People are calling the grace revolution the new reformation.
Joe Purcell Sr., the Dean of Rhema Singapore had read an article written by a professor, saying that there was a reformation coming unlike that of Augustine and Luther. This Grace Reformation will be so radical that it will sound like blasphemy at first .
*Many Protestants, especially Calvinists, consider St. Augustine to be one of the theological article fathers of the Protestant Reformation due to his teachings on salvation and divine grace.
*Martin Luther; 10 November 1483 – 18 February 1546) was a German professor of theology and seminal figure of a reform movement in 16th century Christianity subsequently known as the Protestant Reformation.
Ps Prince: “God loves to use weak things<points to himself>, and the foolish things <does NOT point to congregation> to confound the mighty.”
In Feb 2012 , Ps. Prince happened to listen to a sermon hosted on the website of a leading Christian network, and the preacher was putting down the local church, and preaching a series on it even. That particular sermon was taking issue with a “certain church” that has this particular disclaimer at the end of its broadcast.
Joseph Prince Ministries believes that your tithes belong to your local church. Your donations to the ministry are received as offerings to support the preaching of the Gospel of Grace.
Jesus died for the local church. You may say we all belong to the universal church but that’s a cop-out. In Revelations, Jesus refers to the local churches in that region.
Revelations 2:1 To the messenger of the church in Ephesus…
Revelations 2:8 To the messenger of the church in Smyrna…
Revelations 2:12 To the messenger of the church in Pergamum…
Revelations 2:18 To the messenger of the church in Thyatira…
Revelations 3:1 To the messenger of the church in Sardis…
Revelations 3:7 To the messenger of the church in Philadelphia…
Revelations 3:14 To the messenger of the church in Laodicea…
Its not so much that going to church will make people righteous, but that righteous people go to church.
Ps Prince later on heard the Lord saying that there is a whole bunch of people being impacted by grace, but there is no local church to house them. There are people completely “grace-revolutionized” but no church to which they can belong to.
Therefore NCC will begin planting churches, and Ps Keith will pastor the first one!
It will be based in Dallas and they have been meeting for 3 Sundays so far.
This was not announced publicly until now, not even on television and not during all the interviews while Ps Prince was in US, and the meetings were kept small on purpose to grow leaders from within instead of starting out with explosive numbers right from the get-go. This was done in order to build God’s house more effectively.
These church-plants are NOT an extension of NCC . They do not receive anything financially from NCC.
——————————– Start of Sermon proper ————————————————–
Last week we saw the story of Woman caught in adultery , but that story was only told in John.
All the miracles in gospel of John are signs. A sign is not the destination, but a pointer to something. For John, all of Jesus miracles point to the Gospel.
7 So when they continued asking Him, He raised Himself up and said to them, “He who is without sin among you, let him throw a stone at her first.” 8 And again He stooped down and wrote on the ground. 9 Then those who heard it, being convicted by their conscience, went out one by one, beginning with the oldest even to the last. And Jesus was left alone, and the woman standing in the midst. 10 When Jesus had raised Himself up and saw no one but the woman, He said to her, “Woman, where are those accusers of yours? Has no one condemned you?”
11 She said, “No one, Lord.”
And Jesus said to her, “Neither do I condemn you; go and sin no more.”
Jesus had the ability and right to stone her, but he would not, and gave her the gift of no condemnation.
You may say but no miracle was performed here, but in truth, for a person’s life to be transformed is miracle itself.
Ps Prince: “The reason why we want to free people from condemnation and guilt is so that the sins and addictions will fall off ! When you believe there is therefore now no condemnation <cause>, you will <effect> go and sin no more!”
Fear and guilt empowers addiction.
God has to reconcile his holiness and his love, and that happened at the cross. At the cross all claims of righteousness and holiness was satisfied. And it was not through the blood of bulls and goats, but the eternal blood of God!
If you can lose your salvation, then Adam was greater than Jesus and that cannot be!
After that event, they Pharisees hated Jesus for they could not stand His light.
The light of Jesus does not expose to condemn.
The entire story is a sign.
The woman is a picture of Israel.
Israel had forgotten the Lord, and committed spiritual adultery, but Jesus came to offer the gift of no condemnation to set her free. But the pharisees were blinded.
56 Your father Abraham rejoiced to see My day, and he saw it and was glad.”
57 Then the Jews said to Him, “You are not yet fifty years old, and have You seen Abraham?”
The thing is Jesus was not saying, “I saw Abraham” but rather, “Abraham saw me!”
58 Jesus said to them, “Most assuredly, I say to you, before Abraham was, I AM.”
The words “I AM” are powerful words.
One other time Jesus said “I AM”, when Judas brought men to arrest him, and the captors were captivated, and they all fell back.
59 Then they took up stones to throw at Him; but Jesus hid Himself and went out of the temple, going through the midst of them, and so passed by.
The Jews were hopping mad. Jesus was claiming to be God!
Now, if you think about it, either Jesus was really God or He was the world’s greatest liar, and there is no middle ground. Jesus cannot simply be just a good man, for a good man doesn’t tell lies.
John 8:2 – 4
2 Now early in the morning He came again into the temple, and all the people came to Him; and He sat down and taught them.
