The sermon at church this morning was good because the pastor in his sermon was really highlighting some tensions. He was preaching about John 17, in which Jesus radically distinguishes his own from the world. Here are some points that the pastor made:
1. How do we engage the world and benefit from what it has to offer
(i.e., entertainment, money, etc.), without being taken over by the
world’s mindset? The pastor’s answer was continuing prayer and Bible
2. How can Jesus portray the world as evil and his disciples as set
apart from that, when his disciples themselves had flaws? The pastor
quoted a commentator who said that God is more interested in the
direction we are facing, even if we in our present state have flaws.
3. The pastor said that Christ can be at the center of our lives,
and yet we may still have things that don’t fit into that, such as
4. The pastor remarked that obeying Christ can seem burdensome, and
yet Christ being at the center of our lives brings us peace.
I was more impressed by the tensions that my pastor highlighted than
by his answers or resolutions. It’s not that I left the service feeling
inspired. It’s more that I left it thinking, “Good thing I’m not the
only one who asks questions like that.”