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If The World Hates You - Part 7

Good Morning My Beloved,

I'm so glad you've decided to join us today
Thank you for coming..

Heavenly Father,

We thank You for the power and clarity of Your truth
We’re so grateful for each new day, every new reality 
that helps our understanding; that captures our hearts 

Help us to see ourselves for who we are
the way You see us, in truth, the essential truths 
this is much needed for re-defining how we live
we’re overwhelmed that You have hand-chosen us 
paid in-full, with Your blood, the price for our sins
bought us and made us Your own 
We trust that you will protect us, provide for us, and use us for Your glory
now and forever and ever

"This I command you, that you love one another. If the world hates you, you know that it has hated Me before it hated you. If you were of the world, the world would love its own; but because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, because of this the world hates you. Remember the word that I said to you, ‘A slave is not greater than his master.’ If they persecuted Me, they will also persecute you; if they kept My word, they will keep yours also. But all these things they will do to you for My name’s sake, because they do not know the One who sent Me.  If I had not come and spoken to them, they would not have sin, but now they have no excuse for their sin. He who hates Me hates My Father also.  If I had not done among them the works which no one else did, they would not have sin; but now they have both seen and hated Me and My Father as well.  But they have done this to fulfill the word that is written in their Law, ‘They hated Me without a cause."
John 15:17-25

Today's Message: If The World Hates You - Part 7

Well, as I'm sure you've guessed by now, we're still in our study of the 15th chapter of John, and as I previously indicated, we have already been here for a while, and it will likely be a while longer.
There's so much so say about this passage is Scripture. And I'm trying to cover as much of it as I can.

When we concluded our study last time, I didn't know whether we would get terribly far, or not, I believe we did fairly well. I feel pretty good about it. We ended with verse, John 15:15

Let's see how far we can get today, but I'm not planning on rushing through this, it is, as I've said before, a very important piece of Scripture, and it does take some time, to unpack the different verses in such a way, that brings clarity and gives you a better understanding, and gives it the attention it commands. I am trying to do my best here. I hope I'm doing a decent job at it, I'm trying. 
Without terribly exceeding the amount of time we have, without to go on for 100 messages, I'm unpacking while consolidating at the same time. If that makes sense...

That said, let's dig in shall we?

Now, I understand, many of you had some questions about what we've discussed.
And to save time here today, I'm not really going to go over it all again today.
But I know that one of the most pressing questions, seemed to be, "I’m not free under Christ, am I?"

Rather than to answer your question, in that sense, I'll answer from a personal stand point.
I am free. My freedoms are defined by Him. My duties are defined by Him. My convictions are defined by Him. My words are defined by Him. My actions are defined by Him. My relationships are defined by Him. Everything in my life is defined by Him. 

First of all, forget what you have previously known about the terminology I am about to use here, this is purely from a biblical stand point. I don't want any one to become offended or get the wrong idea about what I about to say.. I know some of you will be squirming in your seats because of the stigma associated with it. But forget all that. Just hear me out. 

Raise your hand if you know that Jesus loves you.

That wasn't so hard was it?

Historically, servants work for someone. Many wealthy people throughout history had servant, as do many today. We're all quite familiar with that concept. And truth be told, probably some have dreamed of a big house at some point, with servants waiting on you hand and foot. You know it's true.

Well, slaves are different, they were bought and sold. We all know that. Everyone knows that. Whoever paid the price for the slave owned them. The save belonged to that owner. I'm sure we all can agree there.

When I said, "Jesus is Lord," I meant that. Every single word. And by Him being Lord of my life, I surrendered all, myself, my family, my career, my finances, my possessions.. all of it. It was not just words to me. It was a sacred commitment. From that day I took that vow, I committed my life and dedicated it all to Him. In unqualified subjugation, to the Divine control to the Holy Spirit and higher commands of the Lord. A servant works for someone, a slave is owned; I do not work for Jesus, I’m owned, and so are you if you’re a true Christian. You’re owned because you were chosen off the slave market of sin, and then you were bought with the price, He paid the price of His precious blood. That is what it means to follow Christ. Christ bought me from Satan, He paid with His blood, now I am owned by Jesus Christ. I no longer choose for myself, He chooses for me. I don't worry about where my next meal will come from, He provides that. He takes care of where I'll live etc. Do you see where I'm going with this? And you have to see it that way.

