Missing the Point

Palm Sunday Reminds Us That The Point Of His Ministry Was Jesus Came To Save.

Jeff Taylor
Apr 2, 2023    49m
Palm Sunday reminds us that, many times, people miss the point of Jesus' ministry, which was that Jesus came to save us from death. When things don't look the way we expect them to look from Him, we miss the fullness of who He is. Video recorded at Upland, California.

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This is a transcription of the sermon. People speak differently than they write, and there are common colloquialisms in this transcript that sound good when spoken, and look like bad grammar when written.

Intro: [00:00:00] Hey there. Thanks so much for checking out one of our messages here at Life Bible Fellowship Church. And we know there are two great ways you can connect with us. You can visit our website at LBF.church to learn more about all of our ministries and what we believe. And also, you can subscribe to us on YouTube to make sure that you don't miss one of our future videos.

Gabe: [00:00:20] Ah, those were powerful, guys. I really love how centered on the glory of God that last song is. My name is Gabe, I'm one of the teachers in the men's group. Please turn with me to the Gospel of Mark chapter 11, verses 1 through 10, As they approached Jerusalem and came to Bethphage and Bethany at the Mount of Olives, Jesus sent two of his disciples, 2saying to them, “Go to the village ahead of you, and just as you enter it, you will find a colt tied there, which no one has ever ridden. Untie it and bring it here. 3If anyone asks you, ‘Why are you doing this?’ say, ‘The Lord needs it and will send it back here shortly.’ ”4They went and found a colt outside in the street, tied at a doorway. As they untied it, 5some people standing there asked, “What are you doing, untying that colt?” 6They answered as Jesus had told them to, and the people let them go. 7When they brought the colt to Jesus and threw their cloaks over it, he sat on it. 8Many people spread their cloaks on the road, while others spread branches they had cut in the fields. 9Those who went ahead and those who followed shouted, “Hosanna!” “Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!” 10“Blessed is the coming kingdom of our father David!” “Hosanna in the highest heaven!” This is God's holy Word.

Jeff Taylor: [00:02:09] I had a friend growing up who had a chore. Anybody in here, do you currently have chores? Adults can raise their hands, too. One of his chores was vacuuming his room. He hated vacuuming his room, like, with a passion. I think he would have traded the vacuuming his room chore for any other chore in the house, so he found a way around it. I was spending the night, and the next morning it was chore day. So his mom goes, Hey, make sure you vacuum your room, okay? He grabs a hanger out of the closet, and he starts drawing lines in the carpet, nice, straight, even lines from wall to wall. Clean your room, are you vacuuming your room? Uh-huh. It took him probably 15 minutes to draw those lines all hunched over and figured I beat the system. I was there another time on a Friday night, Saturday was chore day. He must have gotten caught with the hanger thing because his mom goes, hey, make sure you vacuum your room. Okay. This time he goes and gets the vacuum. But rather than going to all the trouble of plugging it in, he vacuumed his room without the vacuum plugged in or turned on or anything. Because what did it show? It showed the tracks, it showed the wheel lines, and so it looked like he had vacuumed his room. He completely missed the point of why his mom was asking him to vacuum his room, the point of vacuuming the room was what? Clean your disgusting room, that was the point. He missed it, and was like, oh, it must be about the way it looks when I vacuum the room. So my mom wants the wheel marks, my mom wants it, and he just missed the point. I got sent home early that day because mom discovered that he had, in fact, missed the point.

Jeff Taylor: [00:04:32] So, God, right now, here we are. God, we don't want to miss the point. We don't want to make what we're doing here today as we sing songs, as we read your word, as we do it all in the name of worship, we don't want to miss the point. And maybe just as an act of putting action to your intentions, if you just put your hands in front of you, just as we invite you, Holy Spirit, we want to receive what you have for us. We don't want to miss the point. We don't want to make it about what we think we need or what we think should happen or what we would prefer, God, we invite you to descend on this place, and that we wouldn't miss you, and that you would reveal yourself in power, you would reveal yourself in your love and your compassion and your grace that you have for us, that we would receive that. So come and have your way, in Jesus' name.

