B. Palm Sunday (3) Jesus Declares His Kingship

You can listen to the audio here from Desiring God, John Piper.

Matthew 21:1-17

When they had approached Jerusalem and had come to Bethphage, at the Mount of Olives, then Jesus sent two disciples, 2 saying to them, „Go into the village opposite you, and immediately you will find a donkey tied there and a colt with her; untie them and bring them to Me. 3 „If anyone says anything to you, you shall say, ‘The Lord has need of them,’ and immediately he will send them.” 4 This took place to fulfill what was spoken through the prophet: 5 „SAY TO THE DAUGHTER OF ZION, ‘BEHOLD YOUR KING IS COMING TO YOU, GENTLE, AND MOUNTED ON A DONKEY, EVEN ON A COLT, THE FOAL OF A BEAST OF BURDEN.'” 6 The disciples went and did just as Jesus had instructed them, 7 and brought the donkey and the colt, and laid their coats on them; and He sat on the coats. 8 Most of the crowd spread their coats in the road, and others were cutting branches from the trees and spreading them in the road. 9 The crowds going ahead of Him, and those who followed, were shouting, „Hosanna to the Son of David; BLESSED IS HE WHO COMES IN THE NAME OF THE LORD; Hosanna in the highest!” 10 When He had entered Jerusalem, all the city was stirred, saying, „Who is this?” 11 And the crowds were saying, „This is the prophet Jesus, from Nazareth in Galilee.” 12 And Jesus entered the temple and drove out all those who were buying and selling in the temple, and overturned the tables of the money changers and the seats of those who were selling doves. 13 And He said to them, „It is written, ‘MY HOUSE SHALL BE CALLED A HOUSE OF PRAYER’; but you are making it a ROBBERS’ DEN.” 14 And the blind and the lame came to Him in the temple, and He healed them. 15 But when the chief priests and the scribes saw the wonderful things that He had done, and the children who were shouting in the temple, „Hosanna to the Son of David,” they became indignant 16 and said to Him, „Do You hear what these children are saying?” And Jesus said to them, „Yes; have you never read, ‘OUT OF THE MOUTH OF INFANTS AND NURSING BABIES YOU HAVE PREPARED PRAISE FOR YOURSELF’?” 17 And He left them and went out of the city to Bethany, and spent the night there.

What I would like to do this morning is help you hear Jesus’ own declaration of his kingship. I want you to see from Matthew 21:1-17 how Jesus says, „I am your king.” And I would like to do it in a way that makes sure you see the nature of his kingship now and the different nature of his kingship when he comes a second time. And I want you to see and feel the difference because the nature of Jesus’ kingship now is creating a season of salvation in world history during which you can still switch sides and be saved from his wrath and judgment. There is still time – even now this morning – when you can accept the amnesty that King Jesus holds out to you, and renounce your allegiance to self and success and money and family and physical pleasure and security – and whatever else rules you more than Jesus. And you can bow and receive Christ as your King and swear allegiance to him, and be on his side with everlasting joy.

The Kingship of Jesus Will Look Different Than It Does Now

To help you feel the wonder of this brief season of salvation in world history – and yes I say brief, though it has lasted 2000 years; compared to how long we will exist in heaven or hell, it is very brief – to feel the wonder of this brief season of salvation in world history consider that the day is coming, and perhaps soon, when the kingship of Jesus will very different than it is now. Here is a description of that kingship, as John saw it in the last book of the Bible:

And I saw heaven opened, and behold, a white horse, and He who sat on it is called Faithful and True, and in righteousness He judges and wages war. 12 His eyes are a flame of fire, and on His head are many diadems; and He has a name written on Him which no one knows except Himself. 13 He is clothed with a robe dipped in blood, and His name is called The Word of God. 14 And the armies which are in heaven, clothed in fine linen, white and clean, were following Him on white horses. 15 From His mouth comes a sharp sword, so that with it He may strike down the nations, and He will rule them with a rod of iron; and He treads the wine press of the fierce wrath of God, the Almighty. 16 And on His robe and on His thigh He has a name written, „KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS.” (Revelation 19:11-16)

When the kingship of Jesus appears in the skies like that, it will be too late to switch sides. „Behold, now is ‘the acceptable time,’ behold, now is ‘the day of salvation'” (2 Corinthians 6:2). I believe that is what Matthew is trying to say to us this morning in the way Jesus proclaims his kingship in Matthew 21:1-17. What he wants us to hear – what Jesus wants us to see – is that, yes, he is king, yes his kingship is not provincial or tribal or national, but international and global and universal. But it is for now meek, lowly, welcoming, seeking, forgiving, patient. He will, in a matter of days, shed his own blood to save all who will accept his free gift of amnesty and come over to his side. And until he comes again this is the wonder of his kingship. It saves sinners.

So let’s watch him make this declaration. I just want you to see him. I want you to hear him. Rivet your attention on Jesus this morning. He will win you. He will heal you. He will save you.

There are four ways that Jesus declares his kingship in this triumphal entry. All of them are Jewish. He was a Jew, and he was fulfilling Jewish promises of a coming king and Messiah. But all them are bigger than Jewish. Remember this gospel is going to end in chapter 28 with the words, „All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations” (Matthew 28:18-19). Jesus knows that he is the king over all nations, not just Israel.

So let’s listen and watch as he declares himself King of the Jews and King of the nations.

1. Jesus Declares His Kingship by Riding on a Donkey (Zech. 9:9)

First, notice Matthew 21:1-5. Jesus sends two of his disciples to get a donkey. Verse 2: „Go into the village opposite you, and immediately you will find a donkey tied there and a colt with her; untie them and bring them to Me.” Why? What is he doing? Why does he want a ride into Jerusalem on a donkey? Never before has he done such a thing. Matthew tells us why in verses 4-5, „This took place to fulfill what was spoken through the prophet: ‘Say to the daughter of Zion [that is, to Israel], „Behold your king is coming to you, gentle, and mounted on a donkey, even on a colt, the foal of a beast of burden.”‘”

This is a quote from the prophet Zechariah (9:9). Jesus has chosen to act out the fulfillment of this prophecy and to declare his kingship in the action of riding on a donkey. This means, yes, I am king, for that’s what the prophet says it means: „Behold your king.” „But,” he is saying, „I am gentle and lowly. I am not, in my first coming, on a white war-horse with a sword and a rod of iron. I am not coming to slay you. I am coming to save you. This time. Today is the day of salvation.

But is he only coming for the „daughter of Zion,” Israel? Listen to the context in Zechariah 9:9-10 – and Jesus knew the context –

Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion! Shout in triumph, O daughter of Jerusalem! Behold, your king is coming to you; He is just and endowed with salvation, Humble, and mounted on a donkey, Even on a colt, the foal of a donkey. 10 I will cut off the chariot from Ephraim And the horse from Jerusalem; And the bow of war will be cut off. And He will speak peace to the nations; And His dominion [his kingship] will be from sea to sea, And from the River to the ends of the earth.

That’s declaration number one. Jesus very intentionally acts out the fulfillment of Zechariah 9:9 and declares his humble, gentile, saving, Jewish and global kingship. And invites you to receive it.

2. Jesus Declares His Kingship by Cleansing the Temple (Isa. 56:7)

Second, in verses 12-13 Jesus acts out another Old Testament text. It says he „entered the temple and drove out all those who were buying and selling in the temple, and overturned the tables of the money changers and the seats of those who were selling doves.” Don’t think that this meek, gentle, lowly Savior-King was without passion for his Father’s glory!

Then to explain what he is doing he quotes Isaiah 56:7. Verse 13: „And He said to them, ‘It is written, „My house shall be called a house of prayer;” but you are making it a robbers’ den.'” There are two things that make this action and this Old Testament quote so significant. One is that the context in Isaiah is about the coming kingdom of God, and so Jesus is putting himself in the position of the coming king. And the other is that the context is global, not just Jewish. Listen to Isaiah 56:6-8.

Also the foreigners who join themselves to the Lord. . . 7 Even those I will bring to My holy mountain And make them joyful in My house of prayer. . . . For My house will be called a house of prayer for all the peoples.” 8 The Lord GOD, who gathers the dispersed of Israel, declares, „Yet others I will gather to them, to those already gathered.”

So when Jesus chooses a prophetic word to interpret his action in the temple, he chooses one that underlines his coming on a donkey as king and the fact that his kingship is „for all the peoples.” It’s for you this morning. He is jealous to open his Father’s house to you for prayer.

3. Jesus Declares His Kingship by Healing (Isa. 35:4-6)

Third, in verse 14 it says, „And the blind and the lame came to him in the temple, and he healed them.” Imagine what an impact this must have had. We are talking about the most public place in the city – the temple. We are talking about blind people, and people who can’t walk – lame, paralyzed people. Not people with headaches and sore throats. This was a public demonstration of something. What?

We’ve already been told at least once. When John the Baptist was in jail he sent and asked Jesus, „Are You the Expected One, or shall we look for someone else?” In other words, are you the coming king of Israel, the Messiah? And Jesus sent this word back to John in Matthew 11:4-5, „Go and report to John what you hear and see: the blind receive sight and the lame walk.” In other words, „Yes. I am the coming king.”

Why? Why does the healing of the blind and the lame in the temple after coming into Jerusalem on a donkey mean: I am the coming king? Because in Isaiah 35 the prophet describes the coming kingship of the Messiah like this: ” Take courage, fear not. . . . The recompense of God will come, But He will save you. Then the eyes of the blind will be opened. And . . . Then the lame will leap like a deer” (35:4-6).

Jesus comes on a donkey, lowly and gentle and patient; he comes cleansing his Father’s house to make it a house of prayer for all the nations; he comes healing the blind and the lame – all to show what his kingship is now in part, and will be fully in the age to come. It is not just a kingship over other kings, but over disease and all nature. We will not just be safe and sick when he comes. We will be safe and whole – absolutely whole. Now is the acceptable time, now is the day of salvation. Trust him. Receive his amnesty. Become his subject.

4. Jesus Declares His Kingship by His Response to Children (Psa. 8)

Finally, Jesus declares his kingship by the way he responds to what the people and the children are doing and saying. In verse 8 the crowds are spreading their cloaks on the road in front of him. This is what they did when kings were crowned in the Old Testament (2 Kings 9:13). In verse 9 the crowds were shouting, „Hosanna [salvation!] to the Son of David [the hoped for king like David]; ‘Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord.'” (These are words from Psalm 118:25-26.)

Then in verse 15 the children were shouting the same things: „Hosanna to the Son of David.” In other words, „The king is here, the king is here!” But the chief priests became angry. So they said in verse 16, „Do You hear what these children are saying?” Now I think they could just as easily have said, „Did you hear what those crowds said? Did you see what they were doing when they put their cloaks on the ground?” They can’t believe Jesus is letting all this stand unchallenged.

Jesus answers their question with one simple word. And then an absolutely astonishing quote from Psalm 8. They say, „Do you hear what these children are saying?” And he answers in verse 16b, „Yes.” „Yes, I do. I not only hear it. I planned it. And I receive it. I would gladly receive it from you. And he would gladly receive it from us!”

Then, he ends this section by quoting Psalm 8, „Have you never read, ‘Out of the mouth of infants and nursing babies You have prepared praise for Yourself’?” What is so astonishing about this is that it refers to God. „O Lord, our Lord, How majestic is Your name in all the earth, Who have displayed Your splendor above the heavens! 2 From the mouth of infants and nursing babes You have established strength [or: praise] Because of Your adversaries.” Don’t miss this. Jesus receives the praises of little children and then explains it by quoting a psalm where children are praising God.

The King Has Come and Is Coming

So here is the concluding declaration and invitation: Jesus came the first time, and he is coming again, as the king over all kings. King of Israel, king of all the nations, king of nature and the universe. Until he comes again, there is a day of amnesty and forgiveness and patience. He still rides a donkey and not yet a white war-horse with a rod of iron. He is ready to save all who receive him as Savior and Treasure and King. Come to him. Know him. Receive him. Live your life in allegiance to him.

By John Piper. © Desiring God. Website: desiringGod.org

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Holy City – Mahalia Jackson (1960) and Paul Wilbur – Jesus enters Jerusalem

Next Year In Jerusalem! (via desiringGod.org)

At the end of every Passover Seder, the Jewish diaspora pronounce the wistful prayer: “Next year in Jerusalem.” It is the deep longing for the promised, peaceful Messianic Jerusalem with a restored Temple—a profound wish that the next year be a happy one.

It seems to me that Christians ought also to say, “Next year in Jerusalem!” rather than wishing one another a “Happy New Year.” For we have come to know the Messiah and he has given us a glimpse of what we long for:

And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them as their God. He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away”…  (Revelation 21:2-4)

And I saw no temple in the city, for its temple is the Lord God the Almighty and the Lamb. And the city has no need of sun or moon to shine on it, for the glory of God gives it light, and its lamp is the Lamb. By its light will the nations walk, and the kings of the earth will bring their glory into it… (Revelation 21:22-24)

No longer will there be anything accursed, but the throne of God and of the Lamb will be in it, and his servants will worship him. They will see his face, and his name will be on their foreheads. And night will be no more. They will need no light of lamp or sun, for the Lord God will be their light, and they will reign forever and ever. (Revelation 22:3-5)

O Jerusalem! “Happy New Year” is such an empty wish in this age. But the new Jerusalem is coming.  And don’t you hope that it is soon?

O Jesus, you promised, “Surely I am coming soon” (Revelation 22:20). Yes, Lord! “Amen. Come, Lord Jesus!” (Revelation 22:20)

Next year in Jerusalem!

JESUS ENTERS JERUSALEM by Paul Wilbur

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… and Jesus wept… Ofra Haza – Yerushalaim (Jerusalem of Gold)

And when he was come near, he beheld the city, and wept over it.

He wept over it – Showing his compassion for the guilty city, and his strong sense of the evils that were about to come upon it. See the notes at Matthew 23:37-39. As he entered the city he passed over the Mount of Olives. From that mountain there was a full and magnificent view of the city.  The view of the splendid capital – the knowledge of its crimes – the remembrance of the mercies of God toward it – the certainty that it might have been spared if it had received the prophets and himself – the knowledge that it was about to put “him,” their long-expected Messiah, to death, and “for” that to be given up to utter desolation – affected his heart, and the triumphant King and Lord of Zion wept!

Amid all “his” prosperity, and all the acclamations of the multitude, the heart of the Redeemer of the world was turned from the tokens of rejoicing to the miseries about to come on a guilty people. Yet they “might” have been saved. If thou hadst known, says he, even thou, with all thy guilt, the things that make for thy peace; if thou hadst repented, had been righteous, and had received the Messiah; if thou hadst not stained thy hands with the blood of the prophets, and shouldst not with that of the Son of God, then these terrible calamities would not come upon thee. But it is too late. The national wickedness is too great; the cup is full: mercy is exhausted; and Jerusalem, with all her pride and splendor, the glory of her temple, and the pomp of her service, “must perish!” (Barnes’ notes)

B. Palm Sunday (2) He (Jesus) set His face to go to Jerusalem! Palm Sunday

from Desiring God. You can listen to the audio for this John Piper sermon here.

Luke 9:51-56

Luke describes the arrival of Jesus in Jerusalem at the beginning of that last week of his earthly life:

As he was drawing near, at the descent of the Mount of Olives, the whole multitude of the disciples began to rejoice and praise God with a loud voice for all the mighty works that they had seen, saying, „Blessed is the King who comes in the name of the Lord! Peace in heaven and glory in the highest! (Luke 19:37, 38)

Palm Sunday: Today and To Come

There is no doubt what was in the disciples’ minds. This was the fulfillment of Zechariah’s prophecy given centuries earlier:

Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion! Shout aloud, O daughter of Jerusalem! Lo, your king comes to you; triumphant and victorious is he, humble and riding on an ass, on a colt, the foal of an ass. I will cut off the chariot from Ephraim and the war horse from Jerusalem, and the battle bow shall be cut off, and he shall command peace to the nations; his dominion shall be from sea to sea, and from the River to the ends of the earth. (Zechariah 9:9, 10)

The long-awaited Messiah had come, the king of Israel, and not just of Israel but of all the earth. Jerusalem would be his capital city. From here he would rule the world in peace and righteousness. What a day this was! How their hearts must have pounded in their chests! And must not their hands have been sweaty like warriors in readiness just before the bugle sounds the battle! How would he do it? Would he whip up the enthusiastic crowds and storm the Roman praetorium—a people’s revolution? Or would he call down fire from heaven to consume the enemies of God? Would any of his followers be lost in the struggle? The tension of the moment must have been tremendous!

