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God Made Us All

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God Made Us All

Introduction: I am in between Sermon Series today. As most of you know, I finished up last week a series on what it means to live our lives by the book -meaning we live according to the Bible and the foundations, principles and commandments given to us by God in His Word.
Next Sunday I will preach the first of a two week series titled: “One Night with Jesus,” from , which is the account of Nicodemus going to Jesus with his questions in the middle of the night.
ME SECTION: This sermon today has been weighing heavy on me ever since last week. Today we will dive into some difficult waters that are swirling with a lot of different emotions. Pray for me because I want to be very broad with the stories, stats and illustrations but very specific in speaking about the root issue at hand and what God is calling us to do about it.
One thing that really solidified the direction I was going with sermon is the young man I met this week. Panhandling. Covered in Tattoos. Twisted up from car wreck. Recovering Heroin Addict. I gave him ride and took him to local clinic to pay for him a dose of legal medicine to help stay of illegal heroin. Saw several other run down and rough looking recovering addicts. Often overlooked members of our world now, except by pimps and drug pushers and drug users.
Something else God used to move my mind about over this sermon, Billy Graham’s death. I was moved by his death because of the impact of His life and the message he preached - God’s judgment and God’s love seen in the gospel. Then later I heard about a comment on social media from a writer for Teen Vogue Magazine who has great influence over the young minds in our society, and here is her view on Rev. Graham’s life and passing: “Have Fun in Hell, …(expletive).
Something else God used to move my mind about over this sermon, Billy Graham’s death. I was moved by his death because of the impact of His life and the message he preached - the gospel. Then later I heard about a comment on social media from a writer for Teen Vogue Magazine who has great influence over the young minds in our society, and here is her view on Rev. Graham’s life and passing: “Have Fun in Hell, …(expletive).
Purposeful Question: Imagine how the ones who follow her are beginning to form their perspective views on the value of others.
WE SECTION: Maybe you heard in the news this past week - 13 Russians and 3 Russian Companies were indicted for trying to cause division in our society through Facebook and other social media. The kind of division that results in incidents like:
In the last Governor race in Texas a Facebook user commented on Repub page saying that if Dem won in November, a “.50 caliber headache was waiting for her.”
Woman rep for NRA on stage at CNN town hall, another rushes the stage yelling “Burn Her!!”
Purposeful question: What makes someone say such a thing about or to another human being? Why do you think the Russians were so active? Do you think they were successful?
Have you seen the new Gerber Baby - Little Lucas Warren, first Gerber Baby with Down’s Syndrome in Gerber’s 91 year history. - While in Ohio the ACLU has recently sued to halt “an unconditional law banning abortion based on baby having Down Syndrome”
About 10 yrs ago an scared high school senior - walked into a crisis pregnancy center with panicked parents. The new mother choosing life. The girl’s dad, a deacon in his church, pushing for abortion because the new babies father was a law student at an ivy league school - who happens to be African American.
Purposeful Question: Why do you imagine people would receive notice from a prenatal test and then make a decision to terminate the life of someone with Down Syndrome? What is it that causes a professed Christian and deacon in his church to be pro-abortion in this situation?
Since 2012 - several black men and women killed by a cop. Supposedly here in SC a couple
Since 2014 - several cops gunned down in the line of duty, often ambushed. 5 in Dallas by an African American
Purposeful Question: Why such chaos and animosity in these situations?
A 19 year old walks into his high school and pulls the trigger killing 17 people. The shooter and his brother had been adopted from the “system.” Reports of abuse before that. People in the school says “if anyone is going to shoot up the school it will be him. He looks like someone who would do that. He is a loner, always wearing hoodies, etc.
A 19 year old walks into his high school and pulls the trigger killing 17 people. Law enforcement had been given various reports 38 times. The shooter and his brother had been adopted from the “system.” Reports of abuse before that. People in the school says “if anyone is going to shoot up the school it will be him. He looks like someone who would do that. He is a loner, always wearing hoodies, etc. Now calling him a monster.
Reports have been given of 18 different shootings in schools or school zones since Jan. 1st - one of them happened to be a middle school boy killing himself in the bathroom.
Last year one of the biggest Netflix shows is 13 reasons why, (which I didn’t agree with because it glorifies suicide), where the story is a girl leaving a tape for 13 people who harmed, bullied or abused her in some why telling them why she is dead.
Suicide is the 2nd leading cause of death of young persons aged 15-24.
Purposeful Question: Many people like myself asking the question, how can someone go kill innocent people like that. I also ask the question, what makes a person say that another looks like a school shooter? I also ask how bad had things been at home or in school to make a young middles school boy want to end his life in a bathroom? How does such a show become so popular? Why are so many kids take their own life?
We arrived in Jonesboro Illinois in June of 2014. Our kids began school that fall. It was not long after school began that our community was wrapped up in a bit of turmoil. A high school boy, grandparents in our church, handsome, athletic, on the football team - was taken after practice, hog tied with duct tape, thrown in the shower without any clothes, water turned on, video taped and shared on social media.