Jeff Taylor: [00:04:32] The Hebrew people who had been enslaved in Egypt sat silently in the dark. Something big was going to happen, and thanks to what God had revealed through Moses, the people knew what that was. And it was strangely quiet at the moment, and at the home of every Hebrew, the doorway had lamb's blood smeared across it. It was a statement of faith that they believed that what God said was coming, was coming, that the angel was going to come, and he was going to take the firstborn in every household unless it was covered in the blood of the lamb. And so through the night as they hear cries and screams throughout the land in the homes of the Hebrews who had their homes covered in the blood of the lamb, there was peace and there was safety. This event came to be known as Passover, as the angel had passed over those who had demonstrated their faith and covered their homes. And it gave people much to celebrate that they were saved, that they were protected, that God was at work in their life. And so this celebration of Passover became something that they engaged in every year, where they would take a lamb, a perfect lamb, and it would be sacrificed in remembrance of the ways that God had saved them. For over 1400 years, the Hebrew people celebrated Passover. It had become a national holiday, and a lot like New Year, you know, in Times Square in New York, people wanted to be in the capital city on Passover. And so I mean the surrounding areas, everyone would just descend on Jerusalem to celebrate Passover. And they knew that because of the population and what was going to happen, there wasn't going to be enough room for everyone to rent. And so people would actually bring building supplies with them, they would travel to Jerusalem, and they'd have what they needed to put up these little huts to be able to stay in. And so if you stood on top of a building in Jerusalem and looked out over the city, not only would you see wall-to-wall people throughout the city, but outside the city on the surrounding hillsides, you would see all these huts, all these places that people had set up to stay as they celebrated Passover, and these huts were roofed oftentimes with palm branches.

Jeff Taylor: [00:08:52] For three years, the stories of this Jesus guy had been circulating. This was the guy who walked on water. This was the guy who raised Lazarus from the dead. This was the guy who healed blind people. This was the guy who fed 5000 plus with the little kids' lunch. This guy was from Bethlehem and he was headed this way, and so the people begin to get ready. Now, Bethlehem was often referred to as the House of Bread, it meant the house of bread. But the Arabic translation of that, does anybody know? House of Meat. See, in Bethlehem, Bethlehem, one of the things Bethlehem was known for is the shepherds of Bethlehem were in the family line of David. These guys were pros, and they had a really important job, one of their jobs, get the sheep ready for sacrifice at the temple in Jerusalem for Passover. So every year as Passover approached, these shepherds would get their flocks together, and they would make the 2 to 5-mile trek from Bethlehem into Jerusalem, and they would go into Jerusalem through the sheep gate, appropriately, the sheep gate is on the back side of the temple in Jerusalem. And so it was this massive parade of sheep entering into the back side of the temple. This is where everybody would go to receive their sheep that they would sacrifice for Passover. But on the front side of the temple was the beautiful gate, and this is where some commotion started. This was where people began talking to me like, hey, I think he's headed this way, and they would go out the gate and they'd look up the hill to see what was going on.

Jeff Taylor: [00:11:04] And here was this Jesus guy coming in, and they were taken aback at first because he doesn't exactly come across like the champion that they were maybe expecting. Here's this guy on a colt, and he's surrounded by his followers who look an awful lot like fishermen and tax collectors and just kind of common ordinary people. But the people in Jerusalem were so ready for a savior, they were so ready for someone to come in and do what they believed needed to be done. I mean, there was political stuff that needed to happen, and there was security stuff that needed to happen, there was freedom stuff that needed to be happening, and the people, as they looked at this, they went, okay, if this is the guy, then this is the guy. We are good. We are ready to go. Let's go.

Jeff Taylor: [00:11:58] So now the Roman guards are looking at this massive influx of people and they're like, this could get weird, this could get out of control, we may not be able to handle everything that's going on. And so as the people are gathering and as they're looking and as Jesus comes down toward the city, someone shouts, Hosanna, it means, save us now. It echoes off the walls and the people, and somebody over here hears it and goes, yeah, Hosanna! Somebody over here, Hosanna! And they grab anything that they've got with them, those with coats, they take their coats off and they throw them down in front of Jesus the way they would usher in a king. People had all these palm branches that they were using for their huts, or that they had cut down because it was right there, and they began waving them and laying them down at the feet of the colt that Jesus is riding, and they're shouting Hosanna! Ready for Jesus to save them, save them the way they have it in their minds, they need to be saved.

