What Actually IS the “Good News”?

Churches talk a lot about “The Good News.” But what is it? Kyle Ranson explores the often misunderstood concept of “grace.” Oh, it’s good news, alright.

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    - Hey, welcome to Crossroads. I'm Sean.
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    And no matter what reasons you started watching,
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    I believe that by watching today,
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    you're going to be closer to God and know more about Him.
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    And it's okay if you don't know anything about faith,
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    spirituality, or don't even believe in God right now.
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    But if you're watching, I'm going to assume that
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    you are open to something different that might
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    just change your life for the better.
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    Or if not, no worries.
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    You can just head back to watching funny cat videos.
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    Now, today we're exploring the book of Romans.
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    It was written by the Apostle Paul
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    and it was a letter to the Romans
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    for how to live a life centered around Jesus.
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    And it wasn't just for them, it applies to us
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    on our journey to follow Jesus today.
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    Now, if at any time in today's episode you have questions,
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    you can reach out to us at crossroads.net.
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    Seriously, ask us anything.
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    Now, one thing people might ask is
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    why do we have music in our services?
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    Well, the quick answer is because music is in the Bible.
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    There are Psalms in the Old Testament
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    and in the New Testament they sang hymns and songs.
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    Now, maybe they didn't have electric guitars and drum sets,
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    but you get the idea.
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    These traditions have been passed down
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    by followers of Jesus for thousands of years,
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    and they are ways for us to connect with God today.
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    So turn up the volume, go full screen and let's get started.
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    - Hey, my name is Justin, if we've never met.
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    I love getting to lead us in singing.
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    I just want to pray for us right now.
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    So, God, that song is a song of trust.
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    It's a song of releasing my control,
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    the thought that I have control or that I'm a fixer
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    and the one who can fix broken things.
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    That's a myth. It's a myth that I've discovered in my life.
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    And because You've set me free,
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    then I say I can trust You with everything.
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    Because you've set me free, led me on a life of peace,
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    one that's released myself than I can say
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    I trust you with the day to day.
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    Every day You walk with me.
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    And for that I give You the loudest voice I could.
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    I give you everything in that way to express myself,
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    to say thank You for that, Lord.
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    Thank You for walking with us every single day.
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    I pray all this because I've found You to be real
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    and seen you in Jesus. Amen. Amen.
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    Look around you. This place is full this morning.
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    So good.
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    Hey, whether it's your first time here
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    or it's your like 300th time here,
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    why don't you turn to somebody next to you and say,
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    "Hey, I'm glad to be here with you today?"
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    I love that you're here today and I love this space.
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    I think this space is unique where so many people come in
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    and at least you're in the door
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    is a step towards God.
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    Wherever you're at on that spectrum or that journey,
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    you're step in here is a step towards God,
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    "I'm open to You."
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    This space is unique, but one of the most unique spaces
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    we have as a church is this place called Base Camp.
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    And I can tell you every time I've been there,
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    I've had this encounter with myself,
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    a deep encounter with friends and laughter
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    and also a deep encounter with God.
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    And so this fall, there's a thing called Man Camp
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    that I'll at, that Eric will be at,
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    and so many others will be at, and you should too.
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    If you don't know about it, then this is for you.
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    [insert camp]
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    - Well, good morning, everybody. How are you?
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    Good to see you. My name is Kyle, if we've never met before.
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    I'm one of our teaching pastors.
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    Like that video said we are in this series
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    of talks about the book of Romans.
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    Romans is the book where we really get this deep dive
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    on the gospel or the good news of God's grace.
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    Now, all the Bible is good. All of it's great.
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    But Romans kind of holds a special spot in the Bible
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    because Paul, who wrote it, is the greatest evangelist,
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    theologian, church planter in world history.
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    And Romans is like his magnum opus
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    where he unpacks the whole thing for us.
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    So it's very, very special, which makes Romans
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    have something in common with me because I am also special.
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    Why? I'm part of the millennial generation, that's why.
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    And you all told us from the time we were born
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    that we were very special.
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    But I have some beef with you.
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    It's that you seem to have changed your minds.
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    I hear often, you know, "What have millennials even done?
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    What have you guys done?
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    What have you contributed to the world?
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    Other generations fought wars, invented airplanes,
