The Kingdom: This Is What You Want | Week of March 12th

Sermon Notes

The Kingdom: This Is What You Want
Pastor Tom Chism
Matthew 13:45-46

  1. Giving first priority to God’s Kingdom is the means by which Jesus becomes King in our lives.
  2. The Kingdom is Jesus’ dynamic reign characterized by his presence, transformation and activity, marked by peace, yet full of energy, and always creating progress.
  3. The Kingdom of God is not about techniques or methods, it is about resource and purpose.
  4. The Pearl is what we want.

Egg Stuffing Parties This Week

Just a reminder that LifeGroups will be gathering at the Egg Stuffing Parites this Monday, March 13th - Wednesday, March 15th. Register or get more details here!

Resources

Article | “A Wild Exchange” by Tim Keesee “His calculated risk was actually no risk at all. Instead, it was a joyful and wildly uneven exchange—as wildly, graciously, and lavishly uneven an exchange as when we are given Christ’s glorious robe of righteousness and acceptance for the filthy shrouds of our own self-righteousness.”

Reflection Questions

We’ll see you for Egg Stuffing Parties this Monday, March 13th - Wednesday, March 15th! Register here to attend.

  1. What’s something you tend to treasure more than Christ? 
  2. What differences do you see in the parable in Matthew 13:44 compared to 13:45?
  3. Do you find that you attempt to turn the Kingdom into techniques or methods? 
  4. What one step can you take to move toward resource and purpose in the Kingdom?
  5. Who is one person you can share the treasure of Christ with this week?

Scripture To Meditate On

“This is why I speak to them in parables: Though seeing, they do not see; though hearing, they do not hear or understand. In them is fulfilled the prophecy of Isaiah: ‘You will be ever hearing but never understanding; you will be ever seeing but never perceiving. For this people’s heart has become calloused; they hardly hear with their ears, and they have closed their eyes. Otherwise they might see with their eyes, hear with their ears, understand with their hearts and turn, and I would heal them.’ But blessed are your eyes because they see, and your ears because they hear. For truly I tell you, many prophets and righteous people longed to see what you see but did not see it, and to hear what you hear but did not hear it.”
Matthew 13:13-17 NIV

A Spiritual Practice To Try

The Kingdom of heaven is of inestimable value! Jesus talks about his present Kingdom ruling invisibly in the hearts of believers, hidden from physical eyes, but its impact on the world is apparent. This week, try the spiritual practice of silence and solitude. 

Even if it’s just two minutes before you start your day! Set a timer for two minutes and pray something like, “Lord God, here I am.” When your mind drifts, just gently and graciously come back to the presence of God and pray, “Lord God, here I am.” Spend time in the Lord’s presence and seeking his Kingdom.

In-Depth Bible + Discipleship Study

Study Matthew 13. Ask, pray, and/or journal about some of these questions:
  • Why does Jesus use parables?
  • Do you think we use this teaching method today?
  • Who was Jesus’ audience at this time?
  • What differences or similarities do you see in these parables?
  • What is one underlying timeless principle that stands out to you in this chapter?

Something To Think About

I love the urgency in the parable of the pearl. The merchant is seeking and looking for fine pearls. When he finds what he’s searching for, he immediately sells everything in order to buy this pearl. This seems to be an easy decision for this man. He realizes the value and acts with urgency and purpose – and probably a lot of joy! 

In Acts 20:24, Paul says, “I consider my life worth nothing to me; my only aim is to finish the race and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given me—the task of testifying to the good news of God’s grace.”

When we think about the Kingdom, are we filled with a sense of urgency? Are we eager to share this good news of God’s grace? Are we joyously taking risks for the Kingdom?

This week, I’m praying the Lord increases our urgency for helping others find this great pearl, finding the Kingdom of heaven. I’m praying we’ll have an eagerness to testify of God’s grace. I’m praying we’ll be a church that joyously takes risks for more people to make the Lord Jesus King of their lives.

Grace and peace,
Lydia Long
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