Pastor Brian K. Brown
This year God fixed it that this year’s Independence Day would fall on a Sunday. Long before we celebrated Independence Day, God created an independence that we might be liberated from sin, from its power, presence, practices, and penalties. Christ died so that we could be brought out of darkness and live in God’s marvelous light. Independence was a thought long before nations decided to break with nations and live lives in an independent way.
The text is a reminder that Jesus is in his final phase of his earthly life and ministry. While he has been privileged to have 30 birthdays, he acknowledges that he is soon to make his way to Jerusalem where the last days of his earthly life will take place, but he’s not concerned about what will transpire in his life on earth but concerned about what life will be as a result of his willingness to offer himself as a sacrifice, what the world could become as a result of his being a part of all of us. We should take a page out of Jesus’ life and recognize that God has gifted us so that our lives could be impactful and insightful, and beneficial to others.
Pastor Brown present three things we should remember from the text. The first: We should remember whom we serve from verses 27-30. God is asking, through Christ, who do men say that I am, and various answers were given. The question is then asked, whom do you say I am. The majority of the disciples didn’t have an answer, but Peter spoke up to say, ‘thou art the Christ’. Jesus says don’t tell anyone. As we go forth in life we need to remember that we serve God who is bigger than everything else. We need to remember this because sometimes we serve our own causes and fail to serve God our creator. Are we serving ourselves more than others? Life is sweeter when we remember to serve God by serving others.
The second thing to remember is remember what is important from verses 31-33. Jesus is the model example in the text. He showed us that it wasn’t important for him to make a name for himself, but to look out for those whose names are not known. It was important for him not to take care of himself but those who aren’t considered somebody. We need to do what’s important, promote others, lift others, and take care of others. Jesus was willing to suffer many things even to his death on Calvary and three days later God remembered him. If we spend our days helping others, God will help us. Could it be that if we never help others God won’t help us?
The final item to remember from verses 34-38: We should remember to pay the price. For every action there is a consequence. God suggests to us that he will not force us to do what he wants us to do. But whatever we decide to do there is a price to pay. What good is living the best of life with material things when we reach life’s end and don’t possess what we ultimately need? The life we live on earth is only a steppingstone to the real life that follows. What we do in this life will either help us or hinder us in the life to come. As Jesus said what good is it to gain the whole world and lose what’s important. Our lives are better because Jesus gave his all for us, so we should use our lives helping others.
On the second Sunday School services will begin at 10:20 a.m. and the worship service will begin at 10:45 a.m. in the sanctuary. The services will also be live streamed on YouTube @ St Mark MBC and bible study on Wednesdays @ 7:00 p.m.