Miracle Math – our new series for the month of May

Here are my notes for this new series:

Miracle Math (-) + (+) = (x)

(-) is what we can subtract from our life = Sacrifice

(+) is what we can add to our life for Kingdom Purpose

(x) is God’s miraculous supply for this life and all eternity

Sacrifice = giving up of something valuable or important for somebody or something else considered to be of more value or importance

    • Just as “love that doesn’t cost is just a feeling”, giving without sacrifice is just a tip
    • “Something valuable or important” is a matter of the heart
    • Sacrifice is a matter of the heart and it costs

Like Fasting – its not so much about what we are fasting from as what we are fasting to

    • Sacrifice – Its not so much about what we are giving up as what we are gaining
    • In God’s light, sacrifice doesn’t cost, it pays!

The Cross 

    • The Greatest Sacrifice! (for the joy that was set before Him, he endured the cross)
    • The Great Exchange – not for us to continually consider our sin forgiven, but to continually consider Him the author and finisher of our faith…

Miracle Math is the formula that God uses and will use to produce the miracles needed to build His Church, corporately and individually

Example: Mk 10:17-30  

    • 17 Now as He was going out on the road, one came running, knelt before Him, and asked Him, “Good Teacher, what shall I do that I may inherit eternal life?” 
    • 18 So Jesus said to him, “Why do you call Me good? No one is good but One, that is, God. 
    • 19 You know the commandments: ‘Do not commit adultery,’ ‘Do not murder,’ ‘Do not steal,’ ‘Do not bear false witness,’ ‘Do not defraud,’ ‘Honor your father and your mother.’
    • 20 And he answered and said to Him, “Teacher, all these things I have kept from my youth.” 
    • 21 Then Jesus, looking at him, loved him, and said to him, “One thing you lack: Go your way, sell whatever you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, take up the cross, and follow Me.” 
    • 22 But he was sad at this word, and went away sorrowful, for he had great possessions. 
    • 23 Then Jesus looked around and said to His disciples, “How hard it is for those who have riches to enter the kingdom of God!” 
    • 24 And the disciples were astonished at His words. But Jesus answered again and said to them, “Children, how hard it is for those who trust in riches to enter the kingdom of God! 
    • 25 It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.” 
    • 26 And they were greatly astonished, saying among themselves, “Who then can be saved?” 
    • 27 But Jesus looked at them and said, “With men it is impossible, but not with God; for with God all things are possible.” 
    • 28 Then Peter began to say to Him, “See, we have left all and followed You.” 
    • 29 So Jesus answered and said, “Assuredly, I say to you, there is no one who has left house or brothers or sisters or father or mother or wife or children or lands, for My sake and the gospel’s, 
    • 30 who shall not receive a hundredfold now in this time—houses and brothers and sisters and mothers and children and lands, with persecutions—and in the age to come, eternal life.”

The (-) is house, brothers, sisters, mother, father, children, land…

The (+) is for Jesus and the Message

The = is (x) of what he gave up and what we gave to for now, and eternity

Sacrifice has always been looked at from the negative perspective of what we have to give up (what we will have less of)…

    • in actuality it is the small door by which we enter into the Large life of what we get – miraculous supply, God’s glory, devil defeating victory, Godly relationships
    • When we let go of what is in our hand for our purpose and release it to God’s hand for His purpose, we get God’s miracle multiplication for His Kingdom and our blessing

Miracle Math is not a magical formulait is not some gimmick

    • we are not raising these funds with fundraisers, bazaars, raffles…
    • we will be teaching what God expects of us as managers of our financial resources… Stewardship is Management For Eternity
    • we will all become better managers and God will provide all the finances we need to build corporately and individually
    • Haggai 1:9 God explains His priority and why His people were not experiencing His miraculous supply – they had pockets with holes in them – “Because while you’ve run around, caught up with taking care of your own houses, my Home is in ruins.”

