25 “Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? 26 Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? 27 And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life? 28 And why are you anxious about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin, 29 yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. 30 But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is alive and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? 31 Therefore do not be anxious, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ 32 For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all. 33 But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. — Matthew 6:25-33 (ESV)
Note: This is a machine transcription, and it has not been reviewed for accuracy.first annual Chapter 11 is our texture this morning, and it's a good one. Good to see you all. Let's pray together one last time. You can find your way to first Samuel Levin and join us. But brief prayer. God be praised. We come to your word because we need you to understand it. Not that we can't understand it on the surface, what's taking place. But we need you to reveal to us what it's true. Intention is for us today, here at Grace. So would you give us your spirit to hear, years to hear, eyes to see and what I pray that you would move among us this morning in Jesus name, we pray Amen. Every Monday morning, you whether you go to school or whether you work whether you go to the grocery store, whether you just pick up the phone and call Ah, friend, somewhere in the conversation. Typically, this question gets asked, What did you do this weekend? It's where we talk. We want to know what we did, and there's a slew of answers to this. None of them are right. None of them are wrong. Common answers are nothing just chilled right. Watch the movie with some friends. Watch football. Watch the Bears beat the Vikings this afternoon. I read a good book. There's no Vikings fans here, so that's can't be anybody here. So, um, went out to the lake on my boat. Maybe, you know, if it's like any time of year in Arizona, Um, Went to a wedding, Played Mario car on my phone till 2 a.m. What did you do this weekend? Here's one that you almost never hear. What did you do this weekend? Oh, me. I went out to battle. I'm sorry. What? Yeah, I went out to battle it, took up arms and I got into a fight. It's like really okay, Braveheart, you know, kind of a violent response. Not the most popular pastime. But if you think about it, that's what happens every time we come to gather together as the church. Every Sunday when we gather together as God's people, we're going into battle. That's what happens every time we're together. Think about it. Just think about it with me for a second. I know it's in Toki. What exactly is a battle? Well, I looked it up in Webster's dictionary, and it defines it like this battle is an extended contest, struggle or controversy. A battle is a combat between two persons or two parties. A battle is to engage in a fight or struggle. That's what happens every Sunday here, a grace church. Now hopefully, it's not happening in the ladies bathroom or in the Children's Ministry cheque in line, right? Hopefully it's not happening among yourselves. Hopefully, we're not going to battle one against another. But when we come together in the name of Christ, were engaging in a fight in a struggle, were engaging in a fight to believe what God says is true were engaging in a in a fight to replace all of the lives that we've been told throughout the rest of the week, including the lies that we've told ourselves were in a battle to replace those lies with what is true about God. We're in a struggle with our sin. We're in a struggle with unbelief, where to struggle against an enemy that wants to see us defeated. It is a battle, a regular battle, and it is not an easy task. It takes effort. Will you be conquered or will you conquer is the question that's getting asked and answered every week. Will you conquer or will you be conquers? It's no wonder that the New Testament speaks to this metaphor. Speaks with this metaphor to describe the Christian life. So just three from the New Testament put on the whole armor of God's right. That's in Ephesians. Chapter six, verse 11. You are suiting up with the armor and you've got a sword and you've got a belt. You've got a chest plate. Second, Corinthians 10 3 says. We're not waging war according to the flesh, right? So you're in a war and you're not doing it according to the flash, the very next verse says. But the weapons off our warfare, right? So we're in a battle. That's what the Christian life is, And the battle that we see today in First Samuel is a physical one. But its main issue is the same as the battles that we fight today. Will they conquer, or will they be conquered? Will you conquer, or will you be conquered? It's the same three scenes this morning, first versus one through four Chapter 11. The kingdom is threatened to read along with me. Then they hash. The ammonites went up in besieged Bash, Gilead's and all the men of job, Ash said to Nash, Make a treaty with us and we will serve you. But they hash the ammonites said to them On this condition, I will make a treaty with you that eye gouge out all your right eyes and thus bring disgrace on all Israel. The elders of J. Boesch said to him, Give us seven days respond respite that we might send messengers through all the