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    went to the moon. What have you done?"
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    Well, I will tell you what we've done.
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    We've contributed a lot, thank you very much.
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    Some things that we've invented: participation trophies.
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    You're welcome.
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    Second, gender reveal parties.
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    That wasn't a thing before us, just a baby shower.
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    Now you get that.
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    Then maybe our most important contribution are selfies.
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    Some of you don't know this in world history,
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    it used to only be acceptable
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    to take pictures of other people,
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    but now you can take pictures of your favorite person,
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    You, thanks to us. Okay. That's what we did, Millennials.
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    We really were told that we were special
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    from the very beginning. You're special.
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    You can be anything you want to be.
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    The phrase that I heard more than any other phrase
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    was probably reach for the stars.
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    Reach for the stars.
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    Now, when the Bible was written,
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    no one knew how far away the stars were.
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    They were just kind of considered unreachable,
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    which is why they represented the heavens
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    or the dwelling place of God,
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    this place that we could never get to.
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    Now, though, apparently we've measured.
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    Do you know the sun is the nearest star
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    and that sun is 93 million miles away?
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    Which means if I was to reach for the sun,
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    I would get a little bit closer,
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    which can anybody in the front row read that?
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    How much closer would I get? Vivian?
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    My friend Vivian is right there.
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    How much closer would I get, Vivian?
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    21 inches. Wow. Okay. 21in closer.
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    Now, I saw Brian Tome, our senior pastor this week,
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    who, by the way, next week we'll be back
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    giving a message about the gift of grace.
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    Get excited for that.
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    It's going to be amazing.
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    When he asked me, he goes, "You know, every time
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    people from Crossroads see me out in public,
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    they always say, 'Wow,
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    you're so much taller than we thought you were.'
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    And he looked at me, he's like, "Maybe it's the stage,
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    maybe it's the lights or the video or whatever.
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    Is that what they say to you?"
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    I was like, "No, no one's ever said that to me."
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    So, Brian, if Brian were to reach for the stars,
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    he might get a little bit closer.
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    If I'm -- If I'm 21, maybe he gets, let's say --
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    let's give him 26in closer. Okay.
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    So closer, but still pretty far away.
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    Now, if you wanted to get as close
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    as you possibly can on Earth,
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    you'd go to the highest point on earth
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    and then you'd reach for the stars.
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    That point is Mount Everest. It's 5.5 miles in the sky.
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    As of January, I think 6338-ish people have ever
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    in world history climbed the top of Mount Everest.
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    You're probably wondering the same thing I did.
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    I wonder what percent of all humans ever that is.
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    And so I Googled that.
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    Estimates are that 117 billion humans have lived on Earth.
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    And so if you do the math, that means
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    only the top 0.000005% of all humans ever
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    have reached the top of Mount Everest.
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    Gotten as close as you possibly can to the stars,
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    reached up.
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    they were still 92,999,994.5 miles short, however.
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    So closer, but still absolutely ridiculously
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    and incredibly short.
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    I bring this up because this is us in sin
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    and the glory of God.
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    See, all of us fall short, even the very best of us.
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    Romans 3:23 says:
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    Like even the very, very best of us,
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    the mother Teresa's, the Gandhis, your mom.
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    I don't know, whoever you think is awesome.
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    The top 0.000005% of all humans ever still fall
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    ridiculously, absolutely, incredibly short.
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    This is the beginning of the story
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    of the gospel of God's grace.
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    The bad news that has to happen before the good news, it's sin.
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    See, there's no exceptions, there's no escape,
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    and there's nothing you can possibly do about it.
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    This is where the story starts.
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    Now, if you missed last week,
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    I'd highly encourage you to go back and watch it.
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    This message is kind of part two,
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    and that one was kind of part one
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    where I talked all about that.
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    If you've ever struggled ever to understand what sin is,
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    why is that in the Bible?
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    Why does God talk about it so much?
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    Why is it what it is?
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    Or you've ever struggled to understand God's wrath?
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    Why is that part of the story?
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    Please, please, please go back and watch last week.
  • 00:20:47
    The best way to do that
  • 00:20:49
    is through the Crossroads Anywhere app.
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    I don't know if you know this exists. It's completely free.
  • 00:20:53
    And it just a couple of days ago got a massive,
  • 00:20:56
    major overhaul that we're so excited about.
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    You can just go into that.