Making fun of a kid in a wheelchair brings the ire of many, yet a kid who just wants to be loved and accepted suffers years bullying in school because of a special need like PTSD or ADHD that can’t be seen. I remember one of my daughters telling me about starting at one school, trying to reach out to several different girls only to hear - we don’t talk to those people. I remember in 3-6 grade my mom taking me to counseling sessions over being bullied by a boy in school - who was also in my youth group. I also am not proud of moments in high school where I used racist words and picked on kids smaller than me.
Making fun of a kid in a wheelchair brings the ire of many, yet a kid who just wants to be loved and accepted suffers years bullying in school because of a special need like PTSD or ADHD that can’t be seen. I remember one of my daughters telling me about starting at one school, trying to reach out to several different girls only to hear - we don’t talk to those people. I remember in 3-6 grade my mom taking me to counseling sessions over being bullied by a boy in school - who was also in my youth group. I also am not proud of moments in high school where I used racist words and picked on kids smaller than me.
Purposeful Question: How or better yet why does something like what happened to the football player happen? Why in the world are these young girls having to worry about how their bodies and their shoe laces look?
I used to ask myself as a teen, how can someone in my youth group treat me like this? He should know better. Didn’t his parents teach him better. As an adult I ask myself, how could I a professing Christian treat another human with such disrespect? I knew better. I was taught by my parents not to be that way.
Joanna gave me permission to share her story. As a Senior in High School (I believe) she was dating a GI who became extremely abusive physically and then eventually, when she tried to leave him, ended up raping her.
Those of you here on Wednesday got to hear from the Baynes who are going to be missionaries in a city of Brazil that is the number 1 city in the world for human trafficking. They told the story of a young 8 yr old girl learning from grandmother and mother how to make money - selling herself to men. Thank God she heard the gospel and now is telling others how to have freedom in Jesus.
Globally, the average cost of a slave is $90.
There are approximately 20 to 30 million slaves in the world today.
There are approximately 20 to 30 million slaves in the world today.
The average age a teen enters the sex trade in the U.S. is 12 to 14-year-old. Many victims are runaway girls who were sexually abused as children.
Human trafficking is the third largest international crime industry (behind illegal drugs and arms trafficking). It reportedly generates a profit of $32 billion every year. Of that number, $15.5 billion is made in industrialized countries.
Purposeful Question: Abuse of women is a prominent issue right now with the #metoo movement, but why has it taken this long for it to become something important enough to talk about? We look at a guy who does horrific things with a young boy or young girl and are disgusted, and wonder how it could happen and why is human trafficking so prevalent?
Some of you may have identified with one or more of these stories due to personal knowledge or personal experiences. In a congregation of our sizes many opinions. Each of these topics are different in many ways, but each one leads us to ask the same question in varying levels and degrees. - Why such a mistreat of people and lack of compassion for humanity?
People are protesting. Politicians are Politicking. Pundits are Pontificating.
Much was covered in these various stories and situations. Some of you may have identified with one or more due to personal knowledge or personal experiences. In a congregation of our sizes still many opinions. Each of these topics are different in many ways, but each one leads us to ask the same question in varying levels and degrees
God called me to preach so I have really been struggling this week on how to preach about this burden on my heart and how to address some of these realities and how to answer some of our obvious Questions. I asked myself what is the fix.
Not here this morning to talk about 2nd Amendment or even the first Amendment, or any Amendment.
I am not here this morning to be pro-DACA or anti-immigrants and refugees.
I am not here to talk politics. I am here to move beyond ourselves. The greatest need of our society is The Greatest Commandment, the Golden Rule and the Great Commission, but they only give the solution to every situation I mentioned.
God Section: We have to go back to the beginning to answer the question of why?
Genesis 1:26–27 NKJV
Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.” So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them.
How many of you have read that more than once?
How many of you were taught that by parents and others in church?
How many of you were taught that in school?
Do you see where I am going with this?
Why did the boy last week kill all those people? To him, these people were just a product of the teaching he more than likely received in school - Evolution
Why did the boy last week kill all those people? To him, these people were just a product of the teaching he more than likely received in school - Evolution
I know some of you teens may be thinking “Wait, Isn’t that what most science and biology classes teach in school? I thought Evolution is a fact.
Yes they teach several billion years ago - chemicals in a sea, acted upon by sunlight and cosmic energy (all of which had to come from somewhere) formed themselves by chance into one or more single-celled organisms, which developed through mutations and natural selection (survival of fittest) to become plants, animals and people.
Illustration: Get your own dirt!!
The implications of atheistic evolution are significant: if no God who created then man is not accountable to God morally. If atheistic evolution were true then there would be no moral absolutes and no one should ever be charged with murder - just call it natural selection. (Holocaust)
The very outcry against murder is itself a denial of evolution
Its a circular argument. Chance for evolution to be true or really have happened - 1 chance in 1 with 243 zeros times. - fraction so small - zero probability of happening.
Its a circular argument. Chance for evolution to be true or really have happened - 1 chance in 1 with 243 zeros times. - fraction so small - zero probability of happening.