The Pharisees had a double reason for wanting this kind of welcome silenced. On the one hand, this Jesus was a threat to their authority, and they envied his popularity (Mark 15:10). On the other hand, they feared a Roman backlash to all this seditious talk of another king (John 11:48). Therefore they say to Jesus, „‘Teacher, rebuke your disciples.’ But he answered, ‘I tell you, if these were silent, the very stones would cry out!”‘ (Luke 19:39, 40). No, he will not rebuke them for this. Not now. The hour has come. The authority of the Pharisees is done for. If the Romans come, they come. He will not silence the truth any longer. To be sure the disciples’ understanding of Jesus’ kingship at this point is flawed. But hastening events will correct that soon enough. In essence they are correct. Jesus is the king of Israel, and the kingdom he is inaugurating will bring peace to all the nations and spread from sea to sea. The book of Revelation pictures the final fulfillment of Palm Sunday in the age to come like this:

I looked and behold, a great multitude which no man could number, from every nation, from all tribes and peoples and tongues, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed in white robes, with palm branches in their hands, and crying out with a loud voice, „Salvation belongs to our God who sits upon the throne, and to the Lamb!” (Revelation 7:9, 10)

The entry into Jerusalem with waving palms (John 12:13) was a short-lived preview of the eternal Palm Sunday to come. It needed to be said. If the disciples hadn’t said it, the rocks would have.

I like to think of all our worship in this age as rehearsal for the age to come. One day we, who by God’s grace have been faithful to the Lord, are going to stand with innumerable millions of believers from Bangladesh, Poland, Egypt, Australia, Iceland, Cameroon, Ecuador, Burma, Borneo, Japan, and thousands of tribes and peoples and languages purified by Christ, with palms of praise in our hand. And when we raise them in salute to Christ, he will see an almost endless field of green, shimmering with life and pulsating with praise. And then like the sound of a thousand Russian choruses, we will sing our song of salvation, while the mighty Christ, with heartfelt love, looks out over those whom he bought with his own blood.

Had Jesus taken his throne on that first day of palms, none of us would ever be robed in white or waving palms of praise in the age to come. There had to be the cross, and that is what the disciples had not yet understood. Back in Luke 9, as Jesus prepared to set out for Jerusalem from Galilee, he tried to explain this to his disciples. In verse 22 he said, „The Son of Man must suffer many things, and be rejected by the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and on the third day be raised.” And in verse 44 he told them, „Let these words sink into your ears; for the Son of Man is to be delivered into the hands of men.” But verse 45 tells us, „They did not understand this saying, and it was concealed from them that they should not perceive it; and they were afraid to ask him about this saying.” Therefore, their understanding of Jesus’ last journey to Jerusalem was flawed. They saw him as a king moving in to take control. And he was. But they could not grasp that the victory Jesus would win in Jerusalem over sin and Satan and death and all the enemies of righteousness and joy—that this victory would be won through his own horrible suffering and death; and that the kingdom which they thought would be established immediately (Luke 19:11) would, in fact, be thousands of years in coming. And their misunderstanding of Jesus’ journey to Jerusalem results in a misunderstanding of the meaning of discipleship. This is why this is important for us to see, lest we make the same mistake.

Jesus’ Resolution to Die

In Luke 9:51–56 we learn how not to understand Palm Sunday. Let’s look at it together. „When the days drew near for him to be received up, he set his face to go to Jerusalem.” To set his face towards Jerusalem meant something very different for Jesus than it did for the disciples. You can see the visions of greatness that danced in their heads in verse 46: „An argument arose among them as to which of them was the greatest.” Jerusalem and glory were just around the corner. O what it would mean when Jesus took the throne! But Jesus had another vision in his head. One wonders how he carried it all alone and so long. Here’s what Jerusalem meant for Jesus: „I must go on my way today and tomorrow and the day following; for it cannot be that a prophet should perish away from Jerusalem”(Luke 13:33). Jerusalem meant one thing for Jesus: certain death. Nor was he under any illusions of a quick and heroic death. He predicted in Luke 18:31f., „Behold, we are going up to Jerusalem, and everything that is written of the Son of man by the prophets will be accomplished. For he will be delivered to the Gentiles, and will be mocked and shamefully treated and spit upon; they will scourge him and kill him.” When Jesus set his face to go to Jerusalem, he set his face to die.

Remember, when you think of Jesus’ resolution to die, that he had a nature like ours. He shrunk back from pain like we do. He would have enjoyed marriage and children and grandchildren and a long life and esteem in the community. He had a mother and brothers and sisters. He had special places in the mountains. To turn his back on all this and set his face towards vicious whipping and beating and spitting and mocking and crucifixion was not easy. It was hard. O how we need to use our imagination to put ourselves back into his place and feel what he felt. I don’t know of any other way for us to begin to know how much he loved us. „Greater love has no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends” (John 15:13).

If we were to look at Jesus’ death merely as a result of a betrayer’s deceit and the Sanhedrin’s envy and Pilate’s spinelessness and the soldiers’ nails and spear, it might seem very involuntary. And the benefit of salvation that comes to us who believe from this death might be viewed as God’s way of making a virtue out of a necessity. But once you read Luke 9:51 all such thoughts vanish. Jesus was not accidentally entangled in a web of injustice. The saving benefits of his death for sinners were not an afterthought. God planned it all out of infinite love to sinners like us and appointed a time. Jesus, who was the very embodiment of his Father’s love for sinners, saw that the time had come and set his face to fulfill his mission: to die in Jerusalem for our sake. „No one takes my life from me (he said), but I lay it down of my own accord” (John 10:18).

Jesus’ Journey Is Our Journey

So Jesus sets out for Jerusalem, and it says in the text that „he sent messengers ahead of him, who went and entered a village of the Samaritans to make ready for him; but the people would not receive him because his face was set toward Jerusalem.” It doesn’t really matter whether this rejection is just because Jesus and his companions are Jews and Samaritans hate Jews, or whether the rejection is a more personal rejection of Jesus as the Messiah on his way to reign in Jerusalem. What matters for the story is simply that Jesus is already being rejected, and then the focus shifts to the disciples’ response, specifically the response of James and John.

James and John ask Jesus, „Lord, do you want us to bid fire to come down from heaven and consume them?” (verse 54). Jesus had already named these brothers „sons of thunder” (Mark 3:17). Here we get a glimpse of why. I take this passage very personally because my father named me after one of these sons of thunder. And I think I probably would have said what John did here: „Jesus, we are on the way to victory. Nothing can stop us now. Let the fire fall! Let the judgment begin! O, how Jerusalem will tremble when they see us coming!” Jesus turns, the text says, and rebuked them (verse 55). And they simply went to another town.

Now what does this mean? It means, first of all, that a mistaken view of Jesus’ journey to Jerusalem can lead to a mistaken view of discipleship. If Jesus had come to execute judgment and take up an earthly rule, then it would make sense for the sons of thunder to begin the judgment when the final siege of the Holy City starts. But if Jesus had come not to judge but to save, then a radically different form of discipleship is in order. Here is a question put to every believer by this text: does discipleship mean deploying God’s missiles against the enemy in righteous indignation? Or does discipleship mean following him on the Calvary road which leads to suffering and death? The answer of the whole New Testament is this: the surprise about Jesus the Messiah is that he came to live a life of sacrificial, dying service before he comes a second time to reign in glory. And the surprise about discipleship is that it demands a life of sacrificial, dying service before we can reign with Christ in glory.

What James and John had to learn—what we all must learn—is that Jesus’ journey to Jerusalem is our journey, and if he set his face to go there and die, we must set our face to die with him. One might be tempted to reason in just the opposite way: that since Jesus suffered so much and died in our place, therefore, we are free to go straight to the head of the class, as it were, and skip all the exams. He suffered so we could have comfort. He died so we could live. He bore abuse so we could be esteemed. He gave up the treasures of heaven so we could lay up treasures on earth. He brought the kingdom and paid for our entrance and now we live in it with all its earthly privileges. But all this is not biblical reasoning. It goes against the plain teaching in this very context. Luke 9:23, 24 reads: „If any man would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me. For whoever would save his life will lose it; and whoever loses his life for my sake, he will save it.” When Jesus set his face to walk the Calvary road, he was not merely taking our place; he was setting our pattern. He is substitute and pacesetter. If we seek to secure our life through returning evil for evil or surrounding ourselves with luxury in the face of human need, we will lose our life. We can save our life only if we follow Christ on the Calvary road. Jesus died to save us from the power and punishment of sin, not from the suffering and sacrifices of simplicity for love’s sake.

By John Piper. © Desiring God. Website: desiringGod.org

Vladimir Pustan – Intrarea Domnului Isus in Ierusalim

Luca 19:29-48 

29Cînd S’a apropiat de Betfaghe şi de Betania, înspre muntele numit al Măslinilor, Isus a trimes pe doi din ucenicii Săi, 30şi le -a zis: ,,Duceţi-vă în satul dinaintea voastră. Cînd veţi intra în el, veţi găsi un măgăruş legat, pe care n’a încălecat nimeni niciodată: deslegaţi -l, şi aduceţi-Mi -l. 31Dacă vă va întreba cineva: ,Pentruce -l deslegaţi?` să -i spuneţi aşa: ,Pentrucă Domnul are trebuinţă de el.„

32Ceice fuseseră trimeşi, s’au dus şi au găsit aşa cum le spusese Isus. 33Pe cînd deslegau măgăruşul, stăpînii lui le-au zis: ,,Pentruce deslegaţi măgăruşul?„34Ei au răspuns: ,,Domnul are trebuinţă de el.„

35Şi au adus măgăruşul la Isus. Apoi şi-au aruncat hainele pe el, şi au aşezat pe Isus, călare deasupra.

36Pe cînd mergea Isus, oamenii îşi aşterneau hainele pe drum.37Şi cînd S’a apropiat de Ierusalim, spre pogorîşul muntelui Măslinilor, toată mulţimea ucenicilor, plină de bucurie, a început să laude pe Dumnezeu cu glas tare pentru toate minunile, pe cari le văzuseră. 38Ei ziceau: ,,Binecuvîntat este Împăratul care vine în Numele Domnului! Pace în cer, şi slavă în locurile prea înalte!„

39Unii Farisei, din norod, au zis lui Isus: ,,Învăţătorule, ceartă-Ţi ucenicii!„

40Şi El a răspuns: ,,Vă spun că, dacă vor tăcea ei, pietrele vor striga.„

41Cînd S’a apropiat de cetate şi a văzut -o, Isus a plîns pentru ea, 42şi a zis: ,,Dacă ai fi cunoscut şi tu, măcar în această zi, lucrurile, cari puteau să-ţi dea pacea! Dar acum, ele sînt ascunse de ochii tăi.43Vor veni peste tine zile, cînd vrăjmaşii tăi te vor înconjura cu şanţuri, te vor împresura, şi te vor strînge din toate părţile: 44te vor face una cu pămîntul, pe tine şi pe copiii tăi din mijlocul tău; şi nu vor lăsa în tine piatră pe piatră, pentrucă n’ai cunoscut vremea cînd ai fost cercetată.„

45În urmă a intrat în Templu, şi a început să scoată afară pe ceice vindeau şi cumpărau în el. 46Şi le -a zis: ,,Este scris: ,Casa Mea va fi o casă de rugăciune. Dar voi aţi făcut din ea o peşteră de tîlhari.„

47Isus învăţa în toate zilele pe norod în Templu. Şi preoţii cei mai de seamă, cărturarii şi bătrînii norodului căutau să -L omoare; 48dar nu ştiau cum să facă, pentrucă tot norodul Îi sorbea vorbele de pe buze.

VIDEO by Daniel Huși

Iosif Trifa si Oastea Domnului – Incercari de reforma in Biserica Ortodoxa Romana (Part 5) Descoperirea Bibliei

Memorialul Durerii – Documentar VIDEO despre Traian Dorz

VIDEO Traian Dorz la batranete – Duioase amintiri

  1. Citeste Part 1 – Introducerea aici
  2. Citeste Part 2 – Revelion 1922 – „Hotarirea”
  3. Citeste Part 3 – Nu este destul sa spui „nu” unor pacate + VIDEO cu Traian Dorz la batrinete.
  4. Citeste Part 4 – Lucrarea Tainica si Dumnezeiasca a Nasterii Din Nou 
  5. Citeste Part 5 – Decoperirea Bibliei
  6. Citeste Part 6 – 1928 – Miscarea Oastea Domnului Se Extindea Vertiginos. Cum se intra in Oastea Domnului?
  7. Citeste Part 7 – Ce trebuie sa nu faca un Ostas al lui Hristos

„…Sint zece ani de cind am inceput sa citesc intiia data in Biblie. Atunci, la inceput, mi se parea Biblia o carte ca oricare alta, dar cetind-o regulat si azi si miine, am aflat in ea o comoara nebanuita. Am aflat in ea comori pe care niciodata nu mi-as fi putut inchipui ca le are –    de nu le aflam chiar eu. Astazi, de cite ori citesc Biblia, imi pare ca am intrat intr-o mina de margaritare scumpe. Din ce intru si din ce sap mai adinc… dau peste noi si noi comori.

Cind va veti infatisa la Judecata inaintea lui Dumnezeu eu socot ca una din intrebari va fi aceasta: Ti-am trimis o scrisoare in care te instiintam despre starea ta pe pamint, despre starea pacatului care te omoara, – si despre iertarea Mea care  iti da viata prin Singele Fiului Meu. Si iti aratam in aceasta carte, cum sa traiesti ca un Fiu al Meu. Ai citit tu aceasta scrisoare?

–Doamne, vei raspunde tu, am auzit ca Tu ai avut o Carte pe pamint, dar eu n-am deschis-o niciodata. Vai va fi tie cititorule, daca nu vei putea da alt raspuns.’

(Part 5) Descoperirea Bibliei

Plinatatea vietii in Hristos este deci – dupa nasterea noastra din nou – taina biruintei noastre in toate luptele cu pacatul si cu diavolul. Aceasta este taina si puterea noastra de rodire in viata de credinta si  de mintuire sufleteasca. In plinatatea acestei cunaosteri si vietuiri in Hristos si prin El, sta si taina ridicarii noastre si ca popor si ca fratietate duhovniceasca.

Se cere neaparat citirea si trairea Bibliei.

Dar pentru dobindirea acestui dar ceresc se cere in primul rind cunoasterea si adincirea Sfintelor Scripturi. Se cere neaparat citirea si trairea Bibliei. Acest insemnat lucru este tot ceea ce ne-a lipsit si ne trebuieste noua acum, pentru a birui raul de care suferim, pentru a ne ridica din decaderea in care sintem, pentru a ne inalta la starea vrednica de Dumnezeu si ceruta de credinta in Hristos Mintuitorul, pe care o marturisim.

Vindecarea si mintuirea noastra, ca insi si ca neam, nu va putea veni niciodata prin altceva decit prin cunoasterea si trairea Sfintelor Scripturi.

Astfel in vara aceluiasi an, 1923, retras pentru un timp de meditatie intr-un concediu de sanatate, parintele Iosif a adincit puternic si cu o lumina noua Sfintul Cuvint al lui Dumnezeu, Biblia.

Reintors la gazeta el va marturisi: „… in citirea si adincirea Scripturilor mi-am petrecut cele doua luni… si acum ma reintorc la aceasta gazeta  si mai hotarit pentru Isus Hristos si Evanghelia Lui. Ma reintorc la Sibiu schimbat. Adica ma intorc hotarit sa traiesc mai deplin lui Hristos si pentru Hristos. Si sa hotarasc si pe altii sa apuce aceasta cale de indreptare si mintuire sufleteasca…”  Lumina Satelor Nr 37 din 23 Sept. 1923

Astfel Duhul Sfint i-a descoperit inca de la inceputul Lucrarii Oastei ca dezgroparea Bibliei de sub lespezile nestiintei si de sub praful nepasarii de veacuri, va fi pina la urma o prima conditie pentru dezrobirea si ridicarea din pacat si inapoiere, a feicarui suflet si a intregului popor. Numai lumina Evangheliei va putea aduce primavara si invierea noastra sufleteasca. Numai puterea Cuvintului si a Duhului Sfint ne va putea trezi si invia la o viata noua pe noi toti mortii in patimi si ingropati in pacate. Pe toti cei tinuti in robie si in orbie sufleteasca de catre satana, dusmanul cel de moarte al sufletului nostru si al neamului nostru.

Sfinta Scriptura trebuie deci adusa la tot poporul si tot poporul trebuie adus la ea! Sfinta Evanghelie trebuie scoasa din altar si dusa in familii, in societate, in mijlocul lumii si in viata fiecauri om.

