The Radical Costs of Being a Christian
Week beginning 3rd May 2020
Roger and I have been reading a book together called “Insurgence” by Frank Viola. The book raises questions like:
Is our allegiance to Jesus Christ greater than that of those who are radical terrorists?
Have we lost the explosive, earth-shaking gospel of the kingdom that Jesus, Paul, and the other apostles preached?
Have we exchanged this dynamic, titanic, living gospel for a gospel of religious duty or permissiveness and “easy-believism”?
Jesus’ words about the Kingdom of God are definitely counter-cultural, are we as Christians – as Followers of Jesus - going far enough? We often sing the song, “Seek ye first the kingdom of God and His righteousness” based on Matthew 6:33. But what does it really mean to “seek the kingdom of God first”? How does the kingdom of God redefine our relationships? Jesus answers this question in these passages. • The radical cost of the kingdom in relationship to family: Matthew 10:34–39; Mark 3:31–35; Luke 9:57–62; 12:49–53; 18:29–30. • The radical cost of the kingdom in relationship to money and possessions: Matthew 6:19–24; 19:16–30; Mark 10:17–31; Luke 12:13–34; 14:33; 16:13, 19–31; 18:18–30.1 • Counting the cost that the kingdom demands: Luke 14:25–35 • The radical cost of the kingdom, according to Paul: 1 Corinthians 7:29–35 All of the above demands are humanly impossible to meet, but they give us the standard of God’s kingdom as it relates to our natural attachments. For the willing, God supplies what He requires. That’s called grace. Also have a look at this video of Francis Chan, an American Pastor, giving a message about The Simple Gospel https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y3Bn7ihYyvw Take some time over the coming week to look up these passages for yourself, reflect on them and what they are saying to us in today’s world and in a post lockdown world. Psalm 33 this last week has been hugely uplifting. Go and have a read of this one; it's one we can use to praise our God, maybe try writing it out. Use drawing, painting or other creative ways to envision this psalm for yourself. We have nearly finished decorating the two bedrooms in the house, and are going to start working on the kitchen this next week. We’ve been enjoying some fantastic walks this week. On Saturday we walked towards Woody Bay along the old carriage track through the woods of Lee Abbey and joined the coast path around Crock Pits. It was a great walk and we were truly tired when we returned home. We have had several phones calls with some of you this week. It’s great to hear from you about your news. Prayer Points:
Alan Hawkins family at this time where a family member has been quite unwell (not C-19)
Pat and Dave Moore – Pat has returned to work this past week
For those who are being “shielded” and unable to get out
Those who work in care homes, particularly Gosia and the staff at Garson House
For the local Food Bank and the volunteers ( including Lyn and myself)
There are some great suggestions for prayer here on the 24/7 Prayer channel
This week’s playlist on YouTube
Have a blessed week