territory of Israel. Then, if there is no one to save us, we will give ourselves up to you. When the messengers came to give you a of Saul, they reported the matter in the ears of the people and all the people wept aloud. So if you've been tracking with us the first Samuel, you'll know that up until now all of the battle in all the war that's been fought has been fought with the Philistine Sze when they are approaching from the West and now here we see the ammonites on the scene. And it's the first time that the ammonites have appeared in First Samuel, but they are the long standing enemies of Israel. They reach all the way back to the days of law in the Book of Genesis, and they show up in the Book of Deuteronomy as enemies in the land. And then they show up repeatedly in the Book of Judges, which is the backdrop for First Samuel. And we're going to see the ammonites again throughout First Annual in a few chapters. But here we get introduced to their leader, Nash, and the Ash is a bad dude. Nash comes in and besieges the city, and he wants to subject gate the Nation of Israel under his kingship, and he's gonna wipe them all out. And the men of the city are panicking and they're afraid, and they come up with a proposal. If you will let us live. If you will make a treaty with us, then we will serve you. Now, Does anybody remember what just happened in the book of First Samuel? Last week's passage? What happened just prior to this? They inaugurated Saul as their king, right? They not grated Saul as the first king of Israel and remember why they wanted salt to be their king because they wanted someone just like all the other nations who would do what fight their battles for them, right? They inaugurated a king toe fight their battles for them. But Saul's not around anywhere. And desperate times seem to call for desperate measures how quickly they abandon their loyalty to Yeah way. If you won't kill us, we will serve you. You will be our king. And Nash proves quickly to be just a skilled in negotiating as he is in war, he makes them an offer that one could hardly refuse. On this condition, I will make a treaty that eye gouge out all your right eyes and thus bring disgrace on all Israel. Now, I actually chuckled as I read this out loud and some of you chuckled as you read this out loud. And then I caught myself. I was like, Why am I chuckling? Because this is not This is not made up. This is literally the threat that's in front of them. So how precious is your right eye to you in seven days? If someone doesn't come there, right eyes are going to gouge. They're not gonna able to fight. And it will stand as a marker of their total disgrace that God, Yahweh, God was not powerful enough to protect them. So he says, Okay, I got a deal for you. You want to play this game? Okay, here's my terms. I get to gouge out your right eyes. If if you make this treaty, I'm sure they're thinking what is behind door number two? You know, could we could we choose option two So they missed. Understand what leverage is? See, they have no leverage, right? They're about to get wiped out. And this is actually, in some respects, an unusual and gracious offer because he should just wipe them out. They make a request. Verse three. The elders of Jagdish said to him, Give us seven days that we may send messengers throughout all the territory of Israel. They're going to send these messengers out to find if anyone can save them. Who who will come to the rescue? Perhaps the ashes amused with this plan. He's like a fan knows type character here. He's toying with them and the scrambling around the countryside trying to find, uh what a savior. Anyone who will save us. They want a savior. And so this was the backdrop for the narrative of Chapter 11. Will anyone be the savior? Will we be conquered? Or will we conquer? Is there anyone? And the news begins to spread, and the news comes to give mea and all the people weep. As the news hits the city, all the people begin to cry. Now why do you think they're crying? Because they don't have any answer to the problem. There's no one in all of Israel who could tackle this problem. So you need to see in the details the implicit and explicit details of the story that nothing in this story inspires confidence in the newly appointed king. Nash has no fear of Saul, the people of J Best Gilead. When they hear the news, they have no confidence in Sol. Even the people of his hometown hear the news, and they begin to weep because there's no one who can save them. If they're WAAS, they would have immediately called Saul. Right? Better call Saul. No one's going solved. No one thinks he can do anything. They're turning to anyone else who might help. Man, that feels an awful lot like what the Christian life feels like right. We know one who saves. We know one who delivers. We know one who's powerful. Can anyone else save me? Can anything else deliver me turning to anyone else who might help? 1st 5 Now beholds Saul was coming from the fields behind the oxen. Now why is the king back out in the field working with the auction? Because he's really the son of Kish, right? The farmer and even Saul is not acting like someone who you'd call in the day of trouble. And Saul hears this news and says, What is wrong with the people that they're weeping? And so they tell him the news of the men of J. Besh and Saul hears this news just like every other citizen in the land. And