3 Important Questions as we move into this season of Stewardship:

1. Why should I want to give?

    1. To bring glory to God = Build The BEST for His Cause
    2. Being faithful with what we have is God’s way to the blessing of More (being faithful in the little things…) (Equal sacrifice, not equal gift)
    3. We All Need the Opportunity to Give
      • Corporately, We together need finances to serve our world (the gospel is free but it costs money to proclaim)
      • Personally, Our personal growth comes through giving (our generosity is the measure of our capacity)
      • Protectively, Giving is the best guard against greed and selfishness
      • Productively, Giving stimulates faith

2. Is God able and wanting to Multiply what I give to Him?

2 Cor 9:10  “Now may He who supplies seed to the sower, and bread for food, supply and multiply the seed you have sown and increase the fruits of your righteousness,”

3. How should I plan my involvement in this miracle campaign?

    • Start where you are at
      • Give purposefully, cheerfully and consistently
      • Put God and His Kingdom first (Tithing) (if God were to take your tithe and times it by ten and made that your income…?)
    • Plan what you could sacrifice in your lifestyle that would make more seed available
      • What minor important things could you give up for the Major important purpose of God and your eternity?
      • Look at practical ways that you could save a little here and there – over time and together with many doing the same thing, it ADDS UP!
    • Pray about a God given goal that you could believe for

Why are women coming from all over to attend the Life Women 2011 Conference entitled, “She Loves”

Starting Thursday night, May 12th the Life Women 2011 Conference, entitled “She Loves” will kick off!  This conference continues to impact and empower women to be all that they can be.  The guest speakers, Holly Wagner and Dianne Wilson along with host, Helen Burns (and her husband) are pumped and ready to be used by God.  You can view the promo video at http://vimeo.com/22004487  – please post this on your facebook, twitter and whatever else you use to communicate online.

You can still register and invite others to join you at lifewomen.com

hope to see you there,

John Burns

Character Becoming – Eph 4:25-32

Becoming Behavior – Character

Eph 4:25 – 32Therefore, putting away lying, “ Let each one of you speak truth with his neighbor. for we are members of one another. Be angry, and do not sin” do not let the sun go down on your wrath nor give place to the devil. Let him who stole steal no longer, but rather let him labor, working with his hands what is good, that he may have something to give him who has need. Let no corrupt word proceed out of your mouth, but what is good for necessary edification, that it may impart grace to the hearers And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption Let all bitterness, wrath, anger, clamor, and evil speaking be put away from you, with all malice And be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God in Christ forgave you.”

  1. Behavior always follows believing
  2. Speaking the Truth builds, all else corrupts
  3. Let righteous indignation be your resolve but under His control
  4. Fighting injustice should start at home
  5. Anger not submitted to the leading of the Holy Spirit is allowing the devil a foot in the door
  6. The Holy Spirit is grieved when we give control to circumstances
  7. Our behavior should point others to Jesus – don’t just work enough for self…
  • There is a difference between things that seem true for the moment and what is True for eternity – eg. 10 spies came back saying what seemed true for the moment and God called it an evil report = non truth
  • Since we have encountered the Truth (Jesus) we should let our speech be only in line with what he says (Mt 12:36 – give an account for every idle word)
  • Words that line up with God’s Word are powerful and they are life
  • The reason we NEED to speak the Truth is that we are part of one another – we are our brother’s keeper – we have a responsibility

Eph 4:26 “Be angry, and do not sin” do not let the sun go down on your wrath”

  • The anger that Paul is talking about is not the explosive, uncontrolled reaction or the bitter, stored up wrath but the anger that is aroused by unrighteous conditions and looks to respond with righteous action
  • When someone devalues what you value – you should feel anger – but what we do with that emotion can either right the wrong or make it worse – HS led is key
  • Disappointment can be the spark that ignites anger = normal… its what we do with it that counts
  • “Be angry” commands a continuous, abiding, settle attitude of righteous indignation against sin and sinful things together with the appropriate actions
  • Today, the ‘in’ thing is to be active with righteous indignation against injustice globally – but what about in your home/family/marriage/friendships? – don’t let the sun go down on your wrath == deal with it! Don’t stuff it… bitterness

–       But “And do not sin” is a warning… we can easily cross over to anger that is uncontrolled and reactionary or bitter in its intent

Eph 4:27nor give place to the devil”

  • This command is to stop an action that is presently happening – when we don’t harness our anger we give place to the devil

Eph 4:28Let him who stole steal no longer, but rather let him labor, working with his hands what is good, that he may have something to give him who has need.”

  • Literally, “let the one who is stealing, steal no more”… stealing was not wholly condemned by ancient heathen opinion
  • Paul now offers a corrective answer – WORK!

Eph 4:29Let no corrupt word proceed out of your mouth, but what is good for necessary edification, that it may impart grace to the hearers.”

  • Any word that doesn’t build, is a wasted word = idle
  • Building words carry grace = empowering

Eph 4:30And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption.”

