Sent – week 2 :: Local – August 13, 2017

Fruit Matters to Jesus and the world

Matthew 7:16-18 – You will recognize them by their fruits. Are grapes gathered from thorn bushes, or figs from thistles? So, every healthy tree bears good fruit, but the diseased tree bears bad fruit.  A healthy tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a diseased tree bear good fruit.

Matthew 25:31-34 – “”When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, then he will sit on his glorious throne. Before him will be gathered all the nations, and he will separate people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. And he will place the sheep on his right, but the goats on the left. Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world.”

Begin with the End in mind. For the Christian – Eternity is that End.

We don’t live like we believe that there are dozens of people we know who will spend eternity apart from Christ.

Matthew 25:35-40 – For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, I was naked and you clothed me, I was sick and you visited me, I was in prison and you came to me.’ Then the righteous will answer him, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you drink? And when did we see you a stranger and welcome you, or naked and clothe you? And when did we see you sick or in prison and visit you?’ And the King will answer them, ‘Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me.'”

Our faith evidenced by compassion for the “least of these.”

Ecclesiastes 3:11 – He has made everything beautiful in its time. Also, he has put eternity into man’s heart…

all of humanity desires good fruit, the gifts of God. Believers are the sheep who know where to look – THE GOOD SHEPHERD.

We are, by nature, self-centered people. Sin has bent us that way. Grace restores, but we all have a tendency to land in one of two camps:

1. Too busy to see the needs around us

2. We choose to look the other way.

May God awaken us from the fog of self-centeredness.

Luke 5:12-13 –  While he was in one of the cities, there came a man full of leprosy. And when he saw Jesus, he fell on his face and begged him, “Lord, if you will, you can make me clean.” And Jesus stretched out his hand and touched him, saying, “I will; be clean.” And immediately the leprosy left him.

Jesus reaches in and touches the leper, the unclean, the outcast. Just as he does for all who believe.

Pray: God gives us eyes to see the needs around us. Free us from our self-centered eyes, our old man, and give us the grace to respond as Jesus does.

And may we believe that when we love the “least of these,” that we have loved Jesus Christ himself.