Vision Sunday 2016
On Vision Sunday Geoff took the time to share a few things that God was leading us in this year. Beginning a vision process with our Pastoral Leaders & Pastors, and investing in families this year with a new playground and additional ministry staff to in our families and generations areas.
Guilty of Treason
He then shared from Acts 17 about our focus for the year in our services and preaching.
In Acts 17 we have Jewish people, Jews & Greeks of the Jewish faith, dragging some Jewish and Greek Christians in front of a pagan Roman city council. That whole area was under the rule of the Roman Empire. It was a cultural melting pot, but everyone was under the law of the Roman Empire and under the rule of Caesar. And Caesar wasn’t any ordinary boss, politician, prime minister or even any ordinary dictator. He was King, he was Emperor, and he was declared to be divi filius, God’s son.
And in this complicated situation, where a sudden turn by the mob could see Jason and the other Christians murdered, this is what the troublemakers said in verse 6 & 7.
“Paul and Silas have caused trouble all over the world,” they shouted, “and now they are here disturbing our city, too. And Jason has welcomed them into his home. They are all guilty of treason against Caesar, for they profess allegiance to another king, named Jesus.”
What the Jews in Thessalonica were doing in Acts 17 was trying to stir up trouble against the Christians. They were trying to put the Christians against the Romans. It wasn’t the Christians who were standing up defying a particular law or their rights or something like that. The Jews were trying to cause trouble and get the Christians kicked out of town…or even killed.
But the Jews were on to something. Following Jesus is not just something you can add on to your life. Jesus requires a much bigger place in your life. A much higher place. A much more influential place. As King above any other kings, as God above any other gods, as The Boss above any other bosses, as Caesar above any other Caesars. The Jews were trying to cause division but they nailed the essence of Christianity – Jesus is God and Caesar is not.
1 John 5:21 NLT
Dear children, keep away from anything that might take God’s place in your hearts.
I wonder if it could be said of me? That I am guilty of treason, or guilty of dissent or guilty of being uncommitted to my hobbies, or my friends or my relationships because I have my full allegiance to another king, name Jesus? Could it be said of me that I’m not fully committed to Australia because my commitment is to another nation – the Kingdom of God?
In 2016 we want to be guilty of treason against any other king. We want to be guilty of unfaithfulness to any other god. We want to be guilty of claiming that we only have one lord, and his name is Jesus. May Acts 17:7 be true of us:
The Lakes Church are all guilty of treason, for they profess allegiance to another king, named Jesus.”