they're weeping and they're crying and their picture in life without the right eye. But notice falls reaction to this present threat. He doesn't cry. He doesn't weep. He doesn't power, doesn't go to the corner and suck his thumb and cry for his mommy. No, here's the response. In Over six and the spirit of God rush upon saw when he heard these words and his anger was greatly kindled. The response is he gets angry, righteous anger as the spirit of God rushes upon him again, just like it said in Chapter 10 just like it did in the book of judges. For Samson, it rushes upon him just like it did when he was supposed to take out the Philistine Sze in Chapter 10. But he didn't, and this time it feels him with God's holy indignation against this barbarian that would threaten God's people. And so, finally, in the book of First Samuel, we see Saul taking some keenly action for seven. Look at what he does. He took a yoke of oxen and cut them in pieces and sent them throughout the territory of Israel by the hand of the messengers, saying, Whoever does not come out after solid Samuel. So shall it be done to his oxen? Now we might send a group text right with like oxen pieces as an emoji. I don't think that would have the same effect, though, right as they get these pieces off of animal bits delivered to them. And he's saying, If you don't come and respond, this is what's gonna happen to your oxen. Okay, So now here's the choice. Right. Either my right out, right. Eyes gouge out or my oxen dies, Dread falls upon them. Then the dread of the Lord fell upon the people for seven and they came out as one man dead oxen or got eyes. Okay, We're gonna take the dead. We're gonna take. We're gonna take the dead ox. And if we don't come out, let's come out. So he calls a summit. Everyone comes and says they came out as one man and look at the numbers when he calls them Verse eight. When he mustered them at Basic, the people of Israel were 300 thousands. And the men of Judah 30,000, 300,000 and 30,000 with just a little bit of backbone. This is a formidable army. Saul has a plan. He has the spirit of the Lord. He has a plan for how to deliver them. Verse nine. And they said to the messengers who had come The one who brought the news. They said thus. Shall you stay to the men of Gabashvili it tomorrow? By the time the sun is hot, you shall have salvation. Now, that would be confusing in Arizona because we'd be like when 2 a.m. But but here it's probably midday, and they would understand the message loud and clear. Salvation was at the door. The messengers raced ahead and they delivered the good news. Ah, savior have been found, and that's exactly what they do. The messenger's come and they tell the men of Jeb Bush, and when they do 1st 9 they were glad if you're at the family meeting. He said that the gospel in Greek means something of a good news that gladdens the heart, brings tidings to your soul, makes you want to dance and shout and cheer. And that's exactly what they're experiencing. As the good news comes that there is salvation, fear and dread is replaced by gladness, and in their joy, the people of J. Boesch concoct a plan Verse 10. Therefore, the men of Jay Bush said, On the basis of this good news, tomorrow we will give ourselves up to you. So this is their response now to Nash. Tomorrow we will give ourselves up to you, and you may do to us whatever seems good to you. So Nash is smirking and smiling he's toyed with them. He's biding his time. He's trying to draw out every last ounce of fear that would be coursing through their system as the deadline draws near. And tomorrow will be the day. I bet you that Nash went to bed as a happy tyrant, smiling, can't wait for tomorrow. And what he did not realize was that saw and his men were traveling under the cover of night 24 miles to get to J. Bash Gilead's and to get to the camp of the AMA rights. And we pick up the story here now in Verse 11. And the next day Sol put the people in three companies, and they came into the midst of the camp in the morning. That's the morning watch. So they've been traveling overnight, and they come into the camp, and they struck down the ammonites until the heat of the day. And those who survived were scattered so that no two of them were left together. So they, as one man came together, fight this battle. Everyone scatters. Not one is together on the army of the other side's. What's the point here? The point is that the good news of salvation have actually become a reality. There's no need to start the J Bash Gilead eyepatch company because everyone has been saved. They've been rescued. They've been unified under God's king, they scatter the army. The result is total and complete salvation. And this joyous story is building to a point coming soon. It's built into a main point here. We've seen the kingdom threatened. We've seen the king respond. Now we see the kingdom renewed verse 12. Then the people said to Samuel, Who is it that said, Shall Saul reign over us? Bring the men that we may put them to death. Now just think about it for a moment. They're self righteousness is blinding. No one in this story was looking for assault to reign over them. No one in this story was looking for Sol to really be their king. But now that Saul has delivered on the goods, there is just like nationalistic fervor that begins to take place. It's it's raised to a feverish pitch, and if you remember this like sort