Mintuitorul si Domnul nostru Isus Hristos nu trebuie sa fie numai un „Prizonier”, un „Condamnat” al chivotului si al altarului, la Care sa mergem doar din cind in cind, ca la un scurt „vorbitor”. Dupa care noi apoi sa-L lasam pe El iarasi tot acolo. Si mergind, sa ne traim afara viata tot fara de El. A sosit vremea sa-L luam pe Isus de acolo, sa-L „eliberam din altar”, sa-L scoatem si sa-L ducem pretutindeni in viata oamenilor, in problemele lor, in umblarea lor,,, si in munca noastra de toate zilele. Isus Hristos trebuie sa fie zilnic Domnul si Stapinul nostru. Tovarasul si Indrumatorul nostru, Lumina si Pilda trairii noastre.

Pe El trebuie sa-L intrebam De El sa ascultam. Lui sa I ne marturisim. Si pe El sa-L iubim, devenind una cu EL, fiecare si toti. Cuvintul Lui sa devina dreptarul vietii fiecaruia dintre noi. Duhul Lui sa devina felul nostru de a fi.

Partasia si Prezenta Lui sa ne devina conditia noastra de viata, fara de care sa nu mai putem trai!

Desigur, o munca si o lupta uriasa se prevede ca va trebui dusa pentru ajungerea acestui scop si acestui nivel! Marile puteri potrivnice sint multe si tari. Marele intuneric si marea nepasare de veacuri, devenita „traditie”, se vor impotrivi din rasputeri oricarui suflu inoitor.

Comoditatea inghetata si pacatele incetatenite, care se vor vedea amenintate din primavara Evangheliei, – vor stirni din greu crivatul urii si al calomniilor impotriva razelor binefacatoare pe care le va aduce Soarele Bibliei, care isi vesteste rasaritul ceresc peste hotarele tarii noastre si a inimilor noastre.

Dar Praznicul Pastelor noastre, Sarbatoarea renasterii noastre in Hristos, tot va trebui sa vina odata! Ceea ce Dumnezeu a facut prin Cuvintul Sau Sfint in viata altor popoare, care L-au descoperit inaintea noastra, trebuie sa vedem si la noi, odata si odata, oricit de lung va fi drumul urcusului nostru spe aceasta luminoasa tinta. Oricit de grea va fi lupta noastra pentru aceasta slavita biruinta si oricit de multe vor fi jertfele care ni se vor cere  pentru aceasta fericita implinire, Dumnezeul mintuirii noastre tot ne va ajuta s-o ajungem odata si odata, daca lucram si luptam cu o neclintita statornicie si nadejde pentru aceasta.

O, ce negraita si fericita va fi atunci bucuria culesului pentru cei care umbla acum plingind cind isi arunca saminta acestui sfint inceput! O, cu ce cintari de veselie vor secera multimea, acei care incep sa semene acum cu atitea lacrimi! (Psalm 126:5-6)

……………………………………………………………………

Iata citeva din cuvintele cu care parintele Iosif indemna inca de la inceput la citirea si trairea Bibliei:

„…Sint zece ani de cind am inceput sa citesc intiia data in Biblie. Atunci, la inceput, mi se parea Biblia o carte ca oricare alta, dar cetind-o regulat si azi si miine, am aflat in ea o comoara nebanuita. Am aflat in ea comori pe care niciodata nu mi-as fi putut inchipui ca le are –    de nu le aflam chiar eu. Astazi, de cite ori citesc Biblia, imi pare ca am intrat intr-o mina de margaritare scumpe. Din ce intru si din ce sap mai adinc… dau peste noi si noi comori.

Toata taria mea este Biblia. Ea ma insoteste, ma indeamna, ma lumineaza si ma intareste in toate imprejurimile vietii mele. Ea imi da caldura inimii si lumina mintii ca sa-L aduc pe Hristos in orice chip la cunostinta (Filipeni 1:18). Ea imi da toate armele ce trebuiesc unui „nebun ostas al lui Hristos”.

Acum, dupa zece ani, simtesc ca Biblia face parte din insasi viata mea. Biblia este o parte intregitoare, o lipsa a vietii mele intocmai ca si apa pe care o beau, ca aerul ce-l rasuflu si piinea ce o maninc. In fiecare zi citesc in Biblie, pentru ca simtesc o sete a sufletului care ma mina sa caut cuvintele ei si sa ma hranesc cu ele in fiecare zi (1 Timotei 4:6)

Biblia este legatura mea zilnica cu Mintuitorul. De cite ori o deschid si citesc in ea, simtesc ceva ca trece din ea in mine si imi umple casa sufletului meu cu lumina, cu putere, cu tarie si bucurie sufleteasca. Prin citirea Bibliei, in toata ziua ma intilnesc cu Mintuitorul meu Isus Hristos si stau de vorba cu El si El cu mine. Tot ce sint si tot ce am este al Bibliei. Biblia scrie si „Lumina Satelor”. Luati-mi Biblia – si mi-ati luat totul. Opriti-ma sa nu citesc in ea si „Lumina” se va stinge.

Dar de cite ori citesc Biblia simtesc si o mare durere. Imi vine sa pling de durere cind ma gindesc citi oameni nu au aflat si nu cunosc inca comorile sufletesti ale Bibliei. Citi se pogoara in pamint, ianinte de a gusta din izvoarele Bibliei. Cititorule, ai tu Biblia in casa ta si citesti tu regulat din ea?”

„Lumina Satelor” Duminica 4 Martie 1923 Pag.1

Biblia este cartea cea mai raspindita de pe pamint. In vemea din urma, raspindirea Bibliei este in tot mai mare crestere. In decursul razboiului s-au raspindit atitea milioane de Biblii incit Societatea Biblica nu mai putea razbi cu tiparirea Bibliei noi. Chiar si aceasta raspindire minunata a Bibliei arata ca ea nu este o carte ca oricare alta, ci ca este cartea lui Dumnezeu si se va predica aceasta Evanghelie in toata lumea ca sa slujeasca de marturie tuturor neamurilor…”

Lumina Satelor 1923 Nr. 8 pag. 3

„Biblia” este cartea lui Dumnezeu. Dumnezeu a ales pe oameni in inima carora a pus cuvintele Sale pe care ei apoi le-au scris. In acest inteles zice si apostolul Pavel: …”Toata Scriptura este insuflata de Dumnezeu si de folos spre invatatura” (2 Timotei 3:16) Cind, asadar, cineva ia in mina Biblia, trebuie sa o ia ca pe o carte, ca pe o scrisoare a lui Dumnezeu. Cind va veti infatisa la Judecata inaintea lui Dumnezeu eu socot ca una din intrebari va fi aceasta: Ti-am trimis o scrisoare in care te instiintam despre starea ta pe pamint, despre starea pacatului care te omoara, – si despre iertarea Mea care  iti da viata prin Singele Fiului Meu. Si iti aratam in aceasta carte, cum sa traiesti ca un Fiu al Meu. Ai citit tu aceasta scrisoare?

–Doamne, vei raspunde tu, am auzit ca Tu ai avut o Carte pe pamint, dar eu n-am deschis-o niciodata. Vai va fi tie cititorule, daca nu vei putea da alt raspuns.’

Lumina Satelor‘  1923, Nr. 8 pag. 3

‘… Numarul acesta de gazeta l-am inchinat Bibliei, ca sa facem cunoscuta cititorilor nostri aceasta Carte a vietii. „Lumina Satelor” le duce nu numai vesti care se schimba de la o zi la alta ci le duce si Cuvintul lui Dumnezeu care ramine in veac. Gazeta noastra tocmai aceasta o vrea! Sa se faca o scoala in care sa stam de vorba si de invatatura cu cititorii nostri, asa cum sta dascalul in scoala cu scolarii sai.In numarul acesta in gazeta noastra am vorbit despre Biblie. In celelalte numere vom vorbi despre multe si multe lucruri de folos din ea. Cine ne va citi cu drag si regulat, cu multe invataturi bune se va alege…’

‘Cititorule, Biblia este o Carte scrisa anume pentru sufletul tau, pentru framintarile, dureirle si bolile sufletului tau. Citesti tu aceasta carte? Biblia este o carte, o scrisoare, trimisa din Cer anume pentru tine, –desfaci tu aceasta scrisoare ca s-o citesti?

Daca ti-ar veni o scrisoare de la Imparatul, ai alege grabit si nesilit sa citesti ce-i scris in ea. Si iata ca aici Imparatul Ceresc iti trimite o carte cu stiri despre mintuirea sufletului tau, iar tu nu vrei sa o deschizi si sa citesti in ea.’

Lumina Satelor‘ 1923 Nr. 8 pag. 3-4

Pentru incurajarea citirii si a raspindirii Bibliei, parintele Iosif incepu curind prin foaie „O scoala Biblica”, incurajind cu premii in bani si carti, cu indemnuri si tilcuri – pentru cercetarea si adincirea Sfintei Scripturi.

Curind ideea aceasta a intrat in obisnuinta adunarilor ostasesti unde incepura sa se tina seri de „Scoala Biblica” in care toti cei care luau parte la ele se intorceau     cu o tot mai adinca cunoastere si traire a Cuvintului Sfint. Si cu tot o mai mare dragoste fata de Cartea Domnului, Biblia.

– Ce idei mari erau acestea! Ce viziune profetica, ce initiative salvatoare, ce moment unic. Ce curs fericit si-ar fi urmat prin ele si de la ele, destinul poporului nostru si chiar istoria Bisericii noastre daca le-ar fi primit, daca le-ar fi urmat. Dar unde erau oare acei care trebuiau sa se patrunda, sa se insufleteasca si sa poarte fericiti pretutindeni acest mesaj divin! Ce mici sint vremurile marilor oameni!”

Articol scris de Iosif Trifa in 1932

Pe tot parcursul lucrarii sale in Oastea Domnului, preotul Iosif Trifa a insistat mereu, mereu, ca centrul atentiei omului in religia crestina trebuie sa fie Isus Cristos.

Mai redam aici un citat aici un citat dintr-un articol scris de Iosif Trifa in 1932 pe aceasta tema:

„… Temeiul si temelia mintuirii noastre este Isus Cel Rastignit. Toate Scripturile ne spun acest lucru (Ioan 3:16: F. Ap. 4:12)… A cauta mintuirea in afara de acest izvor al mintuirii inseamna a pierde vremea si a pierde mintuirea… A cauta mintuirea fara Isus Cel Rastignit este a incerca sa faci piine fara faina… E o slabiciune generala a crestinilor de azi de a-L lasa afara pe Isus Cel Rastignit din framintarile mintuirii lor… Diavolul e siret mare. El lasa crestinilor framintarile mintuirii, el lasa crestinilor toate rinduielile, toate obiceiurile, toate formele. El isi bate capul doar cu un singur lucru: sa le fure faina de piine, sa le fure mierea din fagure, sa-L fure pe Isus Cel rastignit din framintarile mintuirii lor.

Se zice ca nicaieri nu doarme mai linistit diavolul decit acolo unde se pastreaza cu sfintenie toate rinduielile si datinile, dar lipseste Isus Cel Rastignit si Viu, viata si puterea din El… De aceea sfintul Pavel   il apara cu atita indirjire pe Isus Cel Rastignit fata de „litera legii”, fata de „pazirea poruncilor”.

Astfel de luptatori se cer si azi. Caci ispititorul parca aici a facut cele mai mari ravagii sufletesti… Si le-a facut chiar acolo unde Isus Cel Rastignit trebuie aparat mai cu hotarire. Eu ma uit spre pilda si la biserica romano-catolica si vad un lucru care ma doare. Cultul exagerat ce s-a facut si acolo in timpul din urma cu sf. Tereza, este o mare greseala. Citesc foaia lor „Lumina crestinului” din Iasi – si in fiecare numar se publica sume si daruri de bani de la cei ce spun ca sf. Tereza i-a mintuit din fel si fel de necazuri si vor ajutorul ei. „Trimit 200 de lei pentru ajutorul ce mi l-a trimis sf. Tereza de am scapat de un mare necaz”– scrie unul. „Trimit 100 de lei sa-mi ajute in dorinta pe care o am – scrie altul – rezervindu-mi dreptul sa intregesc suma aceasta, daca imi va ajuta”. Un adevarat tirg. Eu de cite ori citesc aceasta urita pagina imi vine sa pling si sa zic ca sf. ap. Pavel: daca oamenii se pot ajuta si mintui in felul acesta, apoi „in zadar a murit Hristos” (Galateni 2:21). Jertfa Lui este de prisos.

Noi insta il vom vesti mereu numai pe Isus Cel Rastignit, oricite impotriviri se vor ridica in contra noastra… Caci stim si credem ca numai in Numele Lui si puterea Crucii Lui este viata si mintuire adevarata…”

(„Ceva despre Credinta”… O.D. Nr. 40 din 2 Oct. 1932)

va urma…

The PASSION EVENTS – Friday/Saturday and Palm Sunday through Easter – Day by Day Events (Check here daily)

Interactive Google map of PASSION week

Visit the full page here.

Click on the red balloons to open description of day and event for that day. You can also scroll in closer using the + key and scroll to East, West, North and South using the arrows.

If you want to move around on the map-click and hold mouse key down and drag in the direction you want to go.
If you run into trouble and lose the red balloons playing with the map, just refresh your page.

Passion Week Songs, Poems and videos

  1. Easter songs: True love and Give me Jesus – Christ our eternal hope and salvation!!!! Christ is risen!!!! Hallelujah!!!! Easter songs –
  2. Easter song- Thank you for the cross, Worthy Is The Lamb, Crown Him .. Crown Him With Many Crowns – [lyrics]
  3. Gospel Easter songs – Garden Tomb and On My Father’s Side by The Barn Again Gang
  4. Revelation song on Easter Video: Jesus’ Crucifixion
  5. Petra – Show Your Power, Oh Lord, our God
  6. The hurt of Peter’s denial of Christ-’Just as I am’, Brian Doerkson
  7. Poem – The thief on the cross – Justified by John Piper
  8. Video clips from „Passion” The last 7 sayings of Jesus Christ on the cross
  9. Misty Edwards – I belong to the man from Nazareth
  10. Brooke Fraser – Hosanna in the highest!
  11. Mahalia Jackson (1960) – Holy City –and Paul Wilbur – Jesus enters Jerusalem
  12. Marantaha Singers – Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord: Hosanna, Hosanna, Hosanna (see the video below in this post)

Post Resurrection

What Happened Sunday

What Happened Saturday

What Happened Friday

What Happened Thursday

What Happened Wednesday

What Happened Tuesday

What Happened Monday

What happened Palm SUNDAY

John 12:12-13 – Jesus Comes to Jerusalem as King

12 The next day the great crowd that had come for the festival heard that Jesus was on his way to Jerusalem. 13They took palm branches and went out to meet him, shouting,

“Hosanna!”

“Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!”

“Blessed is the king of Israel!”

Some Greeks seek Jesus. He responds to unbelievers, weeps over Jerusalem, enters and looks around the temple area, and then returns to Bethany.

(1) Tears of Sovereign Mercy– Jesus weeps over Jerusalem Luke 19:28-44

(2) He (Jesus) sets His face to go to Jerusalem (Palm Sunday)

(3) Jesus Declares His Kingship (Palm Sunday)

SONGS FOR PALM SUNDAY

 (1) Maranatha Singers – Blessed is He who comes in the Name of the Lord (video below)

Uploaded by

(2) Ofra Haza – Jerusalem song

(3) Mahalia Jackson – Holy City: Jerusalem, Jerusalem and Paul Wilbur – Entry into Jerusalem and Up to Jerusalem

(4) Brooke Fraser – Hosanna in the highest (video below)

gospelinnovation.com

I see the king of glory
Coming down the clouds with fire
The whole earth shakes, the whole earth shakes
I see his love and mercy
Washing over all our sin
The people sing, the people sing

Hosanna, hosanna
Hosanna in the highest

I see a generation
Rising up to take the place
With selfless faith, with selfless faith
I see a new revival
Staring as we pray and seek
We’re on our knees, we’re on our knees

Heal my heart and make it clean
Open up my eyes to the things unseen
Show me how to love like you have loved me
Break my heart for what is yours
Everything I am for your kingdom’s cause
As I walk from earth into eternity

What happened Friday/Saturday

A.  Friday/Saturday Jesus arrives at Bethany(click here for story)

Jesus arrives in Bethany; Mary anoints Jesus during a meal; the crowds come to see Jesus

This is a telling of the Gospel story and event of Jesus and Mary who annointed Jesus’ head with oil, one week before he was to be crucified.

B. Palm Sunday – (1) Tears of Sovereign Mercy

You can listen to the audio here from Desiring God, John Piper.

