Pastor Jeff Knott continues the sermon series on “Rejoicing the City” with “The Gospel of Healing”:
God’s intention is not so much to get us into heaven, but rather to get heaven into us so that we live differently in the present age.
So how will creation and how will Kingdom be restored? How do we reclaim what was lost? How will healing take place in our world? The Bible tells us it is through the gospel.
The gospel is about Jesus – about His death on the cross for our sins, His resurrection, and His promise to return. It’s about Jesus, but it’s also of Jesus. It’s the gospel He preached about the Kingdom. The good news that the Kingdom had come and that shalom was possible on the earth. It’s through the gospel that creation and Kingdom are brought together.
God’s intention in creation is His plan that all creation live under the Lordship and the favour of Christ and He does that through the gospel of and about Jesus.
Before the first tick of the clock of time and space, God had you in mind. He had your salvation worked out. He had peace and He had joy and He had shalom for you. That’s good news! Thanks be to God for His indescribable gift!
There are four alienations that we experience:
- The first alienation is between God and humanity.
- The second alienation is from one another.
- The third alienation if from ourselves.
- The fourth alienation is from the land.
Estrangement with God leads to deep divisions with each other.
Howard Schneider says, “Because of sin people are not at home within themselves.”
Self-alienation is what the Bible calls double-minded.
Much of the self-help industry is aimed at offering solutions to this internal dividedness.
We’re alienated from creation itself. Why is the ground cursed? Because of you, because of sin.
Sin affects all of our relationships, even our relationship with the created order.
The Bible is clear that we are estranged from the world and the world is suffering because of our estrangements with it. It’s our original mandate, really, to care for creation. Sin warped our calling and because of sin humanity is banished from the garden.
The good news is that Jesus came to heal them all. Through Christ, God restored the peace between ourselves and Him. Jesus paid the price for our sin to reconcile us so that we could be put back together again.
He also healed the alienation between ourselves and others because Jesus gave us a way of living, a way of love, of forgiving our enemy and going the extra mile and caring for people we’d rather shoot or stay away from.
Through Jesus, He restored the alienation within ourselves. Jesus is big enough so that we can forgive our own selves and knit us back together so that we see ourselves as beloved children of God.
Yes, we’ve made some mistakes and some terrible mistakes, but God can move us past those and build us up so that we don’t do them again so we add to this world and we can be whole people.
One day He will restore this world.
We’re not going up to Heaven, Heaven is coming down to earth. It’s the marriage of Heaven and earth – that’s how the end of Revelation ends.
If we are going to work for the common good of our community, then we will endeavour to be part of healing of all these areas.
All the facets of our lives are important to God. We’re meant to be whole people who live whole lives and witness to the whole of God’s goodness and His grace. When we do that, we’re healed in all four areas.
Any activity or attitude that’s aimed at weaving together the fragmented aspects of our lives and the lives of others is God’s work.
When He restores us, we’re in a better place to restore the world.