Jeff Taylor: [00:13:23] Two processionals, two parades, one through the sheep gate in the back, lambs ready for sacrifice, and one through the beautiful gate in front of the temple, and all this took place on a Sunday. We know it was Sunday because, according to Hebrew law, the lambs for slaughter needed to be received and taken care of by the family, kind of like a pet, for four days before Passover, before it was slaughtered. So all this happens on a Sunday. So for centuries, people took the lamb, and they sacrificed it in memory of how God had saved them. That's what Passover is.

Jeff Taylor: [00:14:17] In the Bible. John refers to Jesus as the Lamb of God. And this Lamb of God was ushered into Jerusalem on that Sunday, he was ushered in as a king. He was received, welcomed in, going, okay, you're going to save us, you're going to do what we believe we need you to do, and he was brought in. But what we understand now that the people didn't see then was that God was ushering in a New Lamb. God was offering his sacrifice on behalf of the people to save them, to take the place of the sacrificial lamb. But in just four short days, by Friday, the people would miss the point and Jesus would be led out the sheep gate up the hill to the place of the skull called Calvary, and his blood would be shed. The people missed the point of what Jesus was actually there to save them from. And when it didn't look like they believed they needed it to look, it needs to do this, we need you to do this and it needs to be done like this, and you need to be overcome this, and when it didn't, the cry of Hosanna turned to cries of crucify him.

Jeff Taylor: [00:16:05] But there are some missing the point that happens before this. How did Jesus get here? What did this look like? Well, let's back up a little bit. Jesus and his followers are on their way to Jerusalem when Jesus receives an invitation from a woman named Martha. And Martha says, hey, come to my house, I would like to welcome you, I would like to host you. Now, we all understand what it's like having company over, right? Okay. Suddenly, especially, and I reflect back to when I was a kid, it seemed suddenly like the broom makes an appearance, the mop is brought out, the Windex, and you find out just how many windows you actually have in your house and mirrors and you're just like, ugh, right? Rooms that are perfectly appropriate for daily living are now referred to as pigsties, and these things need to change and this needs to be cleaned up. So this was the same here, so Martha invites Jesus to her house, and she gets to work cleaning.

Jeff Taylor: [00:17:19] Now, apparently, there wasn't much time between the invitation and Jesus' arrival because when Jesus gets there, Martha is still cleaning. Martha is still preparing for her guests. So she opens the door, imagine how this is if you were running behind, right, we can all imagine this. She opens the door. Jesus, it's so good to see you, please come in. Jesus comes in, he takes a seat and Martha is gone, she's off busying herself. I mean, she's working hard, this lady has integrity, she's polite, she's doing what she needs to do to get ready to host this man, this person that she like. I'm so glad he's here, Mary, probably Martha's sister, doesn't help Martha at all. Just pulls up a chair next to Jesus, and it's like, how's it going? And begins talking to Jesus and begins listening to what Jesus has to say. And she's just sitting there, Martha is walking through it and I'm sure Martha is probably like as she walks by Mary, like, walking a little harder right? Probably like bumping her with the broom and trying to get her, like, trying. And for a while, okay, you can take some laziness for a little while, but then eventually Martha has had it. And like a kid who is just sick and tired of this sibling who's not pulling their weight, she doesn't go to Mary and go, Mary, come on, help me she goes right to Daddy. She goes right to Jesus and goes, look, are you seeing this? Look at the way that I'm working. Look at how much I am trying to do to honor you, to get ready for you, and here she sits, just staring at you. Now, here's the thing, culture, people watching this happen wouldn't have criticized Martha, they would have applauded Martha. They would have said, Martha, you are doing the right thing. Good for you, Martha, for being a good host to your guest by preparing and wanting your place to look nice. Good for you, you're doing the right thing. Yeah, that Mary, man, boy, she didn't help you at all. So, everybody, I'm pretty sure most people, would have been on Martha's side because what they viewed as important was the same thing that Martha clearly viewed as important, and that was to check things off the list, get things done, be appropriate, be what is expected, do what needs to happen, and prioritize that over all else, and the culture around her would have said good job.