Luke 19:28-44

And when he had said these things, he went on ahead, going up to Jerusalem. 29 When he drew near to Bethphage and Bethany, at the mount that is called Olivet, he sent two of the disciples, 30 saying, „Go into the village in front of you, where on entering you will find a colt tied, on which no one has ever yet sat. Untie it and bring it here. 31 If anyone asks you, ‘Why are you untying it?’ you shall say this: ‘The Lord has need of it.’” 32 So those who were sent went away and found it just as he had told them. 33 And as they were untying the colt, its owners said to them, „Why are you untying the colt?” 34 And they said, „The Lord has need of it.” 35 And they brought it to Jesus, and throwing their cloaks on the colt, they set Jesus on it. 36 And as he rode along, they spread their cloaks on the road. 37 As he was drawing near – already on the way down the Mount of Olives – the whole multitude of his disciples began to rejoice and praise God with a loud voice for all the mighty works that they had seen, 38 saying, „Blessed is the King who comes in the name of the Lord! Peace in heaven and glory in the highest!” 39 And some of the Pharisees in the crowd said to him, „Teacher, rebuke your disciples.” 40 He answered, „I tell you, if these were silent, the very stones would cry out.” 41 And when he drew near and saw the city, he wept over it, 42 saying, „Would that you, even you, had known on this day the things that make for peace! But now they are hidden from your eyes. 43 For the days will come upon you, when your enemies will set up a barricade around you and surround you and hem you in on every side 44 and tear you down to the ground, you and your children within you. And they will not leave one stone upon another in you, because you did not know the time of your visitation.”

Before we get back to Romans 9 the Sunday after Easter, I wanted to preach a message that is partly an overflow of one of the books I worked on during the writing leave. (It will probably be called Don’t Waste Your Life.) Actually, this message is the overflow of more than the book.

  • It’s the overflow of conversations with John Erickson about his vision for ministry in the city.
  • It’s the overflow of conversations with my son Benjamin about what it means to be a merciful person on the street.
  • It’s the overflow of reading Timothy Keller’s book, Ministries of Mercy: The Call of the Jericho Road.
  • It’s the overflow of the seminar I did on Prayer, Meditation, and Fasting a few weeks ago, as I pondered what it really means to enjoy fellowship with Jesus and anticipate meeting him face to face very shortly and giving an account of the way I have thought, for example, about giving to people who ask for money. I remember, specifically, in one of those hours asking the class: Suppose you die and you’re standing before Jesus Christ, who surrendered his body to spitting and shame and torture and death so that undeserving sinners (like you and me) might be drawn into eternal joy, and he inquires how you handled the people who asked you for money – you know, panhandlers, beggars, street people, drunks, drifters. What would you say?I suggested to them, and I suggest to you now, you’re not going to feel very good about saying, „I never got taken advantage of. I saw through their schemes. I developed really shrewd counter-questions that would expose them. So I hardly ever had to give anything.” Do you know what I think the Lord Jesus is going to say to that – the Lord Jesus, the consummately, willingly, savingly abused and exploited Jesus? I think he is going to say, „That was an exquisite imitation of the world. Even sinners give to those who deserve to be given to. Even sinners pride themselves on not being taken advantage of.” Well this message is a spillover of some of those thoughts.
  • And it’s a spillover of a conversation that Noël and I had at Annie’s Parlor a little over a week ago as we assessed our lives how we wanted the next ten years to look – if God gives us ten – in regard to practical deeds mercy. What do we want Talitha to see in the city? What kind of Jesus do we want her to see living through us in Philips neighborhood on 11th Avenue? Do we want her to remember someday when we are gone: my folks were shrewd? Or do we want her to remember: My folks were merciful?

Palm Sunday: An Event of Insight and Misunderstanding

Well, that’s what led me to choose this text for Palm Sunday. It’s a Palm Sunday text. Palm Sunday is the day in the church year when traditionally we mark the entrance of Jesus into Jerusalem for the last week of his life. It’s an event of great insight and great misunderstanding. The great insight was that this Jesus really is „the King who comes in the name of the Lord” (Luke 19:38). He was the Messiah, the Son of David, the long-awaited Ruler of Israel, the fulfillment of all God’s promises. But the great misunderstanding was that he would enter Jerusalem and by his mighty works, take his throne and make Israel free from Rome.

It wasn’t going to be that way: he would take his throne but it would be through voluntary suffering and death and resurrection. The first sermon Peter preached after the resurrection comes to an end with the words, „This Jesus God raised up” so that he was „exalted at the right hand of God” (Acts 2:32-33). And the apostle Paul says that he is now King: „He must reign until he has put all his enemies under his feet” (1 Corinthians 15:25; see Ephesians 1:20; Colossians 3:1).

So Palm Sunday was a day of insight and a day of misunderstanding. The insight gave joy, and the misunderstanding brought about destruction – the murder of Jesus a few days later, and the destruction of Jerusalem 40 years later. And Jesus saw it all coming.

And what I want to focus on this morning is Jesus’ response to this blindness and hostility that he was about to meet in Jerusalem. Indeed, he met it already in this very text. The crowds were crying out in verse 38, „Blessed is the King who comes in the name of the Lord!” But in the very next verse it says, „Some of the Pharisees in the crowd said to him, ‘Teacher, rebuke your disciples’” (Luke 19:39).

So Jesus knew what was about to happen. The Pharisees were going to get the upper hand. The people would be fickle and follow their leaders. And Jesus would be rejected and crucified. And within a generation the city would be obliterated. Look how Jesus says it in verses 43-44:

For the days will come upon you, when your enemies will set up a barricade around you and surround you and hem you in on every side and tear you down to the ground, you and your children within you. And they will not leave one stone upon another in you, because you did not know the time of your visitation.

God had visited them in his Son, Jesus Christ – „he came to his own, and his own received him not” (John 1:11). They did not know the time of their visitation. So they stumbled over the stumbling stone. The builders rejected the stone and threw it away. Jesus saw this sin and this rebellion and this blindness coming. How did he respond? Verse 41-42: „And when he drew near and saw the city, he wept over it, saying, ‘Would that you, even you, had known on this day the things that make for peace! But now they are hidden from your eyes.’” Jesus wept over the blindness and the impending misery of Jerusalem.

How would you describe these tears? You can see from the title of this message that I call them, „Palm Sunday Tears of Sovereign Mercy.” The effect that I pray this will have on us is, first, to make us admire Christ, and treasure him above all others and worship him as our merciful Sovereign; and, second, that seeing the beauty of his mercy, we become merciful with him and like him and because of him and for his glory.

Admiring Christ’s Merciful Sovereignty and Sovereign Mercy

First, then let’s admire Christ together. What makes Christ so admirable, and so different than all other persons – what sets him apart as unique and inimitable – matchless, peerless – is that he unites in himself so many qualities that in other people are contrary to each other. That’s why I put together the words „sovereign” and „merciful.” We can imagine supreme sovereignty, and we can imagine tenderhearted mercy. But who do we look to combine in perfect proportion merciful sovereignty and sovereign mercy? We look to Jesus. No other religious or political contender even comes close.

Look at three pointers in this text to his sovereignty. First, verse 37: „As he was drawing near – already on the way down the Mount of Olives – the whole multitude of his disciples began to rejoice and praise God with a loud voice for all the mighty works that they had seen.” Jesus had made a name for himself as the worker of miracles, and they remembered them. He had healed leprosy with a touch; he had made the blind see and the deaf hear and the lame walk; he had commanded the unclean spirits and they obeyed him; he had stilled storms and walked on water and turned five loaves and two fish into a meal for thousands. So as he entered Jerusalem, they knew nothing could stop him. He could just speak and Pilate would perish; the Romans would be scattered. He was sovereign.

Then look, secondly, at verse 38. The crowds cried out: „Blessed is the King who comes in the name of the Lord! Peace in heaven and glory in the highest!” Jesus was a King, and not just any king, but the one sent and appointed by the Lord God. They knew how Isaiah had described him:

Of the increase of his government and of peace there will be no end, on the throne of David and over his kingdom, to establish it and to uphold it with justice and with righteousness from this time forth and forevermore. The zeal of the Lord of hosts will do this.” (Isaiah 9:7)

A universal, never-ending kingdom backed by the zeal of almighty God. Here was the King of the universe, who today rules over the nations and the galaxies, and for whom America and Iraq are a grain of sand and a vapor.

Third, verse 40. When the Pharisees tell him to make the people stop blessing him as a king, he answers, „I tell you, if these were silent, the very stones would cry out (Luke 19:40). Why? Because he will be praised! The whole design of the universe is that Christ be praised. And therefore, if people won’t do it, he will see to it that rocks do it. In other words, he is sovereign. He will get what he means to get. If we refuse to praise, the rocks will get the joy.

It is remarkable, therefore, that the tears of Jesus in verse 41 are so often used to deny his sovereignty. Someone will say, „Look, he weeps over Jerusalem because his design for them, his will for them, is not coming to pass. He would delight in their salvation. But they are resistant. They are going to reject him. They are going to hand him over to be crucified.” And so his purpose for them has failed. But there is something not quite right about this objection to Jesus’ sovereignty.

He can make praise come from rocks. And so he could do the same from rock-hard hearts in Jerusalem. What’s more, all this rejection and persecution and killing of Jesus is not the failure of Jesus’ plan, but the fulfillment of it. Listen to what he said in Luke 18:31-33 a short time before:

And taking the twelve, he said to them, „See, we are going up to Jerusalem, and everything that is written [planned!] about the Son of Man by the prophets will be accomplished. 32 For he will be delivered over to the Gentiles and will be mocked and shamefully treated and spit upon. 33 And after flogging him, they will kill him, and on the third day he will rise.”

The betrayal, the mockery, the shame, the spit, the flogging, the murder – and so much more – was planned. In other words, the resistance, the rejection, the unbelief and hostility were not a surprise to Jesus. They were, in fact, part of the plan. He says so. This is probably why it says at the end of verse 42, „But now they are hidden from your eyes.” Remember what Jesus said about his parables back in Luke 8:10: „To you [disciples] it has been given to know the secrets of the kingdom of God, but for others they are in parables, so that ‘seeing they may not see, and hearing they may not understand.’” God was handing them over to hardness. It was judgment.

We have seen all this in Romans 9. The mercy of God is a sovereign mercy. „I will have mercy on whom I have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I have compassion” (Romans 9:15). But here is the point I want you to see today: This sovereign Christ weeps over heard-hearted, perishing Jerusalem as they fulfilled his plan. It is unbiblical and wrong to make the tears of mercy a contradiction to the serenity of sovereignty. Jesus was serene in sorrow, and sorrowful in sovereignty. Jesus’ tears are the tears of sovereign mercy.

And therefore his sovereign power is the more admirable and the more beautiful. It’s the harmony of things that seem in tension that makes him glorious: „Merciful and Mighty,” as we sing. We admire power more when it is merciful power. And we admire mercy more when it is mighty mercy. And, as I said, my prayer is that as you see his mercy and admire his mercy, you will become like him in his mercy.

There are at least three ways that Jesus is merciful, which we can draw out of this context. And I pray that I will become like him in all of these. I pray that you will too.

Jesus’ Mercy Is Tenderly Moved

First, Jesus’ mercy is tenderly moved. He feels the sorrow of the situation. This doesn’t mean his sovereign plan has wrecked on the rocks of human autonomy. It means that Jesus is more emotionally complex than we think he is. He really feels the sorrow of a situation. No doubt there is a deep inner peace that God is in control and that God’s wise purposes will come to pass. But that doesn’t mean you can’t cry.

In fact, on the contrary, I appeal to you here: pray that God would give you tears. There is so much pain in the world. So much suffering far from you and near you. Pray that God would help you be tenderly moved. When you die and stand before the Judge, Jesus Christ, and he asks you, „How did you feel about the suffering around you?” what will you say? I promise you, you will not feel good about saying, „I saw through to how a lot of people brought their suffering upon themselves by sin or foolishness.” You know what I think the Lord will say to that? I think he will say, „I didn’t ask you what you saw through. I asked you what you felt?” Jesus felt enough compassion for Jerusalem to weep. If you haven’t shed any tears for somebody’s losses but your own, it probably means you’re pretty wrapped up in yourself. So let’s repent of our hardness and ask God to give us a heart that is tenderly moved.

Jesus’ Mercy Was Self-Denying

Second, Jesus’ mercy was self-denying – not ultimately; there was great reward in the long run, but very painfully in the short run. This text is part of the story of Jesus’ moving intentionally toward suffering and death. Jesus is entering Jerusalem to die. He said so, „We are going up to Jerusalem . . . and the Son of Man will be delivered up . . . and they will kill him” (Luke 18:31-33). This is the meaning of self-denial. This is the way we follow Jesus. We see a need – for Jesus is was seeing the sin of the world, and broken bodies, and the misery of hell – and we move with Jesus, whatever it costs, toward need. We deny ourselves the comforts and the securities and the ease of avoiding other peoples’ pain. We embrace it. Jesus’ tears were not just the tender moving of his emotions. They were the tears of a man on his way toward need.

Jesus’ Mercy Intends to Help

That leads us to the third and last way Jesus is merciful. First, he is tenderly moved, second he is self-denying and moves toward need. Now third, he intends to help. Mercy if helpful. It doesn’t just feel – though it does feel – and it doesn’t just deny itself – though it does deny itself – it actually does things that help people. Jesus was dying in our place that we might be forgiven and have eternal life with him. That’s how he helped.

What will it be for you? How are you doing in ministries of mercy? How are you and your roommate, or your housemates, doing together? How is your family doing? (That’s what Noël and I asked at Annie’s Parlor.) What is tenderly moving you these days? Is there movement toward pain or suffering or misery or loss or sadness, that means denying yourself – in the short run – and multiplying your joy in the long run? And what help are you actually giving to those in need?

Two prayers: Oh, that we would see and savor the beauty of Christ – the Palm Sunday Tears of sovereign joy. And oh, that as we admire and worship him, we would be changed by what we see and become a more tenderly-moved, self-denying, need-meeting people.

By John Piper. © Desiring God. Website: desiringGod.org

Passion Week A. Friday/Saturday: Jesus arrives in Bethany

This post corresponds to the related Google map of Jesus’ Passion Week you can access here.

This is a telling of the Gospel story and event of Jesus and Mary who annointed Jesus’ head with oil, one week before he was to be crucified. The Gospel is told by C.J.Mahaney and transcribed by Alex Chediak for a Desiring God conference in 2007. You can read the entire message here

Message Title: Extravagant Devotion

We then were asked to open our Bible’s to Mark 14:1-11. C.J. read the text. C.J. assured us that his text, Mark 14:1-11, revealed a truly historic moment as it contained a profound pronouncement. Nobody else except this woman receives this promise from the Savior: „wherever the gospel is proclaimed in the whole world, what she has done will be told in memory of her.” Why? Why her? Why now? Just her. Why her? C.J. wanted to help us discover „why her” so that we all might be affected by her.

The Mark 14 passage begins with disturbing descriptions of the chief priest: Only Jesus’ popularity and the threat of a riot slow have slowed them in their goal of killing him. That’s the backdrop to our passage. At the end of the evening, the chief priests will get some help from Judas.

The Alabaster Flask

And in between the intrigue of verses 1-2 and 10-11, there is a party taking place in Bethany. Jesus and his friends are gathered. They are in the home of „Simon the leper,” who – had he still been a leper – could not have been hosting the get-together. C.J. suggested he might have been previously healed by Jesus. John’s gospel, in a parallel passage, informs us that Lazarus was present, having recently been raised from the dead.

[C.J. joke: „Imagine being there with Lazarus. I’d find some way to recline next to him at some point in the evening. I’d have lots of questions for him. It’s not often you meet someone who has died. What was it like to die? Is it a bummer you have to do it again? What was heaven like? Who broke the news to you that you had to go back? How did they break the news to you? ‘Lazarus, your sisters won’t stop crying, now the Savior is crying, you’re going back, pal.’ And what was that like? Hearing the Savior say, ‘Lazarus, come forth.’ Going from Paradise to the graveclothes. What was that like? If I’m disoriented by frequent travel, how disoriented is Lazarus?”]

John also tells us Martha is present; the quintessential servant, she is catering the party. And most important, the Savior is there. Presumably, he is the guest of honor. One would expect the atmosphere to be warm and friendly – there are no Pharisees or chief priests present. Only those with every reason to be grateful to Jesus are present (except perhaps Judas, who is still under the radar at this point).

Suddenly, a woman (John tells us it was Mary) stands by Jesus and proceeds to break an alabaster flask of very expensive perfume. She pours the entirety of its contents over his head. The fragrance fills the room. It was impossible to ignore this public, dramatic, passionate display of affection. The disciples do not appreciate this act, and they scold her. The scene is no longer festive. Suddenly there is a dramatic change in the mood and atmosphere. A voice says leave her alone.

