Q. "Who will go and work today?" A. I am a missionary. So are you.
The disciples feared the Jews because they did not truly believe yet that Christ was resurrected. We are afraid too, perhaps for the same reason. Lord, strengthen our faith.
Jesus said three things to the disciples:
1. "Peace be to you" - between each sinful human and God.
2. "As the Father has sent Me, so I now send you."
3. "Receive the Holy Spirit" to forgive or retain sins.
- Why was Jesus Christ sent? To do God's will and work.
- What is God's will? 1 Timothy 2:4 says that it is for all people to receive salvation (only through Jesus) and to gain a knowledge of the truth (John 14:6 states that Jesus is the truth). Therefore, God's will is for each person to know and receive Jesus!
- What is God's work that Christ was sent to finish? It was to put our sins onto Jesus' back, sending Him to the cross. The vicarious atonement is finished, paid in full (John 19:30)!
Share what you believe. If you must ask, "What do I believe?" then learn it! Consume the Word. For Jesus in you will lead to joy, spilling over so that you can't help telling others.
- When is the Holy Spirit given? In each person's Baptism. Therefore, He is given to all Christians. Consequently, all members of the Church - not pastors alone - hold the Office of the Keys (1 Peter 2:5).
- How are sins retained, and why? We tell each person his or her sins against us. If the person accepts this by repenting and believing that forgiveness is his, they are forgiven. If he does not believe nor repent, he is still in his sins, which truth we tell him (John 3:18).
John wrote the signs in his Gospel so that we may believe and have life in Jesus' name. God's Word = Jesus Christ = the Truth.
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Notes from the Confirmation service (sermon text: Matthew 16:21-27).
Connect people to Christ by . . .preaching the distinctive, utterly Christ-focused, divisive Gospel!? Yes, this exposes and wounds hearts, for all are sinful. And it is what Jesus did.
Confess Christ and His work only by being in the Word. Counter the world with the Word. This word is applied to you: I am a disciple of Jesus.
Stay in the Word, your Lord Christ. As an object lesson, earplugs reduce exposure to hazardous noise. So does the Word - it drowns out Satan's lies.
- Matthew 4:4. Every word from God's mouth sustains you, making you eternally living.
- Deuteronomy 6:4-9. Keep God's commands in memory. God's Word is given to the entire Church, your brothers and sisters, if ever you should forget a Word.
- Psalm 1:1-2. Meditate day and night on the Word. Keep it at the front of your mind.
- Matthew 16:23-24. Taking up your cross = carrying the Gospel message into others' midst, to share it. Turn your back on Satan.
Soli Deo gloria.