  • Again, this is a command to stop an action that is already happening – stop grieving the Holy Spirit…
  • This statement is not a general exhortation but one referring back to vs 29… idle or worthless words are repugnant to the Holy Spirit
  • The Holy Spirit is here seen as capable of feeling… He is love and love has its wrath side and its grieving side

Eph 4:31Let all bitterness, wrath, anger, clamor, and evil speaking be put away from you, with all malice.”

  • “Let” = a choice to be in control
  • Don’t give control to emotions leading to evil words and actions

Eph 4:32And be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God in Christ forgave you.”

  • This is a command to start a new behavior… become kind – they need to abandon their former to start a new… the Opposite – Kind, gracious, forgiving…
  • Again, Paul points us to follow His example (1 John 2:6)

Off with the old, On with the new – Eph 4:17-24

Off with the old, On with the new – Eph 4:17-24

Vs 17 “This I say, therefore, and testify in the Lord, that you should no longer walk as the rest of the Gentiles walk, in the futility of their mind”

  • “futility of their mind” = vain, aimless, resultless, futile… not merely the intellectually but also morally and spiritually… the description of the heathen lifestyle

Vs 18 having their understanding darkened, being alienated from the life of God, because of the ignorance that is in them, because of the blindness of their heart;”

  • darkened = blinded in their thinking, feeling, desiring
  • Alienated = they have estranged themselves from the life of God (walk of faith/love – usually by isolation from fellowship… this is a downward spiral (also found in Rom 1)
  • Blindness = hardness of heart… choices to go your way in opposition to His Way – every step away from God further calcifies the heart and darkens us with less want to come back to God = downward spiral
  • This hard heart is not comfortable in the light… therefore it runs from truth and fellowship = isolation = alientation from the life of God

Vs 19who, being past feeling, have given themselves over to lewdness, to work all uncleanness with greediness.”

  • “past feeling” = seared conscience = the deadness that supervenes when the heart is disconnect from the conscience
  • “given themselves over” = sold out to the devil
  • “lewdness” = one who acknowledges no restraints – complete surrender of self
  • “greediness” = the path that leads to this demise – that’s why Paul says that the LOVE of money (greediness) is the root of all evil… that’s why “tithing” is such a God protection from evil because tithing is our declaration and response that God is first, not money

Vs 20-21 But you have not so learned Christ, 21 if indeed you have heard Him and have been taught by Him, as the truth is in Jesus”

  • But you” This is not a question but a statement that you as Christians have met Him, heard Him and follow Him – so your walk, thinking, understanding should be different

Vs 22-24that you put off, concerning your former conduct, the old man which grows corrupt according to the deceitful lusts, 23 and be renewed in the spirit of your mind, 24 and that you put on the new man which was created according to God, in true righteousness and holiness.”

  • This is a description of the process of ‘repentance’ = come back up in your thinking
  • To come back up, you need to stop going down and turn around by thinking new higher thoughts – change your mind = come to your senses
  • The defeats and victories of life start in our thinking
  • Pr 23:7For as he thinks in his heart, so is he”
  • Rom 12:2And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God”

Eg. The Prodigal (extravagant to a degree bordering on recklessness)

  • Lk 15:11-24 To illustrate the point further, Jesus told them this story: “A man had two sons. 12 The younger son told his father, ‘I want my share of your estate now before you die.’ So his father agreed to divide his wealth between his sons.
  • 13 “A few days later this younger son packed all his belongings and moved to a distant land, and there he wasted all his money in wild living. 14 About the time his money ran out, a great famine swept over the land, and he began to starve. 15 He persuaded a local farmer to hire him, and the man sent him into his fields to feed the pigs. 16 The young man became so hungry that even the pods he was feeding the pigs looked good to him. But no one gave him anything.
  • 17 “When he finally came to his senses, he said to himself, ‘At home even the hired servants have food enough to spare, and here I am dying of hunger! 18 I will go home to my father and say, “Father, I have sinned against both heaven and you, 19 and I am no longer worthy of being called your son. Please take me on as a hired servant.”’
  • 20 “So he returned home to his father. And while he was still a long way off, his father saw him coming. Filled with love and compassion, he ran to his son, embraced him, and kissed him. 21 His son said to him, ‘Father, I have sinned against both heaven and you, and I am no longer worthy of being called your son.[a]’
  • 22 “But his father said to the servants, ‘Quick! Bring the finest robe in the house and put it on him. Get a ring for his finger and sandals for his feet. 23 And kill the calf we have been fattening. We must celebrate with a feast, 24 for this son of mine was dead and has now returned to life. He was lost, but now he is found.’ So the party began.