of throw away sentence in Chapter 10 that said, and these worthless fellows, they decried saw and who is father reign over us, and now they're at the center stage because this crowd isn't such a bloodlust that they want to kill those guys who were against him and that sound like any political scene we've seen in the last 12 years in our country. And Saul responds, not a man shall be put to death this day. For today, the Lord has worked salvation in Israel. Saw understands that there's a bigger point here to be made than whether or not people should have believed in him from the star. Saul wants the people to know. This is the main point. Here is that there is a king who fights for them. He fights for Israel. His name is ya Wei and Saul wants to give homage and praise where it's do. It's not about the Vice King Saul. It's about the true king God, the one who brings salvation. And the story keeps building diverse. 14. Samuel then says to the people, Come let us go to Gil Gal and their Renew the Kingdom. And so all the people went to Gil Gal And there they made Saul King before the Lord and giggle. There they sacrificed peace offerings before the Lord. And there, Saul and all the men of Israel rejoiced greatly. Now, if you're just slightly confused and how it's possible for him to be made king after he was already anointed King after he's already selected as King Sovereign Lee through lots and now here they're making him king. It's because this is now confirming the establishment of salt as the rightful king of Israel. He's anointed. He's declared by the sovereign choosing of lots. But the people didn't act like he was king. In other words, they didn't treat the true King Saul here in this story, they didn't treat the true king like the King. What do they do? Instead, they got fearful, and they look for salvation from every other source, apart from the one who was called by God to be their king. This story is building, and they realize this saw Samuel calls them to renew the kingdom, renew the kingdom, renew their commitment to the king as his subjects as his servants. And so they did a kill gal. Gil gal. Finally, as we've seen, this story kind of builds. Finally, they submit to the Kings King, who is solved. There is a point to this story, and it's aimed straight at us. The Old Testament is written to instruct us as New Testament New Covenant. Christians toe understand something of God, something of Christ, something of man ourselves, something of redemption, something of the kingdom. There's a point to this story aimed straight at us, and we see it so clearly here as a story builds to this and this crescendo, they're cherishing this victory, and it drives them into a commitment to his kingdom. And that maps onto what we see in the New Testament as we consider our victory in Christ. As we cherish God's victory in Christ, it compels us into a renewed commitment to his kingdom. It's not just that you show up and you go to church and you go home, and then you just go about your week when you come back and just come sit and go. That's not what God's building. God is building a kingdom under a righteous king, and we're his subjects. He is the sovereign he calls us through his victory into this, cherishing this, treasuring off this victory that compels us to renewed commitment into his Kingdom noticed the order of events here. They don't renew their commitments in order for God to take action. How often do we fall into that trap? If I do these good things, then God will treat me this way. That's not the order of operations. God delivers them, gives him salvation from the eye gouging. And then they cherish him and treasure him, and it drives them. It compels them into commitment for the kingdom. This narrative is just dripping with gospel application for us. You showed up today and we together found ourselves going out to battle. And our battle is not against nay hash or the AMA rights. But it's against sin. And in a very real way, this story reveals a similar dilemma. Will you conquer your sin, or will you be conquered by it? Will you conquer the lives of the enemy, or will you be conquered by it Immediately? There's two or three ways that this can go terribly wrong. The first wrong response is to deny the existence of the battle. It's not really really you don't really think you're in a battle. Life is like a staycation to you. It's not like a war zone. And that is exactly what the enemy wants you to think. The enemy wants to lull you into a sense of comfort and acceptability and false peace so that you stop fighting against sin. The enemy wants to. I love you to sleep toe to sedate you with comfort so that you will stop fighting so that life will feel good so that you will not have a need. And I promise you that when this is happening, the enemy is just as real and waiting for an opportunity to kick you. When you're down, the enemy will punch you. When it hurts the most. The enemy will show you no mercy. The enemy will use your sin against you and use other sins against you. We have a great enemy that's that's using sin. This great enemy Satan, who is just like prowling around like a roaring lion. It says in first Peter five, seeking someone to devour the enemy, wants to devour you and destroy your faith. And the best way one of the best ways that he can do that is to make you completely apathetic and ignorant of the battle, like it doesn't have to come full