BEGINNING IN JERUSALEM REVISITED

FROM PASTOR TIM JOHNSON:


We had a tremendous Great Commission Sunday comprised of four powerful baptismal testimonies, five encouraging reports from our missionaries, wonderful songs of praise and some great food afterward.

It is a true privilege to serve RVC at a time in history when God is continuing to work through His church to spread the unimaginable truth of repentance and forgiveness. Doing God’s work is truly the major leagues of life.

My lightning fast sermon (around 10 minutes!) abbreviated what I was going to say from Luke 24:46-47. It’s worth reading again.

Jesus said to begin in Jerusalem, and Paul said he was not ashamed of the Gospel, which was “to the Jew first and also to the Greek” (Romans 1:16). Why?

It could mean simply that the Jews, as the descendants of Abraham, have, historically, received the Gospel first. And since the disciples were in Jerusalem when Jesus spoke to them, they would naturally begin there.

Both are possible, perhaps even likely. But I wonder if it’s because the Jews are the root from which salvation springs to the rest of the world as Paul suggests in Romans 11:18. If branches are to be healthy, you don’t water the branches, you first take care of the root.

God’s prescription is to begin with the Jews, His chosen ones, and in Jerusalem, the place He chose to dwell Himself…forever (Psalm 132:13-14) because when the Jews and Jerusalem are nourished, the rest of the world is blessed as well.

After all, God told Abraham that he, Abraham, would be a blessing to the nations. We are blessed at RVC, and that was so evident on Sunday! Let’s thank God for the Gospel, for those called to share it around the world, and for the privilege we have of sharing it right where we are at.

Rescued by Christ,

Pastor Tim


SERMON: THE GOSPEL IN JERUSALEM FIRST