The Savior then makes the profound promise: „wherever the gospel is proclaimed in the whole world, what she has done will be told in memory of her.” Why? Why does he make this promise to her at this moment? What she has done must be told wherever the gospel is preached, because Mary uniquely exemplifies the transforming effect of the gospel, which is extravagant devotion to the Savior. She demonstrates the effect of the gospel by her extravagant love for Jesus. She was to be an example of piety to the church universal throughout history. Her story is told so that we might evaluate if we have been appropriately and effectively transformed by the gospel. Not just applause, but application: We should evaluate ourselves in relation to her.

Two points to be drawn:

1. Extravagant devotion is an evidence of conversion.

Earlier in Mark’s gospel we encounter a teacher of law who is told, „You are not far from the kingdom of God” (Mark 12:34). It was surely both an encouragement and a warning to this man. You are near, but not in. Well, it is clear that Mary’s not simply “near.” She’s “in.” Big-time. This is what being “in” looks like.

Where there is a profession of faith without affection for and obedience to the Savior, it’s authenticity should be questioned. Be assured if you are truly saved. If you have genuine affection for the Savior, and genuine obedience to the savior, then you can have fresh assurance.

C.J. expressed concern regarding the prevailing tendency among many in the church to grant false assurance to those who profess faith in the Savior, but whose lives bear no evidence to the miracle of regeneration (namely, affection for and obedience to Jesus Christ). C.J. lamented that in the U.S. evangelical church, it is quite common for someone to retain the lifestyle of those in the world, but with the (false) confidence that they possess eternal salvation.

Where does that confidence come from? In his novel The Painted House, John Grisham describes a Sunday school teacher eulogizing a mean character Jerry Sisco, killed the night before: “She made Jerry sound like a Christian, and like an innocent victim. As baptists we’d been taught that they only way you get to heaven is by accepting Jesus. Accept Jesus, or you went to hell. That’s where Jerry Sisco was, and we all knew it.” C.J. exhorted us not to emulate the example of this Sunday school teacher who gave false assurance to someone whose life displayed no evidence of salvation: affection or obedience. We are not serving the children we have the privilege to lead if we impart false assurance to them. Let us not encourage assurance where there is the absence of affection for, or obedience to, the Savior.

Given the size of this conference, C.J. noted, he would be remiss to assume that everyone present is genuinely converted. „I think I can assume most everyone here is, but given the large number, it would be unwise to assume that all are converted, and perhaps even now God is drawing near those who have maybe even made a profession of faith, are serving in children’s ministry, but without evidence of affection or obedience. There are other things you are more passionate about than the Savior. If that is a description of you, I would warn you right now to receive this plea as an expression of God’s mercy. If you are not genuinely converted recognize that God is demanding you to turn from your sins to the Savior for the forgiveness of your sins. Because extravagant devotion is an evidence of genuine conversion.” (My paraphrase of C.J.’s warning)

If I witness a person who is unaffected by truth, uninvolved in the local congregation, and uninterested in spiritual things, that individual is very unlike Mary, and therefore unconverted. Extravagant devotion to the Savior cannot be concealed. It must find expression. It is evidence of true conversion. This is the significance of Mary.

2. Extravagant devotion is the increasing experience of the converted.

C.J. asked us to consider if we recognized ourselves in the following illustration:

A woman took her children to the park to break the monotony of the summer days. Instead, she broke her heart. A young attractive woman skipped to a picnic table in a secluded spot. The mother wondered who she might be so eager to see. The mother grew preoccupied with her children and forgot to watch. But when she did look again, it made her heart hurt. The young woman was reading her Bible. She had so eagerly run from her car to meet the Lord. The mother knew she had lost this passion. Something had happened over the years of her walk with the Lord. She would not now be one to skip to meet the Lord. She wept in the park for her loss.

The question C.J. put to us is: Are we still skipping? Now all who are genuinely converted can, at times, recognize themselves in this illustration. In the Mark 14 episode, we are sometimes more like those criticizing Mary than we are like Mary.

What should have happened there in Mark 14? As Mary stood over the Savior pouring out the perfume, affectionately, passionately, appropriately, over His head….quietly, everyone present should have gotten up and formed a line behind her and should have said to her, “Mary, could you please save some for me to pour? For he has forgiven all of my sins. Mary, can I pour some? For he healed me of my leprosy. Mary, thank you for your example. Can I follow your example?” That’s what should have happened.

So who do you resemble more? The arrogant and critical disciples? Or humble Mary, expressing her love for the Savior through this extravagant display of affection. How can we become more like her? How can we cultivate extravagant devotion to Christ?

Application: We must review and reflect upon the gospel.

We must regularly read, and meditate upon, the gospel, particularly the events surrounding Christ’s death. The transforming effect of the gospel is extravagant devotion to the Savior. Therefore, if extravagant devotion is diminished, it normally means the gospel has been neglected. Charles Spurgeon said:

Are you content to follow Jesus from a distance? O, let me affectionately warn you for it is a grievous thing when we can live contentedly without the present enjoyment of the Savior’s face. Let us work to feel what an evil thing this is – little love to our own dying Savior, little joy in our precious Jesus, little fellowship with the Beloved! Hold a true Lent in your in your souls, while you sorrow over your hardness of heart. Don’t stop at sorrow. Remember where you first received salvation. Go at once to the cross. There, and there only can you get your spirit aroused. No matter how hard, how insensible, how dead we may have become, let’s go again in all the rags and poverty, and defilement of our natural condition. Let’s clasp that cross, let’s look into those languid eyes, let’s bathe in that fountain filled with blood – this will bring us back to our first love; this will restore the simplicity of our faith, and the tenderness of our heart….The more we dwell where the cries of Calvary can be heard the more noble our lives become. Nothing puts life into men like a dying Savior.

How often do we dwell where the cries of Calvary can be heard? Those cries were all necessary because of our sins, and those cries were sufficient for our salvation. The transforming effect of those cries is extravagant devotion to the One who uttered those cries.

C.J. than cautioned that if we don’t intentionally review and reflect upon the gospel each day, we will inevitably review our own sin – and, consequently, be more aware of our sin that of God’s grace. Reflection upon sin should be a means, never an end. Cry out for grace, and be amazed by grace.

C.J. encouraged us to custom-design a play so that we can each day survey the wondrous cross on which the Prince of glory died. And express extravagant devotion each day through the experience of dwelling where the cries of Calvary can be heard.

If our affections have grown cold, C.J. suggested we consider restricting our spiritual diet to dwell where the cries of Calvary have been heard. Study a gospel, particularly the passion week. Study the Savior as he resolves to go to Jerusalem, as he is overwhelmed in the garden of Gethsemane, and contemplates the experience of God’s full and righteous wrath against sin.

C.J. movingly recounted Jesus’ words on the cross as we sat with eyes closed. He then encouraged us to have Christ-centered, Sunday school curricula, so that the attention of our children is drawn to Christ and Him crucified with regularity. Finally, he prayed that all present would be encouraged in their ministry and sense the Savior’s pleasure, even as we take appropriate measures to maintain our first love for Christ.

Books which C.J. commended for „dwelling where the cries of Calvary can be heard”:

J.I. Packer quote C.J. displayed:

The preachers’ commission is to declare the whole counsel of God; but the cross is the center of that counsel, and the Puritans knew that the traveler through the Bible landscape misses his way as soon as he loses sight of the hill called Calvary.

Dr. John R.W. Stott – John Stott on the Bible and the Christian Life (Audio – Chapter 1 – in his own words)

via 

John Stott sheds light on the authority of the Bible, the „dual-author” nature of the Bible, biblical interpretation, the problem of culture, developing a Christian mind, and making an impact on society.

Available in print, audiobook format and DVD format. In the six-session DVD curriculum, author and pastor John R. W. Stott–recently named one of the 100 most influential people in the world by Time magazine–addresses key areas of Christian beliefs in his typical clear, balanced, biblically based, and intellectually rigorous manner. Sessions include:

  1.  The Authority of the Bible;
  2.  The Nature of the Bible: Double Authorship;
  3.  The Interpretation of the Bible;
  4.  The Problem of Culture;
  5.  Developing a Christian Mind; and
  6.  Making an Impact on Society.  Also includes a discussion guide.

Videourile Vodpod nu mai sunt disponibile.

Al Mohler – Shepherd’s Conference 2012 – The Calling of a Preacher

Introduction from the message given by Al Mohler. See video for flu message:

Let’s admit it. There’s a lot of mysteries in the christian life, but one of the greatest mysteries is why God would in His sovereign, omnipotent and omniscient, and wisdom and righteousness, and mercy choose the likes of folks as we… to do this. You might think that if we were orchestrating this, we might have angels doing the preaching. Everybody would listen to an angel, wouldn’t they? Of course,  not American angels. We domesticate little angels, we paint little pictures of cherubs and hang them in the bathroom. It’s a completely different reality. Just remember in the Gospel of Luke, the angelic hosts showed up to the shepherds and the first think they had to say is, „First of all, don’t die” – „Fear not, we bring you tidings of great joy”. Meanwhile, most Americans, in our weirdo, fake, postmodern spirituality think they’re channeling with little cherubs in the bathroom.

But God doesn’t assign angels to do the preaching. He assigned human preachers, men whom He has called because when an angel shows up to preach you don’t ask, „How did God do that?”. But, when we show up to preach you’re looking at me going (saying), „He’s just flesh and blood. He’s nearsighted. He only speaks one language. He’s gonna be hungry soon. He fell asleep during a Greek lecture, thirty something years ago and you’re letting him preach?” Well, it’s as the apostle Paul says, „It’s so that the glory would be all of God’s and not ours. So that the excellence would be His excellence that’s demonstrated and not ours.”

Admit it: you’d love to be doing this, and then admit it: That’s a good thing. And then let’s just admit it together, it’s just a priceless thing that we get to be together for these days and these hours, to preach and to hear preaching and to be encouraged, not only by each other, but by the Holy Spirit of God in this calling that has come to us.

How is it that there can be such confusion about the calling of the preacher?

There are many things I can understand that can confuse us. We’re rightly confused about many things. There are simple some things that are vexing and confusing They’re not easily understood. But when it comes to the calling of a preacher there is such Biblical clarity. How in the world do you get confused about this? When you look at the contemporary church life, it is very, very clear that there is wholesale confusion about what the preacher is supposed to do. Not only in academia are they talking about getting the sage off the stage just to be the guide on the side.

There are an awful lot of preachers who think they’re not supposed to declare, they’re not supposed to proclaim, they’re not supposed to rebuke, they’re not supposed to exhort. All they’re supposed to do is kind of hint… suggest… maybe a little insinuation, here and there.

Have you noticed how many churches don’t have a pulpit anymore? Because it implies something that’s supposed to take place here. I think one of the reasons a lot of churches don’t have pulpits is because you can just sort of glide here and there and make a few suggestions. Whereas, a pulpit has a history. It’s a substantial piece of furniture that says: This is actually a place where something is supposed to happen. Now, a lot of those pulpits weren’t very useful because they had a tiny place to put anything on. Everything about this pulpit says that it is here for one reason: teaching. But there’s an antipathy towards this, there’s an incredible confusion and I’ll admit I just don’t understand it.

I think, that it just might be, that the most dangerous place on planet earth is in an evangelical Bible study. One of those unguided Bible studies, like some churches have. Where everybody slouches in a chair with their own copy of God’s word, open on their lap. And you read a verse and you know the question that’s coming: What does this verse mean to you? I don’t wanna hurt your feelings, but I don’t care what this verse means to you. I wanna know what it means and that’s when you’ve actually gotta have someone who can teach, who’s equipped, who has studied to show himself approved, a workman who needs not to be ashamed.

I remember back in junior high school when we had these non directed Bible studies. They told us to get together. You imagine 14 year old boys in  a room, sitting at the table, reading a Bible. We read a text and said, „What do you think?” „I don’t know” After going around we closed the Bible and asked, „Ok, what’s your favorite team?” They have to be taught. We have to be taught.

It is the privilege and the responsibility of the preacher to teach.

 „How will they hear without a preacher?” asked Paul. The Ethiopian Eunuch had to be taught by Philip. The clear assignment to the preacher is to preach the word in season and out of season. And we wonder with an exhortation, a commandment that is that clear, how could we possibly get it confused?  And yet many do.

by Grace Community Church at Vimeo

Colossians 1 (ESV)

Greeting

1 Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God, and Timothy our brother,

To the saints and faithful brothers[a] in Christ at Colossae:

Grace to you and peace from God our Father.

Thanksgiving and Prayer

 We always thank God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, when we pray for you, since we heard of your faith in Christ Jesus and of the love that you have for all the saints,because of the hope laid up for you in heaven. Of this you have heard before in the word of the truth, the gospel, which has come to you, as indeed in the whole world it is bearing fruit and increasing—as it also does among you, since the day you heard it and understood the grace of God in truth, just as you learned it from Epaphras our beloved fellow servant.[b] He is a faithful minister of Christ on your[c] behalf and has made known to us your love in the Spirit.

And so, from the day we heard, we have not ceased to pray for you, asking that you may be filled with the knowledge of his will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding, 10 so as to walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing to him, bearing fruit in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God. 11  May you be strengthened with all power, according to his glorious might, for all endurance and patience with joy, 12  giving thanks[d] to the Father, who has qualified you[e] to share in the inheritance of the saints in light. 13 He has delivered us from the domain of darkness and transferred us to the kingdom of his beloved Son, 14  in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.

The Preeminence of Christ

15  He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation. 16 For by[f] him all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things were created through him and for him. 17 And he is before all things, and in him all things hold together. 18 And he is the head of the body, the church. He is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in everything he might be preeminent.19 For in him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell, 20 and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, making peace by the blood of his cross.

21  And you, who once were alienated and hostile in mind, doing evil deeds, 22 he has now reconciled in his body of flesh by his death, in order to present you holy and blameless andabove reproach before him, 23  if indeed you continue in the faith, stable and steadfast, not shifting from the hope of the gospel that you heard, which has been proclaimed in all creation[g] under heaven, and of which I, Paul, became a minister.

Paul’s Ministry to the Church

24 Now I rejoice in my sufferings for your sake, and in my flesh I am filling up what is lacking in Christ’s afflictions for the sake of his body, that is, the church, 25  of which I became a minister according to the stewardship from God that was given to me for you, to make the word of God fully known, 26  the mystery hidden for ages and generations but now revealed to his saints. 27  To them God chose to make known how great among the Gentiles are the riches of the glory of this mystery, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory. 28 Him we proclaim, warning everyone and teaching everyone with all wisdom, that we may present everyone mature in Christ. 29 For this I toil, struggling with all his energy that he powerfully works within me.

Sarbatoarea de Pasti – Invierea Domnului – Predici, Filme, Poezii, Cintari

Intrarea lui Isus in Ierusalim     Marcu 11:1–11     Matei 21:1–11      Luca 19:28-44 

LUCA 19:37Şi cînd S’a apropiat de Ierusalim, spre pogorîşul muntelui Măslinilor, toată mulţimea ucenicilor, plină de bucurie, a început să laude pe Dumnezeu cu glas tare pentru toate minunile, pe cari le văzuseră. 38Ei ziceau: ,,Binecuvîntat este Împăratul care vine în Numele Domnului! Pace în cer, şi slavă în locurile prea înalte!„

Pe acesta pagina gasiti articole, filme, poezii si cintari despre patimile si marea sarbatoare a Inviereii Domnului Isus Hristos. Postari vor fi adaugate zilnic. Cautati aici, zilnic. Pagina aceasta va ramine afisata la topul blogului pina in data de 17 Aprilie, 2012

  1. Drama patimilor lui Isus Hristos inscenata pe strada in Romania
  2. Viata lui Isus din Nazaret (6 ore)
  3. Patimile Lui Hristos (full 2 ore) (trailer de 7 minute aici)
  4. Viata lui Isus (dialogul in L. Romana) Versiunea pentru copii (dialogul in L. Romana)
  5. Quo Vadis (3 ore)
  6. Cele zece porunci si Printul Egiptului (animat) (Moise a fost prototipul Domnului Isus)(ambele filme sunt in L. Engleza
  7. Baraba (in Limba Engleza) (4 ore)

PREDICI:

  1. Nelu Brie – Beneficiile Invierii
  2. Nelu Brie – Mesajul Invierii
  3. CEA MAI MARE SARBATOARE A INTREGII OMENIRI – de Avram Cuc
  4. Vladimir Pustan – La zaruri linga crucea lui Isus
  5. Florin Ianovici – Pastele
  6. Florin Ianovici – Invierea lui Tabita
  7. Iosif Ton –  Scopurile mortii Domnului Isus
  8. Cristian Barbosu – Floriile (Invitat special Vasile Oprea)
  9. Vladimir Pustan – Intrarea Domnului Isus in Ierusalim
  10. John Piper – Omul Isus Hristos – Opt afirmatii uluitoare facute de Isus
  11. Vladimir Pustan – De ce a intrat Isus in Ierusalim?
  12. John Piper Omul Isus Hristos – Niciodata nu a vorbit vreun om asa

POEZII:

  1. Teodor Codreanu – O noapte preasfintita (Poezie de Pasti) – inregistrare video
  2. Florin Ianovici – Tacerea
  3. Traian Dorz – Doina Golgotei: Canta o pasare maiastra
  4. Poezie de Vinerea Mare – Ti-aduci aminte Vinerea aceia (background music – Pe un deal departe (Instrumental)
  5. Costache Ioanid – Carturari si Farisei

CINTARI:

  1. Hristos a inviat – Chemati bucuria sa vina
  2. Lacrimioara Asandoaie – Hristos a inviat! ♫ – Inaltati pe Domnul ♫
  3. Este oare iertare?
  4. Laura Stoica – Golgota-i trista…
  5. Virginia, cintari pentru Vinerea Mare (1) Isus calvarul a urcat (2) De la Ana la Caiafa (3) Du-ma la cruce
  6. Nicu Wagner – Isaia 53 (cintare noua 2011)
  7. Serviciul de Florii la Biserica Metanoia – Predica Cristian Barbosu – Inchinare Vasile Oprea

Petrisor Bodea cinta „Chemati bucuria sa vina”

O, de nu-L mai iubeşti pe Domnul Poezie Traian Dorz

Din Cintarile Harului (1990) Nr. 511 Autor: Traian Dorz

1 O, de nu-L mai iubeşti pe Domnul,
Ce mai iubeşti Tu oare azi?
Ce, oare, când priveşti acuma,
Mai lumineaz-al Tău obraz?

