The church is often tempted to stray from centrality of its mission by becoming a marina rather than a lifeboat station. Primarily, the church exists to “rescue the perishing” and to bring unbelieving men and women to Jesus Christ. So how can the church remain pointed toward the true Lighthouse?
1They came to the other side of the sea, to the country of the Gerasenes.1 2And when Jesus2 had stepped out of the boat, immediately there met him out of the tombs a man with an unclean spirit. 3He lived among the tombs. And no one could bind him anymore, not even with a chain, 4for he had often been bound with shackles and chains, but he wrenched the chains apart, and he broke the shackles in pieces. No one had the strength to subdue him. 5Night and day among the tombs and on the mountains he was always crying out and cutting himself with stones. 6And when he saw Jesus from afar, he ran and fell down before him. 7And crying out with a loud voice, he said, “What have you to do with me, Jesus, Son of the Most High God? I adjure you by God, do not torment me.” 8For he was saying to him, “Come out of the man, you unclean spirit!” 9And Jesus asked him, “What is your name?” He replied, “My name is Legion, for we are many.” 10And he begged him earnestly not to send them out of the country. 11Now a great herd of pigs was feeding there on the hillside, 12and they begged him, saying, “Send us to the pigs; let us enter them.” 13So he gave them permission. And the unclean spirits came out and entered the pigs; and the herd, numbering about two thousand, rushed down the steep bank into the sea and drowned in the sea.
14The herdsmen fled and told it in the city and in the country. And people came to see what it was that had happened. 15And they came to Jesus and saw the demon-possessed3 man, the one who had had the legion, sitting there, clothed and in his right mind, and they were afraid. 16And those who had seen it described to them what had happened to the demon-possessed man and to the pigs. 17And they began to beg Jesus4 to depart from their region. 18As he was getting into the boat, the man who had been possessed with demons begged him that he might be with him. 19And he did not permit him but said to him, “Go home to your friends and tell them how much the Lord has done for you, and how he has had mercy on you.” 20And he went away and began to proclaim in the Decapolis how much Jesus had done for him, and everyone marveled.
In him was life, and that life was the light of men. The light shines in the darkness, but the darkness has not understood it.
The Church is often confronted with the challenge of losing the centrality of the gospel in its mission – of becoming a marina instead of a lifeboat station. Primarily it exists to introduce unbelieving men and women to the saving power of Jesus Christ. The Gospel records tell us that Jesus repeatedly talked about doing the work of His Father, which was to provide payment for sin and breathe spiritual life in all who believe. As a result, those who are spiritually blind and live in darkness might have their eyes opened and become witnesses to His powerful light. Jesus performed great signs, ultimately, not so people would be amazed, but rather so they might believe and in believing they might have eternal life.
But these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name.
In this series Alistair Begg leads us through several unique and transforming encounters that people had with Jesus – the Light of the World. He exposed their real problem: the darkness of their sin and their need for forgiveness and a Savior. As you listen you will discover that their problem is universal and Jesus provides the only solution that brings conversion. How can the Church remember her mission and point people to the penetrating searchlight of Jesus Christ so that all may find life in His name? Find out when you listen to “A Light in the Darkness”.
But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light.
1 Peter 2:9
|Go and Tell Them||Mark 5:1-20|
|You Give Them Something to Eat||Mark 6:30-43 Matthew 14:13|
|Come See a Man, Part One||John 4:27-42|
|Come See a Man, Part Two||John 4:27-42|
|This Dark World's Light||John 9:1-7|
|Blind from Birth||John 9:8-12|
|Why Don't You Ask Him?||John 9:13-23|
|Do You Believe..., Part One||John 9:24-38|
|Do You Believe..., Part Two||John 9:35-38|
|Lord, I Believe||John 9:38|
|Are We Blind Too?||John 9:39-41|