9, Numbers 14:10, Numbers 14:12, Numbers 14:20-24, Proverbs 18:21, Matthew 7:2, Matthew 16:19, 1 Peter 3:7, Mark 6:1-6,
Blessing and Cursing.
I don’t have to agree with someone to bless them. I don’t have to agree with someone to honor them. And if I do honor them even when maybe they don’t seem very worthy of that honor, then there is a blessing for me which we will talk about later.
But the natural instinct of man is not to bless. It is to curse. Now let me explain, because you probably would say “I would never curse someone!”
The Hebrew word for curse (qa-lal) means “to make light.” It means to add no value to them. It means to say “the words you are saying, and the things that you are doing in this moment mean nothing.”
All of us in this place have been cursed. We have been belittled. We have been made to feel like we have no value. And I don’t know about you, but when someone makes me feel that way, I shut down. I have a very hard time pulling myself back together and refocusing. It hurts really bad.
On the contrary, the Hebrew word for blessing (Ba-rak) means something very interesting… you would think it would be the opposite of cursing, but its not. Blessing, in Hebrew, means “to bend the knee.”
Think about it. When a King walks into a room, what do people do? They get on their knees. Why? Because they want to show honor, because that person holds a position of great authority. Showing honor blesses people.
We need to set our social default mode to blessing.
Its the best way to honor one another no matter what the circumstance.
But what is honor?
The most simple way to put it is that it is how you treat people. When you are around them, when you are not. Thats the simple way to put it. But there is so much more to it than that.
Honor is the Hebrew word “kavod” (ka-vode) and it means “heavy or weighty.”
It means to place weight on something. It is literally the opposite of cursing. Cursing is to make light, honor is to give weight.
Now, as you probably know, in the time of the Old Testament, value was based on weight. If you were measuring how much money you had, it would be determined by the weight of the gold in your possession, not the number of pieces, so what it is talking about is “giving something value.”
That is why people bow before the King. Because his job carries weight.
We would have no problem honoring a King, or honoring someone who has already accomplished what we desire to accomplish.
Now, we have been looking at the word picture for each number in the ten commandments, and we will get to that in a minute, but first… there is also a word picture for the word “honor” itself, you have possibly heard this phrase but this is where it comes from… for the Hebrew word “kavod” – If you take away the vowels (because there are no vowels in Hebrew, we add them so that we can say them in English) the letters are K-V-D
are the Hebrew letters:
“Kaf” is a picture of a hand and it symbolizes what opens, you use your hands to open doors, cabinets, your refrigerator, most things… Now, “bet” is the picture of a house or what is inside… a home is a sacred place, its a place that you share with the people who are closest to you. You welcome your family, you host your friends there, but you are protective of who enters your house.
and the letter “dalet” like we learned last week (and we have talked about it before), is a door…
so the word picture you get for the word “kavod” is it is the hand or the thing that“opens the inside door.” I have heard that phrase Think about it.
If you look at your life, and you look at the people you let in and the people you keep out, does it not always come back to the ones who honor you?
The ones who make you feel like you matter?
Like your words matter? Like your opinion matters?
That is a natural instinct in us, we are drawn to honor, and that is why.
It opens the inside door.
It opens our heart.
Date: May 3, 2015
Teacher: Jacob Bender
Title: Come and See
scriptures: Isaiah 61:1-2, John 1:43-46, Genesis 33, 2 Corinthians 5:17-19, Luke 4:16-21, John 12:47-48, 2 Corinthians 6:2
“optimum remedium contra opiniones praeconceptas”
Bengel in his commentary of the conversation recorded in John 1:43-46 between Philip and Nathaniel, uses this latin phrase to describe Philips response to Nathaniel’s question “Can anything good come from Nazareth?”
It means “The best remedy against a pre-conceived opinion.” The only remedy to a pre-conceived opinion is to show him something different.
Well, we have only been here, living in Detroit for a few days now, so we don’t want to pretend like we know everything about this city yet, but one thing is for sure. We live in a place that has a lot of pre-conceived opinions formed against it.
It kind of sounds like the church.
People who draw conclusions about the church based on past experiences, probably in most cases justified. About the way someone treated them in the “name of Jesus” – someone who didn’t act like Jesus but did so while claiming to represent Jesus. And I think that its time that those people “come and see” – but when they do come and see, will they see anything different than what they saw in the past? Will we be any different than the pre-conceived opinions that they have already formulated in their minds? What will they see?
By the grace of God, when they do come and see, I want them to see Jesus.
I want them to see a place that is all about restoring them back to Jesus.
A place that is all about reconciliation.