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    You can watch the message.
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    It's on the home screen right there.
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    Or you can click watch tab and watch all old messages there.
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    And I'll also say, all the videos in there
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    are probably the least impressive part.
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    The coolest part that I like about the app
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    is that you can follow along in scripture
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    with your community every single day.
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    We've been reading Romans for this whole entire two weeks.
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    And right now this morning, we're in Romans 8.
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    We will be again tomorrow.
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    You can read my journals about what I thought about it,
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    Brian's, your community pastor.
  • 00:21:25
    I highly encourage you to get it.
  • 00:21:27
    Advertisement over.
  • 00:21:28
    Some of you were like, where was the skip ad button?
  • 00:21:31
    I was looking for that the whole time you were talking.
  • 00:21:33
    Just admit it. Didn't exist.
  • 00:21:34
    But really, go back and watch that if you need to.
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    Now, the good news is that the story doesn't stop in sin.
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    It doesn't stop in our shortcoming but see,
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    God shows up and changes everything. Everything.
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    Romans 5:8, where we're going to start today says this:
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    Those two words change everything, but God.
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    And I don't know who you are.
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    I don't know what's going on in your life.
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    I don't know what situation you need a but God in in your life.
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    My hope and my prayer is that today you get it.
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    See, there's more of grace than you can possibly imagine.
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    It's better than you can imagine.
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    And it's available to every single person who wants it.
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    What I find is that for most of us,
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    there's this gap in understanding
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    of what Grace really is,
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    and that limits our experience of it.
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    And there's also a block in the way that limits us
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    from experiencing it each and every day as God intended.
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    Most of us still go through life,
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    even if we believe in grace
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    still with this like low level anxiety.
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    We still struggle to have hope.
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    We still look to other people to define us
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    and give us worth or our accomplishments.
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    And by the way, if that's how you experience life,
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    it's okay. That's called normal.
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    It's okay. You're in a safe place.
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    And I have great news for you,
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    Jesus didn't come for you to have a normal life.
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    He said He came to give you the abundant life
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    or the full life, that's in John 10.
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    And so would you join me as we start
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    and just asking God for that gift?
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    God, I ask that you give all of us more of Your grace,
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    that if there's gaps, You would fill them.
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    That if there are blocks, You would remove them,
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    all of them, God, in my life
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    and in everybody who's listening and watching today. Amen.
  • 00:23:20
    Well, let's start to fill that gap.
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    What is Grace?
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    Well, grace in the Bible is a few things,
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    but the biggest one to get is that
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    it is a free gift that's offered.
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    Today we're looking at mainly Romans chapters 5-8.
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    And if you were to look through there
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    and see what's the word that Paul uses
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    more than any other word, you'd find the word gift.
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    He uses it over and over again in Chapter 5 and Chapter 6.
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    He says, "Grace is a free gift."
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    Here's Romans chapter 5:18:
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    It's a gift.
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    Now, why would Paul emphasize the fact that it's a gift?
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    And what does that mean?
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    Is this a gift that everyone receives?
  • 00:24:13
    Last week I talked about how there are
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    these impostor gospels that we have to see
  • 00:24:17
    and understand if we want to understand
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    and unpack and experience the true gospel.
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    One of those right now is the God is love Gospel.
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    We talked about this last week.
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    This is the gospel that basically wants to
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    take those parts of the Bible where God is loving
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    and keep those and throw out the whole rest.
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    We talked about some of the good things about God is love.
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    That's true. That's awesome.
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    And some of the dangers
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    when we get rid of all of the rest of it.
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    Another one that I see popping up
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    is what I call the love wins gospel.
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    Lately, maybe you've seen this on Instagram
  • 00:24:45
    or in a different feed or kind of picked up on this attitude.
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    And the love wins gospel says
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    grace is a free gift that all automatically receive.
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    Like, you went to sleep last night
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    and your phone got an automatic software upgrade. Right?
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    That's what happens. You didn't do anything.
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    It just kind of downloaded. And now you got it.
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    Is that grace?
  • 00:25:05
    In other words, is everyone saved?
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    This is an important question.
  • 00:25:10
    And let me just say from the start, I sure hope so.
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    I hope that everyone is saved.
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    That would be great.
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    What kind of horrible person would go, "No, you know,
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    I just kind of prefer the reality where
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    maybe half of all humanity become eternal tiki torches
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    and just burn in the lake of fire forever.
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    I just thought that'd be pretty neat."
  • 00:25:30
    Like, no, of course not. Of course not.
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    I hope that that's true.
