Sermons and Classes
CLASSES: Our adult class next Sunday will continue its journey into the book of Acts. We have had lots of discussion as we have studiued this book carefully for over half a year now. Knowing about the 1st century church with its problems and solutions is important, so come and join our discussion. Our class with Richard Hoyt on the life of Christ continues tonight.
FAIR IS A MONTH AWAY: Five weeks from today we will be setting up our fair booth at the Cass County Fair. We are going to repeat last year's exhibit on “Dandy Designs” with a few modifications. The booth got a lot of interest last year, and we will be having a special children's question board in addition to last year's adult boards. Be sure to save July 28 – August 2 to work the exhibit. We had a visitor recently from last summer's booth, and people have e mailed us wanting to know if we are doing the same booth this year, so we do have interest in the community.
SENIOR DEVO will not be held in July. There is an announcement about it on the bulletin board.
INTRODUCTION — Luke 16:19 – 31
A. This is a parable, not a history.I. LESSON 1 — WE WILL KNOW OUR CONDITION AT DEATH.
1. “Lazarus” means “without help.”B. Three lessons come from studying the “rich man.”
2. Tradition says the rich man was “Dives.”
3. Abraham is not God and is not our judge.
4. You cannot see heaven from hell.
A. Our first conscious thought after death is where we are.II. LESSON 2 — DIVES HAD A CONCERN FOR HIS BROTHERS.
1. Dives does not contest his condemnation.B. Our actions reflect our knowledge.
a. He created his own hell.2. Verse 23 — “Lifted up his eyes being in torment.”
3. He knew he had no options — he is helpless.
a. Verse 24 — "Send Lazarus."
b. Verse 26 — There is no escape from hell.
1. Luke 12:47 – 48
a. Look what Dives could have done.2. How are you using what God has given you?
A. Verse 27 — I do not want any of my family to be lost. Do you?III. LESSON 3 — THE RICH MAN KNEW GOD'S RULES
B. I see what sin does — Galatians 6:7.
C. Are we willing to sacrifice to see loved ones saved?
A. Remember this is the Old Testament — Verses 29 – 31.
B. Dives wants a spectacular salvation (verse 30).
1. Abraham says spectacular does not work.C. Think of the examples — Paul, the jailer, Lydia, Eunuch
2. Your salvation is not a blast in the night.
THE BACK PAGE
“WHAT KIND OF A SHOW ARE YOU PUTTING ON?”
One of the things that I have learned in recent months is that just being on the property opens the door for dialogue with neighbors and people in the community. This past Thursday I was mowing near the driveway to the house behind our building when the man of the house came out to get his trash container. This eventually resulted in a long conversation about his background and interests — and showed we have a lot in common. He has a Down Syndrome son and I have a son who is multiply handicapped including being mentally challenged. He loves fishing and so do! (he's just better at it than I am). I hope we will get to know him better in the months and years ahead, but he is a neat guy and our discussion was friendly and productive.
While I was using a weed eater around the sign, a car pulled up and a young man leaned out and yelled, “What kind of a show are you putting on this Sunday?” I shouted back my title for the sermon (Some Things in Hell that Ought to Be in the Church) and followed that by saying he should come and see what hell is about. That caused him to make an obscene gesture with his hand and he threw an empty whiskey bottle at me as they cut across the yard and out of our driveway.
I think there is a good lesson in these two exchanges. The way we build good relationships in the community is by getting to know people better. There is an old saying that goes, “You get more flies with honey than you do with vinegar.” My response to the show question was not a very good response. What I should have said was, “We plan to help people who don't have enough to eat.” What kind of response would that have produced? It is hard to say, but I am pretty sure it would not have been tire tracks across the yard and skid marks in the driveway from them peeling out.
This past week the sign was about smiling and what smiles produce. I suspect Jesus did a lot of smiling and no shouting as he reached out to the lost of his day.
— John Clayton