Tag Archives: featured

Honoring Our Inheritance

An inheritance is something to take very seriously. When it is available and given through family or a loved one, it is to be honored and well taken care of. If we take a quick glimpse at the book of Joshua, we see a book that is the promise kept by God to Moses that they would inherit the land and possess it. Essentially, this is a book on victory and God’s faithfulness to Israel, and a charge to honor the LORD with this inheritance of grace. Lets take a look of the Book of Joshua.

As a walk-through Joshua is broken up into 4 major parts

  1. Crossing into the land

    1. We have to understand that this was a very joyous time for the Israelites. They have been wondering the desert and they have finally found the lands that they have been so eager to see. Now they are here. The promise made to Moses is very real and the promise from the LORD about the land has been kept.

    2. It was important for people to remember the things God did for them so that they would never forget the faithfulness of God during times of struggle and hardship. See God told Joshua to remember this moment and to tell their children of this.

  2. Taking the land.

    1. Israel was commanded to conquer and take the land that the Lord had given to them. This was unique moment for the history of Israel. This pattern of claiming what is ours is repeated for us even in the New Testament as to knowing whose and who we are in Christ.

  3. Dividing the land.

    1. Once the land was taken into their hands it was now time to divide the land among the people in Israel. They now had an inheritance when they did not have one before. What will they do with it? If you look at history, not all the tribes kept their promise. If we look to Christ, He was the perfect promise keeper.

  4. Serving the Lord in the land.

    1. Joshua 23:6-8 (ESV)

Therefore, be very strong to keep and to do all that is written in the Book of the Law of Moses, turning aside from it neither to the right hand nor to the left, 7 that you may not mix with these nations remaining among you or make mention of the names of their gods or swear by them or serve them or bow down to them, 8 but you shall cling to the Lord your God just as you have done to this day.

    1. This scripture is a similar parallel scripture to Matt 28:18-20 and & Hebrews 3:12-14. This is a call to obedience and remembrance to what God has done.

    2. Joshua is given a charge similar to one he was given. The last portion of Joshua is an ending in Joshua’s life where he asked them again to make a declaration again; that the Lord is who they will choose to serve today.

What’s The Big Idea?

How are we honoring our inheritance?

Jesus is our brother and scripture says in Romans 8:17 that not only has given us authority but are co heirs with Him! We share in this inheritance, which means we must OWN it and stop acting like bad tenants renting a home that is not ours. This is an idea we must now own for our families and our church that we have an inheritance in Christ that we must take very seriously. This is means we must serve Jesus by responding faithfully to the great commission.

What do we do with this inheritance?

Jesus has given us the ultimate inheritance and possession, Jesus is the greater Joshua.

Our inheritance is Christ and the hope He has given us is life.

We now stand in the greatest season yet of God’s redemptive history. Christ, the greatest promise has already come and now we have the responsibility to carry out the call and mission to reach the world for Him.

Here are some practical solutions

Let us as households and churches to make Jesus known, and walk in obedience by honoring the inheritance of the great harvest, and heirs in His kingdom.

  • Have you decided on your household purpose?
  • Are you praying daily?
  • Is your home open to people?
  • Do you see your neighborhood as a mission field?
  • Do you see your work as a mission field?
  • What are your circles of influences?
  • Does your family seek to help in service projects on your own? Food banks, taking up a church ministry, passing out food etc.

We will win many times as Israel did, w will also lose and fail many times. We must continue to declare whose and who we are in Christ and remember and live out the promise given to us through Christ.

We must be ready to give Gospel demonstration, AND NOT ONLY gospel proclamation.

Remember that God uses families, especially weak ones to do His work!

This is an expert from a sermon preached on 11/25/13

In Community For Jesus

Have you ever seen ants work? I know it sounds ridiculous to start a lesson with that, but really, have you ever looked at ants and how work together? They work so well with each other, even without a leader, and yet they get things done, and they get them done together. The Bible actually mentions ants in Proverbs 6:6 and in 30:25. If you look real hard, they are carrying food, protecting their land, and even carrying their wounded off to safety. We try and do everything on our own without anyone’s help and along the way we’ve convinced ourselves that we’ve brought some good to the world by being independent. And the truth is, we actually need each other.

