Sunday, May 16, 2010
God's Math preached @ Tinney Chapel
Click on any image above to view it in larger format, or click on the arrow below to view the video of sermon for kids by Georgia Goggans.
God's Math: 1 plus 1 plus 1 = 1
It's in the Bible, emphasized Pastor Sue Gross, it's Scriptural! Look it up.
John 17:20-26, Revised Standard Version:
Neither for these only do I pray, but for them also that believe on me through their word; that they may all be one; even as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be in us: that the world may believe that thou didst send me.
And the glory which thou hast given me I have given unto them; that they may be one, even as we are one; I in them, and thou in me, that they may be perfected into one; that the world may know that thou didst send me, and lovedst them, even as thou lovedst me. Father, that which thou hast given me, I will that, where I am, they also may be with me; that they may behold my glory, which thou hast given me: for thou lovedst me before the foundation of the world. O righteous Father, the world knew thee not, but I knew thee; and these knew that thou didst send me; and I made known unto them thy name, and will make it known; that the love wherewith thou lovedst me may be in them, and I in them. --RSV
That entire chapter of John's Gospel is a prayer by Jesus, and any discussions or sermons based on it, sometimes tend to get deeply mystical, but Pastor Sue chose to compare her interpretation to our understandings of math, the New math, the Old math and God's math.
Jesus is actually empowering His Disciples, explained the Pastor, who wanted us to get His message about Jesus being One with the Father--and all of us becoming One with Jesus the Christ, being indwelt by the Holy Spirit. See how quickly all this starts to sound very mystical.
Think of the Cross itself, suggested the Pastor, with the parallel (up and down) beam representing God reaching down to us through Christ. Think also of the horizontal crossbeam, she added, representing His outstretched arms, embracing you, me, our neighbors and the whole world.
We are all One, re-emphasized Pastor Sue, in the math of God! And this is accomplished by the unmentioned third Divine being of the Holy Trinity: The Holy Spirit, Who enlightens us with the Word, fills us with Power and sends us out to heal others in His Name. We are truly One through the Holy Spirit.
By living in a community of faith, we are stronger than living apart. We make up the Body of Christ and share our Spiritual Gifts with one another. Certainly, the New Testament mentions Spiritual Gifts several times and the need to share them in order to build up the Church.
The Pastor mentioned the fabulous participants in the Mt. Vernon Youth Musical, Let's Rock, performed at Tinney Chapel's Family Life Center last Wednesday night (see separate post on this Weblog). In that production, the Youth emphasized the Body of Christ and using our talents for God's glory.
People look to Christians to know who Jesus is, added Pastor Sue. We are standing with arms outstretched in love, forgiveness and grace, in contrast to a secular world that emphasizes individuality and reaching the top at all costs.
We are not to assume from this Scripture that our goal is a global church, concluded Pastor Sue. Rather, we are simply to be united in the Spirit to be about the Father's business of forgiveness, discernment of right and wrong and the Peace that passes all understanding.