Power Under Sacrifice

March 23, 2024   /   Marty Kaiser   /   Vineyard Church North Phoenix

Power Under Sacrifice

I. Introduction

A. Matthew 21:1-11 (NIV) 1As they approached Jerusalem and came to Bethphage on the Mount of Olives, Jesus sent two disciples, 2saying to them, “Go to the village ahead of you, and at once you will find a donkey tied there, with her colt by her. Untie them and bring them to me. 3If anyone says anything to you, say that the Lord needs them, and he will send them right away.” 4This took place to fulfill what was spoken through the prophet: 5“Say to Daughter Zion, ‘See, your king comes to you, gentle and riding on a donkey, and on a colt, the foal of a donkey.’” 6The disciples went and did as Jesus had instructed them. 7They brought the donkey and the colt and placed their cloaks on them for Jesus to sit on. 8A very large crowd spread their cloaks on the road, while others cut branches from the trees and spread them on the road. 9The crowds that went ahead of him and those that followed shouted, “Hosanna to the Son of David! Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord! Hosanna in the highest heaven!” 10When Jesus entered Jerusalem, the whole city was stirred and asked, “Who is this?” 11The crowds answered, “This is Jesus, the prophet from Nazareth in Galilee.”

B. “For although in the cross there is nothing but curse, it was, nevertheless, swallowed up by the power of God in such a way, that it has put on, as it were, a new nature. For there is no tribunal so magnificent, no throne so stately, no show of triumph so distinguished, no chariot so elevated, as is the [post], on which Christ has subdued death and the devil, the prince of death; nay, more, has utterly trodden them under his feet.” (John Calvin)

C. Hebrews 2:9 (NIV) But we do see Jesus, who was made lower than the angels for a little while, now crowned with glory and honor because he suffered death, so that by the grace of God he might taste death for everyone.

II. Power Under Sacrifice

A. Luke 22:24 (NIV) Also, a dispute arose among them as to which of them was considered to be greatest.

B. Luke 22:25 (NIV) Jesus said to them, “The kings of the Gentiles lord it over them; and those who exercise authority over them call themselves Benefactors.”

1. system of

C. Luke 22:26a (NIV) “But you are not to be like that.“

1. A power over system of authority is not the of My .

D. Luke 22:26 (NIV) “But you are not to be like that. Instead, the greatest among you should be like the youngest, and the one who rules like the one who serves.”

1. Jesus does not call us to a power over system of authority, but to a system of .

III. The Early Church and Constantinian Shift

A. Two factors significantly accelerated the growth of the early church:

1. and service toward

2. of women

B. 313 A.D. Constantine ratifies the Edict of Milan

1. “Can you find any region where Christians once ruled where the church has prospered in the long run? …It teaches us that whenever Christians have gotten the power to enforce their righteous will on others — it eventually harms the church as well as the culture. The lesson of history, a lesson the Devil has known all along, is this: The best way to defeat the kingdom of God is to empower the church to rule the kingdom of the world — for then it becomes the kingdom of the world! The best way to get people to lay down the cross is to hand them the sword!” (Greg Boyd)

IV. Conclusion

A. Our is not to win the culture war.

B. Our mission is to bring people to !

1. The transforming message of the Gospel does not move forward by the muscle of power over authority, but in the wake of power under sacrifice, as reflected in the cross.

C. Romans 14:17 (NIV) For the kingdom of God is not a matter of eating and drinking, but of righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit.

D. Romans 14:19-20 (NIV) 19Let us therefore make every effort to do what leads to peace and to mutual edification. 20Do not destroy the work of God for the sake of food.

E. Luke 22:29 (NASB) “And just as My Father has granted Me a kingdom, I grant you.”


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