Refren:
Dragul meu, ce iubeşti?
Ce iubeşti, dragul meu?
Dacă Tu nu mai vrei să-L iubeşti Pe Isus,
ce iubeşti, ce iubeşti,
Ce iubeşti dragul meu?

2 Tu astăzi nu mai mergi cu fraşii,
Dar unde duce calea Ta?
Ce slavă te aşteaptă în ceruri..-
Şi cum te-ai lepădat de ea!

3 De ce-ai dat altuia cununa,
Păstrată pentru tine sus?
Cum vei putea-ntâlni odată
Privirea Domnului Isus?

4 O, suflet, suflet scump, întoarce,
Incă mai poţi a te salva!
Dar mare cât a fost căderea
Să fie pocăinţa ta!

Iosif Trifa si Oastea Domnului – Incercari de reforma in Biserica Ortodoxa Romana (Part 4) Lucrarea Tainica si Dumnezeiasca a Nasterii Din Nou

Memorialul Durerii – Documentar VIDEO despre Traian Dorz

VIDEO Traian Dorz la batranete – Duioase amintiri

  1. Citeste Part 1 – Introducerea aici
  2. Citeste Part 2 – Revelion 1922 – „Hotarirea”
  3. Citeste Part 3 – Nu este destul sa spui „nu” unor pacate + VIDEO cu Traian Dorz la batrinete.
  4. Citeste Part 4 – Lucrarea Tainica si Dumnezeiasca a Nasterii Din Nou 
  5. Citeste Part 5 – Decoperirea Bibliei
  6. Citeste Part 6 – 1928 – Miscarea Oastea Domnului Se Extindea Vertiginos. Cum se intra in Oastea Domnului?
  7. Citeste Part 7 – Ce trebuie sa nu faca un Ostas al lui Hristos

Temelia cea dintii pentru mintuirea sufletului nostru este sa-L cunoastem si sa-L primim oricare dintre noi in inima si in casa noastra pe Hristos.

Apoi cea de-a doua tot asa de insemnata, este munca si lupta noastra de a-i face pe toti oamenii sa-L cunoasca si sa-L primeasca in viata lor ca Mintuitor si Stapan pe El.

Nasterea din nou

Minunea descoperirii lui Hristos face in sufletul nostru o alta minune: lucrarea tainica si dumnezeiasca a nasterii din nou. Taina Pocaintei care este o lucrare a Duhului Sfint, recunoscuta ca una dintre cele sapte Taine a Bisericii, numita in altfel si taina convertirii, sau taina nasterii din nou – este acea lucrare dumnezeiasca pe care o face, – si trebuie s-o faca, – in viata fiecarui om, Duhul Sfint si Cuvintul Sfint.

„Daca un om nu se naste din nou, nu poate vedea Imparatia lui Dumnezeu – a spus Mintuitorul catre Nicodim, adaugind ca daca nu se naste cineva din Apa si din Duh nu poate sa intre in Imparatia lui Dumnezeu” (Ioan 3:3-5).

Desigur, intelegind pentru aceasta nastere din nou prin Apa, Cuvintul lui Dumnezeu, Sfinta Scriptura, dupa cum explica insusi Mintuitorul in Ioan 4;14: „apa pe care i-o voi da Eu se va preface in el intr-un izvor de apa care va tisni in viata vesnica…” Si dupa cum arata si sfintii apostoli in epistolele lor: Sf. Pavel in Tit 3:5′ … El ne-a mintuit prin inoirea facuta de Duhul Sfint’. Sau in Romani 10:17: … credinta vine prin auzire, iar auzirea vine prin Cuvintul lui Dumnezeu. Sf. Iacov in cap. 1:8: El de bunavoia Lui ne-a nascut prin Cuvintul Adevarului… Sf. Petru in Ep. 1 cap. 1:23: Fiindca a-ti fost nascut din nou nu dintr-o saminta care poate putrezi ci dintr-una care nu poate putrezi prin Cuvintul lui Dumnezeu care este viu si care ramine in veac… Sf. Ioan in Ep. 1 cap. 3:9 : Oricine este nascut din Dumnezeu nu pacatuieste pentru ca saminta lui Dumnezeu ramine in el si nu poate pacatui fiindca este nascut din Dumnezeu.

Deci este vorba de acea tainica lucrare si schimbare pe care o face in viata aceluia care crede si care se intoarce, Cuvintul lui Dumnezeu Apa cea vie, si Duhul lui Dumnezeu, Puterea cea vie si cereasca. Aceasta lucrare e o taina si o minune dumnezeiasca dupa cum limpede a spus Mintuitorul: „… este ca si cu vintul caruia ii auziti vuietul dar nu stii nici de unde vine nici incotro merge” (Ioan 3:8) Sau… este ca si cu saminta care pusa in pamint… creste si rodeste totul. Sau este ca altoitul pus in pom: – schimba si inoieste totul. Sau este ca aluatul pus intr-o framintatura: – dospeste si imbunatateste totul.

Sufletul acela prin care Duhul Sfint vrea sa aduca pe altii la o stare dupa voia lui Dumnezeu

Aceasta schimbare si inoire o facuse Cuvintul si Duhul lui Dumnezeu mai intii in viata slujitorului Sau Iosif, de care se folosea acum spre a face acest lucru si in altii. Iar in el aceasta schimbare si inoire se adincise si se desavirsise mereu. Fiindca asa lucreaza totdeauna Domnul Isus: Sufletul acela prin care Duhul Sfint vrea sa aduca pe altii la o stare dupa voia lui Dumnezeu, trebuie sa fie el insusi mai intii nascut din nou, apoi curatit si sfintit spre a fi cit mai potrivit pentru lucrarea ce Dumnezeu vrea sa o faca prin el.

Dumnezeu in tot ce face, este intelept si bun: Lucrind, El Isi desavarseste mereu unealta prin care lucreaza. Invatind, El il face tot mai invatat pe invatatorul prin care invata pe altii. Ducind lumina, El il face tot mai luminos pe acela prin care lumineaza pe altii.

Precum un zidar trebuie sa se afle intotdeauna mai presus decit lucrarea pe care o face el, tot asa se cere neaparat sa fie si lucratorul lui Dumnezeu. Mai intii sa aiba si el o stare si o viata mai inalta, mai sfinta, mai smerita, si mai plina de roadele Duhului Sfint, caci numai dupa aceea va putea face ca aceste lucrari sa se faca si in altii.

Trebuie mai intii ca lucratorul Domnului sa se sfinteasca el insusi in toata fiinta si trairea lui, pentru ca apoi sa poata duce si pe altii la sfintirea fara de care nimeni nu va vedea pe Dumnezeu (Evrei 12:14). Iata cum marturiseste Parintele Iosif despre nasterea sa din nou, despre schimbarea si inoirea facuta de Dumnezeu in starea si viata lui.

Parintele Iosif Trifa marturiseste despre nasterea sa din nou 

„…daca aceasta gazeta place, si daca scrisul ei a inceput sa cistige suflete pentru Hristos, apoi lucrul acesta nu sta in mestesugul penei de scris ci in sufletul care scrie aceasta gazeta. Puterea acestei gazete sta tocmai in aceea ca o scrie un suflet care s-a hotarit pentru Hristos. O scrie un suflet care si crede el insusi mai intii ceea ce scrie. Si care face el insusi mai intii ceea ce ii invata pe altii sa faca.

Caci si eu „m-am schimbat”, dupa ce m-am hotarit (dupa ce m-am nascut din nou – lucrul acesta este firesc, este normal. Ar fi foarte nefiresc sa fi ramas tot neschimbat si dupa ce m-am hotarit sa traiesc pentru Hristos. O hotarire ce nu schimba pe om n-ajunge nimic. E o hotarire fara Hristos si fara nici o putere.

Eu nu ma rusinez sa spun ca m-am schimbat dupa ce m-am hotarit sa traiesc cu Hristos si pentru Hristos. O, ce minunata schimbare s-a facut in sufletul meu dupa ce m-am hotarit sa traiesc asa cum spune Evanghelia”. din Gazeta Lumina Satelor Nr. 46 din 25 Noiembrie 1923 – „Si eu m-am hotarit„.

Desigur aceasta este taina si explicatia izbinzilor minunate ale parintelui Iosif si al Lucrarii Oastei. Aceasta va fi intotdeauna puterea si conditia fara de care nici un lucrator si nici o lucrare evanghelica nu poate avea roade..

O, daca ar crede si daca n-ar uita acest mare adevar nici unii din cei care au venit si vor mai vrea sa vina in aceasta Lucrare dumnezeiasca a Evangheliei in Hristos Domnul! O, daca s-ar incredinta cutremurator cu totii acei care vor sa lucreze in ea, ca fara o sfinta si totala schimbare si inoire in viata si in fiinta lor, nu vor putea sluji nici odata pe Domnul. Si nici nu vor putea vedea niciodata mintuirea Lui. 

Conditiile acestea puse celui mai dintii ostas si lucrator dintre noi, sint obligatorii si celui mai din urma. Pe urmele lui Hristoseste dator sa calce intocmai ca primul, oricare din cei care vin si doresc sa intre in aceasta lucrare – pina la sfirsit. Cine intra intr-o coloana dar nu tine cadenta si nici alinierea cu coloana – este un incurcat si un incurcator. Va sfirsi prin a fi in curind aruncat afara ca un netrebnic.

Phil Johnson at Shepherd’s Conference 2012 – The Lessons of Grace

Titus 2:11-15

A few highlights from Phil Johnson’s message with extensive notes below the video:

  • But, just as emphatically, I despise the common evangelical tendency to write off as legalistic every call for obedience and every summons to holiness as if grace were a sanction for disobedience and immorality and as if the Gospel gave us license to continue in sin that grace might increase. May it never be, Paul said. How shall we, who are dead to sin, still live in it?
  • …it is a serious blunder, also condemned in the strongest possible terms by the apostle Paul, to imagine that the Gospel disagrees with the moral standards that are set by the law. To think that justification by faith eliminates the need for obedience or to think that the perfect freedom of God’s grace gives license for unholy living. All of those things are errors as profound as legalism. Good works and obedience to God’s commands and encouragements and admonitions to be holy; those things are necessary aspects of the christian life. Not necessary in the way the legalists suggest, to earn favor with God. In fact, our works are worthless, totally impotent for that purpose.
  • But, obedience is the natural and inevitable and essential expression of love for Christ and gratitude for His grace and this is the chief, practical lesson we learn from the principle of grace. Grace compels us to love and good works. Grace constrains us to renounce sin and to pursue righteousness.
  • …the Gospel is more excellent than the law, but the two do not disagree when it comes to the moral standard. Believing the Gospel sets us free from the law’s condemnation, but it does not release us from the moral standard set by the law.
  • But if we properly understand the principles of sola fide, it should make us zealous for good works, earnest in the pursuit of holiness, eager to obey the Lord’s commands. We don’t need to be the least bit hesitant to provoke one another to love and good works. If you are hesitant like that, especially in your preaching… shame on you.
  • Paul’s point is that the vital, practical duties of holiness and obedience are in perfect accord with sound doctrine. And calls to obedience and exhortations to virtue are not inconsistent with the doctrines of grace, much less are they opposed to grace.
  • The distinction between law and grace has nothing to do with the commandments or the moral content of the law. What grace eliminates and overturns are the law’s curses. As far as the moral imperatives of the law are concerned, grace is in full agreement.

Uploaded by by Grace Community Church  at  VIMEO and with thanks to G.Bogdan for alerting us to this message.

Videourile Vodpod nu mai sunt disponibile.

Phil Johnson at Shepherd’s Conference 2012, posted with vodpod

Notes from Phil Johnson’s message:

Just 3 years ago I spoke from verses 7 and 8 of Titus 2; that’s where Paul tells Titus:

Show yourself in all respects to be a model of good works, and in your teaching show integrity, dignity, and sound speech that cannot be condemned, so that an opponent may be put to shame, having nothing evil to say about us.

That message was titled Sound Words, Sound Doctrine”. It was a plea for purity in doctrine and dignity and soundness in our speech, both words and conduct that are beyond reproach.  That was the example Paul was urging Titus to model for the young men in his flock. In Paul’s time, as now, adolescent males were especially prone to bad language and unhealthy companionships and raunchy jokes and undignified conversation about  indecent subject matter and things like that in a similar vein and those things were undermining the church’s testimony in Crete and it seems that the chief culprits were immature young men. Cretan bad boys. Vulgar talk was then, as it is now, the common tendency of adolescent boys. And not just lewd language but also salacious subject matter and boorish behavior and those are today even, in our culture the main features of typical male adolescent misbehavior.

Unless you’ve been sleepwalking through the past decade, you know that those very same characteristics have become common badges of identity among certain celebrity mega church pastors and their acolytes. My point 3 years ago was that the drift of the evangelical movement is the exact antithesis of what Paul is calling for in this chapter. Worst of all, the problem begins too often in the pulpit.

There has been no end in the media, about evangelical preachers who purposefully use profane language, their sermon series relentlessly exploit risqué, sexually oriented subject matter. They do advertising that is deliberately designed to be suggestive. It is a nationwide problem. Literally, hundreds of churches have been sending out tasteless publicity for sermon series after sermon series on sex.  Honestly, I think it has gotten worst in the last 3 years.

In the current climate of evangelicalism you can’t even whisper a word of disapproval about that without someone, somewhere labeling you as a legalist. If you dare to suggest that Christians should not be trying so hard to please this world’s elite, but instead we ought to cultivate sobriety and godliness and righteousness, a chorus of angry voices will rise up to explain to you that all of this is necessary. It’s what contextualization demands. And it’s the only alternative to the world’s obsession with sex and perversion and so christians need to talk about such things almost non stop in Jesus’ name.

Legalism has become the all purpose evangelical retort to any mention of hones and obedience or good works. And it’s a potent „scare” word and legitimately so. I don’t want to be a legalist. I hate legalism. Legalism as defined in Galatians 5:1 is the error of abandoning our liberty in Christ in order to take on a yoke of legal bondage. To the legalist, good works are necessary to earn God’s favor. And I have no sympathy for those who believe that a person with the weakest conscience or the Bible College with the strictest rules should get to define holiness for everyone. I’m quite happy to let scriptures set the parameters of sanctification. And where scripture is silent, I think we should be too.

The principles of Romans 14 are sufficient to cover questions the scripture doesn’t answer either expressly or by giving us clear principles that may be deduced by good and necessary consequence. Where scripture speaks, in either way, explicitly or implicitly, we need to obey scripture. But, beyond that, we should just shut up. I explore every hint of legalism and I want to make that clear.

But, just as emphatically, I despise the common evangelical tendency to write off as legalistic every call for obedience and every summons to holiness as if grace were a sanction for disobedience and immorality and as if the Gospel gave us license to continue in sin that grace might increase. May it never be, Paul said. How shall we, who are dead to sin, still live in it?

The line of demarcation between Gospel and law is absolutely vital and you will never hear me say otherwise. One of the great advances of the Protestant Reformation came in the way Martin Luther stressed the distinction between law and Gospel. Law is not Gospel and vice versa. And I appreciate those who labor to differentiate between the two. There is hardly any more theological distinction and let me say once more with emphasis: To confound law and Gospel is no small error. It’s an easy error to make and let’s be candid. There seems to be something in the fallen human heart that makes us prone to that kind of error. It’s the error that lies at the heart of every kind of legalism and I think it’s a tendency of every fallen human heart to default towards legalism and it’s right that we should resist that tendency. Galatians 5 urges us to resist that tendency. There is no more deadly blunder in all of theology than to confound law and Gospel.