Jeff Taylor: [00:20:17] But Jesus responds, and Jesus responds, it makes me cry because Jesus' response to Martha is I see how worried you are, I see the stress, I see the anxiety in you to try and do this good. Martha, I know you're trying to do this good; I see it. Okay, the house is nice and you're picking up and you're preparing food and you're doing it, I see how important that is to you. And there's a part of this where it's like, yeah, that's very honoring. But Martha, in the midst of you trying to be the best hostess, you've missed this opportunity that you have to be with me, to just be with me. Yeah, you're checking stuff off the list, and the people around you are applauding and going, yes, good job, you are accomplishing the right things. But Jesus says to Martha, but you're missing me, Mary, I'm not picking sides, but Martha, Mary's chosen the better thing. And yeah, it looks less successful, it looks less accomplished, it doesn't look culturally as welcoming and inviting, and it's not the thing that's going to get everybody to be like, oh, my gosh, look how clean the house is, but she's going to get me, she's going to receive from me, and that is the better thing, being in the presence of Jesus, and this is something for us, being in the presence of Jesus is the fulfillment we need. Making the Kingdom of God, the power of God, and the presence of God the priority in our life will always be a choice. So what does that choice look like in your life? How does that look? Is it, hey, I'm going to do all these things, I'm going to cross all these things off my to-do list, and I'm going to be successful and I'm going to accomplish this and I'm going to get the right GPA and I'm going to get the right job and I'm going to provide this for my family, I'm going to have a nice enough this, and I'm going to go and do this? Look at all I've done. And in what ways do we miss Jesus? Jesus, himself, said seek first, what? The Kingdom of God before? Before all the other stuff. Now he's not saying, hey, the other stuff, I just blow it off, nobody cares about it. He's going, no, no, but before you get wrapped up in all that, first seek me. Mary chose the better thing because it was the thing that would allow Jesus to speak into her life first. Before Mary got up and did any of the other things, she was like, I want to see what Jesus says first. Yeah, the house stuff, okay, we probably need to do that, but I want to see what Jesus is going to say first. And in our culture, there will always be things pulling and saying, do this first, fix this first, clean this first, be this first, accomplish this first. And we go, go, go, go, go, go, go, and Jesus is sitting there going, come, come, come, come, come, come. Will we give the time, will we give the resources, will we give the effort, not to the things that are going to get the world around us to be like, yeah, but to the one who is inviting us into a supernatural relationship. So I'm just going to throw this out there to you, as you consider this in your heart, in that situation, do you think you would likely be more like Mary or more like Martha? You don't have to tell me we're not going to take a poll or anything, but do you feel like innately would you be more on the Martha side of I'm going to get stuff done, or more on the Mary side of going, well, I'm going to get stuff done, but I'm going to see what Jesus says about it first?

Jeff Taylor: [00:24:53] After leaving Mary and Martha's, Jesus, and the entourage head, toward Bethphage. And Jesus tells a couple of his disciples, go on ahead, you're going to find a colt tied to a tree, and I want you to untie it, and I want you to bring it to me. Now, the disciples are a little concerned that Jesus might be asking them to commit grand theft donkey, but they go ahead and they're like, okay, well, you're telling me to do it, okay, I'm going to go. So they go. Indeed, people are wondering what they're doing, and they're like, hey, what are you doing? And almost like that scene in Star Wars with Obi-Wan Kenobi, where it's like these aren't the droids, you're looking for, right? Something happened and they're like, oh, the Lord needs it, and the people went, all right, and they're allowed to take it. So they take it back to Jesus, and they throw their blankets over it, and they continue on their way. And as Jesus and his followers are headed over the hill, the people around Jesus begin praising God, singing, shouting, praise the Lord, hallelujah, we love you, God, you are good, we praise you. I mean, they're just going for it. Now, this gets a little awkward for the religious people who are watching this because this is not a sanctioned event. This is not an appropriate service where there's the decorum and the appropriate list of things and liturgy and things like this, this is just like out in the wild. And so the religious leaders are like, okay, hold on, Jesus, you better tell them to stop. And he looks at the religious leaders, and we know that Jesus' heart is for them, Jesus isn't looking at these religious leaders with disdain and like, oh, you're worthless. He has compassion for them, and he recognizes, look, as you are so concerned about dress, you're so concerned about protocol, you're so concerned that everything is predictable and controlled and easy and the way that it's supposed to be that you're wanting to shut this down. And he goes, okay, I can tell them to stop. But here's what you should know, if I tell them to stop, these rocks are going to start singing. Now, which do you think is going to be a more difficult mess for you to try and explain? Right. So you have these people worshiping God or the arts or the rocks are going to start crying out. How are you going to explain that? Because everything in all creation is made to glorify God, all of it. And so as people are expressing their praise to God, he's going look when the people shut it down, God will be praised. He is worthy to be praised and he will be praised. But the religious people missed the point when they're saying, no, no, no, no, but he has to be praised like this, he has to be praised in this moment, he has to be praised in this setting, he has to be praised in this way, and they missed it.

