As Jesus gives ‘The Sermon on The Mount’, He and His disciples, they ‘stood together’…

How are you with the idea of ‘Standing with Jesus’? Standing with Jesus means taking on HIS humility, HIS grace and HIS ways. When we abide with Him, walk with Him, learn from Him: we store up good things that come from Him, good things we can then give to each other! This is growing ‘The Heart of Christ’: Thinking, Feeling & Acting Like Christ! This is the goal of our discipleship, that we may glorify God in living our lives for HIM!

Our membership covenant is designed to encapsulate ‘Jesus’ Words’. We are to not just hear them but put them into practice: here @ Midtown we have committed to! Knowing what we are called to, committing to it and then not doing it is dangerous. Jesus says it will result in complete destruction…carefully consider violating that

37 “Do not judge, and you will not be judged. Do not condemn, and you will not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven. 38 Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.”

  • Continuation of the ideas about Christ-based relationship from last week
  • This pertains to interpersonal relationships (not about you & God)
  • The key is to be concerned with YOUR part, not anyone else
  • Doing it God’s way get you rewards only God can give
  • Grace over law!

39 He also told them this parable: “Can the blind lead the blind? Will they not both fall into a pit? 40 The student is not above the teacher, but everyone who is fully trained will be like their teacher.

  • Parable is to drive home the point about self awareness and self development
  • Until you have been a good student you are blind, (no good to the blind)
  • Embracing the ‘training’ / discipleship needed before trying to be a leader
  • Big picture of the concept then illustration

41 “Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye? 42 How can you say to your brother, ‘Brother, let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when you yourself fail to see the plank in your own eye?

  • It is meant to be extreme to show us how we lack self awareness, all of us
  • Your ability to help others is regulated by your own spiritual & emotional health
  • Your credibility is suspect when you try to help from a place without humility

You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.

  • Without seeing your own errors & shortcoming you are no way fit to lead others
  • Dealing with my problems, being teachable & humble enables God to use me!
  • Clarity to help others comes from working out your own issues
  • What makes you think people can’t see that plank?

43 “No good tree bears bad fruit, nor does a bad tree bear good fruit. 44 Each tree is recognized by its own fruit. People do not pick figs from thorn-bushes, or grapes from briers.

  • The reality of WHO you are & WHAT you are will be proven
  • We all know what is good (figs or grapes) and that is what we want (not thorns)

45 A good man brings good things out of the good stored up in his heart, and an evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in his heart. For the mouth speaks what the heart is full of.

  • What you store up in your heart is your ’emotional relational’ reality (worldview)
  • That reality colors everything you say & do; you can’t really fool people for long
  • What is in your emotional, relational self (heart) comes

46 “Why do you call me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ and do not do what I say? 47 As for everyone who comes to me and hears my words and puts them into practice, I will show you what they are like.

  • Calling Jesus ‘Lord’ is not the same as living your life like He truly is ‘LORD’
  • Jesus positive example of how we are to structure our lives (priorities / time)
  • Words without application are WORTHLESS

48 They are like a man building a house, who dug down deep and laid the foundation on rock. When a flood came, the torrent struck that house but could not shake it, because it was well built.

  • Digging deep into WHO and WHAT Jesus the Christ is (The Rock)
  • The structure of a life based on the Biblical Truth of the Gospel of Jesus Christ
  • This life of Discipleship can stand up to whatever life throws at it
  • Not ‘If’ the flood came, but rather ‘When’ it came (it’s coming!)

49 But the one who hears my words and does not put them into practice is like a man who built a house on the ground without a foundation. The moment the torrent struck that house, it collapsed and its destruction was complete.”

  • Here is the other way people go: exposed to the truth but unaffected by it
  • The foolishness of thinking a house has no need for a foundation!
  • The destruction being complete has an eternal aspect to it

Application Questions:

How can you be more grace giving, and less judgmental in your relationships?

