Sam M

Message 2 of 4: My Body My Choice - Intergenerational perspectives : Sam M and Ross P

In this second message in the series on Sexuality and Identity we have two speakers, Ross and Sam. Ross begins by summarising his message from last week on the origin of sex, gender and marriage and foundational understanding that men and women are image bearers of God who created us. We are created to glorify God and to find enjoyment in him.

Ross reads through Gen 3:1-7 and makes the observation that the deception of Eve starts with Satan

1. questioning what God says,…”did God really say..?”
2. contradicting what God says, “you won’t surely die..”
3. debating what God says, “God knows that you that your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God..”

The area of sexual sin and identity is a battle for the mind. Facing temptation is a battle of the mind. 2 Cor 11: 3.  Our thoughts are lead astray from sincere and pure devotion.

Sam then brings insight from the perspective of a ‘millennial’ generation person about gender, identity. He identifies that conversations about sexuality between generations is difficult and avoided since both sides are coming from a completely different set of 'rules' about the world and relationships. 

He tells how sex has become a recreational sport between people on the basis that if it felt right then there was no reason not to indulge so long as you were being true to yourself.  Individual expression became the moral wallpaper of his generation. There was no need or even concept of looking outside ourselves to an objective standard. 

He explains however that under the test of being authentic to yourself and absolute freedom actually brought about crises of anxiety and not knowing who you really are. Identity is sought from within rather than in the creator who made us. We are made to be in relationship with the One who made us. 

The crisis of anxiety comes from a deep desire to be fully known and fully accepted. Sam shared his own experience of finding caring friendships from young men and women who turned out to be homosexual and lesbian who were nonetheless, seeking to be known and loved. He identifies that our identity is only meaningful when it is anchored to Christ and is an ongoing relationship project where we are slowly being healed and restored to fellowship.

Ross then finishes by sharing about the privilege of being able to study the human body throughout his career and testifying how wonderfully and fearfully it is made. Ps 139. He implores us to flee sexual immorality, 1 Cor 6:12-20. Our body is a sacred and special place and we need to chose how we use it to either honour or dishonour it.

So to tie the two generational perspectives together, the millennial and baby boomer, the challenge we face is a battle for our mind how we view God’s plan for sexuality and how we use the temple of the Holy Spirit to honour God and to honour one another.

 

Matthew 27:1-26 Making choices, what to do with Jesus - Sam M

Mt 27:1-26 Making choices: what do I do with Jesus?
A morning like no other.
Abandoned
Death sealed
Denied by Peter 3 times
Committed to destruction.

Ch27 presents Jesus set against back drop of evil
Illegal and unjust trial
Pilot’s cowardice
Herod’s cruelty
Frenzy of the mob

Matthew always presented the Messiah, presenting the King in his majesty purity and perfection. Against all this ugliness, the beauty of Jesus is seen in higher contrast.

The pain of the guilt of Judas. 

Judas had a visual experience of Jesus.  Spat upon, face bruised and beaten, bound, lead away to a man condemned to death.
Why? The leadership would have approved of his action.
Judas is confronted internally by what has been done is wrong because we are all made in the image of God. He knew what he had done was wrong.
Peter denied Christ, but was remorseful and repented and chose a saviour while Judas chose a system.
Judas hanged himself after betraying innocent blood. Against this tragedy the perfection of Jesus shines through.

The guilt of sin can weigh heavily on us. Rom 4. Who will deliver is from this body of death? Who will deliver you from the awful feeling of guilt. The guilt of sin drives us to the Saviour. We are not to seek escape but seek the saviour.

Judas’ Choice
In deciding what to do with Jesus, Judas tried to use Christ as a means for personal gain.

Pilot’s Choice
John 18:28. What accusation do you bring against this man. He took the easy way out and sent him to Herod.

Herod and Pilot became friends, Luke 23:12. Previously enemies but now bond over a common cause. They have a camaraderie of cruelty. As Herod had mocked him then he thought that perhaps Jesus does deserve to die but he cannot pin anything legally on Jesus.

Pilot’s wife, a gentile, even recognised Jesus as a righteous man and prompts Pilot to have nothing to do with the prosecution but instead he trades the life of Jesus for the murderer Barabbas.

We all have a choice as to what to do with Christ. With real choice comes real consequences and the answer to this question determines your eternal destiny.

The Scandal - 1 Cor 1:17-31 : Sam M

The importance of the Gospel message is not found in it delivery but in its content, the cross of Christ. The power and wisdom of God is the message of the cross. 

Through attempts to make the message of the cross culturally relevant, the message can be emptied of its power.  The cross is scandalous message and folly to unbelievers. A stumbling block. It must not be re-interpreted to suit our religious sensitivities. Our wisdom is a person and that person is the Lord Jesus Christ.