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Is everyone really welcome?

A purple coloured graphical image of a movie projector, with a beam of light showing the name 'Jesus'.

We weeks sermon asks the question ‘Is everyone really welcome?’. Preaching from Nathan Gordon. Service led by Brian Dickson. This service is followed by Baptismal Class.

Sermon Notes

The Situation
– Movie Clip from Jesus Revolution & The Believers in Judea

1 The apostles and the believers throughout Judea heard that the Gentiles also had received the word of God. So when Peter went up to Jerusalem, the circumcised believers criticised himand said, “You went into the house of uncircumcised men and ate with them.”

Acts 11:1-3

The church pastor (Chuck) is confronted by the church elders, who are concerned about the new people attending the church.

  • “These kids are runaways from home.”
  • “They have medical issues.”
  • “They have drug problems.”
  • “They need to go home; they’re making our congregation uncomfortable.”
  • “This is a house of worship; the girls are not dressed appropriately.”
  • “They are messing up the carpet.”

The Complication
– Their concerns led to a parting of ways in the movie and an intense argument in Judea.

And when Peter was come up to Jerusalem, they that were of the circumcision contended with him,

Acts 11:2
  • In the movie, the elders eventually left the church because they did not like its new direction or the new people joining.
  • In the early church, the believers in Judea were disappointed with their leader, Peter, because he welcomed and shared fellowship with Gentiles (non-Jews)

Challenge – The elders in the movie were so preoccupied with their own likes and dislikes that they failed to see the bigger picture of God’s love and the Gospel for all people. Remember the gospel is bigger than our comforts and preferences, The kingdom of God is about souls that need a saviour.

The Celebration
– Clip 2 – Washing of the feet is symbolic of God’s welcome to all and for the church to do likewise

When they heard these things, they became silent, and they glorified God, saying, “Then God has also granted to the Gentiles repentance to life.”

Acts 11:18
  • The Pastor and other church members who initially were sceptical of welcoming change and new ideas into the church arrived at the place where they were willing to welcome everyone to Christ.
  • Likewise, after Peter’s explanation to the believers in Judea, they finally recognised the reality that God’s love and grace are available to both Jews and Gentiles. 

Challenge: Remember that God’s love and grace are sufficient for all people regardless of their background, ethnicity, or status. God shows no partiality, and we should strive to follow His example. Let us ensure we model God’s invitation to all people, not just those who look like us.

Questions

  1. Discuss how you would feel if the local church saw an influx of young people from various backgrounds and styles, like in the movie Jesus Revolution.
  2. Do you think Chuck (The Pastor) did the right thing by ignoring the advice of the elders not to welcome the new people into the church?
  3. Peter’s development and change of heart towards the Gentiles were highlighted during the sermon. Discuss how you may have had a change of heart towards people in the past or present because of the leading of God. (See Acts 11:4-13)
  4. Why is Peter’s revelation and confession in Acts 10:34-35 and 43 so significant? What does Paul say and celebrate in Ephesians 2:11-13? Why is this such good news for us? How does it inform our evangelism?
  5. In Acts 10, God welcomes Gentiles into the Kingdom family and instructs Peter to do the same. What is the significance of Gentiles welcoming Peter in and asking him to stay with them for a prolonged period of time (Acts 10:48)?

Service Details

Sermon Title: Is everyone really welcome?
Sermon Series: Jesus Revolution
Bible Reading: Acts 10:34-36 & 44-48, Acts 11:1-3
Preacher: Nathan Gordon
Worship Leader: Brian Dickson

Service Audio here

View Service Video here

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A purple coloured graphical image of a movie projector, with a beam of light showing the name 'Jesus'.

Is everyone really welcome?

We weeks sermon asks the question ‘Is everyone really welcome?’. Preaching from Nathan Gordon. Service led by Brian Dickson.