Can you ask someone you trust to tell you if you have reoccurring ‘Plank Eye’?

What is your specific & intentional plan of how you are going to store up good things in your heart?

What are some specifics of Biblical Christian Theology you are building the foundation of your life on?

What are your weak areas of putting Christ’s words into practice consistently?

It is important to connect the choosing of the twelve to the message Jesus gives them. Those who identify fully as disciples are those Jesus designates to send, and they are to go into the world and show it a different way to live. It is a life marked by sacrifice, rejection and others focus; life lived by the power of total association with Lord Jesus Christ. The ‘Twelve’ set the pattern were are to follow…what we are TO BE: transformed priorities, attitudes and actions.

Luke 6:12-36
12 One of those days Jesus went out to a mountainside to pray, and spent the night praying to God. 13 When morning came, he called his disciples to him and chose twelve of them, whom he also designated apostles: 14 Simon (whom he named Peter), his brother Andrew, James, John, Philip, Bartholomew, 15 Matthew, Thomas, James son of Alphaeus, Simon who was called the Zealot, 16 Judas son of James, and Judas Iscariot, who became a traitor.
This scene takes place during this early time of traveling and preaching
He pulled and ‘All Nighter’…
He need to have undivided fellowship with The Father
The significance of choosing ‘Twelve’ (12 tribes of Israel)
Rag-tag group of ‘Non-Elites’
Why choose such people?
17 He went down with them and stood on a level place. A large crowd of his disciples was there and a great number of people from all over Judea, from Jerusalem, and from the coastal region around Tyre and Sidon, 18 who had come to hear him and to be healed of their diseases. Those troubled by impure spirits were cured, 19 and the people all tried to touch him, because power was coming from him and healing them all.
He ‘Stood’ with them, they ‘Stood’ with Him (Total Association)
Those who were learners / followers who would then be ‘sent’
The power was abundant because the faith of His ‘posse’ was abundant
20 Looking at his disciples, he said: “Blessed are you who are poor, for yours is the kingdom of God. 21 Blessed are you who hunger now, for you will be satisfied. Blessed are you who weep now, for you will laugh.”
This message is for those who as identified as ‘His Disciples’
You have to surrender your life to Him in order for this stuff to make sense
Poor here and now, rich in eternity
Eternal blessing flow from a poverty of Spirit which results in surrender to God
Lacking creature comforts here VS the satisfaction of eternity with your Creator
The road of discipleship is not one of luxury & fun but the destination is worth it!
22 “Blessed are you when people hate you, when they exclude you and insult you and reject your name as evil, because of the Son of Man. 23 Rejoice in that day and leap for joy, because great is your reward in heaven. For that is how their ancestors treated the prophets.”
If the opposition know who you are that is a sign you are the ‘Real Deal’
Your reward: You are saved for eternity by your true ‘unconditional surrender’
You’re in good company; those who spoke for God no matter the consequence
There is no comparing human accolades and heavenly rewards
24 “But woe to you who are rich, for you have already received your comfort. 25 Woe to you who are well fed now, for you will go hungry. Woe to you who laugh now, for you will mourn and weep. 26 Woe to you when everyone speaks well of you, for that is how their ancestors treated the false prophets.”
‘WOE TO YOU… if you’re holding on to this world & it’s standards / pursuits
In that context to not suffer in the least meant serious wealth
People speaking well of you proves nothing: words are bought
False prophets were propped up by people to gain advantage by their lies
27 “But to you who are listening I say: Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, 28 bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you. 29 If someone slaps you on one cheek, turn to them the other also. If someone takes your coat, do not withhold your shirt from them. 30 Give to everyone who asks you, and if anyone takes what belongs to you, do not demand it back. 31 Do to others as you would have them do to you.”
The act of listening involves hearing, understanding and application
Act counter to your basic desires and self interest
Don’t base relationships on what the other person does, YOU do what is right
Leave your life and what you get in God’s hands…
Isn’t that what we say we do when we surrender our lives to Christ?
32 “If you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? Even sinners love those who love them. 33 And if you do good to those who are good to you, what credit is that to you? Even sinners do that. 34 And if you lend to those from whom you expect repayment, what credit is that to you? Even sinners lend to sinners, expecting to be repaid in full.”
Love that requires reciprocation is not love in God’s economy
If your good deeds are done only to get something in return that’s self-centered
Lending and getting repaid is just business, not charity
In both cases those living without the influence of God can do them
35 “But love your enemies, do good to them, and lend to them without expecting to get anything back. Then your reward will be great, and you will be children of the Most High, because he is kind to the ungrateful and wicked. 36 Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful.”
We who are disciples of Christ are to live exactly the opposite way of the world
Our reward is not to come from others but from our Creator
We are His children when we trust HE will take care of us
When we are truly His disciples HE will use us to bless those in rebellion to Him
His mercy doesn’t make sense by human standards
We are to be imitators of this other-worldly mercy & kindness
We are only able to live like this by yielding to God’s Spirit in us
Only way to have God’s Spirit is a life surrendered to Christ
Application Questions
What keeps you from being ‘totally associated’ with Christ and being ‘sent’ by Him
What is the relationship between your commitment to Christ’s discipleship & healing?
Are your priorities more aligned with here and now or eternity?
What are some specific ways to trust God more and rely on what you can do less?
When you live with open hands and a open heart, like God, what kind of things happen?

