MatthewCHAPTER 28Verse 1-10April 22, 2012 Easter SundayFIRST BAPTIST CHURCH JACKSON, MISSISSIPPIAnnouncements!"Praying For Our Jerusalem" Acts 1:8Praying For Our Jerusalem is a prayer effort by which we attempt to go into everyhome of our church family for the sole purpose of praying with the people in thathome. No gimmicks, no signing up for something, just to pray. Prayer Warriors will visitup to four homes and pray with our church family from April 1-30.BREATH OF LIFEWhat: A Sunday School Class for those with a chronic cough.When: Sundays @ 8 a.m.Where: At FBCJ in the Chapel ParlorNext Generation Leader LuncheonWhat: A Luncheon For Young Professionals ages 20-39 "Are You A Contributor or Consumer"When: Thursday, April 26, 2012 @ 11:45 a.m.Where: Christian Life Center AuditoriumWho: Chris Maddux, SpeakerPrice: $10.00 Per PersonReservations: Call (601) 949-1941 or online at www.FBCJ.org
In life - occasionally we soar like an eagle, sometimes we run and don’t get tired,but most of life is lived at a walk.So we must learn to walk with the Lord (as Enoch did) and also to wait on the Lord.In doing so, we will gain new strength!Wait in Isaiah 40:31 comes from the Hebrew word – qavah – which has both a literalmeaning and a figurative meaning.The literal meaning of the word qavah (wait) is: “to bind together like a cord”Think of making a rope (cord) by twisting or weaving (binding) thin strands together toform the rope.
The more strands that are twisted or woven together in a rope, the greater is itsstrength.
Ecclesiastes 4:9-12 NIV9 “Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their work:10 If one falls down, his friend can help him up. But pity the man who falls and has noone to help him up!11 Also, if two lie down together, they will keep warm. But how can one keep warmalone?12 Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of threestrands is not quickly broken.” Ecclesiastes 4:9-12 NIVA piece of string cannot lift very much weight because it does not have very manystrands in it.
A rope however can lift hundreds of pounds because it is made up of many strands.When a rope lifts or pulls a load, it stretches a little while it is working. As it stretches,the individual strands are pulled closer together.
Now imagine that One of those strands in the rope is Unbreakable!That One would be none other than Jesus Christ!
While this “stress” is on the rope, the individual strands are pulled closer together,closer to the Unbreakable One - to lift or to pull the load.John 16:33“In the world you have tribulation (pressure), but take courage; I have overcome theworld.” John 16:33
So our strength comes through being united with Christ.Philippians 4:1313 “I can do all things through Christ, Who strengthens me.”2 Thessalonians 3:33 “The Lord is faithful, and He will strengthen and protect you from the evil one.”The “rope” of our lives gains us new strength by being twisted or woven or boundtogether with the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.We are to entwine our lives around His life while we are waiting!A ropes strength remains constant even when it is not being used. When a rope is not being used, what is it doing? 1. The rope is “waiting.” 2. It “waits” for its Owner to put it to use.So how exactly do we “wait” upon the Lord? The best analogy again is this one of a rope made up of many strands. The literal definition of “qavah” implies strength through numbers.A rope is made up of many strands and so is our relationship with God. The more “strands” that we weave into our relationship with God, the stronger that relationship will be.What strands make up our relationship with God?
• Pray without ceasing.1 Thessalonians 5:17 We are practicing the presence of God when we pray so wemust show up for practice.• Read and Study the Bible daily - 2 Timothy 2:15• Memorize the Word - Psalm 119:11• Meditate on His Word day and night - Psalm 1:1-2
• Keep our focus on Jesus - Hebrews 12:2bHebrews 12:2b2b “fixing our eyes on Jesus, the Author and Perfecter of our faith,” Hebrews 12:2b• Assemble with other Christians - Hebrews 10:24-25Hebrews 10:24-2524 “and let us consider how to stimulate one another to love and good deeds,25 not forsaking our own assembling together, as is the habit of some, butencouraging one another; and all the more as you see the day drawing near.” Hebrews 10:24-25• Share the Gospel - Matthew 28:19-20, Luke 19• What are some other “strands” that we can weave into strengthening ourrelationship with God?That is how we renew and gain new strength.That is how we rise up with wings like an eagles.That is how we run through life and not get weary.That is how we walk through problems and adversity without fainting.By weaving all the strands together, we “wait” upon the Lord. So while we arewaiting, we are to entwine our lives around His life!So the literal meaning of the word qavah (wait) is: “to bind together like a cord”The figurative definition of the word “qavah” is: “to hope, to expect.” The figurativemeaning of “qavah” conveys anticipation.
It is the same type of waiting that children do on Christmas morning while waiting forMom and Dad to get out of bed so they can open presents.It is also the same type of waiting that a child does when told that their Granddaddybuilt them a playhouse and is coming to pick them up and take them to play in it forthe first time!So the child stares out of the window expectantly anticipating the arrival of the Onewho loves them.Luke 2:25-3825 “And there was a man in Jerusalem whose name was Simeon; and this man wasrighteous and devout, looking for the consolation of Israel; and the Holy Spirit wasupon him.26 And it had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not see deathbefore he had seen the Lord’s Christ.27 And he came in the Spirit into the temple; and when the parents brought in theChild Jesus, to carry out for Him the custom of the Law,28 then he took Him into his arms, and blessed God, and said,29 “Now Lord, You are releasing Your bond-servant to depart in peace, According toYour word;
30 For my eyes have seen Your salvation,31 Which You have prepared in the presence of all peoples,32 A LIGHT OF REVELATION TO THE GENTILES, And the glory of Your people Israel.”33 And His father and mother were amazed at the things which were being saidabout Him.34 And Simeon blessed them and said to Mary His mother, “Behold, this Child isappointed for the fall and rise of many in Israel, and for a sign to be opposed—35 and a sword will pierce even your own soul—to the end that thoughts from manyhearts may be revealed.”36 And there was a prophetess, Anna the daughter of Phanuel, of the tribe of Asher.She was advanced in years and had lived with her husband seven years after hermarriage, 37 and then as a widow to the age of eighty-four. She never left the temple, servingnight and day with fastings and prayers.38 At that very moment she came up and began giving thanks to God, andcontinued to speak of Him to all those who were looking for the redemption ofJerusalem. Luke 2: 25-38Until Christ returns, believers "groan within themselves, waiting eagerly for theiradoption as sons, the redemption of the body" (Romans 8:23).