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The Messenger and the Message

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Intro;

Paul 2nd missionary journey.

He is moving from one town to the other. Planting seeds.

 Athens to Corinth.

Short distance (50 miles)

Big distance culture change.

Athens was noted for culture/learning experience.

Corinth was noted for it’s commerce/wildly extranvagant life.

Athens was a city of the intelligentsia.

Corinth was a city of movers and shakers. (Make a quick $)

Just as you would expect.

City supported by travelers.

Those trying to make money/sinful living.

Worship center of Corinth was Aphrodite

The goddess of love.

Nothing more than prostitution ring/support the temple.

Go into town/night/favors.

Reason for all this; Corinth is located south of this narrow

Isthmus narrow canal

Any cargo moving

Land trade north and south.

Sea trade east and west

Very busy seaport

Moving from Athens to Corinth. Major culture shock!

Moving from Wichita to Washington

Small town western Kansas/Large city west coast.

Sin is rampant/open in the streets.

Very different life styles.

Lets get on board with Paul.

Slide: “The Messenger and the Message”

What message are you sending?

You are sending a message by your life style.

Acts 18:8 Then Crispus, the ruler of the synagogue, believed on the Lord with all his household. And many of the Corinthians, hearing, believed and were baptized.
NKJV

Illustration;

Lady at stop light/all these Christian bumper stickers.

light slow to change/she’s having a fit

Bad language/honking/officer pulled her over.

Let’s see what kind of “Messenger” Paul is.

Slide:

Acts 18: 1 After these things Paul departed from Athens and went to Corinth.
NKJV

After what things?

Proclamation;

God, creator of world/heavens/earth/sea.

The one who give breath and life.

The one who determines times/boundaries.

The Messiah they search for..

Jesus Christ in the flesh/crucified/rose from the dead.

Paul proclaimed that through this Man/judged.

Repent worship of idols.

Faith and trust in Christ.

After he did these things many live were changed.

Persuaded/joined/believed/committed.

Many lives were changed forever.

After he did what?

He planted seeds…

Paul was a seed planter by night and tent maker by day.

Slide:

Acts 18:2 And he found a certain Jew named Aquila, born in Pontus, who had recently come from Italy with his wife Priscilla (because Claudius had commanded all the Jews to depart from Rome); and he came to them.
3 So, because he was of the same trade, he stayed with them and worked; for by occupation they were tentmakers.
NKJV

One way you can send a message is by company you keep.

Paul immediately hooks up with other Christians.

Our church model is Acts 2:42 And they continue the Apostles doctrine, fellowship…

Interesting to see how God brings things together

v.2 because Cladius had commanded all the Jews to depart from Rome.

The Jews were sent out of Rome.

Due to rioting Jews/possibly because of Christ/Christians.

Paul left Athens

Guiding of the Holy Spirit.

They all met in Corinth.

Aquilla and Priscilla hire Paul as a tent maker.

Slide:

Acts 18:4 And he reasoned in the synagogue every Sabbath, and persuaded both Jews and Greeks.
5 When Silas and Timothy had come from Macedonia, Paul was compelled by the Spirit, and testified to the Jews that Jesus is the Christ.
NKJV

Paul continually planting seeds. Sharing the message

v.5 compelled by the Spirit

If you want to be a good “Messenger” you want to be sure to know the “Message”

He reasoned/persuaded them. Jews and Gentiles.

Not with force/violence/implying judgement.

Not pointing fingers.

Passion persuasion.

1.     He cared

2.     Not all were convicted.

Slide:

Acts 18:6 But when they opposed him and blasphemed, he shook his garments and said to them, “Your blood be upon your own heads; I am clean. From now on I will go to the Gentiles.”
7 And he departed from there and entered the house of a certain man named Justus, one who worshiped God, whose house was next door to the synagogue.
NKJV

The opposed him.

They spoke bad about him.

So what’s the problem?

Why do so many reject Christ.

Is it the “Messenger or the Message?”

The Jews were in bondage to Egypt.

Now they were in bondage to Roman gov.

All these years waiting for the Messiah.

This political powerful personality/free them oppression.

When He arrived, passion, promise future.

They wanted justice/now!

So they opposed this Messiah

When God brings opportunities satan brings opposition..

You get a job promotion.

Rumors about you.

A new relationship.

Compromising situations.

Satan wants you to fail/lose/stumble

He is your advisory/he’s against you.

He’s a deceiver.

Illustration;

Elections.

Some politicians say what you want to hear. Not the truth.

I am not a crook.

Read my lips, no more taxes.

It’s like a fairy tale.

Story on email/little girl ask grandma if all fairytales start with “Once Upon a time”

No, some fairy tales start with “If I’m elected I promise”

The Jew wanted a King/worldly king.

Jesus Christ brought the message of love and forgiveness. The message of Salvation “For All”

Everyone knows John 3:16

What about John 3:17

Slide:

John 3:17 For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved.
NKJV

The Message Paul brought was that the world might be saved.

Slide:

Acts 18:8 Then Crispus, the ruler of the synagogue, believed on the Lord with all his household. And many of the Corinthians, hearing, believed and were baptized.
NKJV

It looks like Paul at the synagogue was a failure.

But Crispus/ruler of the synagogue saved/family.

They heard/then the believed.

Close;

Let’s talk about your walk.

“Are you a good example or a horrible warning”

Happiness/hypocrisy

Press on/continue the race.

The word of the Lord never goes out void.

That means the word of the Lord never goes unheard.

Sometimes with many of us…the word of the Lord never goes out.

Because your afraid.

Afraid rejection/ridicule/

Afraid you might say the wrong thing.

Do not be afraid.

Slide:

Acts 18:9 Now the Lord spoke to Paul in the night by a vision, “Do not be afraid, but speak, and do not keep silent;
10 for I am with you, and no one will attack you to hurt you; for I have many people in this city.”
NKJV

Why do you think God said to Paul “Don’t be afraid”

Because Paul was afraid.

ESV Do not be afraid , but to go on speaking, and do not be silent.

In the scientific circles there’s a word.

Causality.

For every action/reaction.

This is also true of the Message of Jesus Christ.

To hear it is the action.

To respond reaction.

What if…we as a church decided to share.

Just in our circle of influence.

They heard and they believed and they were blessed.

Those people neighborhood they heard/believed/blessed.

Like a fire.

Parents would start parenting.

Couple would stay together.

Children respecting their parents.

That’s the “Message of the Messenger”

For God so loved the world…

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