– Notice that the father said “quick” to his servant, “bring the finest robe…” He didn’t wait for his son to take off the old dirt and dung before He put on the new – the Father wanted to cover his son’s shame as soon as possible… Love covers!

Next Week’s Verse:  Eph 4:30 “And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption”

The DNA of Unity – Eph 4:7-16

The DNA of Unity – Eph 4:7-16

Eph 4:7 “But ​​to each one of us grace was given according to the measure of Christ’s gift.”

  • The first word is a conjunction tying what came before to this new series of thoughts – What came before is the “Calling” we each have individually
  • Grace = God’s empowering to accomplish His assignment
  • Gift = the ministry gift that we individually are to the Body of Christ
  • Measure = how much power you will need in your gifting

Eph 4:8-10 “Therefore He says: “When He ascended on high, He led captivity captive, And gave gifts to men.” (Now this, “He ascended”—what does it mean but that He also first descended into the lower parts of the earth? He who descended is also the One who ascended far above all the heavens, that He might fill all things.)”

  • Therefore = “This is why…” – Ps 68:18 – He completed the payment for our debt, set the OT prisoners [waiting in the bosom of Abraham] free, sat down at the right hand of the Father and poured out His HS to fill us to be the Church – (Eph1:23 “which is His body, the fullness of Him who fills all in all.”)
  • Everyone of us is a “gift” given by Jesus, empowered by the HS to minister/serve

Eph 4:11 “And He Himself gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, and some pastors and teachers,

  • This is a short list of ministry gifts He has given the Church – a longer list is found in 1 Cor 12:28 “And God has appointed these in the church: first apostles, second prophets, third teachers, after that miracles, then gifts of healings, helps, administrations, varieties of tongues.” — this is followed by 1 Cor 12:31 “But earnestly desire the best gifts…” = earnestly desire to be the best gift you can be – this is not to compare yourself with others – that is dealt with in prior verses… eye can’t say to the ear…
  • This is the only list put in order… the “Apostle” is the best only in that he has served in all the other offices; start where you are and be the best gift to the Body and God will continue to use you in greater ways – “Promotion comes from the Lord”
  • “Some” = not all!

Eph 4:12 “for the equipping of the saints for the work of ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ,”

  • Our goal for each of us is to help each other be better and do better… and in this way we all grow

Eph 4:13 “till we all come to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a perfect man, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ”

  • Our bottom-line goal is that we all become more like Jesus – individually and corporately – This Glorifies God!
  • In her book, “Love Revolution”, Joyce Meyer sites and example of a hurting young women that finally braved entering the doors of a church but walked away hurt and more broken than when she started because corporately and individually the church did not characterize Jesus – She then compares this to a later experience of the same girl going to a church that open-heartedly accepted, loved, served, reached out to… and her life was changed!

Eph 4:14 “that we should no longer be children, tossed to and fro and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, in the cunning craftiness of deceitful plotting”

  • Disconnected, uniformed, non-functioning Christians are like ‘small children who are an easy mark for imposters’ (Message translation)
  • There will always be voices peddling ‘get-rich-quick’ schemes and ‘short-cuts’ to success

Eph 4:15 “but, speaking the truth in love, may grow up in all things into Him who is the head—Christ—“

  • We need to be connected with strong enough relationships within the church that friends will speak the truth to us when we need to hear it – Pr 27:6 “Faithful are the wounds of a friend, But the kisses of an enemy are deceitful”

Eph 4:16 “from whom the whole body, joined and knit together by what every joint supplies, according to the effective working by which every part does its share, causes growth of the body for the edifying of itself in love.”

  • The very interesting thing about a cell within a complicated organism such as a human being, is that its individual development has been hardwired within it since conception (DNA) yet, it is wholly dependant on the environment of cells around it as to its final development.  Each individual cell has the capacity to become whatever is best for the whole body. (stem cell research)
  • The path of development each cell takes is ultimately determined by the need of the whole… its future is secure only in serving the whole… the greatness of the species is dependant on each cell’s resigning to serve the whole.
  • This is what Church is made of… the resigning attitude of each to serve the other.

How are you serving?  How are you helping others in the Church to be better and do better?  How could you serve better?  As a result, what developments have you seen in the person you are becoming?

Nxt Wk Vs – Eph 4:24 “and that you put on the new man which was created according to God, in true righteousness and holiness.”

