In Your Bible Read This
John 17, Acts 10
Here Is Your Memory Verse
There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called to one hope when you were called, one Lord, one faith, one baptism; one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all. Ephesians 4,4-6.
Afterwards Talk About This
Examine your hearts for prejudice, pre-conceived ideas and traditions and confess and repent for who you have been considering unclean, that God has cleansed. Who is Cornelius in your area?
Something To Do Before Next Time
This week visit ‘Cornelius,’ as many pastors, priests and people from other churches as you can to encourage them.
Written Diploma Work
On one page propose what might be done in your area that people might believe through our oneness.
Meditate Word By Word On This Verse
Spend a Minute to Change the World
Pray For Colombia – 35,000,000 Spanish speakers. 93% Catholic, 3.1% Evangelicals, notorious for drugs and violence. Significant church growth
Be sure to teach this lesson to others. Always pray and prepare well adding your own verses and stories to bring it to life.
Will Jesus’ Prayer Be Answered?
Jesus prayed that we might be one as God is One, although three very different persons are united in that Oneness. God also intends his flock also to be one in its rich diversity, under one Shepherd. There is no greater source of public ridicule than our church divisions, and no more popular excuse for ignoring the gospel. People generally have little problem with God but the way we represent him can be scandalous. John 17.11; 21,22; 10.16.
Is Your Evangelism Working?
We spend huge amounts of money on mission but give little attention to the most effective evangelistic strategy of all. John 17,21-23 and John 13,34-35.
The Promise Of Being One
Increased Anointing And Provision
1 Chron. 12, 38-39, 2 Samuel 2,4 when David and the mighty men became one.
Mount Zion is a dry, dusty place but when brothers are one it is as if Zion enjoys the daily life giving water that Mount Hermon is famous for. The oil of healing and anointing flows from the head to the whole body. Psalm 133
Why Do We Prefer To Be Cursed?
Such blessing is impossible while we insist on so many separate denominations each with its own churches, colleges, agendas and missions. Denominationalism is utterly opposed to Jesus’ prayer, and builds walls of prejudice perpetuated by generations of exclusive clergy. Every enthusiast for it is disloyal to God’s heart.
Why Does This Happen?
We have to understand that even Christians have selfish, competitive ambitions that lust for power and personal empires unless restrained.
Satan joined the Church long ago, to work on the inside rather than simply attacking from the outside. Luke 11.17.
We Build Walls Not Foundations
Remember this word: AIDS – for unity.
A is for absolutes,
I for interpretations,
D is for doctrines and
S for subjectives.
When we focus on our Absolutes such as God’s existence, man’s sin, Christ as Saviour and eternal life we are very much one with each other. Absolutes are common ground especially when we face false religions together.
But when we continually preach our own Interpretations of a verse, or our own Doctrines from a series of verses, or worse if we insist on our own cultural or Subjective feelings then we rapidly build walls that divide us.
Thank God that in many parts of the world a new and fresh wind from God is blowing. What can we do to help bring healing to Christ’s broken and divided body?
Famous thinker George Bernard Shaw once asked, “What is wrong with the world?” He answered his own question, saying, “I am.” The difference between two words UNITED and UNTIED is only the position of one letter, the letter I. The answer always starts with me and my position towards you.
Guard What God Has Given
Ephesians 4.3 tells us to keep the unity of the Spirit in peace. To keep something implies that it already exists, so we are more united than we think, although many things challenge this. Unity of the Spirit is the unity that the Holy Spirit brings, not manufactured uniformity of either doctrine, culture, lifestyle or worship.
Confess Personal Prejudice
In Acts 10, 9-16, God shows Peter in a vision a zoo coming down from heaven in a sheet. “Get up Peter, kill and eat.” “Surely not, Lord,” says Peter the Jew. “You have got it wrong, I know the rules of my religion and I am not eating those animals!”
To really make the point God challenged Peter’s prejudice, his preconceived ideas, his stubbornness and his religious and cultural subjective feelings three times. Why? To prepare him for a revival where he least expected it, and where he would not normally go because of that prejudice. Into a Gentile home where God was waiting. Acts 10.17-48.
Unclean – Or Unknown And Unloved?
We need to reach the many ‘Cornelius’ of today who may be so culturally different and disliked by us that we never imagine that God actually cares about them. Yet how many people in the different races, religions and denominations actually want to love a God they do not know? Prov. 30, 1-6.
Becoming A United Kingdom
Christians can be traditional people, or charismatics, or radicals but can we grow together that the world might believe ?
What Can We Do?
- We can focus on the Absolutes of scripture. Stop looking at the ways we that are different and do something together in the ways that we are alike.
- We can appreciate the respected Interpretations of scripture of others, even though we think differently.
- We can pray for the Holy Spirit’s activity to increase in the whole area
- We can decide to promote Christ and his word in our towns above any particular name or church.
- We can practice supportive speech and actions towards one another. One church started a monthly lunch for Ministers and wives. It began icy and full of suspicions but years later it was healthy, fun and effective with city-wide campaign called ‘Together 95.’
To Close Pray for the World’s Most Unreached Peoples by Name
Taken from the Joshua Project Unreached Peoples List these people have no church and as yet no cell, church or mission has committed themselves to prayer, adoption or church planting among this people.
|Roglai, Southern||Roglai, Southern||20,000|
|Tai, Red (Thai Deng)||Tai Daeng||100,000|