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Posts Tagged ‘Peter’

No Plan B

January 21, 2011 Leave a comment

“Relevance is a consequence of kingdom living, not a cause.” Rick McKinley

 

How did Jesus get things done?  He was the master organizer and the ultimate project analyst.  He had a plan…The Plan…and 2000 years later that Plan is still going strong.  If we would take a few minutes to peak into His Plan and how He is accomplishing it, we might see that we all have a part to play in this Master Plan.

 

First we need to know what the plan is for.

 

Goal:  Everyone has the opportunity for full forgiveness so they can be in Heaven forever with their Creator.

 

Adam and Eve had no clue what pain or time or frustration or sin was until they were hip deep in it.  They were in a place where they were wholly with God, face to face and hand in hand.  Jesus is the final piece of a huge strategy to get us back in a position so this can happen for each one of us.  Sin must be done away with…evil defeated.

 

Jesus begins his ministry around the age of 30 after His baptism and a short time of temptation in the wilderness.  In the passage, we read of Jesus beginning by preaching about repentance in Galilee.  My guess is that most people in Galilee had heard the news about Jesus preaching, healing, and forgiving many.  Obviously, lots of people were accepting Him as the one the prophets had talked about.  He had instant fame by human standards.  His message was not just popular though…it made sense if He was who He said He was.  It made perfect sense to the first men that Jesus approached, because when He said, “Follow me,” they did just that.  His message had been clear.  He was who they were looking for.

 

Given that, Andrew, Simon, James and John’s friends probably thought this a huge deal…rather than a weird thing they were doing.  It made sense.  Their decision to follow made sense with the message they had heard from their forefathers and Jesus’ own lips.  Jesus’ message was understood.  It lined straight up with what they had been told since they were little boys.  Thus, if this was really God’s own Son…why NOT follow him?!

 

Jesus’ plan wasn’t really His.  It was His Father’s (John 5:19)…and He said that He can only do what God the Father was doing.  This movement started long before He was born in human skin on planet Earth.  The plan for salvation began when God’s first children walked away from Him.  Therefore, God is not only clear about this plan through His Son, Jesus, He is very un-changing all the way through the Bible.  He’s been committed to this plan for a very long time.  Jesus is committed to this plan as well.  He calls us to join Him and commit ourselves to the plan too.

 

This is a plan that has been clear since the beginning.  Now…not all of it has been revealed since the start…but each step was clear.  Examples:  “Abraham, you’re going to have a kid,” “Joseph, you’re going to be OK…you’re one of mine,” “Moses, just go back to Egypt and help me free my kids,” “David, one from your family is going to be The One,” “Micah, tell everyone that He’s coming …specifically to Bethlehem,” “Mary, you’re going to be a mommy,” “Zachariah, your soon to be son will be like the one called Elijah,”  “Hey shepherds, He’s here…go check it out,” “Yes, Herod, be very afraid,” ….and on and on and on.

 

Each one of these people had a point of either committing to truth or walking away from it.  Truth stands…it was their decision to mark their part of the story with the rest or not.  And here we are today.  We’ve heard Truth.  It is consistent with what the Bible says from beginning to end.  It is also consistent with much of human written history…go figure.  So what do we do?

 

We have a choice to make.  Do we join this earth age movement, which hell can’t stop, or do we … well you fill in the blank.  From my perspective, this makes sense.  Life is short.  We are privileged to be invited to have a part to play in this plan.  Like those first disciples said, “Let’s go!”

 

Sometimes we ask ourselves if we’re being relevant as a church family or even individually as a disciple.  I love the first quote by Rick McKinley from his book The Beautiful Mess, “Relevance is a consequence of kingdom living, not a cause.”  We can have a part … just live like we’re really part of this Kingdom plan.

 

I like the way Manafest puts it in the band’s new song No Plan B, “I know that this road is my destiny, I’ve got to stick to the plan, cause there’s no plan B.”  Jesus has only a plan A because it is working and it is perfect and it is from His Father.  We don’t need a plan B.  Only plan A will work.  Are you in?

 

ed

 

Grow Questions:

  • What holds us back from simply saying “Yes” like Peter, Andrew, James and John?
  • Is our/your message “flock worthy”?  (See Matthew 4:23-25)
  • How do you live this message daily in your schedule wherever you are?
  • Does your daily message sound/look like you follow someone who came back from the dead?