Jeff Taylor: [00:28:57] So what does praising Jesus look like in your life? Is it just when it is at appointed times like, okay, Sunday morning, 9:00, it's a good time to praise? Is it only in controlled, predictable situations? Like when I'm alone, when nobody's going to think I'm weird. Or is it just when it's facilitated by professionals? Like, well, if I'm in a praise God, I need somebody there to tell me how to do this and walk me through it step by step.

Jeff Taylor: [00:29:35] What does praising Jesus look like in your life? Because we will miss the point if our praise is based on ritual rather than in response to a relationship that we have with God. Consider that in your life, like in what ways do we miss the point? Because our praise is so based on ritual, the right setting, the right mood, the right song, we better sing the right songs. I can't worship to these songs; I can't worship at this volume. I can't worship with the lights this way. I can't worship with this person singing. I can't worship if my kids are around. I can't worship at work. I can't worship, it just has to look exactly the way I think it needs to look in order to worship. We will miss the point if it's based on that, rather than worshiping in response to a relationship that you have with Jesus. These people were just walking along, and they couldn't contain it, they couldn't hold it in any longer.

Jeff Taylor: [00:29:35] And as they crossed the hill, Jesus’ kind of stopped. Imagine that scene in Forrest Gump where he's been running and running and then he just decides he's done running. Jesus just stops at the top of the hill, and he looks down over Jerusalem. And I imagine the Chosen will do this in some really cool, dramatic way, but as Jesus stares down at Jerusalem, his heart begins to break because he knows they're going to miss it. He knows it's going to be about all these other things. He knows they're going to be distracted by this and by that, and they're going to have this their mindset here, and they're going to wonder what's going on, and they're going and they're going to make things important that are going to cause them to miss it, and it says that he begins to weep. If you, even you, had only known on this day what would bring you peace, but now it is hidden from your eyes.

Jeff Taylor: [00:31:47] It's not even the first time that Jesus talks about this. Earlier in the Gospel of Luke, in chapter 13, “Jerusalem, Jerusalem, you who kill the prophets and stone those sent to you, how often I have longed to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, and you were not willing. 35Look, your house is left to you desolate. I tell you; you will not see me again until you say, ‘Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord.’” Missing the point grieves God when he wants to move supernaturally in our lives, and we make it about something else. When he wants to give us gifts, but he's going to bring too much change, it's going to be something that we're not comfortable with, or that we don't understand fully, and so we pull back. When He calls us beyond what we can do or figure out for ourselves and do it under our own power, it grieves God. We see that with Jesus in this scene where he recognizes that they're going to miss it and it grieves his heart. And in Paul's letter to the Thessalonians, he says, "Do not quench the Spirit. 20Do not treat prophecies with contempt 21but test them all; hold on to what is good, 22reject every kind of evil." So when we miss the point, it grieves God. When we quench the spirit of God in our lives, it grieves God because he wants so badly for us to receive the life that he has for us. Will we receive it?