Real Power – Eph 3:14-21

Real Power – Eph 3:14-21

Eph 3:14-21 “For this reason I bow my knees to the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ,[a] 15 from whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named, 16 that He would grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with might through His Spirit in the inner man, 17 that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; that you, being rooted and grounded in love, 18 may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the width and length and depth and height— 19 to know the love of Christ which passes knowledge; that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.

20 Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us, 21 to Him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus to all generations, forever and ever. Amen.”

Vs 14,15 –  “For this reason I bow my knees to the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ,[a] 15 from whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named,”

  • This is the continuation of the thought started in 3:1… the reason is the Unity defined in Chapter 2 regarding the Jews and Gentiles – the gospel that breaks down the walls that separate us… this good news causes Paul to go to prayer (this is the common meaning of “I bow my knees”… it doesn’t literally mean that he kneels)
  • We often go to prayer when we need something… Paul is moved by the potential he sees for the church, by the good things that God has in store for people –
  1. WHAT BRINGS YOU TO YOUR KNEES?

Vs 16 – “that He would grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with might through His Spirit in the inner man”

  • “the riches of His glory” = the superabundant measure that is immeasurable
  • “strengthened with might” comes through His Spirit “IN” the inner man – most are looking for His strength and power to come from without but we are conduits where it comes from within!

Vs 17-19that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; that you, being rooted and grounded in love, 18 may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the width and length and depth and height— 19 to know the love of Christ which passes knowledge; that you may be filled with all the fullness of God”

  • The Results of Holy Spirit strengthening is LOVE that is non-comprehendible and uncontainable
  • Love = God, Power, Action
  • “With all the saints” = can’t be known alone
  • Filled with God – don’t know if your full till you overflow
  1. WHERE DOES YOUR POWER COME FROM?

Vs 20Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us”

  • AMP  “Now to Him Who, by (in consequence of) the [action of His] power that is at work within us, is able to [carry out His purpose and] do superabundantly, far over and above all that we [dare] ask or think [infinitely beyond our highest prayers, desires, thoughts, hopes, or dreams]—“
  • God’s Word Translation  “With God’s power working in us, God can do much, much more than anything we can ask or imagine.”
  • With God, we can do beyond! – Phil 4:13
  • Mother Theresa once wanted to build an orphanage, but she had only three shillings, and someone jeeringly said to her, “What can you do to build an orphanage with only three shillings?” “Theresa with three shillings,” was the answer, “can do nothing, but with three shillings and with God to help her there is nothing that Theresa cannot do!”

3. HOW BIG IS YOUR GOD?

Vs 21to Him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus to all generations, forever and ever. Amen.”

The bottom line purpose for all that we do is to bring Him glory = and He has chosen to show His glory through His Church to all generations

The Secret Revealed – Eph 3:1-13

The Secret Revealed – Eph 3:1-13

Eph 3:1-13 “For this reason I, Paul, the prisoner of Christ Jesus for you Gentiles— 2 if indeed you have heard of the dispensation of the grace of God which was given to me for you, 3 how that by revelation He made known to me the mystery (as I have briefly written already, 4 by which, when you read, you may understand my knowledge in the mystery of Christ), 5 which in other ages was not made known to the sons of men, as it has now been revealed by the Spirit to His holy apostles and prophets: 6 that the Gentiles should be fellow heirs, of the same body, and partakers of His promise in Christ through the gospel, 7 of which I became a minister according to the gift of the grace of God given to me by the effective working of His power. 8 To me, who am less than the least of all the saints, this grace was given, that I should preach among the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ, 9 and to make all see what is the fellowship[a] of the mystery, which from the beginning of the ages has been hidden in God who created all things through Jesus Christ;[b] 10 to the intent that now the manifold wisdom of God might be made known by the church to the principalities and powers in the heavenly places, 11 according to the eternal purpose which He accomplished in Christ Jesus our Lord, 12 in whom we have boldness and access with confidence through faith in Him. 13 Therefore I ask that you do not lose heart at my tribulations for you, which is your glory.”