Do you think Jesus is willing to: save / forgive / bless / heal / work with you? The demonstration of what Jesus ‘Is Willing’ to do is here in the Scripture. What is God’s will for your life? (Midtown Culture of intentionally seeking God’s Will) ForAll of Us = Scripture. You Specifically = Scripture + Holy Spirit (Spirit’s Guidance agrees with Scripture) Today’s Text contains some of what Jesus is willing to do in your life, general guidance each of us needs to explore and apply to get the specifics.

1 One day as Jesus was preaching on the shore of the Sea of Galilee, great crowds pressed in on him to listen to the word of God. 2 He noticed two empty boats at the water’s edge, for the fishermen had left them and were washing their nets. 3 Stepping into one of the boats, Jesus asked Simon, its owner, to push it out into the water. So He sat in the boat and taught the crowds from there.

  • He recognized the need of the masses to hear His message
  • He is willing to accommodate anyone who will listen
  • He is willing to recruit co-workers…to incorporate us in HIS plan,as HE wills

4 When he had finished speaking, he said to Simon, “Now go out where it is deeper, and let down your nets to catch some fish.” 5 “Master,” Simon replied, “we worked hard all last night and didn’t catch a thing. But if you say so, I’ll let the nets down again.”

  • He taught the crowds, now He was going to recruit some co-workers
  • Peter has done what he could do in his own power regarding fishing…
  • Jesus is willing to demonstrate what He can do that is beyond what you can do
  • Peter is willing to let Jesus Christ show him what He can do

6 And this time their nets were so full of fish they began to tear! 7 A shout for help brought their partners in the other boat, and soon both boats were filled with fish and on the verge of sinking.

  • From zero fish to too many fish, The difference is important
  • Jesus says: what you can do for eternity without me is ZIP… But with me…
  • Supernatural VS Natural

8 When Simon Peter realized what had happened, he fell to his knees before Jesus and said, “Oh, Lord, please leave me—I’m such a sinful man.” 9 For he was awestruck by the number of fish they had caught, as were the others with him. 10 His partners, James and John, the sons of Zebedee, were also amazed.

  • Peter calls Him ‘Lord’
  • Peter thinks his sinfulness should disqualify him from being around Jesus
  • The experience was shared by John & James (They become the 3)

Jesus replied to Simon, “Don’t be afraid! From now on you’ll be fishing for people!” 11 And as soon as they landed, they left everything and followed Jesus.