Some of the strongest words of condemnation anywhere in the New Testament were aimed at those who supplanted Gospel promises with legal demands (Galatians 1:6-9). So are we clear on this? I hate legalism with a holy passion. However, it is a serious blunder also condemned in the strongest possible terms by the apostle Paul, to imagine that the Gospel disagrees with the moral standards that are set by the law. To think that justification by faith eliminates the need for obedience or to think that the perfect freedom of God’s grace gives license for unholy living. All of those things are errors as profound as legalism.

Good works and obedience to God’s commands and encouragements and admonitions to be holy; those things are necessary aspects of the christian life. Not necessary in the way the legalists suggest, to earn favor with God. In fact, our works are worthless, totally impotent for that purpose. But, obedience is the natural and inevitable and essential expression of love for Christ and gratitude for His grace and this is the chief, practical lesson we learn from the principle of grace. Grace compels us to love and good works. Grace constrains us to renounce sin and to pursue righteousness.

Listen, the Gospel is more excellent than the law, but the two do not disagree when it comes to the moral standard. Believing the Gospel sets us free from the law’s condemnation, but it does not release us from the moral standard set by the law.Or, to say it another way, the principle of sola fide, justification by faith alone, that principle is not hostile to good works. The Gospel puts good works in their proper place . But if we properly understand the principles of sola fide, it should make us zealous for good works, earnest in the pursuit of holiness, eager to obey the Lord’s commands. We don’t need to be the least bit hesitant to provoke one another to love and good works. If you are hesitant like that, especially in your preaching, shame on you.

Mai mult

Florin Ianovici – Alergare – O Cursa pe Viata si pe Moarte


PAGINA – Predici Florin Ianovici aici

  • Viata este o alergare.
  • Viata este o alergare staruitoare pentru ca :
  1.  Nu mai este timp
  2.  Strabatem valea umbrei mortii
  3. Pentru ca nu poti negocia cu ispita
  • In aceasta alergare :
  1. Mergem in pluton, nu de unul singur
  2. Ea nu e o competitie
  3. Sa nu ne uitam inapoi
  4. Sa privim la pasiunea Domnului Isus
  5. Sa privim pozitia Domnului Isus
  6. Sa ne uitam tinta
  • CONCLUZIE: Care sint motivele pentru care unii oameni nu mai alearga?

La Brasov 26 Noiembrie 2011 Uploaded by 

Cea mai mare putere in viata, energia care-ti ajuta este cea a rugaciunii si a Duhului Sfint.

Nu vi se pare ciudat ca Ilie, spune Cuvintul lui Dumnezeu in 1 Imparati 18:45-46, a facut un lucru ciudat. S-a apucat sa alerge  pe linga carul lui Ahab. Dupa ce s-a rugat sa ploua si a stat multa vreme in rugaciune la un moment dat, plin de Duhul lui Dumnezeu a inceput sa alerge pe linga carul lui Ahab si i-a luat-o chiar inainte. Oare de ce? Poate printre altele vrea sa ne spuna ca in viata aceasta nu trebuie sa te bizui doar pe un car, nu trebuie sa te bizui doar pe o pozitie sau o diploma ca cu acest car imparatesc, daca vrei te duci pina la un loc, dar prin puterea Duhului Sfint poti sa-l depasesti.

Evrei 12:1 Şi noi, dar, fiindcă sîntem înconjuraţi cu un nor aşa de mare de martori, să dăm la o parte orice pedică, şi păcatul care ne înfăşoară aşa de lesne, şi să alergăm cu stăruinţă în alergarea care ne stă înainte.

Spuneam ca m-am hotarit sa va vorbesc despre alergare pentru ca am bagat de seama ca oamenii in vremea din urma oamenii se gindesc mai mult la plimbare decit la alergare. Omul isi proiecteaza viata cu o casuta alba pe malul marii, sa il bata vintul, briza, eventual un catelus, o pensie indestulatoare, sa nu ma deranjeze nimeni si sa traiesc eu acolo. Ne inchipuim viata aceasta ca o plimbare, insa Domnul Dumnezeu spune ca viata nu e o plimbare ci ea este o alergare.

Primul indemn pe care ti-l da Duhul Sfint dimineata: Viata este o alergare

cind te trezesti este: Pe loc, fi-ti gata, START! Ca nu sti ce te asteapta. Acesta este primul indemn pe care ti-l da Duhul Sfint iar noaptea cind te culci, in loc sa stai in genunchi si sa plingi cu amar ziua pierduta, ar trebui sa spui: Multumesc frumos ca dimineata o sa o luam din loc.” Si plecam din nou intr-o alergare. Si viata noastra este o viata care in fiecare zi umplem o fila in care ni se spune si unde am alergat si ce kilometraj am avut pentru ca ce va conta? Dumnezeu va zice: Tu ce kilometraj ai pentru mine?

De cele mai multe ori, atunci cind ne proiectam viata crestina, este bariera aceasta: Oare ce ar putea sa faca Dumnezeu pentru mine ca sa fie bine? M-am gindit, de ce oare Dumnezeu ne spune ca viata e o alergare?  Mai intii ar trebui sa stiti ca noi, cei ce sintem ai Domnului avem o cetatenie cereasca. Cetatean ceresc inseamna ca tu reprezinti pe cineva mai presus de tine. Noi ne-am inscris in aceasta alergare crestina si eu nu ma reprezint pe mine, nu-mi fac mie reclama. Nu conteaza cine este Florin Ianovici. Conteaza ca eu onorez si reprezint pe Isus Hristos. Eu nu alerg oricum. Alerg pentru ca dorinta inimii mele este ca El sa fie proslavit fie prin viata mea, fie prin moartea mea.

Dumnezeul nostru este un Domn care zice: In aceasta alergare a vietii, voi purtati, fiecare dintre voi o sarcina; ma reprezentati pe Mine. Atunci cind scrie inspirat de Duhul Sfint fie apostolul Pavel sau Apolo (pentru ca nu se stie exact care din ei a scris Epistola catre Evrei), atunci cind vorbim despre alergare, Dumnezeu spune: Cind alergi reprezinti pe cineva. Primesti un echipament, primesti o tinuta. Cind te-ai inscris intr-o alergare, tu alergi. Si noi, oamenii care ne-am intors la Dumnezeu, imi place sa cred ca noi vrem sa alergam pentru Imparatul.

De departe se recunosc alergatorii lui Isus

Exista un steag pe care Dumnezeu il are si in Cintarea Cintarilor 2:4 spune ca exista un steag sub care noi alergam. Acest stindard spune Cuvintul ca este: Dragostea este steagul fluturind peste mine. Cind m-am inscris in aceasta alergare eu stiu ca il reprezint pe Imparatul meu si alerg de dragul acestui Imparat.

Cei mai multi alergam in viata si vrem un Dumnezeu care sa ne ajute pe noi dar aici trebuie sa ne punem urmatoarea intrebare: Pentru ce alergi in viata? A cui voce ai auzit azi dimineata? Puterea unui om credincios sta in faptul ca atunci cind ma ridic si cobor din pat o fac in numele lui Isus Hristos. Dar aceasta insemneaza dincolo de toate sa stiu un lucru, ca n-alerg cum vreau eu. Alergarea aceasta este sub un drapel si sa stiti ca de departe se recunosc alergatorii lui Isus. Alergatorii lui Isus se incoroneaza cu acest drapel al dragostei. Cine n-are dragoste nu alearga pentru Imparatul, alearga pentru el insusi sau pentru oricine altcineva. Dar dragostea ne face sa fim din Dumnezeu.

Noi nu alergam oricum

Exista pe pamintul acesta spectatori si exista mai mult decit spectatori. Noi avem spectatori care se uita la noi si ei sint ciudati. Ti-a iesit? Bravo, esti in top si zic: O ce bine. Cind am venit la Bucuresti nu aveam prieteni, dar a venit si Sesiunea (la facultate) si si dintr-o data n-am mai vazut pe nimeni… Dupa prima sesiune am fost cautat. Asa fac spectatorii. Esti pe val, esti sus si spectatorii stau cu ochii pe noi pentru ca foarte multi dintre ei sint dezamagiti sau disperati. Multi nu stiu incotro sa o ia si ar veni sa faca un pas catre Dumnezeu dar mai intii se uita la tine si la mine sa vada daca nu am obosit, n-am facut ceva gresit? Se uita si asteapta. In functie dupa cum merge alergarea noastra oamenii vor veni in biserica.

Nu fac niciun favor nimanui prin faptul ca il duc la biserica sau prin faptul ca predic sau ii zic sa se pocaiasca. Nu-i fac nici un favor nici lui Dumnezeu prin faptul acesta; asta e datorie. Deci eu trebuie sa alerg intr-asa fel ca oamenii sa vina la biserica si oamenii sa se pocaiasca.

Noi avem ceva deosebit. Nu avem numai spectatori, Calea crestina este singura care are si martori. Avem si nor de martori. Linga mine cind alerg e Ilie. Norul acesta de martori ce ne spune? Hai inca un pic, mai alearga… Ridica-te, nu sta sa iti plingi de mila. Cu fiecare martor din acestia poti sa te ridici, poti sa capeti puteri noi. Martorii acestia fac un lucru. Spune 2 Timotei 4:7 : M’am luptat lupta cea bună, mi-am isprăvit alergarea, am păzit credinţa 8Deacum mă aşteaptă cununa neprihănirii… Daca a putut unul (din martori) poti si tu. Nu spune: Eu nu pot. Ba poti, daca norul de martori ne spune atunci se poate.

Viata este o alergare staruitoare. De ce ?

(1) – Pentru ca nu mai este timp. Sportul national stiti care este? Nu fotbalul; tocarea timpului. „Taiem frunze la timp”.  Venim in casa Domnului si zicem: Doamne vreau sa ma inchin, dar seara stam pe Facebook pina la 2 dimineata si Domnul zice: Da, dar ai tocat timpul toata saptamina si nu se poate. Avem noi o constiinta, Duhul Sfint al lui Dumnezeu se intristeaza. Pacatul de omisiune, fundamental in ziua de astazi e tocarea timpului. Biblia spune ca voi trebuie sa alergati. De ce va muiati? Stiti ca pierdeti timp pretios? Ca v-o ia altii inainte? 15 ani de pocainta si eu nu pot sa fac o rugaciune cum trebuie si nu se muta nici praful de pe mocheta la rugaciunea mea pentru ca n-ai facut nimic pentru Dumnezeu. Daca staruiesti in fiecare zi in fata lui Dumnezeu nu trebuie sa o iei din nou Duminica ci continui cu Dumnezeu.

Nu mai este timp pentru ca propriu zis, foarte multi dintre noi sintem inruntati de Dumnezeu. Citi dintre voi aveti credit in banca? Ce inseamna credit? In fiecare luna vine scadenta. Asa este si cu timpul.

La minutul 22 vorbeste despre o proorocie si un accident unde el (Florin Ianovici) trebuia sa fie mort dupa accidentul care l-a avut pe drum spre Oradea cu citiva ani in urma.

Dupa acel accident eu mi-am dat seama ça eu nu mai sint al meu sa fac ce dores eu si am zis: Doamne, eu traiesc pe credit. M-am imprumutat de la banca asta a vietii din Dumnezeu. In fiecare zi cind ma trezesc spun: Doamne iti multumesc, trebuia sa fiu mort si Dumnezeu m-a facut viu si imi dau seama ca eu traiesc pe credit. M-am imprumutat cu zile de la Tine si Tu esti acela care mi-ai creditat aceste zile. Dar eu stiu ca intotdeauna cind este vorba de zile din imprumut, e dobinda mare. Ma duc si alerg pentru Domnul Dumnezeu unde pot.

(2) Strabatem valea umbrei mortii. Pamintul acesta este ca o vale peste care este umbra mortii. Cind ne nastem porneste cronometru. Noi cu fiecare zi ne trecem, murim. Acest spectru al mortii, acest cronometru a pornit de la maternitate si il simtim in fiecare zi. Tarina se va duce in tarina dar sufletul merge la Dumnezeu. Daca noi strabatem valea umbrei mortii, dumneavoastra va dati seama cum tot pamintul acesta asteapta cu infocare rascumpararea fiilor lui Dumnezeu. Creatia asteapta sa fie innoita pentru ca este impregnata de pierzare si pamintul acesta cu tot ce este pe el stie ca intr-o zi va arde. N-a fost menit sa arda. Arde din pricina fiilor lui Dumnezeu care n-au facut voia lui Dumnezeu si care au facut lucruri rele si pamintul acesta este blestemat din pricina noastra. Deci daca pamintula acesta este sub umbra mortii, care vrea sa se plimbe sub umbra mortii? Nu, daca sint sub umbra mortii imi vine sa o iau la fuga. Pai, asta spune Biblia: Alergati si alergati staruitor pentru ca daca este valea umbrei mortii voi nu trebuie sa va plimbati ca moartea pindeste si pe cine pune mina doboara. Si moartea nu-i la cimitir. Intelegeti voi lucrul acesta? Unde-i moartea? Unde ti-ai ingropat visele. Unde ti-ai ingropat credinta, acolo-i moartea.

In ziua cind n-ai mai avut credinta, in ziua cind n-ai mai stiut pentru ce sa traiesti, in ziua in care nu mai ai un vis pentru care sa traiesti, ai murit prietene. Tie numai numele iti merge ca traiesti, dar esti mort pentru ca moartea e abila. Moartea loveste in multe feluri nu doar cind iti ia trupul asta  biologic. Moartea este arma Satanei. Stiati lucrul asta? Si principiul mortii este mai mult decit al trupului, decit biologic vorbind. In Ieremia 9 spune: Moartea s-a suit pe ferestrele voastre. Atunci mi-am dat seama de un lucru, ca moartea s-a suit si sta pe ferestrele noastre pentru ca ce facea Daniel in captivitate? Daniel stia ca traverseaza valea umbrei mortii. Ce facea Daniel? Daniel deschidea fereastra larg, se uita spre Ierusalim si se ruga cu voce tare si zicea cu privirea indreptata spre Ierusalim: Doamne, eu nu uit de unde am venit, nu uit al cui sunt si nu uit incotro ma indrept. E important sa deschizi fereastra rugaciunii si sa spui acelasi lucru in fiecare dimineata.

Fugi de poftele tineretii

(3) Nu poti negocia cu ispita; nu poti negocia cu pacatul. Sfintul Augustin, intr-o viziune care a avut-o zice ca a vazut tot pamintul acesta acoperit de capcane de ispita. Si a zis ca a vazut capcana, linga capcana, linga capcana si a zis: Doamne, dar cum ar fi posibil ca omul acesta sa mearga si sa nu cada in aceste capcane care sint una linga alta? Cuvintul care l-a auzit a fost: Smerenie.

Cind a stat Iosif fata in fata cu nevasta lui Potifar n-a zis: Stai putin sa imi dau seama, uite vreau sa iti spun psalmul 23. A taiat-o, a fugit si mai bine isi lasa haina decit sufletul. Deci eu plec, nu stau, nu negociez pentru ca in ispite nu stai tu sa parlamentezi cu Satana, ca te pune la pamint. Nu, mai bine o termini cu totul. E important lucrul acesta. Trebuie sa alergi din locul ispitei. Nu poti sa ramii acolo si sa crezi ca esti biruitor. Iosif a fugit si Biblia zice: Fugi de poftele tineretii.

2 Timotei 2:32 spune Fugi de poftele tineretii. Intrebarea mea este, oare numai tineretea are pofte? Oare batrinetea nu are pofte? Ba da, are. Dar oare de ce spune Dumnezeu tinerilor sa fuga de poftele tineretii? De ce nu trebuie sa fuga batrinii de pofte? Pentru ca ar trebui sa fuga in tinerete. Cum adica tu la 60 de ani si mai ai pofte din alea? Tu trebuia sa fi fugit de mult de ele. Fiecare virsta are incercarile ei. Fiecare virsta are greutatea ei.

Unde sa fugi?

Dar daca fug de poftele tineretii, unde fug? Ca multi fug. Cind fugi, fugi in bratele lui Isus. Cind fugi, fugi la crucea Domnului Isus Hristos si pocaieste-te.

Filipeni 3:14 – alerg spre ţintă, pentru premiul chemării cereşti a lui Dumnezeu, în Hristos Isus. De ce este viata oarecare staruitoare?  Efeseni 6:12 spune Căci noi n’avem de luptat împotriva cărnii şi sîngelui, ci împotriva căpeteniilor, împotriva domniilor, împotriva stăpînitorilor întunerecului acestui veac, împotriva duhurilor răutăţii cari sînt în locurile cereşti. Cum e alergarea crestina?

