Manage episode 283312767 series 2812824
Stewarding the Gospel…of Equality
When we steward well the gospel, we recognize that it calls us to a radical oneness, a radical equality. We are called to give up the pride of separation and see that we are all equal in two amazing ways: all distinctions of prideful hierarchy are leveled in both the condition of being lost and being found.
This week one of our #WholeLifeTakeAways asked: How broad is your concept of equality? Can you freely sing “When we ALL get to heaven,” or is it easier to sing “some of us get to heaven?”
So, what about you? How broad is your concept of equality? Have you struggled, conquered, still learning? Let us know by using one of the following:
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Quotes from this episode:
Martin Luther in his commentary on Romans writes: “The corruption (of which the Apostle here speaks) is so very deep that it is not fully understood even by such as are spiritual (believers). For this reason, the truly righteous pray fervently and entreat God for divine grace, not only because they know that their will is evil, but also because they can never fully comprehend the unspeakable depth of their depravity. So, they humble themselves and earnestly ask God to sanctify them perfectly, …Man (by nature) selfishly seeks only what is to his advantage; he can love only himself above all things; and that is the sum and substance of all transgression. Such (self-sufficient) persons seek only to please themselves and secure applause, even when they follow piety and virtue.”
Ellen White from Christ’s Object Lessons p. 159-160: “No outward observances can take the place of simple faith and entire renunciation of self. But no one can empty themselves of self. We can only consent for Christ to accomplish the work. Then the language of the soul will be, Lord, take my heart; for I cannot give it. It is Your property. Keep it pure, for I cannot keep it for You. Save me in spite of myself, my weak, unchristlike self. Mold me, fashion me, raise me into a pure and holy atmosphere, where the rich current of Your love can flow through my soul. It is not only at the beginning of the Christian life that this renunciation of self is to be made. At every advance step heavenward, it is to be renewed. All our good works are dependent on a power outside of ourselves. Therefore, there needs to be a continual reaching out of the heart after God, a continual, earnest, heartbreaking confession of sin and humbling of the soul before Him. Only by constant renunciation of self and dependence on Christ can we walk safely.
The nearer we come to Jesus and the more clearly, we discern the purity of His character, the more clearly, we shall discern the exceeding sinfulness of sin and the less we shall feel like exalting ourselves. Those whom heaven recognizes as holy ones are the last to parade their own goodness. The apostle Peter became a faithful minister of Christ, and he was greatly honored with divine light and power; he had an active part in the upbuilding of Christ's church; but Peter never forgot the fearful experience of his humiliation; his sin was forgiven; yet well he knew that for the weakness of character which had caused his fall only the grace of Christ could avail. He found in himself nothing in which to glory.
Sir William Temple: The only thing of my very own which I contribute to my redemption is the sin from which I need to be redeemed.
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NEXT WEEK: ‘Stewarding the Gospel…of Reconciliation’ with Andy McDonald.
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