Anything less than that gives you far too much latitude for controlling your own life. You need to completely relinquish control to the one who is your Master. This is why it’s so hard to enter the kingdom. This is why Jesus said it’s hard. And I'll tell you, it’s hard because you have to completely deny yourself. Most cannot surrender to that extent. Narrow is the gate. 

When Christ walked the earth, He was God incarnate. He submitted to the will of His Father, God.
He was the example for the disciples, and later for us, as to how we are to live our lives.
I'm just going to run through these real quickly, feel free to study them further on your own.

"Enter through the narrow gate; for the gate is wide and the way is broad that leads to destruction, and there are many who enter through it. For the gate is small and the way is narrow that leads to life, and there are few who find it."
Matthew 7:14

For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and give His like a ransom for many."
Mark 10:45

I want to ask you to turn with me 1 Corinthians 6 if you would, verse 19 and 20. I Corinthians 6
"Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and that you are not your own? For you have been bought with a price: therefore glorify God in you body."

Now let's look at 2 Peter 2, verse 1, " But false prophets also arose among the people, just as there will also be false teachers among you, who will secretly introduce destructive heresies, even denying the Master who bought them, bringing swift destruction upon themselves."

Acts 20:28, "Be on guard for yourselves and for all the flock, among which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to shephed the church of God which He purchased with His own blood."
You've all read these passages, over and over, but likely never made the connection. Now, I want you to really read them, I want you to really meditate on each one of them for a moment. What is Jesus really saying.

Now, all you were fine with that. I was the same way, and then one day, it finally dawned on me, I'm not a servant, I'm a slave. And Christ's own, be should be fine with that now. There's nothing offensive about that. But it should change the way we serve Him. 

"For we are not proclaiming ourselves but Jesus Christ as Lord, and ourselves as your slaves because of Jesus."
2 Corinthians 4:5

You won't find that translation used in most of the Bibles that you have. It says, servant, bondsman, bond-servant etc. Why? Bear with me.

Just imagine that you’re a Christian in Jerusalem and you’ve wanted to preach the gospel. So you go to the Jews who don’t have slaves and you say something like, "You know Jesus, that one that your nation rejected, the one the Jewish priests convicted in a mock trial? You know, the one the Romans crucified on the cross? Well, you need to confess Him as Lord. You need to confess Him as Lord, and you need to confess that you are His slave. Not His servant but His slave. You need to confess that He is the absolute sovereign Master of your life. Set aside all your own will, your own wants, your own desires, you also must be willing to give up all of your possessions, you might also need to abandon your relationships, yeah, all of your relationships, your even parents, and your spouse to follow Him; You might have to give up absolutely everything and surrender yourself totally to the One who died on a cross to pay for your sins. Salvation comes faith, suffering and sacrifice. So, you need to do all of this. Sound good?"

I imagine the response you'd likely receive would be something like this: 
"Say what? What on earth are you talking about? I’m supposed to do that for somebody that the nation rejected and the Romans executed? Are you nuts?"
No, I'm not and Yes. Oh, by the way, did I mention that He is God?" And imagine that you’re now given the responsibility to go along with the apostles into the Gentile world; and everywhere you go all the places where slavery is recognized, where there’s a huge stigma attached to it, nonetheless to slavery among free men; and many slaves want their freedom, their fighting for it. Let's face it, that’s why there were slave rebellions because there was so much oppression. There were people who wanted nothing except their freedom, and so your message is essentially this, "I’m calling you to be slaves to a crucified Jew, who was executed by the Romans, and rejected by His own people."
I ask you, what kind of message is that? That’s why if you go to the Circus Maximus in Rome, you’ll find a little kind of statue, and the letters are fading away. But if you go up to it and look at it, you’ll see basically the carving of basically a man with the head of a jackass. And then bowing down to the man with the head of a jackass is a guy worshipping, and the sign says, "Alexamenos worships his god." This is the idiocy of Christianity: "Who would worship crucified man? It’s like worshiping a donkey." Beloved, like it or not, that was a hard sell in the world, in the gentile world, the Rome world, and the message was not received with favor and you know the rest of the story.  