force against you, but can just get you to turn your head away and just watch a lot of TV. Because when you forget that you have a king, then you're ripe for the NATO ashes of the world to come in around you and to undo you, the enemy Israel and the battle Israel. That's one way to mrs to deny the existence of the battle. Another way to miss it is toe. Try to fight the battle in your own strength. Like like man up woman up that I'm gonna battle this thing with my own strength. Or did you notice that saw was out in the field and wasn't doing anything until the spirit of God came upon him? God saves by the power of the spirit in Saul's life and in your life. He saves by the power of the spirit. It is the spirit of fusion says that rises that rose price from the dead. That same spirit lives inside of you. The power of the Holy Spirit is massive and lives inside of you. It's the spirit that drove Jesus into the wilderness. It's a spear which led him toe sustain under temptation. It's the spirit that let Jesus into the miracles and ministry that he has. It's the spirit that took Jesus to the garden of gas Samity, where he sweat drops of blood. It's the spirit that walked him up the hill of Calvary and allowed him to take nails into his hands and feet and suffer the painful agony of being cursed in our place by the wrath of God. The battle is fought not by your own strength. It's fought in the power of the spirits. What happens if you try to fight it in your own strength? What do you quickly find out when you don't want anybody else in? You don't seek help. Here's what happens when you fight in your own strength. You become your own savior, and you just like me are not very good at saving anyone. You will quickly come to the end of your strength. You will look around for someone else to save you. And the good news that blows into the jab ish Gilead spot of your heart is that salvation is here. It's here by one who actually can save one who actually can deliver in the God man, Jesus Christ, our savior, Jesus. Live the perfect life off faith driven obedience in the power of the spirit for you because you couldn't do it yourself. I couldn't do it myself. And we don't have to because God's appointed king has already come, has already fought the battle and has already won. We get to cherish the victory that Jesus has accomplished on our behalf, which drives us and compels us to serve him into his kingdom. Man, what an amazing reality that God has committed his kingly rule over you. God is protecting you from your fiercest enemies. He's graciously leading you in the way of ways of the kingdom and even the battles that we do fight. Listen, even the battles that you do fight as real and as intense as they are, you are simply fighting the after battle skirmishes. The war has been won in Christ. We fight for faith in the God who has already won the battle so we can wage war against the skirmishes with confidence and not fear by the power of the Holy Spirit. That's what we do every time we get together. Every time you read the words every time you fellowship with the saints, every time we gather at its community group, every time we come together and open up God's word, we're going to battle were taken up arms, and he's given us his spirit to constantly renew the kingdom. I want to just draw your attention. Here is we kind of move towards application because Jesus talks about this kind of kingdom in the New Testament, and I want to just read this passes to you. I don't know if it'll have a prophetic impact on you or not, but but this passage spoke to me this week, and I pray it will. Matthew six. Jesus has given the sermon on the Mount. Instructing his disciples, he says. These words therefore I tell you, Do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body. What you will put on is not life more than food and the body more than clothing. Look at the birds of the air. They neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns. And yet your heavenly father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they and Which of you, by being anxious, can add a single hour to his life span. And why are you anxious about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow. They neither toil nor spin. Yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. But if God so clothes the grass of the field which today is alive and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will he not much more clothe you? O you of little faith? Therefore, do not be anxious saying what shall we eat or what shall we drink? Or what shall we wear for the gentiles? Speak after all these things. And here, here, here it is. And your heavenly father knows that you need them all. Your heavenly father knows what you need. The heavily father knows that you need them all. So what should we be seeking? But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness and all these things will be added to you. You worry about these things like everybody else. But the father knows what you need. And you're of more value to these birds in these and these flowers and yet he dresses them and feeds them. How much more? Really not care for you know you, Christian. You set your heart on seeking first the Kingdom of God, God's rule and reign in this earth, God's purposes, God's agenda. You set your heart on God. You set your heart on what God is doing. You set your heart on being a servant off the true