Living in Community

In Acts 20:17-38 ESV we read about Paul’s probable final meeting with the Ephesians elders. This meeting was very full of teaching the Gospel, warning and storytelling, In the final few verses it says this,

And when he had said these things, he knelt down and prayed with them all. And there was much weeping on the part of all; they embraced Paul and kissed him, being sorrowful most of all because of the word he had spoken, that they would not see his face again. And they accompanied him to the ship.

Within this time of Christian community we see so much life, teaching, and love on the part of everyone. I know for most of us as people, we desire this. I love this is quote by Bill Clem, “A community of believers following Jesus can image God in ways that an individual simply cannot.”1 If you really pay attention to any book of the bible, most of them are full of commands and graces that are meant for listeners that in a community context rather than an individual. This word community has been distorted over the years and will probably conjure up ideas of communism or exclusive types of cults. This is not the case, God has a plan for us to work and image Him together. We must get out of our lone-ranger mentality of life and ministry.

There are marks of a Christian community worth mentioning, so that imitations can be easily pinpointed. First, a Christian community worships. This means that a Christian community loves truth, prayer and enjoys eating together. Second, there is belonging that cannot be found anywhere else in the world because there people that forgiven by Jesus, so they forgive. A beautiful picture of belonging is when Jesus washes Peter’s feet in John 13; we see the perfect example of servant leadership and refreshing friendship. And third, we image God together on mission as a witness.2 When we love the world together, more can happen then what we could ever do on our own. The real question begins to be, are you a consumer? Or are you a giver?

Common distortions when it comes to community are often caused by sin. Sometimes, difficulties in community can also stem from various ways in which certain members have experienced generous, fun or unbiblical fellowship. Four common distortions3 an slowly sneak their way into a community; therapeutic, business network, programmatic, and exclusive. I think we have all been there, therapy looks like an accountability group, networks are business meetings, programs are boring, and exclusive groups are creepy. “Community distortions prevent us from experiencing and expressing the salvation Jesus died to provide.”4

Memorize This Scripture

Mark 9:50 (ESV)

Salt is good, but if the salt has lost its saltiness, how will you make it salty again? Have salt in yourselves, and be at peace with one another.

Personal Reflections

  • Read Acts 2:42-47
    • How would it look for our church for these descriptions to be true in our setting?
    • Does this excite you? Why?
    • Does this concern you? Why?
  • What type of distortion do you see you most prone to be involved with; therapy, network, program, or exclusive?
  • Take time now and plan to go to dinner or lunch with a group and find ways to integrate each other into the rhythms of everyday life. This might seem uncomfortable, but you all are mature adults, make it happen.

Things to Pursue on Your Own

Spiritual Discipline

  • For a lot of people, the use of imagination sounds secular, though it can be secular, it doesn’t have to be. The imagination can be used5 to the glory of God when fenced in by scripture, God gave us our imagination. Spend time in prayer and worship imagining in your mind the beauty of God and joining with other faithful followers in worshiping Him. Imagine what it can look like to be faithful Christians together, and mirroring the church as described in Acts chapter 2.

Personal Study

  • Are you currently in community with other Christians, besides scheduled gatherings like Sundays or required meetings?
  • Read the beatitudes in Matthew chapter 5.
    • Could these teachings be applied to both an individual and in plurality? If so, why?
    • Look at the beatitudes, and make note in your journal how each can be applied in your personal and community life.
  • Study the scriptures laid out in table below, and evaluate if your life is bearing such fruit in your local community.6

 

Biblical Community
'One-Anothers' SCRIPTURE
Care 1 Corinthians 12:25
Forgive Colossians 3:13
Be Kind Ephesians 4:32
Submit Ephesians 5:21
Be Honest Colossians 3:9
Love John 13:35
Peace 1 Thessalonians 5:13
Hospitality 1 Peter 4:9
Serve Galatians 5:13
Instruct Romans 15:14

Action Points

  • While considering your family first, go out of your comfort zone and invite a family in your neighborhood to dinner inside your home, or out to a restaurant if you feel safer with that. I know, big step, but you’ll be surprised what doors can open when steps of kindness are pursued in the Name of Jesus.

Footnotes

COVER PHOTO Photo © Eko Adiyanto

Source: 1x


  1. Clem, Disciple, 123. 

  2. Ibid., 130. 

  3. Ibid., 141. 

  4. Ibid., 150. 

  5. Demarest, Satisfy Your Soul, 148. 

  6. Clem, Disciple, 136.