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    I hope that you hope it's true, too.
  • 00:25:36
    But I see a few problems with this idea
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    that grace is this free gift we all automatically,
  • 00:25:41
    whether we choose to or not, automatically receive.
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    Number one is this: We can't actually know
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    whether grace is a gift that all automatically receive.
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    We can't know.
  • 00:25:54
    Now, there's a French mathematician
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    in the 17th century named Blaise Pascal,
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    and he created this idea called Pascal's Wager.
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    And it's an idea that we can relate to this concept, I think.
  • 00:26:05
    In Pascal's Wager, he basically says,
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    you have to with your life wager whether God exists or not.
  • 00:26:12
    Nobody actually gets to sit out this wager,
  • 00:26:14
    by the way, if you attempt to sit back,
  • 00:26:16
    you're actually wagering no.
  • 00:26:18
    And so he runs through the logic of making this decision
  • 00:26:21
    and he says, "You know, if you wager no
  • 00:26:23
    and God turns out to exist, the consequence is eternal loss.
  • 00:26:29
    If, however, you wager that He does exist
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    and He does prove to exist, you stand for eternal gain."
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    And so just logically, he goes,
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    "The smartest thing you can do is wager,
  • 00:26:40
    bet your life on the fact that He does exist." He wrote this:
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    See, I think the same logic applies
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    to the concept that everyone is saved.
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    If I live and I preach as if, yes,
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    everyone automatically receives the free gift of grace
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    and I turn out to be wrong,
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    the consequences are eternal and horrible.
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    If I decide, you know, this is a free gift.
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    Everyone gets it.
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    I don't need to tell my neighbor about God.
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    I don't need to show them grace.
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    I don't need to invite them to church.
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    I don't need to live a life that pleases God in any way.
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    I automatically get it if.
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    I'm wrong, the consequences are eternal loss.
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    Therefore, I will live my life
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    as if it's not an automatic download,
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    as if it's something that you actually have to accept.
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    And then if I turn out to be wrong
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    and everyone gets it anyway, hey, no harm, no foul.
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    We're all in heaven. How great is that, right?
  • 00:27:47
    This is the view I take on it.
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    The second problem I have is this.
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    Imagine there was a man
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    who rescued some orphans from a fire.
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    Now this orphanage is in the middle of the woods.
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    It happened at night. No one saw it.
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    And so he walks out of the woods the next day,
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    orphans in tow and a reporter sees him and asks what happened?
  • 00:28:04
    "There's this big fire and it was going to destroy everybody.
  • 00:28:07
    And so I well, I saved the orphans." Right?
  • 00:28:10
    And that story, it gets on the nightly news that night,
  • 00:28:13
    local news, the next day the national news picks it up.
  • 00:28:15
    Eventually, this guy gets a book deal about the story.
  • 00:28:18
    The book is made into a movie.
  • 00:28:19
    The movie's a bestseller.
  • 00:28:20
    The guy is celebrated. We call him a hero.
  • 00:28:22
    We call him a savior.
  • 00:28:23
    And then at the end of his life, the guy goes,
  • 00:28:25
    "You know what, guys? Something I got to tell you.
  • 00:28:28
    There was actually no fire.
  • 00:28:31
    I didn't save the orphans from anything."
  • 00:28:34
    Would we feel something betrayed?
  • 00:28:36
    Like, "Are you kidding me? There was no --
  • 00:28:39
    You didn't save us from anything?"
  • 00:28:41
    Well, friends, I bring this up to just point out
  • 00:28:43
    that Jesus makes a very firm claim
  • 00:28:45
    you cannot get around if you want to read any of His words.
  • 00:28:49
    And he says, "I'm saving you from something.
  • 00:28:51
    There is a real fire coming for you.
  • 00:28:54
    And what that looks like is this eternal state
  • 00:28:57
    of tormented being away from God."
  • 00:28:59
    He uses different words to describe it.
  • 00:29:01
    Matthew 8 as one example, Matthew 8:12:
  • 00:29:10
    The outer darkness, in Matthew 18:8
  • 00:29:12
    He describes it as an eternal fire.
  • 00:29:14
    In Matthew 28:46 it's eternal condemnation.
  • 00:29:17
    He again and again comes back to this thing.
  • 00:29:19
    But if He's not saving us from anything,
  • 00:29:21
    He's not a Savior, but he's taking our worship
  • 00:29:23
    and our praise for it right now.
  • 00:29:25
    We just sang a song earlier.
  • 00:29:26
    I thank the Master. I thank the Savior. I thank God.
  • 00:29:30
    If He's not, why are we singing?
  • 00:29:34
    Why are we singing?
  • 00:29:36
    So I firmly believe a part of this story
  • 00:29:38
    and the way I choose to live my life is
  • 00:29:40
    as if the consequences are real,
  • 00:29:43
    that, see grace is a gift
  • 00:29:45
    that absolutely must be received
  • 00:29:48
    and just as absolutely can be rejected. No, thank you.
  • 00:29:52
    Romans 6:23 says this:
  • 00:30:02
    I have three kids, my wife Sarah and I have three kids.
  • 00:30:05
    We have Ben, Eli and Gracie.
  • 00:30:08
    This will shock you, but every year
  • 00:30:09
    we celebrate their birthdays, each of them,
  • 00:30:12
    because we were very generous parents. Right?
  • 00:30:15
    Celebrate their birthdays. We give them presents.
  • 00:30:18
    Here is something that has never happened
  • 00:30:20
    when I've given my kid a birthday present.
  • 00:30:21
    I've never gone, "Here you go, son. Here's the present."
  • 00:30:24
    And had them go, "Oh, Dad. Oh, Dad,
  • 00:30:26
    I couldn't ever accept that." Right?
  • 00:30:29
    Or unwrap it, "Oh, it's too much, Father.
  • 00:30:32
    It's too much for me. Too much, the glory, can't take it."
  • 00:30:36
    It's never happened.
  • 00:30:38
    What my kids do when I give them a gift
  • 00:30:40
    is they're like wood chippers.
  • 00:30:42
    They just shred everything. "What is it?
  • 00:30:44
    Oh, awesome. Thanks."
  • 00:30:46
    That's how a kid receives a gift.
  • 00:30:48
    But us as adults, we have this idea that
  • 00:30:51
    we have to earn everything and so it stops us
  • 00:30:53
    from receiving free gifts.
  • 00:30:55
    We think, "No, no, no. It can't be free.
  • 00:30:57
    Let me -- Let me pay you back."
  • 00:30:59
    I hear this phrase all the time in churches and I hate it.
  • 00:31:01
    Let's give back to God.
  • 00:31:03
    No, don't give back to God.
  • 00:31:06
    Don't try to pay for the gift.
  • 00:31:07
    Don't try to earn it. You never can.
  • 00:31:09
    You can say thank you. You can be grateful.
  • 00:31:11
    You can try to love Him. That's awesome.
  • 00:31:14
    But the idea of giving back, of paying for it,
  • 00:31:16
    God says, "I don't need you to do that.
  • 00:31:18
    I just want you to be like a child."
  • 00:31:20
    Jesus says, "If you don't have faith like a child,
  • 00:31:22
    you cannot enter My Kingdom."
  • 00:31:24
    The picture of faith like a child is the picture
  • 00:31:26
    of the kid just ripping the gift apart.
  • 00:31:27
    Wow. Awesome. Thanks, Dad.
  • 00:31:29
    That's what He wants for you. That's what he wants for you.
  • 00:31:32
    Thank you, Father. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.
  • 00:31:35
    Now, free gift doesn't mean cheap gift.
  • 00:31:38
    It doesn't mean cheap gifts at all.
  • 00:31:40
    Because the free gift of grace had the absolute highest price.
  • 00:31:44
    And another letter that Paul wrote to the Corinthians,
  • 00:31:46
    he put it this way. First Corinthians 6:20:
  • 00:31:52
    Price. What was the price?
  • 00:31:54
    The price was the life of Jesus, the Son of God.
  • 00:31:57
    The highest possible price
  • 00:31:59
    anyone could possibly pay for anything.
  • 00:32:02
    If there is a God,
  • 00:32:03
    the most valuable thing in the universe is Him.
  • 00:32:05
