I really enjoyed Ken Fish‘s message last weekend. I believe he spoke some very important words to us as a church. This Sunday I will attempt to connect some dots for us as a church. See also my interpretation of the Beatitudes found in Matthew 5. I see them as stepping stones – one is a kind of prerequisite for the next…
The Cycle of Revival
- Outpouring/renewal/infilling (Acts 2:1-13; 4:23-31)
- Fellowship/prayer (Acts 2:42-47; 4:32-37; 5:1-11)
- Healing/Signs & Wonders (Acts 3:1-11; 4:31; 5:12-16
- Preaching/proclamation (Acts 2:14-40; 3:11-26; 5:14, 19-25, 26-32)
- Persecution (Acts 4:11-23; 5:17-18, 33-42)
Five Key Takeaways
- Our greatest strengths must be cleansed/purged just like your greatest weaknesses. Submit to it. Offer it.
- Don’t hold back
- God is committed to having a church living in transparency and purity. He will expose hypocrisy and shouldn’t be surprised (or offended or stumbled) by this.
- A pure church can be an empowered church, but an empowered church must be pure. No purity = no power.
- Persecution follows power.
Here’s a question to consider: What’s the connection/s between The Cycle of Revival, The 5 Key Takeaways and the Beatitudes????
THE BEATITUDES: A LIFELINE TO SPIRITUAL FORMATION
As we move toward a Sacred Assembly, let’s make good use of the Beatitudes as we prepare our hearts to be honest, humble, and yielding to God’s plans. The Beatitudes (Mat. 5:3-12) describe eight qualities that characterize the life of Jesus Christ, and therefore our life in Jesus Christ. Following is an overview of how one unfolds into the next…
- Blessed are the poor in spirit… To enter into God’s kingdom, we are invited to admit that we have come to the end of ourselves and are in need of God’s help and care.
- Blessed are those who mourn… As we are honest about our own sinful tendencies there will be a transforming grief, or repentance, that surfaces – not only for our own lives, but also for the injustice, greed, and suffering that grips our world.
- Blessed are the meek…Grieving over sin and suffering places us in a humble learning posture (disciple means learner).
- Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness…Spiritual hunger and thirst is the desire to be empty of those things that don’t reflect God, and initiates a deep longing for wholeness in our lives.
- Blessed are the merciful…As we receive God’s mercy we begin to give mercy – to ourselves and to others.
- Blessed are the pure in heart… Mercy cleanses our heart and restores purity to our lives.
- Blessed are the peacemakers… Purity gives way to a personal serenity and peacefulness. Peace is not the absence of conflict, but the absence of anxiety in the midst of inevitable conflict – and when others encounter it, they want it too.
- Blessed are the persecuted… Living life from a kingdom of God perspective will place us in conflict with those that oppose it (often times it’s “religious” people!).