In primul rind trebuie sa stiti ca alergarea crestina nu este o alergare de unul singur. Alergarea crestina e o alergare in pluton si alergarea crestina nu e un sprint. Alergarea crestina e un maraton. Se alearga in pluton si trebuie sa iti pastrezi ritmul si suflul. Aceasta alergare e o alergare in pluton ca pe Dumnezeu nu-L intereseaza cine trece primul la linia de sosire. Pe Isus Hristos il intereseaza sa trecem linia de sosire toti!  Important e sa pastram cadenta, ritmicitatea. Cu cit se ingroasa plutonul si cu cit este mai mare cu atit e mai mare multumirea Domnului Isus Hristos.

Alergarea crestina nu e competitie.

Asta ne macina pe noi si asta de multe ori ne tulbura pe noi pentru ca in alergarea crestina incercam sa vedem care e cea mai buna predica si dam scoruri. Si atunci ce avem? Avem dumneavoastra juriu si noi candidatii. Satana vrea ca noi sa facem lucrurile dintr-o dorinta competitiva insa Dumnezeu ne spune ca noi trebuie sa facem lucrurile in asa fel incit sa ne fim de folos unul altuia.

La o conferinta nationala in Portugalia m-a intrebat un filozof: Pastore ai 3 minute sa imi spui pentru ce traiesti tu, filozofic. Am zis: N-am nevoie de 3 minute. Iti spun din prima secunda ca traiesc sa iau citi mai multi cu mine si atunci cind voi fi in fata lui Dumnezeu sa ma doara miinile de rod. Sa ma duc in fata Domnului Isus cu miinile pline si sa zic: Sint ai tai… Nu-i competitie. Nu conteaza cine a cintat mai bine. Conteaza cine a zidit. Nu conteaza cine a predicat mai bine, conteaza cine a schimbat prin cuvintele lui ceva, conteaza cine l-a reprezentat pe Imparatul. Noi nu alergam unii impotriva altora, noi alergam unii pentru altii si pentru Isus.

Este o alergare aparte pentru ca noi alergam fara sa ne uitam inapoi.

Cind alergam ne uitam numai in fata. Stiti de ce? Pentru ca eu trebuie sa ma uit la El, si sa spun: Mai am putin, inca putina vreme si cel ce vine va veni si nu va zabovi. Filipeni 13 spune: Fraţilor, eu nu cred că l-am apucat încă; dar fac un singur lucru: uitînd ce este în urma mea, şi aruncîndu-mă spre ce este înainte, alerg spre tinta. Intotdeauna cind te uiti in spate, te uiti in spate pentru ca ceva nu merge bine in prezent. UItatul in spate are de a face cu regret, are de a face cu vinovatia de cele mai multe ori. Cind ne uitam in spate inseamna ca cumva nu ne mai uitam in fata. Sint oameni care sint ancorati in trecutul lor cu regrete, poveri, resentimente. Stiti ca sint oameni care si dupa 30, 40 de ani inca sint captivi intr-o relatie de neiertare? Tu nu mai poti sa traiesti. Esti legat de diavolul. In momentul in care tu nu-l poti ierta pe cel ce ti-a gresit, tu esti captivul lui.

Stiti de ce merita sa  iertam oamenilor si sa parasim gindurile acestea de acuzatie si judecata? Pentru ca sint in mina Domnului Isus Hristos, de dragul Lui pot ierta si merg inainte.

Practic ce inseamna sa te uiti la Isus?

Alerg spre tinta si ce vad eu inainte? Spune in capitolul 2 Sa ne uitam tinta la capetenia si desavirsirea credintei noastre, adica la Isus. Daca ma uit la Isus, adica cum sa ma uit la Isus? In primul rind cind ne uitam la Isus sa nu ne uitam doar la patima Domnului Isus pentru ca in general pocaitii se uita doar la patima Domnului Isus. Uita-te si la pasiunea Domnului Isus. Spune Biblia: Pentru bucuria care-i era pusa inainte (pasiune) a suferit patima (crucea) a dispertuit rusinea si sade la dreapta scaunului de domnie. Domnul Isus Hristos avea o pasiune extraordinara. Cind mergea pe drumul acesta al calvarului si sufera patima, cu pasiune privea la cer, la bucuria care ii era pusa inainte. Priveste la bucuria care ti-e pusa inainte si alearga

Pentru mine formula de un success total este sa aud din guar lui Dumnezeu: Bine, rob bun si credincios. Gindul acesta ma insulfeteste si imi da o bucurie extraordinara. Ce e omul ca sa imi fie teama de el? Ce poate sa imi faca mie omul? Ma gindesc la Domnul, cel ce este ocrotitorul vietii mele. Rascumparatorul meu este viu si ma gindesc la ceasul si ziua cind voi sta fata in fata cu El si ii voi cadea la picioare si-i voi spune: Te-am iubit Doamne, da-mi o vesnicie sa Te vad. Ma remonteaza si imi da putere. Alearga pentru ca intr-o zi il vei vedea pe Dumnezeu si iti va deschide larg usa.

Priveste la pozitia Domnului Isus Hristos.Ce inseamna sa ma uit la scaunul sau de domnie, la pozitia Lui? Domnul Isus spune ca firile de par va sint numarate. Stiu un lucru, ca nimic nu se intimpla fara voia Dumnezeului meu. Privesc spre cer la scaunul de domnie pentru ca pe el este asezat Imparatul si am credinta ca Dumnezeu ma va ajuta si pe mine.

Sa va uitati tinta. Verbul acesta greces – sa ne uitam, impreuna cu cuvintul tinta, este doua sintagme aparte. In traducere libera vea sa va spuna cam asa: Uitati-va la El, la cel ce poate sa va umple retina. Deci cind te uiti spre Isus Hristos, adica ti se umple privirea, adica Domnul Isus Hristos absoarbe toat retina ta. Stiti cum ne uitam noi la predicatori in biserica? In trei parti; noi sintem distributivi cu atentia.

CONCLUZIE: Care sint motivele pentru care unii oameni nu mai alearga?

Eu n-am nimic cu nimeni, dar mi se intimpla mie in biserica. Nu vorbesc despre voi (sau altii). Vin la biserica si pentru mine este groaznic ce se intimpla. Ne rugam. Trei minute rugaciune. Noi avem ora de rugaciune. Noi mintim pentru ca aia nu-i ora de rugaciune. Aia e ora in care dai 45 de minute indemnuri, cintam 10 minute sau invers, si ne rugam 5 minute. Aia e ora de rugaciune? Macar sa fim cinstiti, sa zicem: Avem si noi de la 9 la 10 CEVA. Dumnezeu stie ce avem. CEVA – ca ora de rugaciune, nu-i.  Sint o multime de piedici. Oamenii azi nu mai alearga. Zice Biblia sa dam la o parte piedicile.

Dar care sint piedicile? Sint oameni cae au neputinta sau infirmitati. Oare Dumnezeu ne cheama pe cei perfecti ca sa mergem cu Biblia subsuoara, toti sanatosi, pleznind de sanatate? Numai bine in viata noastra si NOI sa le spunem amaritilor despre Dumnezeu? Un amarat sa predice uni amarat si un sarac sa predice unui sarac; un bolnav sa predice unui bolnav. Asa ne spune Domnul de piedicile astea a noastre. De ce a trebuit Isus sa vina si sa poarte crucea? Pentru ca cei ce n-au nici o nadejde  si nici o putere ma voi putea identifica cu un Hristos care isi duce crucea in spate ca astea-s poverile mele de fiecare zi.

Traian Dorz – Amintiri de la batranete (video)

Citeste Part 1 – Introducerea aici

Citeste Part 2 – Revelion 1922 – „Hotarirea”

Citeste Part 3 – Nu este suficient sa zici „nu” unor pacate

Nu vreau să merg în nici o parte

,, Nu vreau să merg în nici o parte
Fără Prietenul meu drag
iubirea Lui mă va desparte
de orice cale și-orice prag.

Cuvântul Lui mă înfrățește
cu orice om din orice loc
răbdarea Lui mă răsplătește
de tot ce pare nenoroc.

Destul de largă-i calea strâmtă
să mergem amândoi pe ea
durerea lângă El mi-e sfântă
cântarea fără El, mi-e grea.

Nu-s fericit pe nici o cale
decât simțindu-mă cu El
mai dulce-i jugul crucii Sale
ca libertatea de-orice fel.

De când cunosc a Lui iubire
I-o caut tot mai însetat
n-am sân mai sfânt, mai cu-alipire
și mai cu dragoste căutat.

Nu-mi vreau nici viață și nici moarte
nici azi, nici mâini, fără Hristos
– Cu El e bine-n orice parte
dar fără El, nimic frumos. ,, – Traian Dorz

Duioase amintiri – Traian Dorz

Iosif Trifa si Oastea Domnului – Incercari de reforma in Biserica Ortodoxa Romana (Part 3) Nu este suficient sa zici „nu” unor pacate

Memorialul Durerii – Documentar VIDEO despre Traian Dorz

VIDEO Traian Dorz la batranete – Duioase amintiri

  1. Citeste Part 1 – Introducerea aici
  2. Citeste Part 2 – Revelion 1922 – „Hotarirea”
  3. Citeste Part 3 – Nu este destul sa spui „nu” unor pacate + VIDEO cu Traian Dorz la batrinete.
  4. Citeste Part 4 – Lucrarea Tainica si Dumnezeiasca a Nasterii Din Nou 
  5. Citeste Part 5 – Decoperirea Bibliei
  6. Citeste Part 6 – 1928 – Miscarea Oastea Domnului Se Extindea Vertiginos. Cum se intra in Oastea Domnului?
  7. Citeste Part 7 – Ce trebuie sa nu faca un Ostas al lui Hristos


In numarul de Pasti al revistei, care a aparut in 8 aprilie 1923, Iosif Trifa a publicat lista primilor „ostasi”. adica a celor care i-au scris ca au luat hotarirea de a se angaja in lupta imotriva injuraturii, a betiei si a altor pacate. Cu ocazia aceasta Trifa scrie ca nu este suficient sa zici „nu” unor pacate:

Noi trebuie sa mergem mai departe, sa inaintam mai departe spre darul si lumina Mintuitorului nostru Isus Hristos, din Noul Testament. Lasati dar, lumina si iubirea Mintuitorului sa intre in toata casa voastra si sa lumineze tot dufletul vostru, sa va curete de toate pacatele voastre.

Si apoi dupa aceasta sa mergem mai departe. Dupa ce te-ai indreptat pe tine, trebuie sa indreptezi pe altii. Ca un bun ostas al lui Hristos tu trebuie sa te aperi nu numai pe tine de Satana si de pacate ci trebuie sa-i aperi si pe altii si sa-i atragi si pe altii in fronturile mintuirii sufletesti.

Ca un bun ostas al lui Hristos tu trebuie sa te lupti neincetat pentru a largi hotarele Imparatiei lui Dumnezeu si pe acest pamint. Miscaea noastra, dragii mei, trebuie sa fie o lumina care sa lumineze in aceasta intunecime de pacate ce s-a lasat peste noi (Matei 5:14). Miscarea noastra trebuie sa fie o sare care sa impiedice stricaciunea (Matei 5:13). Si un aluat care sa dospeasca framintatura noua in traiul nostru si al vecinilor nostri.

Fiti, – si faceti-va – iubitii mei asa ca tot omul, vazind faptele noastre sa se aprinda de dorul si de dorinta de a intra si ei in Oastea Domnului. Domnul si Mintuitorul nostru sa ne ajute si sa ne binecuvinteze cu as Sau dar si ajutor, inceputu nostru’.

Asa s-a nascut miscarea Oastea Domnului

Au urmat congrese ale „ostasilor”, au urmat adunari prin sate, s-au format grupuri speciale de „ostasi” care se adunau pentru studierea Bibliei impreuna si pentru incurajarea frateasca. Preotul Iosif Trifa, ca indrumator spiritual al miscarii, s-a vazut nevoit de indata sa defineasca principiile ei fundamentale. Traian Dorz constata ca aceste principii de baza au fost trei: primirea lui Isus Hristos ca Mintuitor personal, nasterea din nou si „descoperirea Bibliei”.

Vom cita aici in extenso din istoria scrisa de Traian Dorz pentru ca sa ne dam seama exact ed natura Oastei Domnului. La rindul sau, Traian Dorz citeaza pe larg din articolele lui Iosif Trifa, si astfel capatam o informare directa despre gindirea fondatorului Oastei.

Istoricul – Traian Dorz citeaza din articolele lui Iosif Trifa

„Odata cu planul Lucrarii, Duhul Sfint i-a descoperit parintelui Iosif  si temelia pe care sa zideasca aceasta lucrare. Prin lumini tot mai puternice, i-a aratat repede si sigur tot mai clar, pas cu pas, ce trebuie sa faca si cum trebuie sa zideasca. Astfel el a inteles si a stiut de la inceput ca taina si puterea biruintei lui si a Oastei – sta si va sta in Hristos. In Jertfa vie a lui Hristos Cel Rastignit.

„Toata lucrarea mintuirii noastre – va spune el inca de la inceput – sta si va sta numai in Crucea si in Jertfa lui Isus Cel Rastignit. Crucea si Jertfa Lui de pe Golgota a facut – si va face – lucrarea mintuirii noastre. Fara aceasta Jertfa toata lupta si truda noastra este in zadar. Toata lupta noastra si toata nadejdea noastra pentru mintuire, sta numai in credinta si in increderea noastra neclintita in Crucea si in Jertfa vie a lui Isus Cel Rastignit. De fapt lucrarea Oastei Domnului este aflarea si vestirea lui Isus Cel Rastignit…

Redescoperindu-L pe Isus Cel Rastignit

Deci fratii mei,cu ochii tinta la Capetenia si Desavirsirea credintei noastre, la Isus Cel Rastignit, dupa cum a spus si a scris marele Apostol Pavel ca n-am avut de gind sa stiu intre voi nimic altceva decit pe Isus Hristos si pe El rastignit (1 Corinteni 2:2). Si cu ochii tinta la Capetenia si Desavirsirea credintei noastre, adica la Isus… (Evrei 12:2).’

De fapt aceasta nu este o descoperire ci mai degraba o redescoperire.
Hristos era in mijlocul nostru, dar noi nu-L cunosteam.
Batea la usa noastra, dar noi nu-L simteam.
Ne vorbea de linga noi, dar noi nu-L auzisem.

Era trimis la noi sa ne aduca mintuirea slavita, dar noi nu-L primisem. Caci nu fusese nimeni sa ne trezeasca din somnul pacatelor in care zaceam. Nici sa ne arate limpede calea si lumina iesirii din intunericul si ratacirile prin care bijbiiam.

Acum Hristos era inaltat cu toata puterea, cu toata caldura si cu toata hotarirea sufletului, in fata tuturor sufletelor si in mijlocul tuturor starilor. Acum chemarea Lui o auzeam cu totii limpede, staruitoare si dulce cum n-o mai auziseram niciodata. Cel ce ni-L arata, simteam ca Il cunoaste pe Isus. Si ca tot ce spune el despre mintuirea si viata cu Isus, el le traieste in totul. De aceea il ascultau tot mai multe suflete si il urmau tot mai cu drag.

Pe masura ce ochii slujitorului erau tot mai atintiti la stapanul sau Isus, iar ureceha lui era tot mai atenta la Cuvintul Lui, viziunea i se adincea si i se largea patrunzandu-se tot mai deplin de marile adevaruri in aflarea si cunoasterea carora statea salvarea noastra, si ca indivizi si ca popor.

Astfel cea mai dintii si cea mai mare trebuinta a poporului nostru aflam puternic ca sta in cunoasterea vie a lui Hristos. Daca L-am avea cu adevarat pe Hristos, nu ne-ar mai lipsi nimic. Toate le-am dobindit prin El, caci in El avem totul deplin (Coloseni 2:10).

Curind el va spune: de fapt nu betia si sudalma sint raul cel mai mare de care sufere poporul nostru – ci raul cel mai mare este ca nu-L cunoastem si nu-L urmam pe Isus Cel Rastignit. Caci daca L-am avea pe El nu numai ca n-am trai in intunericul acestor rusinoase pacate si patimi ci am umbla cu totii in toata curatia si bucuria luminii minunate a lui Dumnezeu.

Astfel se aseza tot mai puternic si mai adinc, ca Piatra din unghiul Lucrarii, temelia cunoasterii si primirii lui Isus Hristos ca Mintuitor personal , de catre oricine isi doreste cu adevarat minturiea sufletului si mintuirea neamului nostru.

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