and living God. You set your heart on being available to do whatever God calls you to do for the sake of this kingdom, even if it means going to a 10 month training program to be trained to be an overseas missionary, too, on underage People group, even if it means getting up and going to the job that you don't like, even if it means battling again with your two year old in your three year old to get them to eat their peas, seek first, who God has called you to be in his kingdom and his righteousness and all these things will be added on to you. If we could live by these words friends. If we could live by these words, what kind of powerful statement would that be? to our world gospel doctrine. Christ is the king. He's won the victory. We're fighting the after battle skirmishes. We don't have to fear because God knows what we need and got. His knows that we have more value. He will give us everything that we need, even when it thinks even when it looks like the pantry's bear, God knows what we need and God will deliver. And so I think. First Samuel points us to Matthew. Chapter six impresses us to seek first God's kingdom and his righteousness. So I want to just tease that out as we end. What does it mean to seek his kingdom? And I think there's two things just on the high level. First, you need to seek to get into this kingdom because there are some who were in. And there are some who are out and and one of the great travesties of modern church life is that the gospel that's preached the gospel the kingdom is is a godless preach of morality. If you do these things, then you're in. You must be a part of the kingdom. But the truth of the scriptures is is that no one transfers from the domain of darkness into the Kingdom of the Sun. That's Colossians one. Nobody gets transferred from the darkness into the kingdom. Apart from saving faith in Jesus Christ, nobody gets there simply by pulling up their bootstraps and doing some good works. You cannot identify who's in the kingdom and who's out of the kingdom simply by their works. You can party all day long with with food banks across the city with men and women and children who are who are serving and serving the poor and giving out food and and they're doing good work. But that's not the same thing as saying that that they're doing kingdom work. It might be good work that you participate in in the broadest sense, but only those who have come under the rule and reign of Christ as their king are those who are doing kingdom work. And so the call this morning for some of you might be seek first his kingdom by coming to Christ and acknowledging that you've been your own key. You've been the one upon which all of life rests your decisions, your righteousness, your conquering and you've come to see through this passage and through the spirit of God that there is a better king in the one that's more lasting in Christ. So we did this morning when we had our new our new members. We brought in people who were in the kingdom. We recognized them as kingdom citizens in the church seek to get into that cry out to God. Tell him that your your starry for your sins and for your wandering away and to come underneath his rule. I think the 2nd 1 hits the majority of us here who profess Christ, and it's seek to build up the kingdom, seek to build up the kingdom. There is, you know, you think about what is a kingdom. It's such an abstract term. But you know, it's like the rule and reign of a king over his subjects in a particular place. Well, God's kingdom is a little bit different because God's kingdom is multi generational rite. It exists in like 40. So you've got every generation off people who are scattered all across the world who have come under the Lordship of Jesus Christ altogether, contributing to the advancement off the proclamation of Jesus as the good news, and he calls us as his servants and as the citizens toe live in this kingdom, Kingdom living, which might look like and does look like and should look like a battle for personal holiness. A battle to say, I know that I've been saved by grace, not by works but God's transforming me into his very image. That's his. That's his remodeling project in my life, and I want to see that takes them some ground. I want a battle against my lust. I want a battle against laziness. I want to be driven into this kind of kingdom living so that the holiness of God's church would reflect the holiness of God. That might mean kingdom living in community, because this call is not just for individuals. It's a call for the church, and so we're sharing life together. We're doing the one another's together. We've prioritized being together. We're seeking his kingdom. Where has God placed you to bet to battle, to do battle for the sake of his kingdom? And there's so many ways where we've talked about this morning ready. There's so many ways to be involved here. A great church by no means do we believe that you should be limited? Please hear me. By no means are you limited only by what we try to lead forward in at Grace Church and the ways to build the kingdom by no means build the kingdom in your family, build the kingdom in your neighborhood, build the kingdom and what you're passionate about. Build the kingdom in your work. Where has God called you to do battle as a kingdom servant? See if we believe the gospel and we submit to the king and we live out this gospel in a culture as a local