Monday, 29 May 2017

I Reading: Acts 2:1-11: They were all filled with the Holy Spirit, and began to speak.
II Reading: 1 Cor: In the one Spirit we were baptised.
Gospel: John 20:19-23: The Great Charter of the Church-Jesus Appears to the Disciples
The Great Charter of the Church-Jesus Appears to the Disciples

today we celebrate the second most solemn day in the year of worship: the feast of Pentecost. The word “Pentecost” is a Greek word which means “the 50th”, in our case, “the 50th day”: for the Jews it meant the 50th day after the feast of the Passover. For us Christians, it means the feast that comes on the 50th day after Easter.
This was the first appearance of Jesus to His disciples as a group after His resurrection. What would He say and talk about? What would be the topic of conversation and the subjects covered? Whatever He chose to say would be of critical importance. It is this that John focuses upon: the subjects and the topics discussed when Jesus first appeared to the disciples.
1. The disciples were hiding in fear (v.19)
                   a. Was the same day: at night
                   b. Discussed reports
                   c. Jesus appeared suddenly
2. Subject 1: The risen Lord-His presence was very real (v.19-20)
                   a. His message: Peace
                   b. His wounds: Evidence
                   c. His effect: Unbelievable joy and gladness when they saw Him
3. Subject 2: The great commission (v.21)
4. Subject 3: The Holy Spirit (v.22-23)
Thought: The disciple is sent forth to proclaim and bear witness to the salvation of God. The disciple is the prophet and witness of the living Lord.
·        Christ is the Way; the disciple points the Way.
·        Christ is the Truth; the disciple proclaims the Truth.
·        Christ is the Life; the disciple shares the Life.

I Reading: Acts 28:16-20.30-31: Paul stayed in Rome, proclaiming the kingdom of God.
Gospel: John 21:20-25: This disciple is the one who has written these things down, and we know that his testimony is true.
The Great Call to Total Commitment, Jn 21:18-25
This is the final passage of John’s gospel. It is the great call to total commitment.
1. Total commitment demands following the leadership of another (the Holy Spirit) (v.18)
a. When young: Peter walked and did as he willed
b. When old: Another would carry Peter where he would not go
2. Total commitment demands the cross-death to self: “Follow me” (v.19)
3. Total commitment demands undivided attention to one’s own task (v.20-23)
a. Peter questioned John’s task
b. Jesus rebuked Peter
c. Jesus challenged and called Peter again
d. John corrected the rumour
4. Total commitment demands bearing witness to Jesus Christ (v.24-25)
Thought: The call of Christ is to total commitment, not just to commitment. Total commitment demands that we follow the leadership of the Holy Spirit. We are to walk as the Holy Spirit wills (Jn 14:15-26; 16:7-15).

I Reading: Acts 25:13-21: A dead man called Jesus whom Paul alleged to be alive.
Gospel: John 21:15-19: Feed my lambs, feed my sheep.
The Great Question of a Disciple’s Love and Devotion, Jn 21:15-17
This is a critical passage for the church and its ministers. It has one great lesson: Love is the one basic essential for ministry. Without love, ministry counts for nothing in God’s eyes. This passage concerns three questions asked by our Lord. There are three kinds of  love according to Greek language: agape (sacrificial love), phileo (relational love) and eros (feelings or emotional love).
1. After the meal, Jesus focussed on Peter (v.15)
2. Do you love me more than these? (v.15)
a. Pointed to disciples
b. Pointed to fishing equipment
c. Feed my lambs
3. Do you love me with God’s love-love me enough to feed my people? (v.16)
a. God’s love (agape)=sacrificial love of God
b. Peter’s love (phileo)=blood relationship or relative love of Peter, (erotic love)=emotional or feelings or attractions love of people
c. Feed my sheep/tend my sheep
4. Do you love me as a royal brother-love me with agape love or phileo love? (v.17)
a. Lord’s love (agape)=sacrificial love
b. Peter’s love (phileo)=relational love
c.  Feed my sheep
thought: Agape love is a seed that can be planted in the heart only by Christ. It is a fruit of the Spirit of God. It is a great love that God holds for His Son (Jn 15:10; 17:26). Agape love was perfectly expressed when God gave up His own Son to die for humanity (2Cor 5:14;Eph 2:4;3:19;5:2).
Agape love holds believers together as Jesus held his disciples for three years. Agape love is the love believers are to have for one another (Jn 13:33-35; 1 Jn 3:17-18). Agape love is the love which believers are to have for all people (1Cor 16:14; 1Th 3:12; 2Pet 1:7). Thus agape love seeks the welfare of all, works no ill to its neighbour, seeks opportunities to do good to all especially to those of the household of faith and is proven by obedience to Christ. Doing as one wishes instead of doing as God wills shows that one does not have agape love. (Jn 14:15,21,23;15:10;1Jn 2:5;5:3; 2Jn 1:6)
Thought: The greatest of all tragedies is that some still do not accept and believe the Lord’s death and resurrection despite the irrefutable evidence.