    And what does He pay? Himself. His own son.
  • 00:32:09
    Romans 5:6-8, I read you that verse 8 just a little bit ago.
  • 00:32:13
    The part that starts with, but God.
  • 00:32:14
    I want to back up two verses and read you
  • 00:32:16
    the whole little section here. It says:
  • 00:32:38
    His own love. It means His unique type of love,
  • 00:32:41
    His unique brand of love.
  • 00:32:43
    A kind of love that we're not used to
  • 00:32:45
    because it's not how people have loved us.
  • 00:32:47
    And so there is some getting used to this gospel of grace.
  • 00:32:50
    His own love, it's costly. Costly.
  • 00:32:53
    One of my favorite authors and teachers
  • 00:32:56
    is a pastor named Tim Keller, who just passed away this year.
  • 00:32:59
    He was a pastor out of New York and an amazing guy.
  • 00:33:02
    And he said this idea of the cost of grace
  • 00:33:05
    really clicked for him as he was examining the story
  • 00:33:08
    of Jesus in the Garden of Gethsemane.
  • 00:33:10
    Now, this story happens the night
  • 00:33:12
    that he's betrayed, Thursday night.
  • 00:33:14
    He's going to be crucified Friday. Okay?
  • 00:33:16
    So this is right before He gets arrested.
  • 00:33:17
    He knows they're coming to arrest Him.
  • 00:33:20
    And so He goes to the garden and He prays.
  • 00:33:22
    And He says to His Hather, basically, "God,
  • 00:33:24
    if there's any other way to pay this cost,
  • 00:33:27
    if there's anything else that's valuable
  • 00:33:29
    that could satisfy the price of this,
  • 00:33:31
    please, can we can we go that way?
  • 00:33:33
    Can we pay some other way?
  • 00:33:34
    But if not, God, if not, Father,
  • 00:33:37
    You can have My life. I'll pay it."
  • 00:33:41
    Keller writes this:
  • 00:34:06
    Costly love.
  • 00:34:08
    It's a question worth asking about this gift
  • 00:34:10
    that such a high price was paid for
  • 00:34:13
    is what's actually inside of it.
  • 00:34:15
    What is grace?
  • 00:34:17
    I find often times that people confuse two words.
  • 00:34:20
    They use them almost interchangeably,
  • 00:34:22
    grace and mercy.
  • 00:34:24
    These are actually distinct concepts in the Bible.
  • 00:34:27
    Mercy has to do with
  • 00:34:29
    when somebody is deserving of punishment
  • 00:34:31
    and you are in the rightful seat of judgment.
  • 00:34:34
    And what you choose to do is to have mercy on them,
  • 00:34:37
    to not punish them. That's mercy.
  • 00:34:40
    It is awesome. It's absolutely a part of grace,
  • 00:34:43
    but it is nothing close to the totality of grace.
  • 00:34:47
    See, grace is actually used in the Bible
  • 00:34:49
    first in the Old Testament.
  • 00:34:50
    I don't know if you knew this,
  • 00:34:52
    Old Testament was written in Hebrew.
  • 00:34:53
    So if you ever hear us use Hebrew words on stage,
  • 00:34:55
    that's because we're going back to
  • 00:34:57
    the original language of the Old Testament.
  • 00:34:59
    And then the New Testament was primarily written in Greek.
  • 00:35:01
    So if we ever use a Greek word, that's why we're doing that.
  • 00:35:04
    And if you go back to grace,
  • 00:35:05
    the first times it shows up in the Bible,
  • 00:35:07
    it is the Hebrew word khen. Everyone say khen, khen.
  • 00:35:12
    Okay, you got to clear your throat. Do it again, khen.
  • 00:35:16
    Okay, now wipe the back of your neighbor's head in front of you.
  • 00:35:19
    This is really, really gross.
  • 00:35:22
    Khen, not Ken like Barbie, khen, khen.
  • 00:35:27
    What is khen? Khen is a view of somebody.
  • 00:35:31
    It is deciding I'm going to look on you,
  • 00:35:35
    I'm going to change my view of you
  • 00:35:37
    to be one of favor and goodness.
  • 00:35:41
    I'm going to decide that you are good.
  • 00:35:43
    And every time I look at you,
  • 00:35:44
    I'm going to see something desirable,
  • 00:35:46
    something great.
  • 00:35:48
    See, 47 times in the Old Testament of the Bible
  • 00:35:51
    this phrase is used to find grace in the eyes of,
  • 00:35:54
    to find khen in the eyes of.
  • 00:35:56
    And sometimes that word is translated favor
  • 00:35:59
    and sometimes it's translated grace.
  • 00:36:01
    Here's just a few examples so we can understand this.
  • 00:36:04
    In Genesis chapter six,
  • 00:36:05
    when God is going to destroy the world
  • 00:36:08
    because of all this horrible sin going on.
  • 00:36:10
    He looks at Noah and He sees somebody who He can trust,
  • 00:36:14
    and the scripture records He had khen in the eyes of the Lord.
  • 00:36:18
    Genesis 6:8:
  • 00:36:19
    But Noah found grace, or khen, in the eyes of the Lord.
  • 00:36:23
    Genesis 39:4, the story of Joseph and Pharaoh.
  • 00:36:26
    Joseph is a prisoner.
  • 00:36:28
    He's in prison unjustly, by the way.
  • 00:36:31
    And Pharaoh comes along.
  • 00:36:32
    He doesn't just have mercy on Joseph and say,
  • 00:36:35
    "Well, I'm going to pardon your sentence anyway.
  • 00:36:37
    Be on your way," kick him out of his house.
  • 00:36:39
    He has khen on him. He finds khen in his eyes,
  • 00:36:43
    and he elevates him out of prison
  • 00:36:45
    all the way up to being the second most powerful,
  • 00:36:47
    important person in the entire Egyptian kingdom.
  • 00:36:51
    Here's what it says in Genesis 39:4:
  • 00:36:58
    In Exodus 33 Moses has this exchange with God,
  • 00:37:01
    and it's all about this desire to find grace
  • 00:37:03
    or khen in the eyes of God. It says this:
  • 00:37:27
    Story of Ruth. Ruth was a widow. She was poor.
  • 00:37:32
    She had to take care of her mother-in-law, Naomi.
  • 00:37:34
    She didn't know what to do.
  • 00:37:35
    And so she goes to a local king's field,
  • 00:37:37
    named Boaz, and she decides,
  • 00:37:39
    I'm just going to aim for mercy, that's all.
  • 00:37:41
    If I can just have some mercy, just pity.
  • 00:37:42
    If I can have the scraps from his table,
  • 00:37:45
    that would be enough for me.
  • 00:37:47
    But Boaz sees her, and he doesn't just have mercy on her,
  • 00:37:50
    she finds khen in his eyes.
  • 00:37:53
    And he says, "You know what?
  • 00:37:54
    I'm going to marry you and make you queen."
  • 00:37:57
    Here's her response, Ruth 2:10:
  • 00:38:05
    See, the point is this, grace is about how you are seen.
  • 00:38:09
    It is God's chosen viewpoint of you.
  • 00:38:12
    And when he looks at you,
  • 00:38:13
    the story of the gospel of grace is
  • 00:38:14
    He doesn't see your mistakes.
  • 00:38:15
    He doesn't see your shortcomings.
  • 00:38:17
    He doesn't see your problems.
  • 00:38:18
    He sees you and goes, "Yes, I'm pumped about you.
  • 00:38:21
    Yes, I'm excited about you.
  • 00:38:23
    Yes, you're the son I love. Yes, you're the daughter I love.
  • 00:38:26
    Yes, I believe in you. Yes, I'm proud of you."
  • 00:38:28
    That's what He says about you each and every day.
  • 00:38:30
    Grace is His elevated view, that's the gospel.
  • 00:38:34
    That's the gospel available to you.
  • 00:38:36
    That's the good news.
  • 00:38:38
    Romans 8:1 says this: Therefore, there is now
  • 00:38:41
    no condemnation at all for those who are in Christ Jesus.
  • 00:38:45
    No condemnation.
  • 00:38:47
    He sees your beauty. He sees value in you.
  • 00:38:51
    Now, the problem I see that many believers have
  • 00:38:54
    is that we don't believe it really.
  • 00:38:55
    We think it's some kind of a trick, you know,
  • 00:38:58
    like God kind of chooses for a little bit.
  • 00:39:00
    He puts on the glasses, "Oh, you're amazing."
  • 00:39:01
    And then He gets bored and He takes them off.
  • 00:39:03
    He's like, "Whoa, whoa. Wow. Okay, hold on.
  • 00:39:07
    Oh, that's better. Oh, man. Okay."
  • 00:39:09
    You know, we think it's like this trick
  • 00:39:11
    or this optional thing.
  • 00:39:12
    We don't think it's permanent.
  • 00:39:14
    In our house we love to -- We love April Fools.
  • 00:39:16
    It's probably our third favorite holiday.
  • 00:39:18
    I mean, Christmas and Easter, right?
  • 00:39:20
    Two Christian holidays, those got to be one and two.
  • 00:39:22
    April Fools, number three. Here's why.
  • 00:39:25
    Because it's socially acceptable to terrify your children.
  • 00:39:29
    And it's so much fun. It is so much fun.
  • 00:39:32
    If you are not doing April Fools, you absolutely should.
  • 00:39:35
    Here's a couple of lay up ideas for you.
  • 00:39:37
    This is one we did a couple of years ago.
  • 00:39:39
    You can buy this shark on Amazon
  • 00:39:42
    and then you tape it to the bottom of the seat.
  • 00:39:45
    And when they wake up in the morning to go poop,
  • 00:39:46
    they're like, "Ahhh," you know, it's great.
  • 00:39:49
    I love that one.
  • 00:39:51
    Here's another one from a few years ago.
  • 00:39:52
    I got black construction paper
  • 00:39:54
    and I cut out the shape of spiders.
  • 00:39:56
    This is important. This is how you have to --
  • 00:39:59
    at night, you sneak into their room
  • 00:40:02
    and you put them inside the lamp and you tape it.
  • 00:40:05
    So in the morning, when they turn on the lamp,
  • 00:40:07
    this is what they see. And they're like, "Ahh."
  • 00:40:10
    I made my son cry with this one.
  • 00:40:11
    So use that one at at your own discretion.
  • 00:40:15
    That might be a little far.
  • 00:40:16
    This year my daughter and I,
  • 00:40:18
    who make pancakes together every Saturday morning.
  • 00:40:20
    And on April Fools we made a hot dog shaped pancakes.
  • 00:40:24
    Right. And I want to hold on this picture for just a minute,
  • 00:40:27
    because you and I make a mistake in this picture.
  • 00:40:30
    There are actually two things here.