Jeff Taylor: [00:33:42] Then we see the entrance into Jerusalem and the event that we now call Palm Sunday, and it looks like the people get it. It looks like it's like, hey, they're recognizing Jesus, they're shouting Hosanna, they're saying save us now, they're recognizing Jesus as someone who can save them. And it looks like they've got it, okay, good, we're good to go. But it's only going to take four days to see that they missed the point, and they go, oh, he's not going to do it the way that we want him to, he's not going to save us from the things that we think we need to be saved from, oh, well, then crucify him. That is a stark contrast, in four days we go from save us, to kill him, because they missed the point. Once Jesus had entered the city, he had been there for three days. So now it's Wednesday, and right now we're entering Holy Week, right? And so now this is stuff that we're starting to recognize and commemorate now and walk through. And I would encourage you, like look into this at the things that through this week that Jesus did, and the things that he made available to us, and the truth that he spoke and the invitation that we have.

Jeff Taylor: [00:35:16] So we get to Wednesday, and Jesus is invited into the home of a guy named Simon. Now, this is a pretty cool relationship because Jesus has healed Simon of leprosy, so Simon says, come on over anytime. So Jesus goes to Simon's house, and as they're reclining, this woman walks in, Mary of Bethany. She walks in and she's carrying this very specific jar, as she walks in, everyone is very aware of what's in this jar of some sort, like, this is one of those nice perfume jars, this is one of those fancy things, like one of those things where, like, on sight you can tell, oh, that's good stuff. And she walks in, and she walks over to Jesus, and this jar has a small spout on it so that you can dispense a very measured, a very controlled amount of this very expensive perfume. She walks over to Jesus, and he turns around and maybe against a wall or against a shelf, she breaks the spout off this jar. There is now a hole in this jar, there is now an opening in this jar, and there will be no measured amounts or delicate application available for this perfume anymore. And she walks over to Jesus, and based on what we see her do and what the meaning was behind it, I imagine that this was not rushed, this was not careless, this was not haphazard, but she walks over to Jesus, and she takes some of his hair in her hands, and she takes the perfume and she begins to pour it lovingly, adoringly on his head. She begins to smooth it into his hair, and she begins to make sure that it's distributed over his head, she does this with all the love and adoration that she has in her heart, and the people around her gasp. The people around her, I mean it says that they are disturbed, they're like, oh, what? She just continues. And they begin saying to each other and to her, what is she doing? Oh, my gosh, how is she doing that? Does she realize? Of course, she realizes what that is, you know why would she do that? Why? And they begin talking to her, they're like, Mary, what is your problem? Oh, my gosh, do you realize what you just did? And to make sure that she gets the point, to make sure that she feels guilty and ashamed, they start listing off the people who could have benefited more than Jesus with this. They're like, oh, the poor, the needy, people are going to go without because of what you just did. How do you feel about that? And I wonder what Mary felt about that. I wonder if there began to be a sense of insecurity, a sense of like, what have I just done? Maybe this was stupid. Maybe I shouldn't have done this, but I don't think so.

Jeff Taylor: [00:39:15] Jesus steps in anyway, and Jesus goes, whoa, whoa, whoa. Oh!
What? And here's what he says," Why are you bothering her? She has done a beautiful thing to me." And he makes this connection, which is awesome, he makes this connection to what's about to happen to him, his death, and his burial. That, hey, she has prepared me for burial. And so he's trying to give them insight into what's about to happen and what's going on, and so this is a beautiful thing, this was kind, this was thoughtful. But what we see is that what Mary did was done out of adoration. She's looking at this and going, look, nothing should be withheld from worshiping Jesus, nothing should be too good. Oh, well, I can't use this resource, I can't give this time, I can't go over here, I can't do it this way. No, she's going, look, see this? Clink, glug, glug, glug, glug, take that. She is demonstrating a heart of adoration that the world is calling wasted. The world is looking at what she's done and gone, what a shame. What a waste. But she does this as a tangible way of expressing her devotion.

Jeff Taylor: [00:40:54] That adoration for Jesus, marked by putting action to our intention, puts honor in the glory where it should be, on Jesus. See, it wasn't enough for Mary to go, yeah, I love Jesus, and in her heart to know that she loves Jesus. Where it's like, oh yeah, no, I love Jesus. She's like, I cannot help the way that people were worshiping with Jesus and the religious people were like, tell them to stop. They're like, we can't help it, we just want to worship. Mary is going, look, nothing should be withheld, and I don't want this just to be a belief in my life, I don't want this just to be something that I think is true, something that in my heart well, you know, I'm sure Jesus knows I love him. She's like, I want to demonstrate this, and I want this demonstration to be an adoration expressing my heart. But this was unreasonable worship.