church, there's nothing more powerful in all of the earth. There's nothing more dynamic. There's nothing more explosive. Listen, he didn't I didn't I didn't know I was going to say this today and he would be embarrassed, probably if I mentioned it. But I got a phone call from an old member of Grace Church Will have you know Jason Moore, number Jason Moore. And this was this last summer, and I got a call from him and I was on vacation. And Jason Moran, old member of Grace but a member of the body of Christ, lives in Montana calls me because his brothers, that serious news, he was gonna pass away and he says, Could anyone go down and preach the gospel to him and just share the DOS with them? And I'm in California. Jamie was gone and John was gone. It was busy and Greg had something and there was nobody. I was reaching out people there. I don't have any obvious answers. And I put out word to Ah, few of the guys in my community group and just said, Is there anybody I know? This is gonna be awkward. This would be hard. You've never met him. This is probably something you do, But But you just could you go to the hospital and could you preach the gospel to him? Could you share the gospel with him and and one person said, I'll go on. It was Tommy McAfee and Tommy went to the hospital and by God's Grace, was able to get there in a point in time when nobody else was in the room and just sat there with Jason's brother, and it was not hardly responsive and was able to just walk him through. This is what this is what's right at your doorstep. This is about heaven and hell. This was about Christ. This is about salvation. This is about the gospel. You cannot legislate that through a church you cannot program that that is the spirit taking someone who is in the kingdom who's sharing the gospel. Jason's brother passed away shortly after that moment. We don't know if he responded to it, but this is kingdom work, and I know other stories in this body, as people have without fanfare without publication, have taken their own money toe to give to people who are in need. And you have brought meals and have supported and who have prayed and have come alongside. This is why it's so special to be a part of the kingdom. This is why it's special to add new members. Like we added this morning. It is a kingdom statement. You're making a statement that you're submitting yourself to the will of the king by following his word into partnership with the body of Christ and as we transition to communion, it's why it's so special that we take communion together every week. So when you hold the bread and you hold the cup, These air symbols of Christ broken body in his shed blood and through the recognition of this cross, which saves us from our sins and we do it together. This is a corporate meal that we say through this through the symbols at this point view that Christ died and shed his blood for our sins and through repentance from our ongoing sins in belief that this saves us is crises us. We're making a kingdom statement that were royal subjects of the king with a high calling from him to do battle because the true king has already won the war. So we're gonna go to battle again today. We're gonna go to battle right now. Let's do battle together against our sins. When have the ushers come forward and begin to start distributing the elements? If you're not a Christian, if you're not into the kingdom yet, please respond. Please come. We want you in the kingdom. We want you with us in this. If you are, then this this moment for us really becomes a renewal of the kingdom. Just like just like Saul says. It's like Samuel says, Let's go to Guildhall. Let's renew the kingdom. That's what we're doing. We're gonna renew the kingdom right now. We're gonna renew our commitment to the king, driven by the cherishing of the victory of the king on the cross. Notice what they did as the elements are past. And if you're a Christian, please participate with us. If you're not just passing by and listen, what do they do when they came to Guildhall? So there they sacrificed peace offerings before the Lord, they offered a sacrifice of peace before God and they all rejoiced. And in a kind of inverse way in communion, we celebrate that God has made his own peace offering for us through Christ. Listen to these words from Ephesians as the plate is being passed, it says. But now, in Christ Jesus, you who were once far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ. For he himself is our peace who has made us both one and has broken down in his flesh the dividing wall of hostility by abolishing the law of commandments expressed in ordinances that he might trade in himself. One new man in the place of the two so making peace and might reconcile us both to God in one body, through the cross there by killing the hostility. And he came and preached peace to you who were far off and peace to those who were near for through him. We both have access in one spirit to the father. Christ doesn't just preach peace. He accomplishes peace through the cross. Hold the bread, Hold the cup. We're gonna take him together. We're gonna renew the kingdom together. Use this time t go to God. I talked to him in your in your head with your thoughts. Talked him with your heart. Confess any sin that you have committed asking for the gracious forgiveness that he promises. Rest yourself in the in the gospel. Today we'll take it together.