 

My Life Can Change

March 19, 2010 Leave a comment

Matt 26:36-27:10, John 21:15-19


This week, we,re focusing on the two circumstances of Peter and Judas. First, both denied Christ. Judas denied Him by turning him into the authorities…obviously stating that this Jesus was not the Christ, but a bother to society…or Judas was just money hungry. Either way, Judas turned his back on Christ. Peter, 3 times, told people that he didn’t know Jesus. After the third time, Jesus turned from where he was standing and caught Peter’s stare. Peter’s guilt overcame him.

Now, we have to outcomes to these two decisions. Judas felt so guilty that he threw the money back to the priests saying that he should not have done this thing. He then, overcome with grief, committed suicide. Peter, well he stuck around. He was probably near when the crucifixion took place, but then quickly, along with the other disciples, locked himself in a house. At the word that Jesus tomb was empty, He and John ran to the place of burial to find it was empty. Some time later, Jesus was eating with his disciples and asked Peter if he loved Him….3 times. Significant? Yes.

Two men. Two different circumstances. Two different outcomes. Judas could not hang on to what he had done. Peter thought there might be hope for forgiveness.

Where are you? When you make bad choices, and you know it, do you ask for forgiveness and repent? Change is possible and a clean conscience is possible as well. Both come through Jesus. As we lead the people of this church family, will others see how we deal with bad judgment and choices? Will they see us holding on to Jesus and asking for forgiveness? Will they see us in true repentance…meaning that we do a U-Turn with our behavior? We can learn all about forgiveness and repentance, but until we experience it or see it in someone else’s life, we’ll never see it for what it truly is in Jesus.

Peter

March 19, 2010 Leave a comment

Mark 8:27-9:1

Two hydrogen atoms walk into a bar. One says, “I’ve lost my electron. “
The other says, “Are you sure?” The first replies, “Yes, I’m positive…”

Peter had come to a point of positively knowing that Jesus was really the Christ, but he wasn’t sure what it all meant and what part he was to play. It took him a few years and many mistakes to figure it out.

I’m positive that all of us can find something inside of us that is like something inside of Peter. We remember from last week that Andrew went to Peter, after having met Jesus, and said that he had found the One they had been looking for. We can safely assume that Andrew and Peter, brothers, had been schooled in the Old Testament prophesies telling of the coming Messiah.

Jesus had motioned to Andrew and Peter to leave their boat and come follow Him (Mark 1:16). Soon thereafter, Peter (Simon) watches as Jesus comes into his home and heals his mother-in-law. Peter knows. But if we remember, Peter has great times in life and horrible failures as well.

Jesus’ name is mentioned most in the Gospels; next is Simon Peter. There are more recorded interactions and conversations between Peter and Jesus than between anyone else. There are more stories of success and failure concerning Simon Peter than any of the other 11 disciples. Peter is a major figure in the Gospels and becomes a major figure in the birth of the Church in the book of Acts.

Just a few things to note about Peter. He followed Christ immediately. He witnessed many miracles. He rebuked Jesus. Jesus called him “Satan.” Jesus called him Simon, yet said he would be called ‘Peter’, a rock. He second guesses Jesus. He calls Jesus ‘The Christ.’ He denies Jesus 3 times. He tell Jesus he loves Him 3 times. Matthew 10 lists him as “the first” in naming the 12 disciples. He walks on water. He sinks in the water. He’s inquisitive when Jesus tells parables. He wants to please Jesus. He falls asleep when praying with Jesus in the garden prior to crucifixion. He admits he is a sinful man after witnessing a dramatic miracle. He viewed himself as a body guard for Jesus. He told Jesus he would die for Him if it meant he could go where He was going. Peter struggled and had great success. Believed and doubted. But when it all counted…He believed and spoke and acted with the Spirit that Jesus had given him. Can we say the same about ourselves?

Ups and downs and ups and downs. Peter’s life is not unlike ours. However, Peter finally put all the pieces of the puzzle together after Jesus’ resurrection. Everything made sense. There would now be less second guessing. Less hesitation…if Peter ever hesitated. He would now experience more power and more love and more peace. It took 3 years of mentoring from Jesus for the picture to become clear to Peter. And when it finally did, he was on the steps of the Temple telling all of Israel that was willing to listen that Christ was really God’s Son, and that they needed Him in their life. From there belief in Jesus spread like wild-fire everywhere. And here we sit today, at our computers, reading and studying because Peter sounded off that because of the resurrection, Jesus is who He said He was, and that we have a chance for eternal life with Him.

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