  • The Christ says: ‘Don’t be afraid of my Holiness’
  • He says ‘I am willing to forgive your sin so we can work together’
  • He is willing to work thru Peter…as He is willing to work thru YOU!

He ‘Wills’ that you work with and for HIM…What else is Jesus willing to do?

12 In one of the villages, Jesus met a man with an advanced case of leprosy. When the man saw Jesus, he bowed with his face to the ground, begging to be healed. “Lord,” he said, “if you are willing, you can heal me and make me clean.” 13 Jesus reached out and touched him. “I am willing,” He said. “Be healed!” And instantly the leprosy disappeared.

  • Notice the approach…He is resigned to what God is willing to do
  • Jesus does it in personal way, with physical touch
  • He says: ‘I Am Willing’ The ‘I Am’ is important
  • He is definitely willing to heal, but the choice to do it is His alone

14 Then Jesus instructed him not to tell anyone what had happened. He said, “Go to the priest and let him examine you. Take along the offering required in the law of Moses for those who have been healed of leprosy. This will be a public testimony that you have been cleansed.”

  • Jesus’ goal is not to get attention for Himself now
  • He has the healed man go thru the current process of thanksgiving for healing
  • He want to point people to God (even thru the soon to be replaced system)

15 But despite Jesus’ instructions, the report of his power spread even faster, and vast crowds came to hear him preach and to be healed of their diseases. 16 But Jesus often withdrew to the wilderness for prayer.

  • The healed guy couldn’t help but tell people
  • When we recognize God’s will being enacted in our lives we will ‘Witness’

17 One day while Jesus was teaching, some Pharisees and teachers of religious law were sitting nearby. (It seemed that these men showed up from every village in all Galilee and Judea, as well as from Jerusalem.) And the Lord’s healing power was strongly with Jesus.

  • The Religious Elites were turning up everywhere Jesus went (Control)
  • Jesus healing power is connected to the faith of those involved
  • These people believed Jesus was the Messiah = Healing happened

18 Some men came carrying a paralyzed man on a sleeping mat. They tried to take him inside to Jesus, 9 but they couldn’t reach him because of the crowd. So they went up to the roof and took off some tiles. Then they lowered the sick man on his mat down into the crowd, right in front of Jesus. 20 Seeing their faith, Jesus said to the man, “Young man, your sins are forgiven.”

  • These Guys wanted to get their friend to Jesus (a real show of faith)
  • When they couldn’t get him to Jesus by normal means they kept trying
  • Jesus is willing to reward faith in Him!
  • Faith in Him will lead to the forgiveness of your sins!

21 But the Pharisees and teachers of religious law said to themselves, “Who does he think he is? That’s blasphemy! Only God can forgive sins!” 22 Jesus knew what they were thinking, so he asked them, “Why do you question this in your hearts?

  • The Jewish religious leaders were not willing to see Jesus as the Messiah
  • He knew exactly what they were thinking and HE wants them to realize it

23 Is it easier to say ‘Your sins are forgiven,’ or ‘Stand up and walk’? 24 So I will prove to you that the Son of Man has the authority on earth to forgive sins.” Then Jesus turned to the paralyzed man and said, “Stand up, pick up your mat, and go home!”

  • Jesus is willing to forgive sin, & He is willing to heal the results of it!
  • Being ‘All Powerful’ means He has the Authority to do as He wills

25 And immediately, as everyone watched, the man jumped up, picked up his mat, and went home praising God. 26 Everyone was gripped with great wonder and awe, and they praised God, exclaiming, “We have seen amazing things today!”

  • The forgiveness of sin was not demonstrable, instant healing can be seen
  • Jesus is willing to do things in your live seen & unseen!
  • Connecting God to blessings / healings / The unexplainable

Application Questions:

What might Jesus recruit you to do with Him?

What are you unwilling to accept or embrace that Jesus is willing to do in your life?

What is the connection between Jesus’ willingness to forgive sin and healing in you?

What is your level of praising God when you see Him do amazing things?