Good start to the new sermon series today, Troy! It lined up perfectly with my pre-church missions meeting.
Called "Everyone, Everywhere," Troy will be focusing on the Scriptures surrounding the Great Commission. The basic message was to be an effective witness, one must hold a great affection for the Lord.
Refer to Acts 1:7-8
He said to them: "It is not for you to know the times or dates the Father has set by his own authority. But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth."
Troy then explained these locations (Jerusalem, Judea, and Samaria) in the context of the time. Good use of exegesis. :)
Jerusalem- the home of Jesus and the disciples, where they can witness right away to everyone they know. However, this may have seemed difficult to the disciples who had just witnessed Christ's crucifixion there... a little bitterness or a lot.
Judea- the outer county, if you will. In today's context, I would say it would be like going to Gordo to spread the Gospel... "there's people already there to do that right?"
Samaria- where the disciples probably wouldn't want to go. It would be like being told all of your life that certain kinds of people weren't worth anything and then being told to love them in spite of it. In terms of The Sandlot, it's like that scene where the other baseball team comes to make fun of the sandlot boys. "You ain't good enough to lick the dirt off our cleats!" And instead of hearing, "Watch it, idiot," you hear "Hey, guys. Want play with us?" I know, I know. Highly unlikely, especially with teenage boys, protecting their baseball turf---but hey, that's basically what the Lord is asking of us.
Ends of the earth- self-explanatory. If you can get through Jerusalem, Judea, and Samaria, you should go for this challenge.
More verses to read: Ephesians 3:14-21, Luke 10, Luke 24:46-49, and John 4.
Looking forward to hearing more in this series and how this will affect my outlook for my upcoming missions trip.
Thought of the day: "Redemption is at the heart of who God is."