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The Little Bigness of the Seed

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Sermon Three                                   Heaven’s Seemingly Small & Shy Seed

Series: God has come-Religion is Done

Text: Matthew 13:31-33

Idea:  The little Gospel seed is an unstoppable constantly expanding power that will transform and fill the entire universe.

Purpose:  To teach our listeners how to tap into a power that while is hidden in a seemingly small unimpressive form but will eventually lead to the transformation of the entire universe.

KW:  Gospel; Lordship; renewal; power;

 

I.                     Why so small?

It is said that the Gospel message is shallow enough for children to swim in and deep enough to drown scholars. But it can get bogged down in religious jargon that can make it hard for the average person to understand what is being communicated and for them to care.

Examples:

The Kingdom of heaven is like….

Mt 13:31 He told them another parable: “The kingdom of heaven is like a mustard seed,   which a man took and planted in his field.  

Mt 13:32 Though it is the smallest of all your seeds, yet when it grows, it is the largest of garden plants and becomes a tree, so that the birds of the air come and perch in its branches.”  

Mt 13:33 He told them still another parable: “The kingdom of heaven is like yeast that a woman took and mixed into a large amount 53 of flour until it worked all through the dough.”

(Who listens to stories? Children do their minds and bodies are constantly needed more room to grow.)

Bruxy Cavey’s definition of the Gospel:

1.       God sent His Son. (He became one of us)

2.       God showed us his love.

3.       God saved us from sins.

4.       God shut down organized religion.

Which numbers got him killed? (1&4)

Compared to world philosophies and great thinkers this message is child’s play, a day camp thing that cannot hold the cup of world’s wisdom.

This message is a stumbling block to the religious and foolishness to the wise.

 Why does God choose something so small to change the world?

 

II.                  The Gospel’s small size detonates when it hits your bloodstream.

Size of mustard seed and end result.

Size of leaven and end result.

How does it work?

The Gospel’s small size detonates when it hits the bloodstream.

By bloodstream I am talking about your passions.

My size was and is a hindrance to the spread of the Gospel-but my passions where the driving force!

By Passions I am talking about the central HQ for the choices of your heart’s will.

Choices lead to movement and blood needs to move throughout the body.

The first choice is answering the question, ‘who will you serve?’  The activating power is when you answer Jesus. Once you know whom you will serve all other choices begin to flow fluently out of that.

Choose this day whom you will serve. Joshua 24:15

James MacDonald writes, ‘Everybody serves somebody. Everybody has somebody in charge of his life.

•  Some people choose an esteemed person to serve. They make the dangerous choice to look to an authority figure, a pastor, a professor, or a politician. Problem is, look closely enough and you’ll see that person’s massive imperfections and become disillusioned.

•  Some people serve a close relationship as their ultimate authority. “I just do whatever my wife wants.” Or “Unless my son is happy, I can’t be either.” Psychologists call it codependency, when you’re so wired into another person that your life goes sideways if his gets off track.

•  Some people decide to serve a mission, a value, or an organization. They’re always raising the flag for some important cause. We feed the poor, we save the trees, or we elect the best possible candidates.

•  Some people serve a personal agenda. I’ll get this degree; I’ll reach this milestone; I’ll break this record; I’ll build this company. Of course, that’s just a thinly veiled version of the most common one, the goal that most people are pursuing...

•  Most people serve themselves. Most people live by this philosophy. At the end of the day, I’ll do what works for me. I’m the one who’s in charge here. That’s the religion of the masses.

Leads to qualitative not quantitative change.

There is a difference, you can get a thousand slumbering Christians in a room and the spiritual climate will not change.

Leads to allowing room to grow by trying to understanding the power of this seed in you.

What does it look like? Rick Warren says change comes in 5 stages:

Personal Renewal

Relational Renewal

III.                The Gospel’s hidden power is designed to expand so as to fill the whole universe.

You see, God is life, therefore God’s words have life inside them, therefore when God’s word is received it produces more life, and where there is life there is absence of death.  Like the expanding universe things just continue to grow!

Missional Renewal

Cultural Renewal

Structural Renewal

Both renewals above become the trees and mix that will provide the shelter and food for the needy.

IV.               God’s power is in you-to detonate all you have to do is to choose obedience.

God hides the missionary church in the most unlikely places (suffering and injustice) Bruner

Popeye the sailor man (Bill Hybels illustration)

Provide context

What cant you stand?

Suffering? Sickness? Insecurity? Suppression? Sin? Selfishness?

 MacDonald writes, 'If you have never made a choice, a real choice, for Jesus Christ as Lord, you probably are on this last agenda by default. You may not feel like you chose, but by not making a deliberate, conscious choice, you have been swept up in the cultural current and carried along in the whitewater of living for self.

As much as someone might love you, no one can choose for you. Even God, who loves you perfectly, will not choose for you. There are simply some crucial decisions you have to make for yourself. The ball is in your court. Joshua was right when he challenged Israel, “Choose this day whom you will serve” (Joshua 24:15).' (I did not use this)

When you choose to obey the power of the Gospel seed is activated! (like spinach)

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