  • 00:40:31
    We think that God's grace,
  • 00:40:33
    His view of us is like hot dog pancakes.
  • 00:40:36
    It's not real. It's kind of a trick.
  • 00:40:38
    It's not lasting. It's not permanent.
  • 00:40:40
    It's a little bit silly, it's a little bit naïve.
  • 00:40:42
    That's what we think, but it's not true.
  • 00:40:44
    God's view of us is the way that I view my daughter Grace.
  • 00:40:48
    No matter what she ever does,
  • 00:40:50
    no matter where she ever goes,
  • 00:40:51
    she will always find favor in my eyes.
  • 00:40:54
    I will always think that she's beautiful.
  • 00:40:56
    Always, always, always. No matter what.
  • 00:40:58
    This is God and you.
  • 00:40:59
    And I just wonder what would change in your life
  • 00:41:02
    if you made it a habit of actively, intentionally
  • 00:41:05
    receiving the gift every single day instead of rejecting it?
  • 00:41:09
    Might you have more peace in your life?
  • 00:41:12
    Might you have more confidence?
  • 00:41:14
    Might you be less worried about
  • 00:41:15
    what people are going to think about
  • 00:41:16
    whatever you said in the meeting or whatever? Yes.
  • 00:41:18
    Might you be willing to take risks?
  • 00:41:20
    Might you feel more safety in your life?
  • 00:41:22
    Yes, yes and yes.
  • 00:41:23
    But see, the reason that we don't experience it
  • 00:41:25
    is because of the block in our way that
  • 00:41:27
    we have to address and we have to remove.
  • 00:41:29
    There's a reason we don't.
  • 00:41:31
    I think the most terrifying question
  • 00:41:34
    a wife can possibly ask a husband
  • 00:41:36
    is how do I look in this?
  • 00:41:39
    Husband's agree, yeah? Terrifying. Why?
  • 00:41:42
    Because we never get the answer right.
  • 00:41:45
    It's impossible.
  • 00:41:46
    Everyone's all freaked out about like Putin and North Korea.
  • 00:41:50
    They're going to start World War III.
  • 00:41:52
    You know, that's how it's going to happen.
  • 00:41:53
    No, it's not.
  • 00:41:55
    I'll tell you how World War III starts.
  • 00:41:57
    There's a world leader, she has a state dinner
  • 00:42:00
    and she gets a new dress and she invites her husband in.
  • 00:42:04
    And she's like, "How does this look?"
  • 00:42:05
    And that idiot screws up the answer and we all die.
  • 00:42:08
    That's how it's going to start.
  • 00:42:10
    That's how it's going to go down.
  • 00:42:12
    Can't get the answer right.
  • 00:42:14
    You know, Sarah will ask me that.
  • 00:42:15
    And if I hesitate for a second, she's like,
  • 00:42:17
    "Okay, never mind. I'll go. I'll go change. I'll go change."
  • 00:42:21
    And if I say what's true, "I go, Babe, you look beautiful.
  • 00:42:24
    You look great." What does she say?
  • 00:42:26
    "Oh, you always say that.
  • 00:42:28
    That's what you -- You always think I look beautiful."
  • 00:42:34
    How am I being punished for this?
  • 00:42:37
    You have found khen in my eyes, woman.
  • 00:42:45
    See, we asked for this, though, because
  • 00:42:47
    our view of ourselves is really severely limited.
  • 00:42:49
    And so we look for other people to validate.
  • 00:42:51
    We look for other people to say, "What do you see in me?"
  • 00:42:54
    Hold out your hands like this. Just put them out.
  • 00:42:57
    This is your default mode of seeing yourself in life. Okay?
  • 00:43:02
    Try to see your face right now.
  • 00:43:05
    I can't. My peripheral vision stops here.
  • 00:43:10
    Is that good, by the way? No. Okay.
  • 00:43:13
    I took off my glasses. That's probably why.
  • 00:43:15
    It's probably awesome besides that.
  • 00:43:16
    This is all you can see.
  • 00:43:18
    Your view of you is severely limited.
  • 00:43:20
    You know, what you can see, though,
  • 00:43:22
    is what happens on the end of your hands,
  • 00:43:23
    the work of your hands is what you see.
  • 00:43:26
    And for most of us,
  • 00:43:28
    the reason that we reject this gift of grace,
  • 00:43:30
    God's high and holy view of us every day is
  • 00:43:32
    because we instead are saying, "You know what,
  • 00:43:34
    I'm actually the result of the work of my hands.
  • 00:43:36
    What I can see out here.
  • 00:43:37
    I don't want your view. Here's my view."
  • 00:43:40
    Now the work of your hands can be wins and losses.
  • 00:43:43
    Wins might seem like, well, that's probably a good idea.
  • 00:43:45
    You know, be proud of the things you accomplish.
  • 00:43:48
    Which that's that's okay, to a degree.
  • 00:43:50
    But the problem with wins is that
  • 00:43:53
    they have an incredibly short shelf life.
  • 00:43:55
    They're like sushi.
  • 00:43:57
    I love sushi, by the way.
  • 00:43:59
    Love sushi. Sushi is great.
  • 00:44:00
    I did see this video the other day that made me reconsider.
  • 00:44:02
    Just check this out real quick.
  • 00:44:07
    - What if Sushi is a scam.
  • 00:44:10
    They act like it's special,
  • 00:44:13
    but they really just didn't want to cook your food. [laughter]
  • 00:44:20
    - Makes you think, right? Makes you think.
  • 00:44:26
    I love sushi.
  • 00:44:28
    Raise your hand if you like three day old sushi.
  • 00:44:32
    No, of course not.
  • 00:44:33
    This is wins in our life.
  • 00:44:35
    They don't have a long shelf life.
  • 00:44:36
    They spoil faster than you want.
  • 00:44:38
    And if you're trying to find your value and worth in them,
  • 00:44:40
    you'll find it deeply dissatisfying because
  • 00:44:42
    just a few days later the thing that was amazing
  • 00:44:44
    that made you feel so great just a couple of days later,
  • 00:44:46
    it's already spoiled.
  • 00:44:47
    That's how wins work in our life,
  • 00:44:49
    whether we want them to or not.
  • 00:44:50
    And the only other option is our losses.
  • 00:44:53
    We view that the things that we miss at,
  • 00:44:54
    the habit that we can't kick,
  • 00:44:56
    the pattern of destructive thought
  • 00:44:57
    that we can't seem to get over,
  • 00:44:59
    the thing we try to do and we just can't quite make it.
  • 00:45:01
    And we decide, "This is who I am."
  • 00:45:03
    And friends, please hear me clearly,
  • 00:45:05
    when you do that on a daily basis,
  • 00:45:07
    you are rejecting the gift of grace.
  • 00:45:10
    See, yes, grace is this one time thing you accept.
  • 00:45:13
    Yes, there's probably a moment
  • 00:45:14
    where the very first time you say yes,
  • 00:45:16
    I'm going to believe who I am, who you say I am.
  • 00:45:19
    But it's not a one time thing forever.
  • 00:45:21
    It's meant to be a daily acceptance.
  • 00:45:23
    A daily, Yes, God, help me see myself the way that You see me.
  • 00:45:27
    I would love that if that's true, but we reject it.
  • 00:45:30
    We decide I'm my mistakes instead.
  • 00:45:33
    But God, thankfully, God is a gracious God.
  • 00:45:36
    That's the good news. He is gracious.
  • 00:45:39
    It's something that He is part of His character.
  • 00:45:43
    The first time God ever says He's gracious,
  • 00:45:45
    by the way, do you know what it is?
  • 00:45:46
    It's Exodus 34, which is the story in the Bible
  • 00:45:50
    where Moses has just led the Israelites out of Egypt,
  • 00:45:54
    out of slavery.
  • 00:45:56
    And the first thing the Israelites do is they thank God.
  • 00:45:58
    Just kidding. They don't do that at all.
  • 00:46:00
    They actually set up a golden calf,
  • 00:46:03
    reject God and worship the calf instead.
  • 00:46:06
    The worst thing you could possibly do.
  • 00:46:08
    And do you know what God's response is to them?
  • 00:46:11
    He says, "Here's who I am." Exodus 34:6-7:
  • 00:46:29
    He says, I'm gracious.
  • 00:46:31
    Doesn't matter what you do, doesn't matter at all.
  • 00:46:34
    I love you. I think you are awesome.
  • 00:46:38
    And friends, if you just need to hear that today
  • 00:46:40
    and nothing else, please do.
  • 00:46:41
    I don't know what mistake you made last night.
  • 00:46:43
    You might walk in here like, "Man, God doesn't --
  • 00:46:45
    God's rejecting me right now."
  • 00:46:47
    No, he's not. No, he's not.
  • 00:46:49
    Did you make a golden calf and completely reject Him?
  • 00:46:52
    Probably not, you know.
  • 00:46:54
    But even if you did, He'd go, "I'm gracious.
  • 00:46:58
    I still look on you with you on favor."
  • 00:47:00
    It never, ever, ever changes.
  • 00:47:02
    Now, if you want to accept this gift every day,
  • 00:47:05
    how might you receive the gift every single day?
  • 00:47:09
    Because it's hard to see yourself.
  • 00:47:11
    What I found in my life is that
  • 00:47:13
    because I can't see it myself,
  • 00:47:15
    I need to hear God say how He sees me.
  • 00:47:19
    One of our fights in our marriage
  • 00:47:20
    that's been going on for forever
  • 00:47:22
    is when our first date actually took place.
  • 00:47:25
    I say it's the first time I took Sarah out,
  • 00:47:28
    bought her food or beverage and paid for it. Yes?
  • 00:47:31
    Good people. Yes? Take my side, please.
  • 00:47:35
    Thank you. Thank you. I am right. No.
  • 00:47:39
    Now what I learned, even on this first date,
  • 00:47:42
    I learned something very important about Sarah.
  • 00:47:43
    It was a great conversation, very just kind of
  • 00:47:45
    vulnerable and trusting with each other.
  • 00:47:47
    And I learned that she, like many women,
  • 00:47:49
    struggle to believe that she's truly beautiful.
  • 00:47:52
    So that was like a kind of a thing
  • 00:47:53
    that she just couldn't quite get there, you know?
  • 00:47:56
    And a few, I don't know, weeks or months later,
  • 00:47:59
    as our relationship progressed, we got more serious.
  • 00:48:02
    I told her, I said, "You know,