Vs 1 “For this reason I, Paul, the prisoner of Christ Jesus for you Gentiles”

  • Because of Paul’s call to the Gentiles, he prays… continued vs 14 – I bow my knees (next week) – vss 2-13 is parenthetical

Vs 2-9“if indeed you have heard of the dispensation of the grace of God which was given to me for you, 3 how that by revelation He made known to me the mystery (as I have briefly written already, 4 by which, when you read, you may understand my knowledge in the mystery of Christ), 5 which in other ages was not made known to the sons of men, as it has now been revealed by the Spirit to His holy apostles and prophets: 6 that the Gentiles should be fellow heirs, of the same body, and partakers of His promise in Christ through the gospel, 7 of which I became a minister according to the gift of the grace of God given to me by the effective working of His power. 8 To me, who am less than the least of all the saints, this grace was given, that I should preach among the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ, 9 and to make all see what is the fellowship[a] of the mystery, which from the beginning of the ages has been hidden in God who created all things through Jesus Christ”

  • Paul confirms that he has been entrusted with the grace/power to bring this good news to the Gentiles
  • This being a mystery that was revealed to him by the Holy Spirit (1 Cor 11 – Communion – words in red = this revelation is as good as Jesus in person)
  • God’s commissioned process of communicating this vital revelation was by Pauls’ writing… there is no other way – The Word
  • “unsearchable riches of Christ” = the anointed one and His anointing – Lk 16:1-13 “He who is faithful in what is least is faithful also in much; and he who is unjust in what is least is unjust also in much. 11 Therefore if you have not been faithful in the unrighteous mammon, who will commit to your trust the true riches? 12 And if you have not been faithful in what is another man’s, who will give you what is your own? 13 “No servant can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or else he will be loyal to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and mammon.”

Vs 10“to the intent that now the manifold wisdom of God might be made known by the church to the principalities and powers in the heavenly places”

  • The Church thus becomes the university for angels, and each saint a professor. Only through the Church can the angels come to an adequate comprehension of the grace of God… the mysteries of redemption.
  • I Peter 1:12 “To them (angels) it was revealed that, not to themselves, but to us they were ministering the things which now have been reported to you through those who have preached the gospel to you by the Holy Spirit sent from heaven—things which angels desire to look into.”
  • The mysteries of the good news have also been hidden from the fallen angels
  • 1 Cor 2:8 “None of the rulers of this age understood it, for if they had, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory.”

Vs 11-13 – “according to the eternal purpose which He accomplished in Christ Jesus our Lord, 12 in whom we have boldness and access with confidence through faith in Him. 13 Therefore I ask that you do not lose heart at my tribulations for you, which is your glory.”

  • This gospel is not God’s reaction to mankind’s bad choices but has been God’s eternal plan
  • It was ONLY through Jesus that our redemption could be secured
  • We have BOLDNESS to enter his presence
  • It is Paul’s privilege to go through tribulations for the gospel

Why This Secret Needed to be Revealed

1. This Secret goes against our natural conditioning

  • Pavlovian Conditioning = every effect has a cause – “do good, get good”
  • People want to blame a natural cause for a natural effect… this gives us the false security that we can always change the effect by controlling the cause = the need to feel in control… the Gospel asks us to trust God is in control and what He says will be – completely disconnected to our performance
  • Paul’s gospel of grace took the controls out of our hands and made us dependent on the Holy Spirit’s leading
  • The Good News takes down the walls that separate us = disarms the comparing and judging mentality… People like to be able to measure and compare themselves to others
  • People often get their identity from what other’s have done (abused,  bullied, scorned…) according to the Good News our identity comes from what Jesus has done
  • People want to be in control of their security… not having to trust God alone but able to work for their acceptance and positioning – ??? insurance, “taking the ‘if’ out of life”
  • Paul’s
  • Paul was persecuted because he proclaimed the good news that we were all made One (the Church) in Christ and through Christ… it wasn’t so much that the gentiles were saved as much as they were equal and one with the Jews (us against them)… It will cost you to minister the Good News

2. This Secret was hidden in Christ

  • We were never to be separate from Christ but our very existence was in Him and through Him – Col 3:3 “For you died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God.” – Our Life is Revealing the All-Time Greatest Secret = HIS GRACE!
  • Angels could not know this because they had no entrance into the revelation/throne room of God… only we, through the blood of Jesus have access… come boldly into His presence/revelation (Heb 4:16; Jn 16:13)
  • Anthony’s tweet… “When I look at Jesus, I see my Father, when my Father looks at Jesus, He sees me”
  • In Him and through Him we are equal, more than enough, more than conquerors, strong, loving, healed, prosperous, able, free, forgiven, redeemed, righteous, new, holy, protected, blessed, wise, bold, fearless, called, equipped, positioned, chosen, loved, accepted, destined, sealed, included, empowered, graced, co-heirs and saved.

Next Weeks Faith Verse – Eph 3:20 “Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us”