Jeff Taylor: [00:41:58] But can I just, I'm challenged with this, and so I'm going to challenge you with it, too, that following Jesus, is rarely reasonable, following Jesus is rarely just calculated. And it's like, oh, it makes sense, and I'm willing to give what I think I can give and do what I think I should do, and following Jesus is rarely reasonable. And if we make ourselves available, he will call us to worship, he will call us and position us, and give us opportunities to worship Him in ways that the world is going to go, what a waste. What a waste of talent. What a waste of resources. What a waste of time. But with a heart of adoration, we stand up and we go, nope, because following Jesus is rarely reasonable. So how have you kept your love for Jesus reasonable and acceptable? What are the ways at school that it's like, all right, you just go with the flow, but man, what happens in church stays at church? Or what happens in your room when you read your Bible, or when you pray, it's always very you know, because I don't want people to look around at me and be like, that's unreasonable, that's silly. Why would you do that? At work, we're like, here at church, you got no problem praising God, and singing. I mean, what other part in your life other than maybe Take Me Out To The Ball Game, do you sing publicly? And we're willing to do it here. Man, Tuesday in the office, sitting there working or hammering something and, you know, you have no problem being like, yeah, take me down to the Paradise City where the grass is green. But here I am to worship, come on, that's unreasonable. How have you kept your love for Jesus reasonable and accepted? And what have you overvalued in your life that you're unwilling to sacrifice? Like we've been saying, time, attention, resources, money, what have we overvalued?

Jeff Taylor: [00:44:42] We miss Jesus when we lean on our own understanding. We miss Jesus when we decide not to wait for him, not to go to him, and not to make ourselves available to him, but have it in our own minds and in our own hearts, our ideas of, well, this is what it looks like for Jesus to be alive and active in my life. And if it doesn't look like that, crucify him. And I'm sorry, I should have said that differently because I don't think it's flippant like that, it's not like, crucify him, who cares? There is a determination that we make, where we go, you know what, I'm going to choose this over Jesus. I am going to be unwilling to change this to allow Jesus to work in some unknown, uncomfortable, and possibly some unreasonable way. We miss the point whenever the point is anything other than Jesus. We miss the point anytime the point is anything other than Jesus. That includes the religious stuff, whenever we make anything more important or more front and center or more reasonable than Jesus, we miss it. And as soon as we start to justify and we start to go, well, I mean, how big a deal is it that I prioritize other things over Jesus? They killed Jesus, that's how important, that's how important the things that we value become if we let it and we miss Jesus.

Jeff Taylor: [00:46:49] So would you bow your heads with me? What do you need to pray? What do you need to confess? What do you need to acknowledge in your life, where today is the day that God is calling you just to recognize it and to confess that I've been missing you? And there's going to be people up here that are going to pray that are here for you, and they are by no means up here because they've never missed Jesus, but to come alongside you.

Jeff Taylor: [00:47:32] Lord God, bring to our awareness the places where we've missed you. God, we confess that sometimes it's intentional, we know what the better thing is, and we choose the other thing because it's the popular thing or it's going to not get a reaction. But God, we also recognize that we have blind spots, and we have things that we prioritize that we didn't even realize we had made bigger than you in our lives, we have made more important than you, and we've missed the point. So, Lord God, I lift up each person in this room, God, we need you, and I pray that you would do this work in each one of us, that you would make yourself known to us, and that you would break through the walls that we have put up and the habits that we have put up, and you would come alongside us, God, and you would allow us to anoint your head. God that we would live lives of adoration for you, and that you would be the one that we praise, and we would invite you to come and have your way. In Jesus' name. Amen.

Jeff Taylor: [00:48:54] I want to invite you to come on up, let us pray with you. And God bless you, have a great rest of your week. See you on Friday.

Recorded in Upland, California.
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Life Bible Fellowship Church
2426 N Euclid Ave
Upland, California 91786
(909) 981-4848