I Reading: Acts 22:30;23:6-11: Now you must bear witness in Rome.
Gospel: John 17:20-26: May they be completely one.
Jesus Prayed for Future Believers, 17:20-26
Jesus prayed for future believers, for all those who would believe in Him from the moment to the end of the world. What he prayed is very precious to believers, but it is also an indictment against believers of every generation.
1. Jesus prayed for all future believers –for all who would believe the Word (v.20)
2. Request 1: That believers may be one (v.21-22)
a. The standard: As God and Christ are one
b. The purpose: That the world may believe
c. The source: God’s glory
3. Request 2: That the believers be perfected in unity (v.23)
a. Source: Jesus within
b. Reason: To convinced the world
          1) God sent Christ
          2) God loves believers
4. Request 3: That believers  may be with him in glory (v.24)
a. The reason: To see his glory
b. The assurance: God’s love
5. Conclusion: A testimony (v.25-26)
a. Of the world: Has not known God
b. Of Jesus: Knew God
c. Of believers: Have known that God sent Jesus
d. Jesus’ faithfulness
          1) He declared God
          2) His purpose: That people might know God’s love
Thought: A terrible tragedy! There are many voices proclaiming so many different messages, message of work, ritual and ceremony, denominationalism, rules and regulations, morality, false prophets, humanism, brotherhood, secularism etc…

I Reading: Acts 20:28-38: I commend you to God, who has power to build you up and to give you your inheritance.
Gospel: John 17:11-19: May they be one like us.
Jesus Prayed for His Disciples, Jn 17:9-19
Jesus prayed for his disciples. What he prayed was striking and full of meaning for believers of every generation.
1. Jesus prayed for his disciples (v.9-11)
a. Because they had been entrusted to him
b. Because they belonged to both Jesus and God
c. Because glory came to Jesus through them
d. Because Jesus was leaving the world
2. Request 1: That God would keep them and keep them together as one (v.11-12)
a. Because they were in the world
b. Because he had kept them and had lost one
3. Request 2: That they might have His joy in all its fullness (v.13)
4. Request 3: That God would keep them from the evil one or Satan (v.14-16)
a. Because world hated them
          1) Because of the Word
          2) Because they are not of the world
b. Because they were needed in the world
c. Because they were now of the same nature as Jesus
5. Request 4: That God would sanctify them (v.17-19)
a. Because  they were sent  into the world
b. Because sanctification is the way of salvation

I Reading: Acts 20:17-27: I am finishing my race and carrying out the mission of the Lord Jesus gave me.
Gospel: John 16:17:1-11: Father, glorify your Son.
Jesus Prayed for Himself, Jn 17:1-8
This passage begins the High Priestly Prayer of Jesus (Jn 17:1-26). In this great chapter Jesus is revealed to be the great intercessor. He reached the summit of prayer. He prayed for himself (v.1-8), for his immediate disciples (v.9-19), and for future believers (v.20-26). He asked only two two things for himself.
1. Jesus’ time had come, that is, his death (v.1)
2. Request 1: Glorify your Son-that he may glorify the Father (v.1-4)
a. How: By giving him authority over all people
b. purpose: That he may give eternal life
          1) Eternal life is knowing God
          2) Eternal life is knowing Christ
c. Reason: Christ completed God’s work
3. Request 2: Restore your Son to His former glory-to His pre-existent exaltation (v.5-8)
a. Because He has revealed the Father’s name
b. Because people now know that He is God’s Son, the revelation of God Himself
1)They now know  accept His Words
2) They now know His origin
3) They now believe He is sent of God, that He is the Son of God Himself

Another Outline: The Hour Has Come.
1. The time of glory (v.1)
2. The time of power (v.2)
3. The time of eternal life (v. 2-3)
4. The time of finished work (v.4)
5. The time of restored glory (v.5)
6. The time of revelation (v.6)
7. The time of mission accomplished, or the time of belief (v.7-8)
Thought: The only way a person can glorify God on earth is to do what God says. If a man is interested in glorifying God, he/she will obey God (Jn 12:27-30).

I Reading: Acts 19:1-8: Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you became believers?
Gospel: John 16:29-33: Be brave: I have conquered the world.
The Resurrection and Its Effects Foretold, Jn 16:16-33
This is one the great passages on the resurrection of Jesus Christ, and it is one the glorious passages in all Scripture. It is one of those passages that lays out more than human could ever imagine. Jesus revealed and proclaimed the resurrection and its effects upon the world.
1. The resurrection exposes weak faith (v.29-32)
a. The disciples declared their faith
b. Jesus questioned
 their weak profession
c. The cross tasted and exposed their profession
2. The resurrection makes available true peace (v.33)
Thought: The peace and joy of God come only through the resurrection of Jesus Christ, only through his conquest and victory over sin and death.