FIRE - Where There’s Smoke (Easter) #1
Opening Scripture: John 19:28-30
Planted - “Fruit where you are, Roots where you’re Growing.”
3 Keys to “Roots” (Time, Talking, Tithe)
- Attending - 3 Sunday’s per month. National statistics show active church attendance is 1.8 Sundays a month.
- Inviting - Inviting means Invested. If we won’t invite someone it is because of one of 2 reasons: A Fruit Issue or A Root Issue. We are not Producing or We are not Planted.
- Invest - Time (Attending), Talent (Fruit or Inviting), Tithe (Financially)
Where there is smoke, there is _______!
FIRE - We are in a series called “Fire.” The thing I love most about Firemen is that they are not scared of fire or not caught off guard by fire. In fact, just the opposite is true, they are ready and prepared for fire. The difference between Firemen and the everyday person is the “prepared” state in which they live.
I believe God is doing more than looking for people to make a decision for salvation. I believe he is looking to create a “Prepared People.”
To understand what Jesus said in John 19:29 “… he said, “It is finished,” and he bowed his head and gave up his spirit.” we have to understand what was declared at His birth in the Gospel of Luke.
“31 And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus. 32 He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. And the Lord God will give to him the throne of his father David, 33 and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of his kingdom there will be no end.”
Therefore “It is finished,” is not just the ending of the rule of one kingdom but the establishing of a superior one.
The purpose of what Jesus accomplished, the reason we celebrate Easter, wasn’t just for an ending but a start, a new beginning.
Jesus’ 3 year ministry was a work of preparation.
Jesus’ journey through Holy Week was a work of preparation.
Jesus serving at the Last Supper was work of preparation.
Jesus’ abused and beaten body leading to the cross was a work of preparation.
Jesus, as He hung on the cross and declared “It is Finished”, was a work of preparation.
Jesus’ 3 days in the grave was a work of preparation.
That first Easter morning, as the sun began to rise, Mary went to the tomb and saw an angel sitting on the stone was a work of celebration.
Jesus’ 40 days on earth after the resurrection and finally the accession was a work of preparation.
I mention Jesus declared “It is Finished.”
What was “Finished” - It was more than the changing of an era from BC to AD. The blood of Jesus that was shed on the cross put an end to the power of sin. When Jesus said “It is finished.” He was declaring all the requirements of God were fulfilled.
Today if you will put your trust in Jesus Christ and what He did for us on the cross, if we will put our trust in Jesus’ resurrection you’ll be Born Again. Today we can say “It Is Finished!”
Firemen, after they get out of the Fire Academy actively go looking for a place to put their training and preparation into practice. They want to make a difference. They want to help those deadly situations. They want to Save Lives!
This mentality is so different than people after they get saved. We encounter Jesus, get saved, and just want to go to Heaven. But if all that was just mentioned, all that Jesus accomplished, was a work of preparation we should be a prepared people ready to step into the promise of God.
Remember, all that Jesus did, was for a work of preparation.
Now “Preparation for what?” is the real question.
It is the preparation that the Prophet Joel in the Old Testament declared to us.
“28 “And it shall come to pass afterward, that I will pour out my Spirit on all flesh; your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your old men shall dream dreams, and your young men shall see visions. 29 Even on the male and female servants in those days I will pour out my Spirit.
It is the preparation for what John the Baptist said Jesus would give us.
John the Baptist said “I baptize you with water for repentance, but he who is coming after me (Jesus) is mightier than I, whose sandals I am not worthy to carry. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire.
It is the preparation in the last words of Jesus himself, spoken in Acts 1, to empower us to accomplish Matthew 28:19-20 known as The Great Commission.
“4 And while staying with them he ordered them not to depart from Jerusalem, but to wait for the promise of the Father, which, he said, ‘you heard from me; 5 for John baptized with water, but you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now.’”
The Gospel: The term “Gospel” means Good News
The Gospel of Salvation: The Gospel (Good News) of Salvation is focused on getting people saved and going to heaven.
This is so vital. This Easter Weekend we did not do 4 Services, Spanish Translation, Live Stream to see how many people we could reach. We did all of this to reach “the one”. That One is you. You are that important, special and Loved.
The Gospel of the Kingdom: The Gospel of Salvation is just for you. The Gospel of the Kingdom includes you, a prepared you, because it is about so much more than you.
The Gospel of the Kingdom is focused on the transformation of lives, cities, and nations.
This occurs when “Prepared People” understand that they were created to make a difference. We want to help those deadly situations. We want to Save Lives! We make that difference when we bring Heavenly Realities into Earthly Situations.
We must not confuse our Destination gained at Salvation one day with our Assignment of the Kingdom today.
The Gospel of Salvation begins with Jesus. The Gospel of the Kingdom begins with Fire.
Illustration: Matches - Strike a Match
The Cross was the match but the resurrection was the power that started the Fire. Without the resurrection the cross was just another crucifixion.
But the Resurrection was the “Preparing of the People” for the Kingdom.
I started this message with the phrase “Where there is smoke, there is _______!” Here is you opportunity to be set ablaze.
Today how will you respond to the Good News?
1. Some of us may need the Gospel of Salvation to gain our destination, Heaven.
2. Many of us need the Gospel of the Kingdom. The Gospel of the Kingdom is focused on the transformation of lives, cities, and nations.
It is done with the Fire of God.
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