  • 00:48:03
    I want you to mark this date because from here on out,
  • 00:48:06
    I am not going to call you Sarah.
  • 00:48:08
    You will never hear me say Sarah again.
  • 00:48:12
    I'm going to call you beautiful."
  • 00:48:13
    And still to this day, if you go to my phone
  • 00:48:15
    and you look at her picture,
  • 00:48:16
    it says beautiful when she calls me.
  • 00:48:18
    Why would I do that?
  • 00:48:19
    Because I knew that she would struggle
  • 00:48:22
    to see her how I see her.
  • 00:48:25
    And therefore, I made a commitment
  • 00:48:27
    I will tell you every day what I think about you,
  • 00:48:29
    every opportunity I have.
  • 00:48:31
    And friends, God does the same thing
  • 00:48:33
    if you'll pause and listen.
  • 00:48:35
    Every day God has words for you
  • 00:48:37
    if you'll pause and you'll listen about
  • 00:48:39
    how He sees you and how He loves you
  • 00:48:40
    and how He's for you and how He's not upset at you
  • 00:48:42
    and how how He's in your corner,
  • 00:48:44
    if you'll pause and listen.
  • 00:48:46
    It's actually a need you were built with,
  • 00:48:49
    you can't run away from.
  • 00:48:50
    In the Bible it's known as your daily bread.
  • 00:48:53
    You need your daily bread.
  • 00:48:55
    In Matthew 6 Jesus taught us how to pray,
  • 00:48:58
    and He gave this kind of prayer.
  • 00:48:59
    It's beautiful. It's known as the Lord's Prayer.
  • 00:49:01
    Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name.
  • 00:49:03
    May Your Kingdom come, may Your will be done
  • 00:49:05
    on earth as it is in heaven.
  • 00:49:07
    Give us today our, what? Our daily bread.
  • 00:49:11
    Now, you know what's interesting is that the Bible
  • 00:49:14
    actually diminishes the importance of bread
  • 00:49:16
    over and over again. Deuteronomy 8:3 says:
  • 00:49:24
    Just two chapters before teaching this prayer
  • 00:49:26
    Jesus was tempted by Satan. He was starving.
  • 00:49:29
    He was in the desert fasting for 40 days, and Satan says,
  • 00:49:31
    "Hey, turn these stones into into bread."
  • 00:49:33
    And Jesus goes, "I don't live by bread.
  • 00:49:36
    That's not the most important thing.
  • 00:49:37
    I live by every word of God."
  • 00:49:39
    And friends, you are no different.
  • 00:49:42
    You would never expect to eat one time in your life
  • 00:49:46
    and have that satisfy you forever.
  • 00:49:48
    You wouldn't expect to eat once a week
  • 00:49:50
    on a Sunday morning for an hour
  • 00:49:52
    and expect that to create physical health in you.
  • 00:49:55
    Why do you expect that for spiritual health?
  • 00:49:57
    The more important thing.
  • 00:50:00
    See, there's an invitation from your Father,
  • 00:50:03
    a beautiful, incredible invitation.
  • 00:50:06
    He says, "I've made a meal for you.
  • 00:50:09
    I've taken the bread. I've broken it.
  • 00:50:12
    The gift, My body, My Son broken for you.
  • 00:50:15
    Every day would you eat it?
  • 00:50:17
    It's not fast food. It wasn't cheap. It wasn't cheap.
  • 00:50:20
    Would you set aside time to read the Bible,
  • 00:50:23
    to pray, to interact with Me
  • 00:50:24
    so I could give you My Word?"
  • 00:50:27
    And right before He was crucified.
  • 00:50:30
    Right before He was actually arrested
  • 00:50:31
    and left to go to the Garden of Gethsemane,
  • 00:50:33
    Jesus instituted what's known as
  • 00:50:35
    the Lord's Supper or Communion.
  • 00:50:37
    And not coincidentally, the first thing He did
  • 00:50:39
    is He took a loaf of bread and He broke it.
  • 00:50:42
    And He said, "This is My body broken for you."
  • 00:50:45
    And He took a cup of wine and He said,
  • 00:50:48
    "This is My blood shed for you.
  • 00:50:50
    Whenever you get together, do this in remembrance of Me."
  • 00:50:54
    As often, as often as you eat, as often as you drink,
  • 00:50:57
    do this again and again and again and again.
  • 00:50:59
    In other words, as often as you have a meal,
  • 00:51:01
    as often as you eat breakfast,
  • 00:51:03
    if you ate breakfast today, spend time with Me today,
  • 00:51:05
    ask Me what I think about you,
  • 00:51:06
    and let that be the thing that informs your day.
  • 00:51:10
    Let that be the thing that lowers your anxiety.
  • 00:51:13
    Let that be the thing that increases your power,
  • 00:51:15
    increases your hope.
  • 00:51:17
    This is the invitation of God.
  • 00:51:20
    So we're going to end this experience today
  • 00:51:22
    having actual bread and actual wine communion.
  • 00:51:26
    If you've been here before, you've seen us
  • 00:51:27
    maybe do communion with the little cups,
  • 00:51:30
    a little tiny thing of juice
  • 00:51:31
    and the tiny little terrible cracker in the top of it.
  • 00:51:34
    We're not doing that today.
  • 00:51:35
    That's fine for some days. We're not doing that today.
  • 00:51:37
    We're going to take the time to enjoy this together.
  • 00:51:42
    Now, as you get up, I do mean time.
  • 00:51:45
    It's highly possible that wherever you are,
  • 00:51:47
    you're going to be in a line
  • 00:51:49
    and that line might last ten minutes.
  • 00:51:51
    It might last 15 minutes for you to get communion.
  • 00:51:55
    And as you're doing that, I want you to have
  • 00:51:57
    a conversation with God about His grace.
  • 00:52:00
    Because I just know there's a place in your life
  • 00:52:03
    where you have yet to fully receive His view of you.
  • 00:52:06
    You're holding on to the work of your hands.
  • 00:52:09
    And as you come forward for communion,
  • 00:52:11
    would you just ask Him, "God, what is that place?"
  • 00:52:14
    And would you ask Him for His Word
  • 00:52:16
    about what He actually thinks about you?
  • 00:52:18
    And would you swap it?
  • 00:52:19
    Say, "God, help me to receive the gift of grace,
  • 00:52:21
    change me, change me today, God."
  • 00:52:25
    And so wherever you are in just a moment
  • 00:52:27
    your campus pastor is going to come on stage
  • 00:52:29
    and give you instructions.
  • 00:52:30
    I'm going to pray for all of us first.
  • 00:52:32
    God, thank You so much for the gift of grace.
  • 00:52:34
    This gift that's free and yet came at a steep cost.
  • 00:52:40
    Thank You for paying for it.
  • 00:52:41
    I don't want there to be a day in my life
  • 00:52:43
    that goes by that I don't enjoy it,
  • 00:52:46
    that I don't say thank You for it,
  • 00:52:48
    that I don't get the absolute most nourishment
  • 00:52:50
    in life out of it possible, God.
  • 00:52:53
    Help us receive this gift now and every day after. Amen.
  • 00:52:58
    If you are watching online and you're like,
  • 00:53:02
    "I don't have bread and wine," you do somewhere near you.
  • 00:53:06
    You have something to drink and something to eat.
  • 00:53:08
    It doesn't matter what,
  • 00:53:09
    the elements aren't holy in and of themselves.
  • 00:53:11
    It's the act that makes it holy.
  • 00:53:13
    So just take something to drink, something to eat.
  • 00:53:15
    That thing you get to eat, I want you to break it.
  • 00:53:17
    That's Christ's body broken for you.
  • 00:53:19
    And I want you to take that cup and drink it.
  • 00:53:21
    That's His blood shed for you.
  • 00:53:23
    If you're in Oakley,
  • 00:53:24
    here's Greg to give you your instructions.
  • 00:53:27
    - Bread and wine communion here in this room.
  • 00:53:29
    This is how we do it.
  • 00:53:31
    We've got some stations down here at the front
  • 00:53:33
    and we have stations in the back of every level.
  • 00:53:36
    Little tip, there's more stations in the back
  • 00:53:38
    than there are in the front.
  • 00:53:39
    And you're going to have someone who has two glasses,
  • 00:53:42
    the round tall glasses, wine.
  • 00:53:44
    The shorter one is juice.
  • 00:53:46
    And they're going to say the blood of Christ shed for you.
  • 00:53:48
    And you're going to get a little piece of bread
  • 00:53:50
    and you can dip it in either one.
  • 00:53:53
    That's the body and blood of Christ shed for you.
  • 00:53:56
    And so as you get in line, just like Kyle said,
  • 00:53:58
    to be prayerfully considering what's happening.
  • 00:54:00
    Also, I'll just mention we've got
  • 00:54:02
    a gluten free option down here as well, if that's you.
  • 00:54:07
    And they're also wearing gloves and hand sanitizers.
  • 00:54:10
    Some logistics for your communion.
  • 00:54:12
    But hey, seriously, right now we're going
  • 00:54:14
    to continue to worship.
  • 00:54:15
    And when you're done taking communion,
  • 00:54:17
    that's all we have for you today.
  • 00:54:18
    So the table of the Lord is open.
  • 00:59:40
    - Hey, thanks for watching.
  • 00:59:42
    Since you stuck around, I want to give you a challenge
  • 00:59:44
    that will bring you closer to God
  • 00:59:45
    and help you get more out of the message.
  • 00:59:47
    Download the Crossroads app.
  • 00:59:49
    It's a simple way that you can change
  • 00:59:51
    the direction of your day, your week, or even your month
  • 00:59:54
    by taking a little bit of time to spend with God in the app.
  • 00:59:57
    And we can even be friends in there. Pretty cool, huh?
  • 00:59:59
    Like, I can like your stuff.
  • 01:00:01
    It's one of the few apps on your phone
  • 01:00:02
    that is designed to help you get closer to God
  • 01:00:05
    and be inspired to follow Him.
  • 01:00:07
    You can even watch the service in the app
  • 01:00:08
    and maybe some of you are doing that right now.
  • 01:00:11
    And however you tune in, don't miss next week
  • 01:00:14
    when Brian is talking about how Grace equips us.
  • 01:00:17
    We'll see you then.