And today, we talk about Christ so superficially, we talk so casually about Christianity:  
"What does it mean to be a Christian? Oh, let me tell you, it's great! Jesus wants to come into your life, fix everything. He wants to make you happy, give you everything you want. You can have it all. Everything you want, when you want it. You can live your best life now. And the best part is, you can still do what you want. And He doesn't expect anything in return. You can cheat on your spouse, steal from your job, you can even go to the club and get drunk. Whatever you wants, it's all okay. He still loves you and will do anything you want. He’s like your own personal genie. You just say jump, and He jumps and He says, ‘Your desires are my command, I’ll give you everything you want, everything you hope for, everything you dream. Just ask me for it, I will do it!" 

That is ludicrous! Absolutely ridiculous! It's an out right lie. That’s the same thing the devil promises to people. That’s the devil talking. The message of the cross is, "Jesus is Lord and Master; and if you want to follow Him and receive forgiveness of sin and salvation, you confess Him as Lord, and you become His slave." And there couldn’t be any more wonderful life than the life of a slave chosen, purchased, cared for, loved, protected, provided for, secured, rewarded by the Perfect Master. So what the early church was doing was basically making an invitation to slavery. That’s what was really going on in the book of Acts. In the very beginning, as Peter preached his first sermon on Pentecost, he quoted from Joel about the Holy Spirit being poured out on all mankind, in Acts 2:17-18, "And it will be in the last days, says God, that I will pour out My Spirit on all humanity; then your sons and your daughters will prophesy, your young men will see visions,and your old men will dream dreams. I will even pour out My Spirit on My male and female slaves in those days, and they will prophesy."

And let me tell you, it was the same story, even in the Old Testament, believers were slaves of God. As they preached the gospel, it was always that same kind of slave language: "Jesus is Lord; we are His slaves." Acts 4:29, "And now, Lord, consider their threats, and grant that Your slaves may speak Your message with complete boldness." And that is what you really find in the epistles. As the apostle Paul and the other writers wrote the epistles, they talked about people like "Epaphras, our beloved slave, who’s also a servant of Christ." Timothy talks about being a slave. Peter talks about being a slave. The book of Revelation calls believers slaves, all the way from beginning 1:1, John, slave... all the way to chapter 22, the very end of Revelation, which is basically what we’re going to be doing in heaven – and I want you to get this.

So listen carefully to Revelation 22:3. This is heaven. This is the eternal state, we’re all there, and it says this: "There will no longer be any curse. The throne of God and the Lamb will be in it, and His slaves will serve Him." Here's the bottom line, as Christians, we’re never going to be anything but slaves. We’re going to be slaves, We're going to be perfect slaves, we’re going to be in perfect slaves in obedience and in perfect worship to a perfect Lord in the most perfect situation where He provides everything for us. Beginning to get the picture? We're slaves. Now, Verse 6: "These words are faithful and true,’ and the Lord, the God of the spirits of the prophets, sent to His angel to show His slaves the things which must soon take place." So the book of Revelation was written to slaves in the 1st century who will still be slaves in the eternity everlastingly.

That's a pretty hard sell, but its biblical truth. Now, we have a clearer picture of why the disciples were receiving the welcome that they did, why they had such a difficult time, convincing the people to surrender to Christ, to be His slave. Hopefully, you can now see that 

But we'll wrap this up for today, and we'll pick up from there next time.

And now may the Lord bless you and keep you;

the Lord make His face shine upon you,
And be gracious to you;

The Lord lift up His countenance upon you,
And give you peace.

Now and forever, in Jesus' name

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Brian Monzon Ministries

The Brian Monzon Ministries



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