Wednesday, May 19, 2010

"Survivor: Jerusalem!", by Pastor Kevin Lynch

Survivor! How popular is that show on television? Pretty soon they are going to run out of exotic places to "survive"!

I seldom watch the show, but I am familiar with the premise. I know that they "vote" off a member until they get it down to one winner at the end.

Smart TV show developer who came up with that one, huh?

Actually, what they do (apart from the "surviving"), is basically use an ancient tradition of "casting lots".

Casting lots is simply voting on an issue. I have heard that it was some sort of rolling of dice. More than likely, as in the case of the disciples in the upper room, it was nothing more than putting the name of their choice for Judas' replacement on a piece of parchment and putting it into a jar and picking one name out.

The difference is they prayed first and they expected the winner to be the one God wanted.

Acts 1:23-26 - "So they proposed two men: Joseph called Barsabbas (also known as Justus) and Matthias. (24) Then they prayed, "Lord, you know everyone's heart. Show us which of these two you have chosen (25) to take over this apostolic ministry, which Judas left to go where he belongs." (26) Then they cast lots, and the lot fell to Matthias; so he was added to the eleven apostles."

"Show us which of these two You have chosen."

Even in something that might not seem as important as the task of waiting for the Holy Spirit, they waited to hear from God.

In a few days they wouldn't have to cast lots on any of life's decisions anymore. They would have the indwelling Presence of God to guide them from within!

There are many reasons to want to receive the Baptism of the Holy Spirit.

Some say it's to access spiritual gifts. Some say it's to receive supernatural power. Others say it's to be purified in the heart.

While all of those are legitimate, could there possibly be a more neglected reason than simply having the fullness of God residing in the believer? Father, Son, Holy Spirit? The attainment of true Image and Likeness?

Of course with that comes all the aforementioned benefits, but rather than formulating separative doctrines and listing them like a menu where one can pick one from Column A and one from Column B, why not simply receive it all?

We have our Father who loves us. We have Christ who died for us. They are part of an inseparable package. We even had part of the Holy Spirit in His role as the Deliverer of the blood for salvation. But now we wait upon Him as the Superintendent of all of it. A more biblical sounding term if it makes you feel better is "Sanctifier".

Sanctification encompasses more than the pat definition of becoming "set apart and made holy". It also alludes to us becoming more orderly, more productive. What good is thinking we are more holy if we do not expect our daily living to change in every way?

So, you see that not only did the 120 wait as instructed, but they prayed and they EXPECTED God to move, even upon their little election.

As we continue this week we will see the extreme benefit of their choice as their actions have played out in the lives of millions across the centuries!

Keepin' it Real,

Pastor Kevin <><

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