Process, journal or discuss the themes of this article - here's a few questions to get the ball rolling...

Welcome to the Weekend-Follow Up! This is the group part of the Bible Challenge, so your questions are based on specific Bible passages from the weekend message. Each week, your group will discover what God might be saying to you, and how you can respond through a group discussion.

  1. What generation are you from? What would you say is the defining characteristic or contribution of your generation?

  2. What stood out to you most from the message?

  3. What’s a desire or a hope you have for your life that just feels out of reach? What’s a situation that just needs a “but God” moment?

  4. How have you experienced God’s grace in your life? If you’re not sure if you’ve experienced God’s grace, how have you received grace from another person?

  5. Are you more likely to take God’s gift of grace for granted, or find it difficult to even accept?

  6. Where do you see obstacles or challenges that feel like they’re standing in the way of you experiencing God’s grace?

  7. What are areas of your life where you find yourself constantly seeking affirmation or validation from others?

  8. What is challenging about sharing God’s grace with the people around you?

  9. How can you give grace to someone this week? Pick a specific person and be intentional in the way you interact with them.

  10. What would it look like to more deeply understand and accept God’s gift of grace? How would it change the way you live?

  11. Let’s end with prayer. You can say something like, “Jesus, thank you for not just having mercy, but for going above and beyond: thank you for your gift of grace. Thank you redeeming us, for washing us clean, and for sparing us from the judgment we deserve. Thank you for seeing us through the glasses of grace. Give us soft hearts capable of sharing the same grace with the people around us. Amen.”

More from the Weekend

  • How often have you received “gifts” that aren’t really free? Gifts that have expectations attached? How has your experience with gifts affected the way you receive God’s gift of grace?
  • What’s an “imposter gospel” you still believe?
  • What’s the difference between grace and mercy? Explain in your own words.
  • What’s been the most exciting or transformative part of God’s grace in your own life?

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(This stuff helps us figure out how many fruitcakes to make come December)

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Aug 13, 2023 1 hr 26 sec

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