3 Then the scribes and Pharisees brought to Him a woman caught in adultery. And when they had set her in the midst,
4 they said to Him, “Teacher, this woman was caught in adultery, in the very act.
Religious people put the woman in the center, in other words, they put our sin in the midst. God likes Jesus only to be in the midst.
When the chapter first started, the woman was in the midst. But near the end, Jesus was in the midst of the crowd.
Jesus is in the midst and He wants to meet you at your point of need, so call on Him!
For where two or three have gathered together in My name, I am there in their midst.
As Jesus was just leaving the crowd that was about to stone him, he saw a man blind from birth. He will pass by self righteousness but when he sees someone with a need, He can’t just do nothing.
And His disciples asked Him, saying, “Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?”
Joshen’s notes: There is a rabbinical debate on whether fetuses could sin, some arguing they could (Genesis Rabbah 63:6) and others that they could not (Genesis Rabbah 34:10).
Disciples were sin conscious, whereas Jesus was need conscious. Do you have a need today? Jesus cares about filling that need!
Even a blind man is not as blind as someone who is sin conscious like the Pharisees.
Where sin increase, grace hyper-increases!
Ps Prince: “Pastors, leaders, please don’t be sin conscious. Don’t beat your sheep, feed them and they will grow..”
If you are always plucking out the dry leaves of a sapling, you might end up pulling off the healthy leaves too! Be patient, keep feeding them, and the dry leaves will fall out automatically!
4 I must work the works of Him who sent Me while it is day; the night is coming when no one can work. 5 As long as I am in the world, I am the light of the world.”
As long as light is there, it won’t rest. As long as there is sorrow or hurting, love won’t rest. As long as you have a need, Jesus won’t rest.
Joshen’s notes: I am reminded of Naomi telling Ruth that Boaz will not rest until the matter is settled.
6 When He had said these things, He spat on the ground and made clay with the saliva; and He anointed the eyes of the blind man with the clay. 7 And He said to him, “Go, wash in the pool of Siloam (which is translated, Sent). So he went and washed, and came back seeing..”
Why did Jesus make clay?
Again, remember that John is all about signs.
So whats the sign of making clay from the dust?
We are made of dust from the ground. No matter a person’s qualifications, bury them long enough and they all turn to dust. If time’s a factor simply cremate them, and you get dust!
Spitting is humiliating. The Pharisees spat in His face.
Clay, is a picture of man’s flesh.
Therefore, Jesus took on humiliation upon Himself and became flesh. The Word became flesh, and dwelt among us.
In the natural, if you put clay on a blind man’s eyes he becomes blinder! But not so with Jesus.
7 And He said to him, “Go, wash in the pool of Siloam (which is translated, Sent). So he went and washed, and came back seeing..”
You cannot see Jesus until you go to the Pool of Siloam, until you see that He is the Messiah .
In 2005, researchers uncovered the Pool of Siloam. Israel blindness is about to come off!
Remember all miracles are signs.
This time, the man is a picture of Israel, and Jesus is the Sent One.
Ps Prince: “It is beautiful to see a new convert, full of boldness proclaiming the light of Jesus .”
28 Then they reviled him and said, “You are His disciple, but we are Moses’ disciples.
29 We know that God spoke to Moses; as for this fellow, we do not know where He is from.”
Whoa, wait a minute! Moses is a servant. Jesus is THE Son!
When the servant sees the son, the servant bows.
We can see some spiritual progress here in the story of the blind man made whole.
John 9:11 He answered and said, “A Man called Jesus made clay and anointed my eyes…” –> first just a man
John 9:17 They said to the blind man again, “What do you say about Him because He opened your eyes?” He said, “He is a prophet.” –> then a prophet
John 9:36 He answered and said, “Who is He, Lord, that I may believe in Him?” –> then a lord
John 9:38 Then he said, “Lord, I believe!” And he worshiped Him. –> now God
His revelation of Jesus grew greater and greater as the time passed, from blindness to faith , from begging to worshiping, from the gutter most to the uppermost!
Another example! Same thing from the woman at well, who was living with 5 husbands.
John 4:6-7 …. It was about the sixth hour. 7 A woman of Samaria came to draw water. —> First, she came in the afternoon to avoid gossipers.
John 4:9 Then the woman of Samaria said to Him, “How is it that You, being a Jew, ask a drink from me…” –> Then she called him a Jew.
John 4:19 The woman said to Him, “Sir, I perceive that You are a prophet. —> Then she sees him as prophet.
John 4:29 “Come, see a Man who told me all things that I ever did. Could this be the Messiah?” –> She went into town calling him Messiah!
41 Jesus said, “For judgment I have come into this world, so that the blind will see and those who see will become blind.” 40 Some Pharisees who were with him heard him say this and asked, “What? Are we blind too?” 41 Jesus said, “If you were blind, you would not be guilty of sin; but now that you claim you can see, your guilt remains.
Rejected light is darker than those who never saw the light. To the blind, Jesus was the light.
The pharisees saw what Jesus was doing, but they refused to see Him as Messiah.
You cannot free yourself from addictions.
Stop saying I can stop at any time.
This weakness can only be removed by drawing upon His grace upon grace upon grace
Only the cross, none of self.
Your own self is the worst enemy.
Look to Jesus saying: “Lord I cannot, but You can!”
In the blood is power and that is what sets you free!
——————end of sermon——————