God's Economy VI - Jesus
God’s Economy VI – Tallying Up, Eph 1 / Phil 3:2-11
OS:1 A man was blissfully driving along the highway when he saw the Easter Bunny hopping across the middle of the road. He swerved to avoid hitting the Bunny, but unfortunately the rabbit jumped in front of his car and was hit. The basket of eggs went flying all over the place. The driver, being a sensitive man as well as an animal lover, pulled over to the side of the road and got out to see what had become of the Bunny carrying the basket. Much to his dismay, the colorful Bunny was dead. The driver felt guilty and began to cry. A woman driving down the same highway saw the man crying on the side of the road and pulled over. She stepped out of her car and asked the man what was wrong. "I feel terrible," he explained. "I accidentally hit the Easter Bunny and killed it. There may not be an Easter because of me. What should I do?" The woman told the man not to worry. She knew exactly what to do. She went to her car trunk and pulled out a spray can. She walked over to the limp, dead Bunny and sprayed the entire contents of the can onto the little furry animal. Miraculously the Easter Bunny came to back life, jumped up, picked up the spilled eggs and candy, waved its paw at the two humans and hopped on down the road. 50 yards away the Easter Bunny stopped, turned around, waved, and hopped on down the road. Another 50 yards, turned, waved, hopped another 50 yards and waved again! The man was astonished. He said to the woman, "What in Heaven's name is in your spray can? What was it that you sprayed on the Easter Bunny?" The woman turned the can around so that the man could read the label. It said: "Hair spray. Restores life to dead hair. Adds permanent wave."
I. 2 Easter Sunday is a great day to finish our series entitled, God’s Economy. (Ephesians 1:7-12)
A. Economy = The management or regulation of the parts or functions of any organic whole; an organized system or method.
1. “Economy” comes from a Greek term found in the NT 9 times.
B. God’s Economy = God’s management, arrangement, order and plan for humanity from before creation into eternity.
C. Big picture to the individual.
1. Joseph, Esther, Ruth, Job …
2. God is God, and He works in our lives for His glory, and for our good. Yet, often we don’t see or understand.
II. 3 Lesson 6 – Tallying Up / “Do the Math”.
A. Ephesians 1:10 – Jesus is the sum of God’s economy.
1. Strange? – Sums should be math, numbers, things.
2. This is true with the world’s economy, but not God’s.
3. 4 The “Sum” of God’s Economy is not found in a Product, but rather a Person.
4. The “Sum” of God’s Economy is Jesus.
B. 5 Sum = Value (God values people)
1. When God sent His Son to suffer and die on the cross, God’s plan, His economy, was summed up in the person of Jesus Christ.
2. We have redemption through His blood.
C. Throughout the series this common thread of thought was obvious.
1. Joseph, Ruth, Esther, Job – all experienced the workings of God in their lives. They were personal to God.
2. They experienced a God who really is mindful of people – a God who cares – they discovered they were not just a face in the crowd but actually known by God Himself.
3. They all shared this sense of security – their lives were in God’s hands. No matter the circumstances, whether good or bad, there is this sense of peace that is beyond explanation other than simply…God.
III. These are people who lived by God’s economy rather than the economy of the world. – I want to live that kind of life.
TS] To live by God’s economy we need to “Do the Math”
I. 6 Re-tabulate our definition of Everything.
A. Tragedy has a way of helping us re-tabulate.
1. Monday – a 6.3 magnitude earthquake hit central Italy. Buildings were damaged/destroyed – some dating back to the 13th century.
2. Survivor, “Even if we lost our houses we’re still alive”
3. Art Official – “right now, the priority is saving people under the rubble.”
B. How do you tabulate everything? What is really valuable? Consider Jesus…
1. He lost everything, so He could be our everything.
2. Jesus paid a price – larger than we understand.
C. What really is everything?
1. If whatever you think is everything can be taken from you its time to re-tabulate.
2. Matthew 6:33, “Seek first His kingdom and His righteousness,…”
TS] To live by God’s economy “do the math” If God’s economy is summed up in a person (Jesus Christ), then our lives must be summed up in a person – Jesus.
II. 7 Calculate the Loss. (How much will it cost?)
A. 8 9 Philippians 3:7-11
1. Paul’s everything is Jesus.
2. all else is rubbish (trash)
B. Jesus said, “count the cost” in Luke 14
1. 26-27, “If anyone comes to me and does not hate his father and mother, his wife and children, his brothers and sisters – yes, even his own life – he cannot be my disciple. And anyone who does not carry his cross and follow me cannot be my disciple.”
2. 33, “any of you who does not give up everything he has cannot be my disciple.”
C. 10 Paul, Galatians 2:20, “I have been crucified with Christ, and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.”
TS] To live by God’s economy “do the math” If God’s economy is summed up in a person (Jesus Christ), then our lives must be summed up in a person – Jesus. He alone must be our everything to live in God’s economy.
III. 11 Don’t forget the addition.
A. God’s economy demands that we die (subtraction) to self, and live for Him (addition).
1. Symbolized in baptism – buried with Him, raised with Him to walk in newness of life. (Romans 6)
B. God’s economy is our economy – His purpose our purpose – people.
1. 12 Matthew 28:18-20
C. What a friend we have in Jesus – Risen Lord
1. “I consider everything a loss compared to the surpassing greatness of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord.” Phil 3.8
2. purpose, significance, meaning, etc.
CS: 13 Everything is summed up in Jesus