Murray Eden of MIT and another professor from University of Paris both running digital computer models - showed evolution was impossible.
Some evolution supporters have stated, “well, if a million monkeys were given a million years to strike the keys of a million typewriters they might by chance type a copy of a Shakespearean play.”
Illustration: My brothers boys might swing from their bunk beds sometimes but that doesn’t make me a monkey’s uncle.
So if evolution is impossible and there are moral absolutes like murder is wrong, then:
So if evolution is impossible and there are moral absolutes like murder is wrong, then:
#Godmadeusall
“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator”
The act of creating man was based on the deliberate counsel of God - “Let Us Make Man” - words which show the peculiar importance of the work to be done.
In this chapter it says all the animals were made according to their kind but God said to make man
“In Our image, According to Our likeness” -
Image - emphasizes our close similarity to God - we are like God
Likeness - stresses the similarity is not exact - we are not God
The image of God is what makes us human. God made us for a purpose. You and I and every Human being are God’s unique representatives.
Is Gender neutral
Applies only to humans
No partial or potential image of God rather it belongs to all humans equally and immediately
The image of God is what makes us human. God made us for a purpose. You and I and every Human being are God’s unique representatives.
There is a dignity to being human. Each individual is a beautiful and very good creation in God’s eyes, thus should be in our eyes.
Every single human being no matter how much the image of God is marred by sin, or illness, or weakness, or age or any other disability, still has the status of being an Image-bearer of God - we all belong to God - and therefore we must treat ourselves and others with the dignity and respect due to God’s image-bearers. Even the girl who comes to school and smells because she is homeless. Even the girl with missing teeth, or the guy covered in tattoo’s or the cross-dresser, or the guy at the bar drowning his sorrows, or the girl on the street corner.
Genesis 5:
Genesis 5:1–2 CSB
This is the document containing the family records of Adam. On the day that God created man, he made him in the likeness of God; he created them male and female. When they were created, he blessed them and called them mankind.
and make it clear that male and female from every race of people bear the image of God
Men and women deserve equal dignity and rights
People of every race deserve equal dignity and rights
Elderly people, the seriously ill, those with special needs, and unborn children deserve equal dignity, rights, protections and honor as God’s image bearer
Genesis 9
Genesis 9:6 CSB
Whoever sheds human blood, by humans his blood will be shed, for God made humans in his image.
When people no longer respect the creator or the created made in His image, the value of a human life is lost. It no longer exists in the mind of the murderer. People are treat no differently than animals.
James 3:9 CSB
With the tongue we bless our Lord and Father, and with it we curse people who are made in God’s likeness.
We give God praises and ask God’s blessings with the same mouth we used to cut down, ridicule his most prized creation, made in His image. People are cruel to others in word and deed because they do not see the other person as having any worth.
Jesus became human to identify with us, to redeem us from sin, and to be an example to us as Christians how to be good image bearers and to be different than the world who does not respect God or those he created.
YOU SECTION: The one thing that gripped me is this week is how Billy Graham end most his messages: “I want you to hear this most tonight - God Loves You.”
The one thing that gripped me is this week is how Billy Graham end most his messages: “I want you to hear this most tonight - God Loves You.”
This week I want you to remind yourself of that fact everyday. Think about how differently you are going to begin to see and think about yourself when you remember.
This week I want you to tell that to as many people as possible.
This week I want you to think differently how you treat other people - use the Greatest Commandment and the Golden Rule. Then treat them that way. Talk to them not at them or about them.
Teens - find someone at school you know nothing about or would never think about talking to and go ask them about themselves and tell them God loves them and you do to. Sit with someone different at lunch. Be kind and be different at school and in youth group to make a difference at school and in youth group. Look for the ones Jesus would reach out to and reach out to them.
How about Posting this to snapchat and instagram #Youmattertoo #livingbythegoldenrule
Adults: Go by the heroin clinic and tell the people there how much God loves them. Go by the pregnancy clinic and tell the director you want to volunteer to share the love of God with a young and scared new mother and family. If you see a person panhandling - go buy them some burgers and get out and talk to them like they were you best friend. Make friends with the one at work who no one wants to associate with. Imagine what change could happen.
WE SECTION: Why is it so important to believe and ? Because if not how can you believe ? How will you be motivated to live out the Great Commandment and Great Commission.
Illustration: I saw commercial on TV about Stand by you - true stories of a woman inviting homeless man to live with her family. Teenagers who started a lunch club at school so no kid would have to eat alone.
Imagine the amazement of politicians and people if we could end bullying, end school violence with God’s love instead of Gun laws.
Now imagine how the atmosphere will be different in your workplace
Imagine the amazement of politicians and people if we could end bullying, end school violence with God’s love instead of Gun laws.
Picture how different your interactions and relationships with non-Christians will be when you see them as God’s image-bearer.
Think about how many new believers will be baptized here and elsewhere because of your new drive to help as many as you can find salvation in Jesus.
Invitation: Let’s be the light of the world.
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